These long summer days
wait by drowsy trees,
an empty lane, a signpost
which points towards low clouds
and a livid purple sky.

I can’t breathe
while the storm vibrates this way –
a sky on fire,
shapes and silhouettes
in the lightning flash,
shadows beating against the rain.

Then a sudden break in the clouds –
a swallow dips and dives, spins
a pirouette –
and a heart which feels so light
you think it must belong to someone else.
So much lost. So much yet to gain.



@Louise Hastings 2014


In the Hush


In the distance the land and sky collide,
the wind picks up, the night closes in
and I’m lost in the slow tumble down,
the fear of it, the mildew, dust,
the shadows in the deep reaches
of dream sleep, and all fades to black…

I’ve lived my life thinking this
was all there was of it –
shapes in the dark,
reflections from a mirror,
times of illusion, times of loss –
nothing was ever planned.

A voice speaks inside my head:
‘Here is your starting point.
Here it all begins’
and I know I’ve travelled far
having walked part-way before
by the trees, their leaves caught
in a silver moon and a net of starlight.

But now the rain pit-patters
off the windows, the clouds
lower like a lid, and the truth
stays just beyond me out of reach.
I turn over with no other thought
but for your breathing form –
the hush in the air, the birdsong,
the salty taste on your lips.

©2013 Louise Hastings



Image by Louise

Again the blossom
foams along the fence
and sparrows in the eaves
chatter, bright-eyed
against the skim of blue.

And while you sleep,
turning as the Earth turns,
rotating in an eye-blink, a petal falls
like a longed for touch of breath
brushing by your cheek.

The garden seems crowded
now, cluttered with sunlight,
a smudge of purple, wings
and trees, a ripple
on the surface of the pond.

And you know this colour well,
the way the light
falls across the water,
how it leaves you breathless
and asks you what you’re waiting for.


©2013 Louise Hastings


I wish these dreams were solid.
The answers would lie before me,
easy questions,
easy as counting matchsticks
in the dark. Setting them ablaze
would warm me, the orange flicker
cupped gently in my hands.
I can feel them try, tilting and unstable,
untouchable between this uncertainty
and real. They do not come from logic
but from another place, carved
out of starlight, sparkling and blue.
Eventually they will fade into nothing.
The left-brained wolf dismisses them,
fears the solitude, the emptiness in the wind.


Copyright 2012 Louise Hastings


The Isles of Shoals 1912 Childe Hassam

Who is she
this woman of silk
outlined among the rocks?
She sits perched
like a muffled silhouette
some distance off
in this silent, deserted spot
where the sun throws its fire
on the water and copper
licks at the shore.
The tide will stir and rise
in endless ebbs and flows,
the azure of the sky
the roof of her world
when she dreams,
absorbed, fragile as china cups.



© 2012 Louise Hastings