The Seagull


And brazenly, the seagull swoops
to the ground, flying in like a fighter jet,
with beady eyes, wings the colour of clouds.
Its clarion cry is pitched against the rumble
of some machine as it searches
among the desiccated fridges,
a rusted TV set, the rotting innards
of discarded plastic bags. The call it gives
is one of seaweed and kelp, the sting
of salt on the wind as the tide rushes in.
But here it is, on terrain thick with broken bottles,
sticks and mouldy fishing nets, the sickly stench
of waste a weight in the summer air.
It is one of life’s scavengers, the garbage can
of birds, ungainly looking, brash, and yet
can glide across the skyline with a grace
we cannot share, rooted as we are to the land.




@2014 Louise Hastings

Mother Earth

She is vast, beautiful like a constellation.
She and I are made up of the same stars.

If you could search her eyes
you would see a whole universe swirling there.

Being a part of her is like riding on a spaceship,
watching as the moon shines like a disco light.

Don’t try to harm her. She’ll become destructive.
Her storms are wild and restless.
Inside she is a fragile chemistry set.

I wish to hug her to me, keep her safe,
but she’s too big to wrap my arms across.

Her seas are endless. She holds life in a pulsating fist.
Her secrets carry on the wind. Her breath is my breath.


©2013 Louise Hastings

A belated Earth Day poem 🙂

Dying Star

Mountain lake

When the sun descends beneath winter clouds
the jackals circle in a deep wood
out where the frozen grass lays under frost light.

They pant hotly on the soil, pressed close
as we pass – saliva drips, a gash for a mouth –
seeking earth’s exposed nerve, riches, death.

These are the hours, all that might be lost,
hopes dissolving with the melting snow,
loss lingering in the dark like the hill fog.

They are laughing now; hear the callous disregard
while earth’s watchers, bathed in moonlight
remain the keepers of this dying star.



Copyright @Louise Hastings 2013

Moon Watching

Image from wikipedia

With a sigh the moon rises,
radiates through twilight mist,
caresses the enveloping night.

Beneath an oak tree
the stag’s steady breathing,
silhouetted by branch and light.

He lays one ear down flat,
hears the whirls and clicks
of bats switching overhead.

Close to wilderness he stands,
watchful as the waters swirl
in quiet eddies along the swollen brook.

He dips his antlers, rubs them
against the bark, waits
among the frost and tree-roots
until the stars are lost to morning
in the pale glow of sunrise.

Then he slips unnoticed
dripping shadows from his shoulders,
the sky widening, day glancing through.



Copyright 2012 Louise Hastings

Among the Tree Roots

Vincent Van Gogh ~ Study of a Tree

A few leaves
still fall
in the late
November sun
from the cirrus wings
of morning

like old ghosts
summoned from the darkness
and firelight,
or from the moon
whose gentle beam

shines down on us
between the twilights
and silver dawn.

A lullaby of solitude
is carried in the cry
of curlew and kittiwake,
and reaches down
among the tree roots

where once I slept
and dreamt of this.



Copyright 2012 Louise Hastings