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1974: When we were young…

@FrancesMForde  #FrancesMacForde  #POEM:ReUnion #PoeticSounds  #ReadingPoetry  #ExploringPossbilities  #SketchingInIreland  #Love&Romance  #Poetry

 

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FMF Art © 2011

An extract from my next poetry collection: ‘Exploring Possibilities’.

 

Before you returned, I slept in a bed

without creases.  Only pulled up the sheets

to straighten.  Now I love my wrinkles. 

Today following signs to Yield in Ireland,

I’m used to an Aussie Give Way while 

I put on red lipstick, tell you stories

of Africa when we were both young

 

and watch my words seduce you again.

You remember  young Chianti; full

round ruby red, peppered with berries. 

I remember a Hotel in Kitwe – Blue Nun. 

You say your taste has matured, you now

prefer an Aussie Shiraz; sharp, punchy,

still youthful – allowed to ripen with time.

 

Frances Macaulay Forde © 2003

@FrancesMForde  #FrancesMacForde  #BOOK:ExploringPossibilties  #POEM:BeforeYou  #Poetry  #Writing  #BOOK:SketchingInIreland  #LovePoetry   #RomanticPoetry  #Love  #Romance

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Has anyone else found scissors inspiring?  Never thought I would but as my favourite Professor said, the scissors chose me – I didn’t choose the scissors.  Very Zen.

To encourage you, here are the first & final versions of a poem written after 10 minutes of  Scissor contemplation & manipulation…

1st Version:

Cutting into my life.
Sharp edges that define.
Cruel severance.
Pointed.
Cold steel ‘ shiny, hard, distant.

Cream/grey plastic
warm, smooth, closer.

Why is?
Unnatural – closer?
Cut/pain ‘ endings,
Death/severance ‘ no going back.
No return ‘ finality.

Blades slicing together
teamwork ‘ severance.
Teamwork – blades;

actually touching.
Wiltshire Staysharp,
a warning of actuality;

‘THIS IS WHAT I AM’

engraved,
scoured into the hard steel,
un-erasable,
undeniable.

Circular pivot – the turning point;
the axis of action.

Inspired by these original words – I linked them to my (then, 2002) romantic dilemma: a man I loved 28 years before, contacted me on the net in 2002 – only I’d  sworn never to be fooled by love again!

Shear Love

You sever my reason,

shape my feelings with your

steely blades of perception.

 

You use the twin edges

of measured analysis

and practical application,

 

to rotate on my axis of impatience,

 

defining our new existence

with that swinging efficiency

of open – closed action. 

 

You manipulate me

with metal precision,

held in a warm moulded grip.

 

My paper reality

waiting for words

that define an Us.

 

Frances Macaulay Forde © 2002

Here’s My Challenge: 

Get a group of writing friends together & tell them to bring something odd.  

If no friends willing, do it by yourself…  I still use this exercise to kick-start a writing session & have loads of bits and pieces on my study desk.

Pile the odds & ends in the centre of the table (or desk).  

With eyes closed, mix them up & hover a hand over them.  

Still keeping eyes closed, pick one thing & take 10 minutes to write about it.    

Please share your results in my comments – I’d love to read them.

 

@FrancesMForde  #FrancesMacForde  #POEM:ShearLove  #Poetry  #PoetryChallengeNo1  #WorkshopWriting  #Writing  #Poems  #PoetryPostcards  #FMF:PoetryPostcards

 

 

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Dear Love Doubters,

I once dreaded Valentine’s Day so much I wrote a scathing article about it.  Then I changed my mind and wrote another one in 2005:

I now believe love can happen at any age.

Yes, I admit I was a doubter for a long, long time and hated – even dreaded Valentine’s Day thinking I’d used up all my chances when I was young and that being older meant love and romance shouldn’t be on my wish list… so it wasn’t!

Well, I am here to prove to you all that it still should be.  I am 54 and have just found romance again.  I’m not slim, rich or famous but I am in love!

I’ve finally married the man I was in love with (in Africa) and ran away from to Australia, 30 years ago.  

In Ireland, he found my name quite by accident (on the net), contacted me,  and although continents divided us, proceeded to systematically smash down my not-inconsiderable barriers.  He deleted all my negatives; wooed me with words, romance, flowers and finally, convinced me to try love again.

Our love story began in 1974.  I was 23 and living in Zambia, I fell madly in love with an Irish rock-n-roller who wasn’t quite ready for me.  Broken-hearted and determined to get as far away as possible, I caught a plane to Western Australia and wallowed in poetry. 

I met and just weeks later married a bronzed Aussie on (wait for it) Valentine’s Day – 14th February 1975, saw him through Uni, produced two beautiful children and divorced in the 80’s.  From then on I hated Valentine’s Day.

But I worked hard at any job I could get, loved my kids and kept busy and distracted from my divorcee label with part-time courses and community work.  I thoroughly enjoyed being in charge of me and secretly kept writing, even wrote a novel but never had the courage to let anyone see it.

Until 1998, I always treated writing as a side dish and love was never on the menu. I couldn’t even write about romance except to say that I dreaded all the hype of Valentine’s Day.  I didn’t want or expect romance in my life.

After seeing both my children through University, they left home happily stepping in their own living-dreams directions.  The empty nest loomed large. There was just me – only me to concentrate on.  So I threw away the safe cocoon of full-time Bank employment. 

At the age of 48 I took casual jobs and began my dream – a full-time degree in creative writing at University.  Surrounded by clever young things used to study, it was very hard. Not the writing – never the writing; but paying bills – you learn never to waste precious sheets of paper again.

But I didn’t give up – I kept going because my kids were so proud of me.  Romance still wasn’t necessary.  I was way too busy with myself to spend any time on or with anyone else. I didn’t recognise that I was busy romancing myself.    

After graduation I was taking my first tentative steps into a new writing career; it was January 2002.  My Irish rock-n-roller recognised my name on the net  – a million-to-one chance!  Both now over 50, he lived in Ireland and I was in Australia, neither of us looking for each other or love.

To prove the point, I sent him a scathing magazine article I had written filled with the hate of romantic hype.  Undeterred on Valentine’s Day he asked if I was accepting Valentines from old boyfriends and my still-youthful heart zinged, surprisingly pierced well and truly by Cupid’s arrow.  I was a terrified cliché! 

Three screamingly silent days later I admitted; “I have always believed that if I ever found my ideal love – a complete acceptance of all that I am; absolute loyalty, unconditional support, encouragement and equality, from someone who would accept and expect nothing less than the same from me… then also mix in intellect, curiosity, humour and chemistry… I WOULD GRAB LOVE – with both hands and never let go!

But I would have to be sure that it was real and not another illusion. An illusion created by my own idealistic and romantic pedestal-placing heart, projected onto a smooth talker; a charming, talented, kind and careful person who has lovely manners, is courteous and doesn’t want to hurt me… I’ve done that before and it didn’t work out!”

Phone lines and emails ran hot for six months between Ireland and Australia, while we explored the possibility of romance and dealt with doubts from both sides.

“I’m not your 23 year old with a ‘girl next door’ look, anymore… I’m over fifty and although I present well socially, once the wrapping is removed… It’s not that I don’t want to consider the possibility and I admit; since the surprising thought hit me, I have spent a lot of time completely distracted by that. But I don’t think I’m ready – I’m not a tease (I’m talking about actions, not flirty words) and can’t promise what I can’t deliver… this is all new…”

He climbed aboard his silver charger, brandished words with conviction, clothed in romance and arrived in Perth. Thirty years melted away when he touched me.  We married last year, surrounded by family and yachts.  I am in love again AND living my dream to write full-time! 

Recently I was asked to write a poem for a wedding.  Three years ago I couldn’t have written any poem about romantic love. Thankfully, my Irish rock-n-roller proved me very wrong. 

 

Frances Macaulay Forde © 2005

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@FrancesMForde  #FrancesMacForde  #UnchainedMelody  #Valentine’sDay  #ForeverLove  #LoveDoubters  #LoveRomance

 

 

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@FrancesMForde  #FrancesMacForde  #PoetryPostcards  #Poetry  #Postcards  #Love   #Romance  #Flowers

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@FrancesMForde  #FrancesMacForde  #PoetryPostcards  #Postcards  #Poems  #Cinquains  #ExploringPossibilities  #HiddenCapacity

 

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GroupShotsAFRICA2web

Color-gist

 

black and white

colored exposures

torn to pieces

carefully measured

 

moulded

miniature portraits

fruit thrown

into a large ceramic bowl

 

it was blue then

I found a bucket

without holes

poured hot water

and glue

 

something to bind

some lemon rind

for freshness

rose oil for fragrance

newly delicate and soft

 

stirred the pot

a witch’s brew

deliberately changing

my past and future of you

 

snowflakes of my tears

softened over

three days/years

 

stewed quietly

to mush

crushed

 

until I no longer

recognised

pieces of wedding,

parties anything

 

dresses I wore

to make myself more

beautiful for you

 

a fleeting betrayal

of a heart filled

with love

 

with lies

happiness arrows – spies

your other women

who were my friends

 

thorns on the rose of my myth

 

 

Frances Macaulay Forde @ 2003

 

@FrancesMForde  #FrancesMacForde  #POEM:Color-gist   #Romance  #Poems  #UnrequitedLove

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