Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Brilliant news! A new writing group is to launch in early 2017 in Cork. More details to follow.

Sunday, 18 December 2016

A bully is able to continue with their horrible behaviour because they have found the perfect way of taking the voice from their victims and muting their words. SPEAK OUT AND BE HEARD.

Monday, 12 December 2016

I have just read the poem The Night Before Christmas. It reminded me of the excitement these weeks leading up to Christmas brought when I was a child. It was a joyous time of year with a sense of expectation and thankfulness in the air. It's a sense that never leaves and emerges in these final weeks before we bid good bye to the year in a flurry of feasting and gifting. In reality I think it all means that we are never too old to enjoy Christmas.
Three weeks holiday from college. All homework completed, Christmas is coming. Looking forward to returning to 'Merlin's Keep'.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016


This quote was sent to my by someone who was bullied and managed to get through the experience. It rings so true.

      "When a toxic person can no longer control you, they will try to control how others see you. This misfortune will feel unfair but stay above it, trusting that the other people will eventually see the truth like you did"

      Thank you to the person who sent this. 

Friday, 2 December 2016


I am running an anti bullying campaign on my fb page of LitWrits and my regular Facebook page. There are many of us who have experienced bullying. It can happen at any time, any place.
Often an accusation of bullying is not taken seriously or ignored because no one can believe it of that person. This is because the bully is very adept at hiding behind a cloak of respectability and will very rarely show their true colours to anyone other than their victim.
There is no glory attached to being bullied nor making an accusation of bullying. In fact it does take courage and the victim has probably taken a long, lonely journey to get to the stage of admitting what is going on to someone else. If someone you know makes such an accusation and you find it hard to believe please take the time to find out the truth. You could save a victim a lot of further pain and humiliation.

Wednesday, 16 November 2016


What is the definition of a bully?
A coward.

All those who bully do it in secret, with their cronies, out of sight. It is a cowardly thing to do. A bully is so yellow that when they know they are being watched they are charm itself. When out of sight they revert to their nasty ways.

When we think of bullies we think of the school playground the stolen lunch money, the menace lurking in the shadows waiting for their victim to pass. But bullies are not only children. Adults can bully, and do. They are clever enough to convince themselves they are right and that their victim is indeed the perpetrator.

Exclusion fro groups, being treated differently and with less respect than everyone else with racist comments like "You do not understand because you are from another country,". These are all forms of bullying.

Bullies lie. They are convincing liars with the ability to smarm their way out of their crimes and point the finger of blame on someone else.

This is Beat the Bully Month.

Saturday, 5 November 2016

Hi Everyone.
     Thank you all for looking at my page while I have been absent. I have gone back to college to study art, craft and design which is time consuming. I have some new work to add to the page but is in need of further editing.
     It's bonfire night in the uk tonight. Take care and don't forget to check the bonfires for hedgehogs before setting light.
     Have a great evening.

Monday, 26 September 2016

It is with great sadness that I announce the passing of Jim O'Leary. A man of great achievement. A poet and a great humanitarian.
Tribute to Jim O'Leary
In the months of his illness Jim wrote a series of poems of which I was honoured
with several others to have been sent via e mail. This is one of them.
Please respect the copyright of Jim O'leary.
Jim's style of writing changed considerably throughout this time and showed his optimism, his heartbreak his courage.
I owe him so much. He helped me find my writing voice. I met him when he took the group at the Ballincollig Resource Centre and the time when the group was at the White Horse under theme of Ballincollig Scribblers. Happy times.
Is this the end,…
Sleep is the end
Of every day, a waking
Possible but not assured
And the morning brings new joy;
Down in that space
Where life seems lost,
A struggle-world whispers
That the all is not despair,…
…Clustering, friends, close
To that turmoil that prevails,
Shake up a sinking soul,
The desperation of a doomsday,
And a light, a blue-moon light,
Spells courage to engage with life,…
…This end will not prevail for now.
© Jim O’Leary

Monday, 22 August 2016

Home From Hols

Back home and finding it hard to get into the old routine of washing, ironing, dog walking (love them to bits), hoovering, cooking, gardening. I believe that after two weeks of being waited on at every turn, of someone cleaning your room every morning and evening, food served without a question (and very edible), entertainment a walk along the hall, there should be offered as part of the holiday a slow weaning off this lifestyle and a gradual introduction to the boring routines of being home. Maybe then the first few days of being home after having such a fabulous time would not be such a shock to the system.

Sunday, 31 July 2016

Ode To The Sea

Ode To The Sea
A Poem by Patricia Wood

The steady beat of the ocean's heart,
Pounding, swashing rhythmically,
Intermingled with the melancholy, distant call of the gulls,
A sound so sad, so solitary, Near and yet far.
Those gulls of prey
Circling, hovering in the cloud-filled sky
Seeking food.
The life from the sea.
O deep endless waves,
Why tread your path of heartbreak and destruction?
Your revenge for your irreplaceable loss to ma?
Or is it a plea from your lonely wintry sands
For the sun, the breeze, and the people who have deserted you?

Think not of our misgivings
As they are as essential to us
As the daily ebb of the tide is to you.
Think of those long, summer days
When the sun blazed through the clear, yet hazy sky,
And children ran barefoot through your warm amber sands;
When your gentle, even tempered waves cooled their hot bodies,
When people lay on tattered towels, hiding behind multi-coloured shades, clad in pretty beachwear and plastic straw hats.
When laughter rang through your silent, friendly inviting beaches
Where flasks of drink, tea cups, bags were in abundance
Those young and old lovers walked hand in hand
And the cool breeze caressed the waters.

Such happy times with lovely memories,
Never far from our minds.
Remember the happy things, you vengeful thunderous sea,
As you pound impatiently against the stony shores.
Sen back your fiery steeds of foam.
Beware, you shores,
Of the waves that hope to engulf your sands.

Be patient, be calm,
O mighty waters,
Your time is gone
But your time shall come again.
©️Patricia Wood/Lorraine Poulter  1978

Today-the day before the bank holiday

What a day!!!!
I had the whole day planned. A few hours in my Shed writing, a walk with the dogs, maybe a bit of gardening. So far the only bit achieved was an afternoon walk with the dogs. The rest of the day was lost to the dilemma of how to cope with no water entering the house. That's right. About 2pm we discovered no water was coming through the taps. After the initial panic we contacted a local plumber who announced on inspection that the pump was fine but there could be a problem with the electrics, which he was unable to sort.
Who do you call on a Sunday afternoon without any hope of contacting anyone to come out until Tuesday because of the Bank Holiday tomorrow.
I put out a note on Facebook for anyone local to contact us with details of anyone who could help. Four hours later no one has replied, probably gone away for the weekend.
So took out Golden pages and found a 24 hour plumber-electrician.He cannot come out until tomorrow.
So a trip to Aldi to stock up on water and some milk for a much needed coffee.

Saturday, 30 July 2016


I read somewhere that most ordinary of people are capable of the most extraordinary actions. As we all presume to be ordinary we are therefore have the ability to find the extraordinary which is in us all. Be special and strive to find that extraordinary within every day.

Pause for thought

We can never take people at face value. We do not know their story and even when we are aware of their story it is from their point of view. In making friendships we learn to accommodate the other person's failings in the hope that they will accommodate ours. We overlook the disappointments in the relationship because they alone do not make up the friendship. Give, take, compromise and a lot of love bring us to our friends. With luck we get it right and they stay.

Friday, 29 July 2016

I am writing this because I can never work out whether or how this situation came about. Last year I invited two separate friends to meet up one afternoon. Both declined with excuses of other things to do. Fair enough. I later discovered that they had lied to me and actually met up without me. I was hurt and could not understand why the need for the deceit. They could not understand my reaction to their deceit and one went so far as to explain to me that I did not understand what had happened because "I was not Irish". Neither apologised nor considered they needed to apologise for the deceit and expect me to do so for getting cross with the situation. I did apologise for my part but they did not reciprocate. In fact they were quite happy for me to shoulder the blame for what happened when in fact I was the victim-not a word I  like but it is all there is. The disagreement has never solved itself. The friendships are broken and lost.
I don't think I will ever understand what basically happened. But it made the basis for a story, The Grand High Witch.

Patricia Wood

The previous two poems were written when I was still at school with dreams of becoming a writer. They were published in a book called Modern Poets 1978. Life intervened with many personal demons haunting my existence for many years which prevented me from pursuing a career in in my first love-writing.

Why Are Seasons Seasons? by Patricia Wood

Why do trees stand bare in winter,
Looking forlorn amidst the wind and snow/
Why do flowers die in winter
Leaving room for weeds to grow?
Why do birds migrate in winter
To sunny land?
Why do ponds freeze in winter
So that no lilies or fish may be seen?
Why are the streets so bare in winter
Except at Christmas?
Why does the sky cloud up in winter
To hide the watery sun?

When spring comes, why are people so busy
In tidying their homes?
When spring comes, why to buds on the trees shoot,
Coating them in a green blanket?
When spring comes why do flowers grow
In colours bright and grey?
When spring comes why do birds sing
Filling the air with music?
When spring comes, why do clouds thin
To open up a blue sky?
©️Patricia Wood 1978

Shadows of the Mind by Patricia Wood

The Party was over
I was alone in the dark empty street.
No lights were on,
No cars drove past,
No lights were on in the houses.
Just me, alone, in the eerie stillness of the night.
Each step I took was echoed instantaneously,
As i someone was behind me.
I stopped dead, then looked behind.
There was no one there.
I was suddenly aware that a thick darkness had surrounded me.
There was no way out!
I turned and started walking, only at a faster pace.
Those echoing footsteps lingered on.
I felt eyes watching every step I took.
I looked frantically to see what was there.
Suddenly I realised my footsteps were accompanied by some shuffling.
I looked and saw the ghostly figure of a man loom up.
Terrified I turned and ran,
For fear of what lurked in those shadows had taken over me.
But how was I to know that these were only
Shadows of the mind?
©️Patricia Wood 1978 in the book Modern Poets

Saturday, 23 July 2016

Satnav by Pam Ayres

This little poem has been sent to me from a friend un the U.K. It is by the lovely Pam Ayres. Last year my family and I went to France and had a wonderful time. However on landing from the ferry the Satnav failed. Took us 2 hours to get out of Cherbourg. We bought a new one. However this satnav proved it was no better. On driving from Paris to Cherbourg to go home we set the satnav to avoid toll roads. We had six hours to make what is normally a 2-3 hour drive. It led us through the countryside and we saw some beautiful villages. All the time it was counting down the kilometres. It was coming up to 40 kms from Cherbourg and instead of seaside houses we were in the middle of areas and acres of ploughed fields with not a living creature in sight. Not even a rabbit. Realizing we had a problem we switched off the satnav and continued to drive. About 20 minutes later we came across a road sign. Tours 23 and Angers 24 . We were 350kms from Cherbourg! And there was no denying we were going to miss the ferry home. Anyway it soured our opinion of the reliability of them.

Satnav – A new poem by Pam Ayres

I have a little Satnav, it sits there in my car. 
A Satnav is a driver's friend it tells you where you are. I have a little Satnav, i've had it all my life. It's better than the normal ones, my Satnav is my wife.
It gives me full instructions, especially how to drive "It's sixty miles an hour", it says, "You're doing sixty five". It tells me when to stop and start, and when to use the brake And tells me that it's never ever, safe to overtake.
It tells me when a light is red, and when it goes to green It seems to know instinctively, just when to intervene. It lists the vehicles just in front, and all those to the rear. And taking this into account, it specifies my gear.
I'm sure no other driver, has so helpful a device. For when we leave and lock the car, it still gives its advice. It fills me up with counselling, each journey's pretty fraught. So why don't I exchange it, and get a quieter sort?
Ah well, you see, it cleans the house, makes sure I'm properly fed. It washes all my shirts and things, and keeps me warm in bed!
Despite all these advantages, and my tendency to scoff, I only wish that now and then, I could turn the bugger off.

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Rainy Days by Dr S. K. Sudhinde

I first joined a writing group in Ballincollig in 2014 under the wonderful guidance and encouragement of Jim O'Leary. While attending the group a shy doctor from India attended. He wrote poems that were personal to him about his faith and love, and developed his own personal philosophy. I have just found a copy of one of his poems called Rainy Days which I shall write down here.
Rainy Days by Dr S. K. Sudhinde
Frequent rainy days, best days for respite
Such days need love, making takin are despite
Feelings of gladness, enjoyment to abide
All petty works always to keep aside.
Drizzling rains, air makes quieter,
Generates affection, love to endear
Heart to heart, eye to eye unclear
Making intimacy more easier
Pains, agony, fear not there
Attain happiness, ecstasy as clever
Have fruitful humorous life
With friends, faithful wife
Enjoy taking, gossiping each other
Making life as Eden garden ever
Enjoy life here on Earth
Love, faithfulness, no dearth
©️Dr S. K. Sudhinde

Monday, 18 July 2016

Some pointers on finding an agent

Lots of handy hints from Carol Blake at the Bantry Literary Festival today about the search for a literary agent.

  1. Research the websites of the agent you are looking at. Check that they are interested in your genre of writing.
  2. Most agencies will refuse to represent books of short stories
  3. There are only a few agencies that handle academic writing.
  4. Turn down publishers who do not use agents
  5. There is no standard contract so if going ahead without an agent join the Society of Authors who will read through the contract and place any offer in context of others. 
  6. Prepare a platform-web page, social media, Facebook
  7. Join a genre group such as Romance Novel Association (R.N.A.), Crime Writers Association (C.W.A), Historical Writers Association (H.W.A)
  8. Read submission guidelines carefully and use them
  9. Send material requested only-synopsis, first 2-3 chapters
  10. No gimmicks
  11. Synopsis is a summary of the book, the main character and where the story is going. Include the ending. Mention the genre, plot, any social media used by author to promote their work, any competition shortlisting or wins
  12. Agents read slowly
  13. Spell the agent's name correctly
  14. Do not pitch at a literary festival or over the breakfast table
  15. Mention a series of books if written
  16. Edit, edit, edit.
  17. Do not re submit if rejected
  18. E mail to follow up a submission
  19. Mention submissions to other agencies
  20. Inform them if accepting another agency's offer

Sunday, 17 July 2016

The Theredin Sagas

Thorde and Mayodin
A Short Story
Lorraine Poulter

      Thorde stretched. His arms reached skywards, his mouth gaped in a cavernous yawn, showing every one of those evenly spaced teeth. Most of his face was hidden by a tangled white beard; a long thick mane of hair that smothered the flesh of his lower flesh of his round stubborn face. The flesh taht lived above the beard was ruddy, dry, red and around his eyes was wrinkled right up to his forehead. Beneath his horned helmet was a shock of equally grey hair as full and knotted as his beard.

       He shook his head and stirred his sluggish mind into wakefulness. He rapidly scanned the stony rock strewn path that wound it way around the desolate mountainside. It was clear.
        A cold wind swept past, filled with flakes of snow. He rubbed his frozen hands, wishing his pride had allowed him to wear the wooollen underwear his wife was keen for him to wear. “Don’t want you catching cold,” she said. He brushed her aside.
       “The battle will keep me warm.” Thorde said. bracingly. It appalled him to think that should he fall at the hands of Mayodin this day, what indiginities his body would be subjected to. And his spirit could not contain the dread of laughter from his enemy at the sight of winter woollies beneath his chain mail.

      The wind howled, carrying on its crest the sounds of the voices in the village below. The cold, stiff armour that covered his chilled body reminded him why he was here. Above his head eager carrion vied for his bones.

      Thorde raised his eyes and before him the countenance of Mayodin appeared. His red hair and beard ever red against the dull blue grey of the mountain. Like Thorde, being of the same, if distant lineage, he was short and round. His belly covered in silvered armour, carrying aloft in one hand a sword and in the other a shield.

      Thorde froze and bent his knees. He fixed Mayodin with a stare, eyes meeting across the rift of battle, their beings poised to fight. As was the tradition, they had braved the wicked mountain road, had climbed the path of treachery to meet head to head, face to face.

       “I see you, Mayodin. “ Thorde roared above the wind. “Are you ready to meet your fate?”
       “I see you too, Thorde,” Mayodin called back.

      They stood rigid, fixed on each other. The breath escaping in icy clouds. Thorde raised his shield yet did not move. His heart though stout pounded in his chest. The cold sweat of fear was not upon him yet its scent was over him. He did not fear death. He had prepared to meet with the Gods of Oldin in the days previous. He had made his peace with them and had been sent on his way with their blessing. He feared not the act of dying. He feared dishonour.

        For years previous Mayodin and Thorde had traded verbal swipes and small incursions across the borders of their lands. Both defying the other, goading each other into the arena of war. Yet neither fully prepared to take that final step into combat. 

     Thorde bit his dry lip, his face partially hid by the helmet that covered his head and chin wondering how things had come to this. 

       Unhappy as neighbours, Thorde and Mayodin had provoked each other with petty incursions and theft of lands. Mayodin stole and acre in teh South while Thorde took an hectare. So it had gone on for centuries. Occasionally they had reached the point of all out war, and instead of trading wounds they traded insults. Many. 

      Mayodin was ill tempered and proud. He ruled his kingdom with tantrums and stomping of feet. His own designated kingdom, crowned upon him on his exile from Theredin as a child. He was the son of Grimm, the then king of Theredin. His rule was marked be war, by vile cruelty to anyone who showed or uttered any dissent. When Thorde as a young adult, the prince in waiting took the chance to usurp Grimm, he wasted no time. In a virtulally bloodless coup, Grimm and his family were driven from Theredin to the Outlands, beyond the murky, swamplands of Theredin. A banishment severe and yet not so severe to the mind of a dwarf. For indeed, despite the bleakness of the land, the harshness of the weather, it was a land rich in mining. Mining, the life soure of every dwarf. Beneath the treacherous fields lay a wealth of precious jewels and minerals ready to be mined. 

        Years of mining, years of wealth, of taming the wilderness that was their home did litte to appease the anger and humiliation of the manner in which they arrived.

        Mayodin was a creature of business. The business of war held no interest for him and he knew little on how to conduct himself in these matters. His rule was governed by endless compromise, by the lack of fire in his blood to defend all her owned and all his people owned. He was spoiled by wealth. He could buy all he needed and he did with much more besides. 

      However his court were not of his thinking. They sought revenge on Grimm’s departure from Theredin. They were fired by the rage of their forefathers, now either dead or too old to carry through their actions. The younger court demanded their idle king became the dwarf he was destined to be. Even at the cost of his own life.

      The removal of Grimm, with no other family, left Thorde in line to the throne of Theredin. And he took the crown with both hands and placed it firmly on his own head. The king.

       Here they were. Both caught in the power of the moment, both defiant, both rapt in their prize of winning. For the first time, they were here to battle to the very end. Only one could live.

      Thorde raised his sword. He felt its weight to the point of his arms ached. Neither moved.

      A shoal of rocks fell from the mountain to the path. Dust rose and shroued them in coarse gloom and for a minute neither had sight of each other. A flash of hope crossed both minds that maybe the other had run from the line of battle. A hope that was dashed on clearing.

        Mayodin lunged forward. His voice screaming. His foosteps thundering over the path as though the tiny chap was weighed by something greater, more physical than the task ahead. “For honour!” he roared as he bore down on Thorde.

       Thorde caught the weight of the blow with his own sword, not without buckling beneath the strength and power that bore down on him.  The impact reverberated down his arms and body. 

      The clash of their swords brought a flash of brilliant blue light to streak across the sky.

      He pushed Mayodin back, who stumbled yet  quickly regained his balance.  “The honour is mine!” Thorde called back. Thorde swung his sword, crashing against Mayodin’s breast plate. Another flash of light lit up the sky on impact. Mayodin gasped and buckled. He straightened and quickly thrust his sword at Thorde’s helmetted head. Another crash of blue light.       

      Their footsteps boomed and rumbled across the valley below where rain fell heavily. The villagers gathered their young ones and ran inside. 

     Thunder roared and lightning streaked.

Theredin Sagas-Thorde and Mayodin ©️Lorraine Poulter 2016




Thursday, 14 July 2016

Bantry Literary Festival

Just found among my e mails the tickets for Meet the Literary Agent at the Bantry Literary Festival. Big surprise as I had forgotten about it. Looks like we are going. Yay!
A new short story "Thorde the Terrible" will be ready for reading by Sunday. The tale of a pair bickering rulers who are forced to face their most dreaded enemies in battle-each other.

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

Hi Everyone
     Good to be back on the internet and the page is back to normal. Been busy in the mean time with Merlin's Keep and a short story. Soon to be on the blog page. Thanks for checking the page. Your support is much appreciated.

Monday, 20 June 2016

The Incoming Storm-A Short Story by Lorraine Poulter

The Incoming Storm
     It is rare for someone to enter your life bringing with them hope of all things the future may hold. You look to them to fill the gaps left open by another no longer there. You impose on them the charge of making good all the bad in your life. They may not even know you have done this, they may close their eyes to it, they may simply ignore it. Others will step away with the charge on the friendship being too great for them to bear. While in others, the charge imposed is not enough.
        Joy had never known the latter. She attracted those who were shallow, inept, selfish. Time after time she was taken in by false promises, and time after time the strength they gave her was ripped from her as each one left.
       “Will you ever learn?” Mary Belle said in her thin scratchy yet commanding voice. She squinted up at Joy from the comfort of her rocking chair with bright blue eyes, set so small and round in her tiny face. The tone of admonishment was no lessened by her determination to say her piece which as far as she was concerned was long overdue. “They come, they stay and they always go.” She leant forward and pulled from a carpet bag beside her chair a piece of knitting and started to unravel it.
          “He was a charmer, alright,” Joy said, standing at the top of the porch with her hands on her hips. The watery sun glinted through the bare branches of the trees. Spring was heading into summer and many trees had still to make their leafy appearance. “Company for those cold nights,”
        “Not any more,” Mary Belle said. “You are too forgiving. Let him go and find another.”
       Joy inwardly smiled. She knew if old fly-by-night were to turn up she would take him back immediately. She gave a shudder. A random icy blast whisked over her feet and chilled her bare ankles through to the bone. Her toes curled with the cold. “There’s a storm brewing,” she said, still gazing into the woodland still bereft of green.
       Mary Belle chuckled. “No doubt. You’ve a good sense of the weather yet you wear sandals in the snow and summer dresses in the rain. You are more likely to catch your death than a prime man,”
       Joy turned sharply. “Jerome was a good man,” she said sharply.
      “He left you as suddenly as the others. Upped and was gone.” Mary Belle said viciously. She shivered and pulled her cardigan close. She added in a softer tone. “Beffore get inside. I’ll put on the kettle,”
       “I should be going,” Joy said. She was used to Mary Bell’s acid tongue. Today though she had no desire to be holed up alone in the storm with it. 
     Mary Belle was disappointed. “You are welcome to stay. I won’t have it said I turned a friend out into the storm,”
      Darkness of cloud descended over them while large droplets fell from the skies. Joy ushered Mary Belle inside just as lightning crackled and lit up the room.
      “My knitting!” Mary Belle wailed.
      “I’ll get it for you,”
      Blue lightning filled the room once more and rain collided with the roof beating out a collision of monotone tapperings.
    “No. Leave it.” Mary Belle said. “I was making a jumper for your Jerome,”
    “You were unravelling it,”
     “He’s gone, isn’t he?” Mary Belle said. “It’s my beau wool for you. One day you’ll keep a man long enough for me to finish it,” Mary Belle said. “Put a log on the fire, Joy. I promised you a cup of tea.” Mary Belle wrapped a towel around the handle of the kettle and carried it to the sink. Water spurted from the corroded taps and hissed as it hit the warm iron of the kettle. She gazed outside. Rain fell like a veil of water so dense that it obscured her view of the trees and her garden. She loved the rain. More so that the sun which she always claimed drained her with its warmth. She loved the smell of the dust that settled into the air before rain and the momentary freshness that lingered once it had stopped. A heaviness clung to her chest. Her heart was in fine form. It was more of a sense, a sense that this rain would not cleanse but annihilate.
       “Bother! She exclaimed. Water poured over the lid of the kettle and splashed into the sink soaking her sleeves and hands. 
     “You ok?” Joy’s voice called to her. 
     “It’s nothing,” she replied, wiping her hands on her cardigan before takng the kettle through to the hook that hung over the fire. When she had done she turned to Joy and said. “Tell me I have not made a mistake in asking you to stay?” Her thn frame never stood more sure although there was the undoubted tone of uncertainty in her voice.
       Joy grinned. “How long?”
       “Maybe longer than I care to admit,” she said. “Can I sit?”
      “It’s your house,”
      Mary Belle seated herself into the wooden rocking chair by the fire. She made a small groan as the ache n her back tore through her.
       Joy moved.
      “Stay. I have arthritis of the spine. Itll pass.”
      “You never said.”
      “We all have our little secrets,” Mary Belle said. “We have nowhere to go and no one to call. Tell me yours.”
       Lightning briefly streaked the room. Both started as the blue flash made shadows of them before retreating to the dull light of the fire.
       Mary Belle grinned. “Do you fear the storm?” she asked seeing the flames of ear in Joy’s eyes and not entirely unrelishing the moment.”
      Joy wrapped her thing cardigan close and said nothing.
      “There’s been talk of the incoming storn for months. They say it is unlike any other we have seen. They say we will never be the same again once it has passed,”
      “Tales of old women!” Joy scoffed.
     “Tales of old witches!” Mary Belle said. From he side of the cushion she removed a long white clay pipe wth a small pot.
     “Is that not-?”
     “Jenna’s pipe. She gave it to me the night she died. Along with those shoes.” She pointed to a pair of old pointed velvet shoes in which the toes curled round. They were heavily worn and their red colour was worn. “Played havoc with my bunions,”
©️The Incoming Storm Lorraine Poulter 2016


Friday, 17 June 2016


Merlin's Keep and The Grand High Witch are available for reading in as collections on google+. Feel free to browse. Happy reading.

Not Fantastic Works of Art, But Fantastic Works of Fun

©️Lorraine Poulter 2016

                                                              ©️Hannah Poulter 2016

     Our art teacher asked us the bring in a large empty canvas this week. She supplied the paint, the sawdust, cardamon post, rice, foil, doilies. Had a great time.

Thursday, 16 June 2016

An Early Hallowe'en Children's Story by Lorraine Poulter

                                                          Without A Clue
       Gregor folded his arms and stamped his foot crossly. “I shall not,” he said with more determination than should be available to one so small.
       “One teeny weeny bite,” implored his mother for the ninetieth time.
      “No,” he said glaring at her.
      She smiled that patient smile which really meant all her patience was spent. She was tall, willowy, with an hour glass figure wrapped in her ragged evening gown. Tattered frills hung from closely fitted sleeves that led down to her long red painted nails. Her long black hair with white fringe fell about her shoulders and draped down her back in loose curls. Her skin was whiter than white, her black eyes framed in lashes unnaturally long. Stunning, beautiful, terrifying. “Your father will be home soon,” She offered. “He won’t be happy to hear you won’t eat,”
       Gregor twisted his face away from her. He was short, stocky with dark hair and matching black eyes. His lips were ruby red against his pale chubby cheeks. He was the image of his father. 
       “You know what night this is?”
        “Yes. And I’m not going.”
        She sighed. Her main bargaining chip was lost. “Well, then eat your tea, and go to your room.”
       Gregor did not move. “I mean it,” he said. “I’m not going. Not now or never.”
      “But why not? You look so handsome, darling,” she cooed. “It’s the one night you can go out and be part of things.”
      Gregor grimaced. “I have no one to go with,” he said sadly. “And it’s all your fault,”
      She rushed over to him and embraced him. He did not yield to the embrace nor did he resist. “We will go together,” she said.
      Outside the darkest of nights had descended over them. The moon hung shyly over the horizon, full, plum and very round. Bats swept over their heads, while the howls of the dying echoed through the empty streets. 
      “I’m not going, ma,” he said sullenly pulling away.
     “Now what?” she asked.
     “I’m not going because I haven’t a clue,”
     She paused and looked at her child bewildered. “About what?”
     “I haven’t a clue,”
     “Can’t you tell me?” She asked concerned. 
      “I haven’t a clue.” He repeated, his agitation growing.
      “If you can’t tell me in words, can you find another way to tell me?”
      “There are witches out tonight with their familiars, warlocks looking for trouble, there are werewolves seeking their next meal, ghosts rising from their graves, skeletons walking by magic.”
       His mother smiled. “You are a vampire, my dear. More feared than any of these low level creatures. You should stand proud above them. We do stand above them all.”
       “I cannot go out without a clue, without my bestest friend, Artemis Cloo.” He cringed at the mention of the name. It was sure to rouse her fury. “Please dig him out for me,”
       “Artemis Cloo?” she asked. “A clue?”,
      “You said I was never to mention his name. But I miss him. Please give me Artemis to take with me and I will join the others for this Hallowe’en.”
       Unable to resist, she reached into the coffer and pulled out a hairy legged spider in a small jar clouded by cobwebs. A shiver shook her being. “His poison will lay you low for weeks. Use him wisely,” she said. She handed the jar to Gregor. 

      “Artemis,” Gregor beamed. “Thank you. I will take good care of him,” He stroked the glass jar and if it were possible Artemis smiled back. Gregor ran to the door and looking back said, “Happy Hallowe’en, ma,”
Without A Clue©️Lorraine Poulter

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

The Weather

The most talked about subject in all languages must be the weather. And why not? It is the most changeable and unpredictable of nature's creations. Take today for instance. I awoke this morning to lovely warm sunshine. Twenty minutes after breakfast it was over cast, then it rained with a huge plunge in temperature as to warrant the retrieval of the winter jumpers. Five minutes later it was so hot that the winter jumpers were feeling decidedly over dressed. It's been like this all day.
No wonder we talk about this feature of our world and no wonder it never ceases to amaze us with its twists and turns.

Monday, 13 June 2016

Shadows of the Past- A Complete Short Story by Lorraine Poulter

Shadows of the Past
     Veronica shook her head slowly. Had the past not taught her how to deal with what was to come? She doubted it.
      She clutched her handbag, staring intently out of the train window, looking and not seeing the sun glinting off the car window screen below, not seeing the blurred streaks of green as the train sped through fields. Her eye intent on not seeing the friendly gentleman opposite, not wishing to be drawn into conversation. There was too much to consider without the distraction of a stranger, who in a moment may not be so strange.
        She could see her reflection in the window and was startled to see how in the double glass of the window how different she looked. There was an unusual paleness to her dark hair, a youthful gleam to her face and a sparkle of vitality in her eyes she had not seen for years. She looked like herself and yet not like herself. Her hand tentatively touched her cheek. The skin felt dry and creased, just as she had seen that morning in the bathroom mirror, before lavishing on her skin moisturizer. She looked again to her reflection and tipped her thick rimmed glasses askew. She hurriedly replaced them while scanning the train to see if someone had seen. She caught sight of her reflection in the window once more. The endearing, smiling face looked back at her. It so reminded her of herself from many years past. The perfect white teeth, the freshness of youthfulness before bursting into maturity.
       Veronica blinked.
       The face beamed happily back at her.
       She turned to the empty seat beside her. Not even the seat across the train was occupied. She realized with a fluttering heart that other than the guard reading the paper and eating a sandwich, that she was quite alone with the handsome gentleman opposite. Her glance flickered past his softly chiselled features, catching her reflection in his cobalt blue eyes before looking rapidly away.
      “Have you forgotten, Veronica?”
      She started. His voice was velvet, with undertones of reeds. He could have sung the words no more beautifully than he spoke them. “Have we met?”
      He smiled. A warm embracing smile. It lit up his face not with passion but compassion. She instantly felt its warmth wash over her, with a very tiny skip of her heart.
     “It has been a very, very long time,” he said smoothly, confidentially. His hand moved across the table.
       She instantly withdrew her. She glared at him. There was something. They had not touched yet she felt he had taken it as his own. “Who are you?”
       “Gerald Armonde.”
      The name sent a shiver down her spine. She knew that name. It was a name that evoked a memory that was yet to be remembered.
      “Veronica?” he said.
     “My name. I did not give it to you.”
     “I would like to keep it,”
     “It is not yours to keep,” she said uncomfortably. This young stranger was flirting with her. A stranger from another place, another time, whom she had forgotten. She could not have forgotten that smile nor the comfort with which he embraced the world. She looked to the window avoiding any further conversation. She saw his reflection. That smile. That, oh so handsome, smile. Those brooding, piercing eyes, so deep in colour as to be the deepest purple before black. There was a charm. An irresistibleness that drew her in and threatened to drive the breath from her lungs. How long had it been since such passion stirred or indeed had been stirred, in her fluttering breast? Why so the unease? 
      The train lurched into awkward slowness. Her hat fell forward. She caught sight from the corner of her eye as the same awkward scene was played out by the younger reflections. The same and yet different. The coyness of youth, the passion of experience. Side by side, yet divided by glass.
       Then to her surprise she saw the reflection of the young chap stand and leave. The young girl was distraught. Heartbroken, sobbed so daintily into her handkerchief.
       Veronica found her hand had been taken by Gerald. She neither saw him move nor did she realized. His hands embraced hers as an unfolding tulip. 
       “What’s happening?” she asked breathlessly.
      The carriage filled with cold air. 
      He was standing. 
     “Where are you going?”
     “I was never going to stay for long. This is good bye, Veronica.”
     “Good bye?”
      The world outside the train fell into the darkness of the incoming storm. Rain fell onto the roof and splattered against the windows. Voices from outside the train carried in on the rain, guards marched by crunching over wet gravel. The train juddered into motion.
     “It is time,” he said. He leant over and kissed her before turning. “Remember me,”
     “I never forgot you,” she said, tears welling up in her eyes. She brushed them aside. When she looked. He was gone.
     Her eye caught her reflection. The face that looked back at her was not the youthful child on the cusp of womanhood. It was her own as she was then. Old, and wrought with the heartbreak of loves lost. 
©️Lorraine Poulter 2016


Sunday, 12 June 2016

The Gift

           The Gift
That time of year when love’s first kiss
Brought joys of rapture, heartfelt bliss.
When summer’s sun shone bright and warm
On waking on each glorious dawn.

The warm gentle breeze caressed our faces
Throughout a summer when love took us to exotic places.
When hand in hand the love we shared
He showed the world how much He cared.
He knelt and took from a small box, a ring
A token, a gift, from one adoring.
We paused and took a moment to linger
Then he placed the ring upon my finger
I took his hand and in it placed
A white silk hanky with embroidered lace.

Soon it was that day when we did walk
And sadness took over our parting talk.
The day when soft rain drowned our dreams
And washed them away in gushing streams.

That final day when all was right 
A heart left broken when he went to fight.
The long and dreary winter passed
When a letter from him came at last.
Opened with hopeful news of peace, no more end to life,
That this news of his return to make me his wife.

Then from the envelope fell to the floor
The hanky given to my amour.
I knew then the news contained could not be well
The shaking hand I could not quell.
The letter said “He was brave, honourable to the core,
Of his kind the world needed more.
The day a good man died, a man who loved who went to war.”
©️The Gift Poem 2015 Lorraine Poulter