Advent Calendar Makeover 2022

Advent Calendar Makeover 2022

Have you noticed how the Advent Calendar
Has evolved?
Less traditional ‘nativity’
Now involved

Gone are the shepherds
And the sheep
Of the Wise Men
Not a peep

Mary & Joseph gone A W A L
Baby Jesus escaped the stall
Even that twinkling star
No longer seen afar

The modern calendar you will discover
Given a radical makeover
Bethlehem now rarely features
Behind the doors quite different creatures

Each day your taste buds stimulated
Your sweet longings thus are sated
Miniature morsels in confection
Cheeses wrapped into perfection

Jewelled trinkets for the rich
Despite the cost, seem rather kitsch
Wine and spirits for the tippler
Mini biros for the scribbler

For those concerned about their looks
Opening doors in tenterhooks
May find something quite prosthetic
Amidst offerings cosmetic

And so on it goes, those daily treats
From micro gifts to tasty sweets
Until at last on Christmas day
We gasp at this endless array

And then we ask
What’s this all about?
Amidst cheap goodies
Don’t shut love out

Ken Fisher

 

 

 

Clocks Go Back 2022

Clocks Go Back Oct 2022

 

The days are getting shorter, the nights are drawing in
In no time at all we will arrive at Halloween
Darkness is descending, as we struggle through the gloom
Look out for the guisers draped in their costume

‘Ere we reach that ‘hallowed’ eve the clocks must be turned back
Between Saturday and Sunday an hour they give us back
For last Spring those same clocks were moved an hour forward
To rectify that change now the movement will be rearward

This year we’ve been distracted by extensive politicking
Let’s hope that none of this has stopped our clocks from ticking
Although the shadows lengthen we hope not so our mood
A new regime in Crown and Government may yet still do us good

The cost of living spirals and interest rates too high
Not easy to accept all this with a resignation sigh
But let’s not in the gloom get overly depressed
Why not pretend the future promises the best!

As of Autumn tints and falling leaves we are made aware
Perhaps the commanders of the nations will ensure they all play fair
In their deliberations may they reach a just solution
To tackle rising tides, melting ice, and poisonous pollution

So as now nights darken may we accept the changing of the light
Brighter in the morning, then earlier dark at night
Nothing’s really changed, it’s ourselves who’ve played a trick
Tinkering with the clock hands but letting it still tick

So with the changing of the hour we revert to Greenwich Mean
British Summer Time left behind till Spring’s green shoots are seen
But at least we know now where we are, the timing quite official
No fiddling with the hours of day or night, no changes artificial

Ken Fisher

 

Autumn Equinox 2022

Autumn Equinox 2022

 

 

This astronomical event occurs twice a year
When the plane of the Earth’s equator
Passes through the centre of the Sun
On this day the Sun shines directly on the equator
And day and night are approximately equal

Today is the Autumnal Equinox 2022
And our minds look back to warm summer days
And forward, with some foreboding, to approaching winter
And we are happy to say, for now, not yet!

An Equinox is perhaps a good time to reflect
On all that has been good in life
To give thanks for many blessings
For holidays, and travel, and time for relaxation

As the tint of the leaves turns and they begin
To flutter down to form an ochre carpet
Like the lowering of a flag at the end of a parade
We realise that gradual change must come

But shortening days and lengthening nights
Need not bring somber thoughts
Or fears of nocturnal terrors
‘Cause winter brings its own special charms

Family gatherings round the ‘hearth’
Bonfires and fireworks displays
Trudging home through deepening snow
To celebrate Christmas with those we love

And so we acknowledge the endless
Progression of the calendar
Through equinox to solstice
And solstice to equinox,
And again
An unending gyration

This year things seem a little different
We seem to be emerging from Covid
Although not perhaps completely free
And we are still mourning for the loss
of our beloved Queen
And the Ukrainian War rumbles ominously
in all our minds

But yet we would remain hopeful
Just as the Earth progresses in its orbit around the Sun
As each season brings its own mood and tenor
Let hope remain, the best is yet to come

 

Ken Fisher

 

Apple

Apple
A Many Splendoured Thing

Thoughts about the Apple

Adam’s Apple – was that his downfall
Or was that Newton’s idea?

The Apple of his Eye – not a Crab
But a Golden Delicious

Don’t write off the whole barrel
Because of one bad Apple

The American Dream of Apple Pie
Blue Jeans and Chevrolet

It’s not Covid that keeps the Doctor away
It’s an Apple a Day

But in today’s world it is not the fruit we think of
But the iPhone, iPad, and iMac, Mackintosh’s iconic Apples

And of course, we cross the pond
To reach The Big Apple where Liberty welcomes us

Solomon pleaded –
Refresh me with Apples!
[Song of Solomon Ch2 V5]

Ken Fisher

[Cooking Apples from Mrs Fisher’s Allotment]

Perplexing Maze

Perplexing Maze

Maze at Doxford Hall Hotel, Northumberland

Do you feel life’s progress can resemble a maze?
Unsure which way to turn, north, south, east or west
The choice of direction may us easily faze
Left or right, fore or aft, which may be best?

Mazes present problems which must be resolved
At every junction we are forced to make a decision
At turning points our sense of direction must be involved
Then for wrong turns and dead ends we must make correction

Of course there may come a time after many attempts
When we feel this labyrinth has got us beaten
Our earlier shifts of direction we may now regret
And those wrong choices we kept on repeating

In the end all we want is to be liberated
From the hedge barriers which so tightly constrain
And all the false hopes that have left us frustrated
At last to escape to  open ground again

Ken Fisher

Heat Wave

Heat Wave

Dire warnings have been issued
Temperatures unprecedented
Desperate need to find some shade
By sun’s merciless rays tormented

It seems there may be no escape
From this mighty solar onslaught
Although Scotland’s hiding in the shade
From this not quite all-pervading sunspot!

Ken Fisher

Harvest Home

Harvest Home

My recent poem was in praise of the bean
But other fruits and veg ought to be seen
Raspberries, gooseberries, blackberries excel
But rhubarb and potatoes are there as well

Whatever your preference for what the earth yields
From tiny allotments to extensive fields
Praise for the harvest which all life sustains
And for the farmer and gardener the result of their pains

Ken Fisher

[Produce grown by B Fisher]

You Can’t Beat Beans!

You Can’t Beat Beans

Home grown Broad Beans

When it comes to beans there’s an infinite range
Up to four hundred some experts would claim
In all shapes and sizes and in every hue
Tasty to eat, great for  health too

There is cranberry, black bean and also chickpea
Cannellini, garbanzo, and pinto to see
Navy beans, fava beans, and of course soya
Nutritionists claim they’re all very good for ya

Beans also appear in a variety of shapes
Kidney shaped, globular, some quite elongate
From slim and narrow to really quite broad
Some appear bashed, regrettably flawed

Beans apparently are a class of legume
Without any doubt they are great to consume
Endless methods of cooking this ubiquitous food
Whatever the type they are sure to do good

So the message is clear you must beans explore
Their many virtues you should not ignore
You can’t beat beans is the greengrocer’s slogan
On your diet sheet give them rapid promotion

 

 

Ken Fisher

Summer Solstice 2022

Summer Solstice 2022

A glimpse of sunshine warms our heart
Flowers and leaves reflect the light
The gentle rays caress our brow
Our lips widen with a smile

For now the daytime stretches out
Filling each hour with gentle light
Dark days of winter long forgot
We rejoice in life outdoors

From this ‘crows nest’ of the year
We scan the horizon fore and aft
Behind, long hours of winter gloom
Then spring pregnant with promise

Ahead the prospect of summer warmth
And autumn’s gold and russet tints
But winter’s spectre lurks beyond
Vaguely threatening summer’s calm

Ken Fisher

A Little Patch of Defiant Beauty

A Little Patch of Defiant Beauty

Amidst all the gloom and doom
Of a fretful world, fearful and overwrought
A corner of an urban garden
Yields a little patch of defiant beauty

When ugliness abounds
And peace seems to have defected
Wild flowers and elegant cultivars
Blend together to restore the mind to health

When hearts are heavy laden
With all pervasive angst
Nature’s nostrum, a ready elixir
Light and shade and colour bring relief

No matter what the trials that would assail
A small parcel of the earth grants its reward
Against the adversary of inward peace
This little patch of beauty remains defiant

Ken Fisher

The phrase ‘A little patch of defiant beauty’
is quoted from BBC Gardeners’ World June 22

 

The Massive Indifference of the Universe

The Massive Indifference of the Universe

One of Thomas Carlyle’s characters describes a
“Universe…..Void of all life, of Purpose, of Volition,
Even of Hostility………”

Have you ever thought whether the Universe cares
about us, or is massively indifferent to our plight
and predicament?

Of course you might respond by saying that
most of the time most of us humans
seem to be totally indifferent of the Universe

We might vaguely realise that here we exist on one
tiny planet, a satellite of our star the Sun, set within
our Galaxy the Milky Way whirling round within the
infinite void of space. But so what?

It seems to me that the issue of Indifference
is a human response. It signifies a lack of concern
or sympathy

Yet humans have indeed shown much interest in
the Universe – particularly through scientific
exploration or philosophical and
even theological musings
but have we noticed any reciprocal speculation
from the void?

So humans may not be totally indifferent but is
The Universe?

I suppose this matter of Indifference or concern
might be related to whether there is any Purpose
in the Universe. Why was it created [if indeed it
was actually created] and what is it for?

It seems to me that it is Humankind [in however limited
a way] which has taken the intiative to make sense
of what the cosmos is all about, and as a result
of such hypothesising has begun to wonder
what’s the point? Are we the only ones that care?

But humans don’t give up hope.

 

Ken Fisher

 

 

Balcony Blizzard

Balcony Blizzard

We open curtains this winter morn
A white carpet does our view adorn
A blizzard overnight arrived
We really ought not be surprised

Snowflakes gently drifting down
Slowing traffic into town
Pavements carpeted by snow
Pensioners, mind how you go!

How will the kids get to the school?
Perhaps they think it’s really cool
Early escape they will expect
Teachers too may well defect

The workers to their jobs will struggle
Waiting for the bus they huddle
Remembering to keep safe distance
Scarfs and masks for their resistance

On the balcony we conserve
From our safe perch we observe
Through swirling blizzard, drifting snow
The working world battling below

But life goes on however fraught
Pandemic months have surely taught
So best foot forward into snow
Let joy on all our hearts bestow

Ken Fisher