The origins of the poem Paradise lie in the responses of others to my request, "Tell me what you love about this place." Inevitably, I found myself answering the same question and my own love of it can be found here too.





someone said This Is Paradise

new days breaking gold like blessed oil

on thin horizons to birdsong

high above high grassland

more urgent than the tide below

and the blazing gardens

loud as a brass band

brazen plantings of close-coupled blooms

yellow orange yellow red

yellow orange yellow red


another spoke of mirrored memories

a young girl's Eden

in long-ago long summers

and another of returning

surprised to find his boyhood waiting


someone said it was

breathing in bracing wind

walking through dazzling views

yellow fields in spring

blood-red fields in summer

or on the rugged limb of clay ember-red at sunset

its sharp-shadowed gullies streaming down its glow

its soundtrack sea-crash and peevish plainchant

cantankerous and quarrelsome

of fulmar and guillemot kittiwake and gannet


one said it was silent footsteps on shining sand

the shifting moon-measured margin

between land and sea

and listening to the latter's sound

delivered on surf spindrift or cloudy fret

echoes and songs of clippers smacks and trawlers

heaving and hauling whaling and drowning

of chasing silver darlings on the storm-bound grounds

hymns of harbour lights distant in the blackened blue

and the God who steers us home



© Jane Poulton 2015