Walk the path 

Sometimes poetry manages to capture even our smallest regrets.

Words From A Borderline

If you could hit rewind

Would you go back in time

Find a different path

Make a different decision

Wouldn’t it be great if we had that control

To know what path leads us where

To know where it is safe to step

To know where the cracks are hidden

To see ahead

To know where happiness is

You cannot change the choices you made

And you cannot change what others have done

Still we continue forward

Still we walk our path toward fate

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From Want to Ambition

She called Herself Desire.
There was a while when I thought I knew Her,
When I thought I understood it all:
The racing pulse
My pounding heart
The ache that settled itself deep within my bones.
That need for Her,
The desperation I associated with Desire –
But it was never true.
The things I wanted, from my partners,
From my friends,
And from my family,
As I trotted through my childish life
Were basic, simple little goals,
Petty in themselves
So easy for Desire to encourage me to demand.
I cannot pinpoint when it chanced,
What incident it was that made me whole,
But the time came
When I discovered
Genuine Desire within me.
No longer was She another party,
Separated physically
From my tender flesh:
The aim, the goal, my real intentions
To improve,
These were the feelings that drove me
To my limits
And gave me all the energy I needed
To become something –
Not somebody –
To inspire Her, Desire,
In another worthy
Of Her generosity.

No Time Like the Present

It is true that there is no time like the present
The present, because you are in it, gives you hope:
There is a yearning need to do everything now,
To fulfill fantasies, win arguments, and prove yourself
Right in this moment, before the eyes
Of every doubter you have ever come across,
From the bully in the playground of your youth
When nothing could ever have hurt more than words,
To the jerk and work who throws his weight around
Just because he can, because his weight is there,
Bouncing around as he goes about his business
As though this claim of superiority over you
Might somehow encourage it into existence;
These are who you want to overcome, to surprise,
Or merely the imagine the surprise of, when you try
To make here and now your primary success,
Even if it is better to wait, to hold back, to learn more:
It is true that there is no time like the present
For the present will teach you where to set your sights
For future successes, future rewards, opportunities
To prove yourself through patience, and not urgency.


A chilling short story that would provide a great introduction to a longer piece of writing, too. I love how so much has been written in such a short space.

Iain Kelly

Nick’s visor kept steaming up. He was breathing too hard and too fast. The only way he could clear his sight was to lift the visor open and wipe it with his gloved fingers, but now that they were outside the sealed command base that wasn’t an option. No-one knew for sure what the atmosphere consisted of. There were differing reports of what chemical weapons had  been used in this area over the past years.

He lugged his weapon up as the platoon started moving forward again. The scouts had deemed the area over the ridge of rubble as clear of enemy activity. The ground shook as the ranks mobilised. Through his fogged vision he could see the masses of rubble that surrounded them. The remains of the once great city destroyed by years of religious terrorism and war.

As they moved along Nick thought about how his life had changed…

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Generation Death

There goes a generation that won’t put a cross next to your name.

The traitor is among us
Standing right before our eyes
We let him keep on lying
As our generation dies
Tomorrow there’s no future
For no life exists today
Burn deserter’s buildings down
To teach them we won’t pay

We are the future of this world
Destroyed by those before us
A nauseating burden on our shoulders

Violence, the only way
Make the media respond
All the young ones are to blame
Our anarchistic bond
Count is in, your lucks gone cold
No, you won’t celebrate
Another term, on your back
Now we won’t take the bait

We are the future of this world
Destroyed by those before us
A nauseating burden on our shoulders

We won’t take this: generation screwed
Over by the bastards that we couldn’t remove
None of the affected could even cast a vote
Praying on the youth to remove all hope

The future has gone cold again
Plain as day, the lies they tell
We listen and believe them
Hypnotising, like a spell
The traitor is among us
Standing right before our eyes
The bastard keeps on lying
As our generation dies

We are the future of this world
Destroyed by those before us
A nauseating burden on our shoulders

We won’t take this: generation black
None of us will ever dare to turn our back
None of the affected could even cast a vote
Praying on the youth to remove all hope

We are the future of this world
Destroyed by those before us
A nauseating burden on our shoulders

We won’t take this: generation screwed
Over by the bastards that we couldn’t remove
We won’t take this: generation black
None of us will ever dare to turn our back
We won’t take this: generation nought
Denied an education that we never shall be taught
We won’t take this: generation red
Converted by the monsters who would kill us dead!
None of the affected could even cast a vote
Praying on the youth to remove all hope

We were the future of this world!

Author’s note: I am on holiday this week. For this reason, I will be unable to reblog/share any of the great poems or stories that appear on my dash. Instead, please enjoy these lyrics – they are several years old, but some of them have never been published before.

Language: Past, Present and Future Tense

When I start writing something new, I tend to default to the past tense automatically. In my opinion, this is the easiest tense to write in, and that’s why I tend to revert to it. From time to time, I dabble in the present and the future tenses, too, although admittedly far less frequently. Each tense can give your writing a very different feeling.

Our theme for this month has been language. We have thought about some of the ways that writers can use language to make an impression on their audience and why we should think carefully about the language choices we make, So far we have covered speech, the first, second and third person, and active and passive voice. Today, we’re going to think about the tenses.

For this exercise, I’m going to assure that you are already familiar with how to change the tense of a verb and the different forms of each tense. If you think you might be a little rusty, you can find a useful table to help you here (scroll down the page to “Verb Tense Overview with Examples”). When you’re ready, let’s think about the impact each tense can have in turn.


As I stated above, this feels like the easiest tense to write in for me. The past tense allows you to write a story or poem about events that have already taken places, whether at a specified or unspecified time in the past. It also allows you to easily move around between moments in time in the past without having the change the tense you’re writing in. I like to use the past tense because it helps me to distinguish between text and dialogue, as my character’s talk in the present tense as the events happen to them.

I believe that the past tense is the most useful tense for long pieces of writing. However, you can also argue that it makes things feel a little emotionally distant – the reader may not experience as many edge-of-their-seat moments compared to the present tense, because they know that what they are reading is not happening right now.


The present tense allows you to write about something that is happening at the exact moment your audience reads it. This can make it the most exciting of the tenses when it is done right, provided there is enough action in your piece of writing (or it is short and snappy enough) to keep the reader excited. Consider using the present tense for something with lots of twists and turns to keep the plot moving.

One con of using the present tense is that it can be harder to stick to the correct tense. I know I find myself slipping into the past tense without meaning to. If you want to write flashbacks, then these will need to be in the past tense, and you will need to ensure that you return to the present tense when it is time to do so.

If you have a great, unique narrative voice, then present tense can help you to show it off. Voice is a very important tool in keeping a story in the present tense alive – so make sure you practice your own a lot!


The future tense allows you to talk about actions that will or may happen at a specified or unspecified time in the future. I like to keep anything written in the future tense short and sweet. Again, flashbacks will need to be in the past tense, so watch out for when you move between the tenses to keep your verbs tight and accurate.

This tense is best for small pieces of writing, poems discussing the future of individuals or groups, short stories or piece of flash fiction imagining what the world might look like in a certain number of years time, or anything with a message of warning or hope. There are lots of possibilities with the future tense, as long as you work within the limits of predictions and potentials.

Do you have a “go to” tense? Which is your favourite tense to write in, and why?

This month’s theme is LANGUAGE. If you have written something that you would like me to share on this blog on the theme of language, then please post a link in the comments or email me on lauramarieclark1@gmail.com with the subject: Language.

One Day

‘One day,’ Luna said to herself, staring at her reflection in the glass of the kitchen door, ‘one day I’ll get out of this place. Nobody will be able to stop me. They’ll see how much more I can achieve, how much more I’m worth. One day.’

The chef came out of the kitchen with a scowl across his face. He loomed over her, his hands on his hips, and said in an unnecessarily loud voice, ‘What are you doing standing out here gawking? Get back to work!’

‘I was just –’ Luna began, but he cut her short.

‘I don’t care! I don’t care if you’re waiting to meet the Queen! Get back in the kitchen, and start taking the food out to the customers, or you’re fired!’

Luna watched him disappear back into the kitchen, shaking in his unneeded rage. She considered walking out, but decided against it. Where would she go? As much as she hated working there, there was no alternative until she found herself another job.

There were many jobs out there, but better jobs were hard to come by.

‘One day,’ she said to her tired reflection, before heading into the kitchen.


Image credit: freeimages.com

There is blood on his hands.
Today it is only the shadow
Of what is certain to come,
But tomorrow, it will be linked
To a place and a name
To misery and regrets that
Will burn deep within his veins.
She does not yet know him.
Their meeting will be
A marvelous occasion
That she will boast about
To all of her friends –
At least, for a while –
Until it becomes bitter.
Less than love, less than she
Had imagined it would be
Behind closed doors.
She will bleed for him until
She can give him no more;
Whether it will be enough
To move him, or only enough
To make him laugh, is not
Yet written on his hands –
But he is already stained with blood.

The Age of Promise

Bernard Dunstan was a lonely man. He was retired, had been that way for many years, and lived on his own in a tiny cottage in the countryside. The villagers who lived nearby were mostly either farmers or old couples who kept themselves largely to themselves, so he was never faced with questioning looks or indiscreet whispers like there had been in the city, asking what might have happened to make a man so alone in the world. He lived in the country so that he could escape from all of that, surrounded only by a vast sea of green, being woken by the sounds of the birds singing in the early morning rather than the roar of an engine or the ruckus of drunken youths staggering home.

The youths had been a big part of his desire to move. There were only a few children in the village, most of them still young and rosy cheeked, innocent in the ways of the world. In ten years or so they would not be so content to sit around and obey their parents rules, instead bickering with them on a daily basis and going down to the pub to get ‘wasted’. That was how Bernard saw the younger generation, and as far as he was concerned they would never change, just continue to be lazy and useless. They made no effort and never did a decent day of work in their lives.

It was the fault of the parents, of course: they should look after their children better, give them more boundaries, be able to use physical punishment if the children acted out of line – but oh no, the nanny state refused to allow that, lay your hand on a kid for misbehaving these days and it would be only a matter of time before the children protection maniacs would find you. Hitting kids was a good punishment, a good deterrent, and it had worked to teach Bernard good manners, but the world had gone soft since he had been young and the children were allowed to run riot.

Not that the old and crippled man had any experience of his own to back up his claim. Bernard had never had children, had never had a family of his own, and so he had watched everyone that he knew growing old and dying around him: his grandparents, his parents, his siblings. He was the only one of them left now. That was not to say that his lack of practical knowledge surrounding children stopped him from making judgements on the struggling parents he saw; as far as he was concerned there was no problem with him insulting them without having any help to provide. He would go on for hours to the neighbours, at least when they were willing to listen, about how he had been raised to respect others and treat those around him decently, forgiving them for their mistakes, and yet he still prejudged the young. He granted them no second chances in his eyes, considered there to be no distinctions between the way those who had dropped out of school at sixteen and those who were continuing their education at university thought or acted. He also held strong opinions on race, gender and class that had failed to move with the times.

So he had a great hatred for the little old lady down the road who had her teenage grandchildren around every weekend and could afford to lavish them with presents and treats as though every Saturday was Christmas day in her house. Bernard would see without a doubt on ever Saturday morning the mother of those teenagers driving down to the lady’s house, and he would wait until the car had turned around and left before grumbling at ever move that the teenagers made. They could be laughing at a completely harmless joke and he could complain about today’s youth, anything that he could use against them he would.

The boy was sixteen and he had yet to get a job, and although he was likely still in education Bernard could still mutter that we he had been that age he had been working alongside his father for three years; the girl was nineteen and would sometimes bring her boyfriend around, and what was another reason to complain because when Bernard had been young kissing like that in public had been seen as disgraceful, and marriage had come before anything else.

Society would forever change, reshape itself into something new, adapt and stand for different notions, but the stubborn and the lonely would remain to halt the age of promise forever more.

The Winding Path of Life

The world is tearing me in different directions.

In truth, I don’t know if I want to select any of the options that are currently available to me. Perhaps my future is yet to be revealed to me. The fact that I don’t seem to knew where to head or what to look for is telling. It feels as though none of these paths are the one I’m supposed to choose.

But these thoughts throw up another issue. How am I supposed to know when the right direction is available? Will it jump out at me as the obvious choice or will I let it pass me by without knowing how important it is to my future? Am I on the road to discovery, or does discovery lie before me in one of these directions? I don’t have the answers I need, and that fact makes me uncomfortable beyond belief.

Life is never straightforward. Anyone who has ever had it easy has never truly lived. I must make the right choices if I am to keep progressing on the promising path that I wish to find. Moving backwards would be an obvious mistake, but moving forwards is never as clear.

I am young. I am well educated. I have options, and I have not yet embarked on a career path. That is, in many respects, because I’ve never been passionate enough about a specific job to choose a career path. There are opportunities available to me, but I don’t want to select a career path that I will later regret.

That’s why I’m stood here at a crossroad, looking down the winding paths that I could choose to follow in my life. Whether any of these are who I should become, I don’t yet know. I must choose and find out.