Winter Joys

by Mrs Chris Tice

Red and yellow skies, washed blue between.
Rainbow speckled frosts, lighting up the trees.

Sparkling stars in moonlit skies,
Crackles and flames of warming log fires.

Flocks of calling birds swooping over fields
Searching cold ground for desperate meals.

Robin trilling in bright red breast
Tawny hooting from wings outstretched.

Warm mince pies and Christmas pudding
Snowy paths and icy puddles

Hot water bottles and thick duvets.
Chattering children pulling sleighs.

Green spears of snowdrops, shooting through the snow.
Warming thick soups, when winter winds blow.

Blackbird’s beaks hold the last holly berries,
And I sip slowly wee glasses of Sherry!

St Lawrence's Churchyard

by  Mrs Chris Tice, a member of the St Lawrence's congregation.
(Written during the COVID-19 pandemic, when staffing the church for an opening for individual prayer.)

In the churchyard's peace and quiet

rabbits hop and chase around.

Squirrels scamper up yew tree trunks

and hares, ears pricked, lop about.

Every stone slopes at a different angle

each records a name and a date.

Lost in time they stand together

treasured is the peace they create.

For this is where like people have gathered

to celebrate, give thanks and pray.

To bury their loved ones and christen their young

sit in the silence, and give thanks for the day.

Fulstow Fall.

by Mrs Chris Tice

Squirrels, ripe chestnuts are burying.

Fat spiders wobble in webs.

Daddy long-legs dance on the ceiling,

And mist is draped over the hedge.

Swallows’ tails twitch on the phone lines.

Heavy dew spangles the grass.

Orange moon lights up the garden.

Autumn is coming in fast.

Easter 2020

By a regular member of the congregation.

No clock to tell the time

Just a cranky bell to call to worship.

But not now.

No organ, no choir, no alleluias

Not this Easter.

But in the churchyard the primroses

And timid violets show the time.

From wren to rook we hear Spring amidst

The tombstones, where love was lost or remembered.

Wives, husbands, mothers, fathers, children

“Safely now with Jesus”.

Nearby, a mound when another pestilence

Silenced the village.

But within the village a kind of resurrection

Against a different virus threat.

A beginning, a time to start again,

Fresh friends and neighbours,

Distant but closer, offering help

A kind of alleluia

A new Easter Day.