Silver Branch Series

Roger Hare

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"Writing, for me, starts usually in my love of being diverted by something overheard, an observation, a fascination, insight or emotion. From this genesis, I enjoy letting the poem make its own way, sometimes to surprising conclusion. Through review and editing I try to distil the images, shaping them as much as I can into a piece that harmonises with me and gives any reader the chance to share in the spark that set it burning."

Herefordshire-based writer Roger Hare has work in Elbow Room, Liminal Residency, Dream Catcher, Anthropocene, Re-Side, Lyrical Eye, Spillwords, Ice Floe Press, BeZine, Sarasvati (forthcoming) and Fevers of the Mind and is published in five anthologies – ‘Deep Time 2’, ‘Dark Confessions’ and ‘Freedom Rapture’ (Black Bough Poetry),  ‘Black Lives Matter’ (Civic Leicester) and ‘Art’ (Dreich chapbook).
 
Roger was commended in the 2019 ‘Gloucestershire Writers Network Competition’, a prizewinner in the 2020 Manchester Cathedral Poetry Competition and the 2021 Rare Swan Press Ekphrastic Competition, commended in the 2021 Allingham Festival Poetry Prize, longlisted in the 2021 Yaffle Poetry Prize and Pushcart nominated in 2021. He had a pamphlet commended in the 2021 Frosted Fire Firsts Competition.
 
He can be found on Twitter @RogerHare6.  

Exposure

 

Let the slow surf of rock

bear your dust,

 

Earth won’t know you;

only our waste

remains still,

long enough

to register

in its long exposure  

From Deep Time 2

Compass

Demons sew their dreams

into our torques and ellipses –

we hold course by glorious iron

disguised in our bedrock

in Freedom Rapture

Glossolalia

Water combs its river grass –

each rising plume

a gentle speaking in tongues

kept from the ears of all but the lonely.

in Freedom Rapture

On Eagle’s Wings

A preacher once told me that only certain birds can fly

in rain, but I see all our hues and cries rise

to the lowering sky – everyone needs someone

who they can move to tears

in Freedom Rapture

Finding My Way (Cornwall)

A shaft of saints,

a spoil of tin Gods –

inspiring cartography

in Dark Confessions

Kintsugi

The many pieces

I have broken us into –

it’ll take all the gold

in Dark Confessions

Fatal Attraction

Your beauty builds up

in my blood, bone and hair –

the dark side of lead

in Dark Confessions  

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Listen to 3 poems by Roger Hare on Soundcloud

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Marsden Moor 

 

At the head of a Clough

I bleed my truth

into an emerging brook:

 

walkers on the old packhorse bridge below

will speak of ghosts.

“… the shingle precludes a garden”

                                         Derek Jarman (diary 18/8/1987)

 

 

I consider my spit-swept land

where Easterlies

refuse

to die

 

spend my hands sculpting

memories of

a fractured time-

line;

                                   seed

of how I want

my legacy

to be

seen

 

 

I weep

             I weep

                          The sea

 

 

 

Gratitude

 

Birch leans its silver

to the care of a nearby Fir.

 

New growth strikes

straight to the sky, ignites

 

the blue with white, strokes

the clouds with brotherly love.

 

The ingenuity of simple mechanics

can sometimes be

 

all that’s needed

to delay our downfall.

Strata

 

Our operatics find a place with leaves;

arias received alongside treasures

of pleasured petals and the rain

of an autumn harvest;

 

all the residue of our expectancy

shuttered in the eyes of a Deity or two

who find the heavens

as confusing a place as we do.

 

So many of our scores, once stitched

through air’s strata, are settled without making a mark –

like jellyfish, dying, that leave no trace

in diatomaceous earth.

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When It Comes To Birds

 

 

some migrate                                  however

a few have learned                         to remove snow

 

                                        so

 

when severity                                  wants a place in you

stay fast and light                            pray with open eyes

 

 

 

 

In 1978

             

I slipped your name between

the folios of my breath, believing

its pigment would stain each-

and-every recto/verso.

 

I find it now, petals pressed

so precisely, so dead –

all my pages

pristine.

 

 

 

 

Shooting Stars

 

When I was young I blu-tac’d a map

on the wall of every room that was mine;

a map of the world decorated (as

I thought it at the time)

with longitude, latitude

and those mysterious tropics.

 

It was only the other day

that I wondered if such focus

had habituated my eyes to the Earth,

stopped me from looking up,

from the sight

of whatever was writing the sky.

Gone Fishing

                         Written outside the home of W S Graham in Madron, Cornwall

 

Your baited words catch me,

battle-scarred but still thrashing

on the slab

 

Feed me something

to sustain the sheer effort

of being alive.

 

 

 

Limestone Landscape in Moonlight

 

A frozen sea as far as the eye.

Trillion-upon-trillion traces

of coral souls beneath our feet.

 

Light that began while all this lay deep

caresses the carboniferous memory

bound, once more, for water.

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