Her days of housework are over.
She has to live with the dust.
She would say to me, “Come on over.
You’re the only one I trust”

Her days of not cleaning the windows
Scar the incoming sun.
A curtain flaps
Where its hook unwraps.
The repair has not been done.

Her days of action suspended.
She sits upright in her chair.
An old lady I’ve befriended.
She refuses to go into care.

There are many old people
Liviing in isolation.
What they really need is
Lively conversation.

She is deaf. Her eyesight is poor.
She is aged ninety three.
Nothing happens anymore.
She’s content just to rest and be.

There’s a splendid view from her home.
East London spreads out below.
You can clearly see the Dome
Lit up in the sky’s rosy glow.

Reader, pause for a while.
Say a prayer for such as she.
I can still see her bravely smile
As she waves goodbye to me.



We thought it was a marvel
So varied was its use.
It could be hard as metal
Or spaghetti like and loose.
We made almost anything:
Bottles, tables, shelves.
Now it’s come back with a sting
To distress ourselves.

Supple as elastic,
It flies into the face.
No longer fantastic.
The litter a disgrace!
It destroys marine life.
And we cannot kill it
The land fill objects
When we try to fill it.

The rivers are invaded
With this terrible debris
That is not bio degraded;
It will outlive you and me.
The fish now eat it
And we eat the fish.
Will we ever defeat it
This poison on our dish?

I look around this room
And see with alarm.
so much plastic that
Will surely do us harm.
We must eliminate
Plastic from our planet,
Before it is too late


Varied reality.
Changes to view.
Colours of the rainbow;
Fluorescent hue.
Movements entwining.
Shapes so diverse.
Ways of divining
Speech long or terse.

Meanings apparent.
Motives obscure.
Pictures transparent.
Light proven pure.
Sound that is silent.
Music that’s heard.
Embrace which is violent.
Voiceless the word.

Deep pool of sunlight.
Ripples of gold.
Winged is a Dove’s flight
Beauty untold.
Varied images;
All life contains.
Parts of entirety
No human explains.


We’re kind to each other now.
It wasn’t always so.
We are kind to each other now
That we haven’t far to go.

In the past there was joy
And pain,
Ecstasy and despair.
We could always make up again.
There was plenty of time
To spare.

We are now more ‘laid back’
And no longer dress in style.
There’s nothing that we lack
We always part with a smile.

I’m grateful to see your
With such precious time
To guard.
May harmony and grace
Defer our last card.


There are pictures still to paint
And poetry to write.
Reclusive, but not a saint.
Just fending off the night.

Though the sky is black outside
Light shines within.
And the door is open wide
To let my lover in.

I work with pen and brush
To stave off waiting time.
All around there is a hush,
While searching for a rhyme.

Just the cat gives a response
To my lonely speech.
I didn’t have to wait so once
Nor have so far to reach.

The world which stays without
Can wait in vain for me,
For there is no longer any doubt
That I ever will be free.


The sky is clear and the stars are bright,
The harvest moon is high;
And my heart is full of song tonight
As the last long hours drift by.

The lonely months and the aching fears
Are dreams of yesterday,
The clouds have gone and the future clears
As you wend your homeward way.

The cosy room with the firelight’s glow
Seems hushed until you come,
And my arms are aching to hold you so
When at last, dear heart.
When at last, dear heart you’re home.


The ocean has a grandeur and a beauty of its own,
And across its face have many beauties passed,
And each succeeding age has seen its secrets better known,
And each has cried “Perfection come at last!”
Coracle and quinquereme, galleon and barque,
Each has given place to something new;
Fair ill-fated Wanderer, and gallant Cutty Sark
Progress has discarded even you!
We all regret the passing of the tall moonraking yards,
With their white wings throwing back the starlight’s gleam,
But clipper ship and quinquereme, they each have had their bards,
I sing the glory of the age of steam.
The sleek, black, ruthless racers of the North Atlantic trade
That come and go as punctual as the sun,
Perchance must follow caravel and frigate to the shade
When relentless Progress says their task is done.
But as long as I can watch them slipping seaward in the dusk
With their yellow ports like little stars agleam,
You may keep your naked rowers, and your Ophir gold, and musk,
I’m content to find all MY romance in Steam.

Donald Ian McGregor 1908 -1985


Others have trodden the path
Challenged the fears, resolved the doubts.
Set up the markers,
Taken their meed of praise.
And some have died.
They are not unknown.

But these will be remembered.

Having no doubts
They have followed the path,
Passed beyond the markers;
And, come to the threshold
Have flung wide the door
And entered their kingdom.

They have returned,
The stars as a gift.
Let us be grateful.
Let us be proud.
Above all let us be worthy.

But these will be remembered.

Donald Ian McGregor 1908 – 1985