After the small hours

After the small hours we awaken
and with Wolfgang to Alcampo
Parking in our usual space, he leads the way
for he knows this place well
with coffee and conversation and
dog biscuits in a bowl by the bar
We break fasting later, laugh
and smile and cry and hug
before charity shop browsing
to part with small coppers
An old book for me, green glass for Sal
and a cute little piggy bank
with a cork stop nose I was
told not to buy but still did
This is Sunday loveliness spent
with extended family filling
moments to fill a life and cherish

©Jemverse

Photo – Jempics

[‘Wolfgang’ is my daughter and partner’s 1-year old Patterdale Terrier; ‘Alcampo’ is a gastropub in North Brighton, East Sussex, UK; the piggy bank pig I was told not to buy but still did now has pride of place in my music/writing/games room]

A Sussex view (revisited)

6 of 10 in the Jemverse ‘Sussex’ series

Sun sets on a winter sea
Golden ‘cross wet sand
as we go walking at low tide
as lovers, hand in hand

Obi’s here of course with us
trotting at our feet
His paws wet in the water
and enjoying this fine treat

And though there’s chill upon the air
there’s warmth within the sun
as it sinks beneath the Western sea
now the daytime is all done

By and by we’ll head back home
but for now a lingering stare
across the golden water
as the light, it fades out there

For this is Sussex by the sea
and these view they are our own
Never ceasing to bring wonder
Here in Shoreham, we call home

©Jemverse

Photo – Jempics

Jemverse originally posted ‘A Sussex View’ on 2 February 2019

40

Forty years ago today
I put my white suit on
The one I bought for twenty quid
in Jayson’s Menswear from
And the only tie I think I had
was a black one from my Dad
and a pair of his old shoes
I’d kept since I was just a lad

My best man Josse was with me
and he did his best I think
to help me look presentable
albeit with a wink
And then when we were ready
we walked down Ashby Road
to meet up with the others
from our single room abode

I was just over twenty
but in my heart I really knew
that love had spoken loud
and clear – this was the thing to do
So Sal and I were married
on the seventh of July
And today we celebrate the fact
of forty years gone by

A ruby anniversary
but far more precious is than that
the love that both of us still share
undeniably a fact
So these words are for my soulmate
repeated here anew
Three words I said both then and now
the adage “I love you”

©Jemverse

Photo – Jem & Sal on their wedding day; Saturday 7 July 1979, Loughborough

July

11 of 12 in the Jemverse series ’12 months II’

In seventy-nine
Forty Julys back
two kindred spirits wed
A fledgling love
grown stronger since
and deeper it’s been said

So this series
now at eleven
to my soulmate here I give
These simple words
true from my heart
for the life we share and live

©Jemverse

Jem & Sal on their wedding day: 7 July 1979 [photo – James Newbold]

Forty-one valentines

This year, this
Valentines, this day
to you, my soulmate
here I’ll say
Though forty years
and one year longer
My love for you
is ever stronger

We grow together
you and me
A partnership
eternally
So here’s to forty
more, my dear
My friend, my soulmate
Ever here.

©Jemverse

Photo – Jempics

Fields of Lavender

We walked in fields of lavender
on the sixth day of July
On a summer evening
beneath a clear blue sky
Lordington near Chichester
high on Sussex hills
to watch the setting of the sun
A cure to cure all ills

A setting here for lovers
romancing with a smile
on this our anniversary
(We stayed for quite a while)
The sun sank low, the fragrance grew
as we sat and watched the scene
here amongst the lavender
my soulmate Sal and me

©Jemverse

Photo – Jempics – Lordington lavender farm, near Chichester, West Sussex, UK. The farm opens for a small number of paying guests on July evenings each year. The chance to walk in and watch the sun set over the lavender fields with a glass of wine. Perfect for our 39th wedding anniversary this year.

39

Back in nineteen seventy-nine
all those years ago
With me in white, my bride in blue
we walked in sunshine slow
A promise made, sealed with a kiss
the entourage they laughed
and in that moment, with applauds
we were wed at last

A love that sparked with smear of clay
grew stronger every year
The laughter stayed, the children came
to fill our lives with cheer
Now almost forty years have passed
yet still in love are we
Thirty-nine upon this day
Our anniversary

©Jemverse

Photo – Jem (of Jemverse) and his soulmate Sal on their wedding day – 7 July 1979 

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