Hummingbird, Flowers | Paul Brookes


Country people say when a hummingbird
flies in at your window it brings a love 
message to someone in your home. Unheard
Love quivers against the ceiling, ‘til love

stunned and exhausted, unless caught, released,
is found dead in rooms little used, entered 
unperceived. Outside love defends cities 
of nectar flowers when found invaded.

Increases intensity and the speed
of its song to ward off intruders. Knocked
Down it revives and returns to succeed,
Keep its territory, invaders stopped.

Bold and fearless tiny love makes very
Good battle when it is necessary.

      Extrapolated from a passage in “Rural Hours” by Susan Fennimore Cooper

Ukraine Flowers
©2022 Vera Shanti Giles


Amongst the ruins where some are cut down.
Sunflowers grow in their soil, where others
fall, Chamomile grows. In between fired rounds
We harvest the dead, as oilseed croppers.

Make tea from our enemies, helps us sleep.
Carve sunflowers into wood furniture,
weave them into girls celebration wreaths.
They protect us from evil, provide cures.

Bullets, missiles and bombs are seeds blasted
Into one another. Skin is good earth.
Violent kernels kill targets planted
in soil amongst ruins that hold their worth.

Victims of war always nation’s flowers.
Memorialise in time’s quiet hours.

©2021 Paul Brookes
All rights reserved

Paul Brookes…

…is a shop asst. Lives in a cat house full of teddy bears. First play performed at The Gulbenkian Theatre, Hull. His chapbooks include The Fabulous Invention Of Barnsley, (Dearne Community Arts, 1993). A World Where and She Needs That Edge (Nixes Mate Press, 2017, 2018) The Spermbot Blues (OpPRESS, 2017), Please Take Change (, 2018), As Folk Over Yonder ( Afterworld Books, 2019). He is a contributing writer of Literati Magazine and Editor of Wombwell Rainbow Interviews, book reviews and challenges. Had work broadcast on BBC Radio 3 The Verb and, videos of his Self Isolation sonnet sequence featured by Barnsley Museums and Hear My Voice Barnsley. He also does photography commissions. Most recent is a poetry collaboration with artworker Jane Cornwell: “Wonderland in Alice, plus other ways of seeing”, (JCStudio Press, 2021)


Be inspired… Be creative… Be peace… Be

Kindly phrased comments welcome here.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.