Imperfect People Poetry


This page is dedicated to those of us who are both imperfect and poetic. Often at the same time! Imperfection is a badge of honor. Perfection is boring, don’t you agree? We less than perfect folk need all the support we can get. Thus, this compilation of poems from our hearts and minds. Joining together like this gives each individual the strength of the whole. Together, we’re pretty good, aren’t we?

Thanks to our contributors to date: James Goddard, Philip van Wulven, Ian Boreham, Laura Wolfe, Linnie Buhman, Gordon Kuhn, Karen Rigley, Mandy Ward, Vivienne Tuffnell, Lorraine Holloway-White, Drew Cross, Andrew Meek, Hannah Warren, Katherine Holmes, Peter Mish.

If you would like to contribute, go to the ABOUT page and fill out the form with your contact information and a single short poem in the Comments space. I reserve the right as editor to make all final decisions as to what goes onto my page. All rights are reserved by each poet for his or her own writing.



by Laura Wolfe

… Press against iris burn them down
on my image eyes (yours)
rained air rising, buildings
grip up subway windows. Their reflections
slivers fleeting yes, but past is done: I meant
they’ve been here once (we can’t change that)

They slip our skin, leave scratch lines
and yell, but darkened ribs weren’t made to hold
grudges, or hot stains of fathers
release a year
We’ve watched our own lives bloom and vanish there
where things erase but don’t un-do

These windows stood it all. Free followed vectors
movements, forces Oh the physics of a train and me inside it
or people who (just possible loves)
will see me as less permanent
they know my inability at becoming bigger
against this skin of hard shellac, image bound by
scrawled fluorescent (outside of it we
are fused with light
and other
enviable things)



by Peter Mish

sever my feet from my body my roaming phase is over I shall not bleed out for the redblooded days have ended green field dreams dislodged like old long in the tooth fillings and ease into old-age apollonian apathy ease into waiting ease into forever


Blue heron

by Katherine Holmes

blue heron on the

island   circumference

of a garage   where

the settler this side

of the bay squatted

duck hunting   a circle

traced around him

the naiad-mystic

ripples humming from

the cool cauldron

one heron   one rock

one cloth of moss

one pine   one boat

one man   one duck

one wild onion

one heron   one leg

one fish   one water


a lookout raised

himself from

the shrinking


area of an office

area of a sunroom

of a stilty fir

sinking in marsh silt

and the waves

fish scale lustrous

where we sisters paddle

with lengthened

arms   lake-brisked eyes

canoe-logging along

to see the heron

the remembered   closely

from the spindle

the blue heron whirs

spins adrift   cloud

of sky camouflage

– First published in Ygdrasil



by Katherine Holmes

The landscaped lawn trees stand pendulous

with apples like a chandelier of autumn.

Its danglings in the drapery

especially choice

don’t drop down at anyone’s feet.

In a liberal backyard the apronload

of windfalls

could furnish a deer’s night foodshelf.

Above the root beer froth of nearby rapid

sapples are perilous as strewn toys

bruised the

carmel of the cascading water.
A sweet-sour aroma rises from

squandered crab apples stomped underfoot.

Vintage slops not far from the fallen golden


A crow could peck at the chandelier apples

but it doesn’t care much more than kids do

about antediluvian fruit

ripping into the wrapper of a thrown

candy bar

heckling “finders keepers” mid-air.

– First published in Re-imagining


After That

by Laura Wolfe

it’s the


in the last


at least you

were you,

but there


when I was,




when I was

as big as

the air with my



when love

was in me,

and then




the silence,

the tone


A B eh?

©Philip van Wulven 2012


see hungry schools, mates, in the court courting

move and turn as the current surges, urges

between reefs of bright choral clothing

brushed by waving trends of weed,

around cool deep dark crack,

break, your mother’s back.

swim there, step on it

swim in the warm,

the heat and beat

ah ecstasy now

we rely on

new plan B

it’s always

now, me,

mi amore




©Philip van Wulven 2012


I saw seven goldfinches

in the plum tree today

three shone bright

like dandelions in the grass

the others brown as branches

all busy among the blossoms

together hawkbait and nestminders

no room for  career choice here.


Pond Song

©Philip van Wulven 2012



see the waterlilies


their jewelled dreams of


in our diesel busy city


Many froggy praises to jade


crooning a moose’s crown



of tangled blossom and mud dripping


harmonising their chorus to


with memories of adamantine


and the dragonflies’ erratic


then hum opalescently a tune

of Zion

learned by lanky goslings

in Babylon


Seven Poems

©Philip van Wulven 2011

Spring fever

In this soft morning

drowsy water shimmers

where the lake sloughs

its outgrown shell

sun in the cedars

gilds worn snow

all trembles gently

against the coming green


Here waterlilies still breathe their dreams of love

in our diesel busy city

singing  jade praises to light

their blossoms’ glory,

wintered in mist and memory,

now made flesh, spirit, bone, laughter

share the dragonflies’ erratic delight

and hum a tune of Zion

learned by lanky goslings

in Babylon

Reap roses,

tread the clay,

beyond the rapid foam of threshing days

and flesh-flashy nights,

of making hay and other delights,

lie still the pools

where the salmon waits

late fall Night

moonlit snow hushes

the shingles

and a slow fire licks

the iron stove

while the kittens are learning

how to purr

the queen brings

a night gift wrapped

in red

a mouse to play with

In the Old Country

Horses graze around the mound in the meadow

that once was a castle and a home

the heroes and the children gone into the green

their dreams echoed only by the irises

that flame beside the pond

in sapphire glory

war and peace

I have seen the black bull tear the red land

I have seen the elephant

Do not speak to me of glory

Or the nobility of the lion

Give me the blue buck

On the green hill

And the small rain falling

The snowflake on moss

dreams dancing as sunlight

on ocean waves


Ghosts left over

by Andrew Meek



That is what we are

digital thoughts about our thoughts

sparking and igniting

an inner space that creates, within itself

another space

but a space that has no size or boundary

a space that needs no space

is no space

for what size is a thought?

what does it weigh?

how can one measure its weight

until it is acted upon

virtual made real


Ghosts inside machines?

or more than that

but somehow less

chemicals secreting messages

electricity pulses across vast chasms

and in doing so, in the act of the mindless reaching out

mind comes and knowledge comes

of  a ‘self’ that is more and less than it knows

the sum of the parts is a feeling of separateness

the ghosts left over.


We come, we go.

by Andrew Meek


We come, we go

The old look upon the faces of the young

seeing themselves reborn

What was then

again yet to come

a promise, a dream of all that will be


We come, we go

The young shall grow old and

look upon the faces of the young

seeing their lives relived, renewed

What was then

yet again to come


We come, we go

We are

We were

Lovers loved

Dreams dreamed

All sorrows end


We come, we go.


Her own private sun.

by Andrew Meek

She breaths heavily

her body warm, wet, with perspiration

as I lay my head upon her stomach

wrap my fingers around her hips

I am safe here, with her

content, no need to speak


I feel her body rise and fall with each breath

feel the life within her

cherish it

worship it

I feel a single tear form in my eye

she must never die, this must never end


Her skin, familiar

so soft to the touch

I breath her in, her sweet sent, her warmth

her inner light

that burns within;

her own private sun


I feel her fingers run through my hair

so gentle

like a mother to a son

no! A lover to a lover

we are gods

we will live for eternity


What is time to us

it means nothing

there is no time

there is just… this

this moment that is all moments

a moment without end


I kiss her skin

little butterfly kisses

and I feel her quiver

as my fingers trace the shape of her form

she is such exquisite beauty;

my own private goddess


I lie upon her, wrapped around her

sleepy and spent and content

I want for nothing but her

she is my universe, my sun and moon

we coalesce, one rhythm, one movement

my life held in her breath


The light of day gives way to the coming night

we sleep times sting away

beyond words

beyond this… bodily form

we drift in a timeless space

lovers forever, entwined.


Wind is Fire

by Hannah Warren  24 July 2011

In memory of the young Norway victims


Go beyond my petty thoughts

Where the wind stirs fire in my soul

And I walk upright in the morning light

Where God is in me

And I am proud.


Tall grass on either side of the path

Bows in reverence to me

While I ponder violence

Human dysfunction

The blades they whisper watch me

While I die.


How we count, yes we count

The wind obeying my command.

Oh still child

It will reveal its secret

Have no doubt.

I’m your fire and you’re my witness.


A Tale of Two Stories

by Hannah Warren   7 July 2006


The crimson sky stands proud against the fading light

As threads of weightless gold weave patterns for the night

Revered, Earth moves towards the dark side of her spin

The night’s beauty echoes the stillness from within.

A breeze plays with the curtains and the soul

The veil slips from the limbs, reveals the body whole

Warm shade of passion draws the figures on the bed

Gives life to thirsty loins, fills up the lonely head.


And though the clock remains the master of the game

The lovers linger free from time that has no claim

Where lips touch skin hands follow traces yet unknown

Searching the torch that brightly shines we’re not alone.


This ancient tale so sweet now twines our stories, too

Into a kid-glove morning, still wond’ring what to do

As Master Sun ascends to warm the bright, clear day

Sure you and me will strike upon our godsend way.


Her Odyssey

by Hannah Warren  1 January 2007


Again today

You see her watch

The birds in flight

Ask them

To bring her quest

Before the gods.


Again today

You hear her listen

To the winds in rage

Pray them

To make him safely

Join her side.


Again today

You feel her taste

The salty waves

That lick her lips

To feel the love

She once obeyed.


Again tonight

You watch her spin

The threads of doubt

Beg them

To help her wait.

Eternal weight.



by Drew Cross

Little boys, little girls

No difference for you, your little

World revolves in different spirals.

An eye for the detail of naivety

And an ear that cannot hear the screams

That you asked for.

You bent him like a flower stem,

That boy who then was not a boy,

Changed as if by twisted magic.


From here a different kind of view,

The topography suddenly askew,

An angle from which I cannot see

The angels that watch on and weep,

The feel of feathery fronds,

Grass imprints on a slapped red cheek,

The smell of seed.

Tell me that you love me,

Tell me that you love this.

Pollen drips.

The sound of the breeze through

Watching trees – shh, shh, shh

Such rude anatomy these flower kind,

A stamen thrust, a silken fold,

The sunlight bleeds out

Honey gold and crimson

Onto bright green leaves,

And into dreams.

I do not dream. I do not scream




by Drew Cross


Won’t you hang me

A crucifix

Around my traitor neck?

Sell me reproachful reprieve or

Tear me limb from limb,

Twist my ten year old tongue

In a knot around my throat,

Leave me dangling

Your mannequin.

Torture me

With conversation,

Embarrassed clouds

Of veiled evasion,

Breathing sharp throatfuls

Of quiet submission

I drown in thorny silence

Like innocence.

A boy with Auschwitz eyes

And a belly full

Of righteous rage.

I do not speak


Thank God for My Senses

©Lorraine Holloway-White

I’m lucky I have all my senses

I thank God every day

To enjoy all the beauty around me

The Nature He passed my way.

As I sit in my garden I wonder

Of the gifts we could all perceive

If only we didn’t hanker

For material things we don’t need.

I only want for the basics

The rest is just luxury

But real contentment and pleasure

Is in the gifts of nature and free.

Not all of us have five senses

Some only have two or three

But they’re contented and happy

And not eaten up by greed.

So if ever I’m sad or lonely

Or life is just getting me down

I think of those gifts God gave me

And the beauty of my surrounds.

I think of those people with nothing

There are others worse off than me

For I have all of my senses

And am rich beyond all belief.


Lazy Science

by Vivienne Tuffnell

The mysteries of the universe

Are best explored by means of verse

Where stars that rise and stars that fall

Remain within the reach of all.

Science sometimes can be too much

For those of us who are out of touch

With latest theories and jargon cool

Or things we’ve all forgot since school.

Sometimes those wonders best remain

Unexplained, like summer rain.


What am I worth?

by Vivienne Tuffnell

What am I worth?

Five K a kidney?

A snip, if you’ll pardon a pun.

Bargain bin good looks,

Reduced due to store damage

And some slight fading.

A cheap sense of humour,

Tending towards blackness

But not quite sick, not yet.

That must be worth a bit.

A Lucky Dip of hidden talents;

Go on, have a gamble.

Even I don’t have a clue

What’s hidden deep inside.

That bland tub of sawdust

May hold mysterious gifts

Awaiting your longer reach.

Go on, I dare you:

Make me an offer.

How much? You’re joking!

No way, no sale, pal!

I’m worth more than that, I think.


Nessie’s Holiday

by Mandy Ward

Along the coast of Wales,

Is a lonely rocky beach.

With a cave and tiny waterfall,

Within the sea tide reach.I walk along here often,

Just after the sun is up.

I watch the Oystercatchers,

And sip coffee from my cup.

One gloomy winter morning,

I heard sobbing from the cave,

And made haste to see who cried,

Whose life I may have to save.

Great brown eyes regarded me.

Tears flooding around flippered feet,

Green and blue scales dimmed by shadow,

A long tail made the picture complete.

“Why are you crying?” I asked bewildered,

By the Dragon’s red rimmed gaze.

“I’m homesick.” The Dragon replied,

“I haven’t been there for days.”

“Where is your home? Is it far?”

My curiosity perked up its head.

“Why can’t you go back to where you live,

And snuggle up in bed?”“I live in the distant Loch Ness,

That place connected to the sea.

I watch the tourists and the locals

Looking out for me.

“The locals call me Nessie,

Even though it’s not my name,

They make models and sell cards,

To the tourists drawn by my fame.

I used to go and talk to them,

I’d slip up onto shore.

And chat to all the local kids,

I won’t be doing it any more.”

“Why ever not?” I asked her then,

Sitting on a nearby rock.

“What happened to upset you?

You’ve cried an awful lot.”

She sniffled and she snuffled,

Blowing her nose on a seaweed hanky

The tears dried up a little bit,

And she looked a lot less manky.

“One sunny morning not long ago,

I went to see a human buddy.

A nasty adult hurt my leg and fin,

And tried to drag me ashore to study.

I fought so hard to get away,

That the adult fell in the loch,

And before I could rescue him,

Hit his head on a massive rock.

The Police all thought I did it,

Despite my Buddy’s cries,

And tried to shoot me in the heart,

Believing the adult’s lies.”

I wasn’t sure just what to say,

To the lovely creature here.

So I just sat and stroked her paw,

I knew I didn’t need to fear.

“You can stay in Wales for a while,”

I eventually said to her.

“I’m sure Y Draig Goch won’t mind,”

And Nessie began to purr.

So if you travel to the Scots Land,

And look for Nessie there.

You won’t find her at the loch,

The water will be bare.

She’s happy on my rocky beach,

Playing in the sun,

And I go down almost every day,

To talk and have some fun.

Even famous monsters need,

To have some time away,

And Nessie has come down to Wales,

To have her holiday



by Karen Rigley

Long ago, merely a wisp of a memory,

I recall your laughter.

I can no longer remember the feel

of your lips pressed to mine,

though your caring touch ricochets through my mind.

You wanted only to love me.

Yet, you reluctantly released me,

as a child sets a butterfly free.

We possessed no crystal ball to see the future.

We did not know our separate paths

led neither of us the right way.

My heart shattered and my soul pierced

when I heard of your passing.

Now I’m haunted by the echo of your love.



by Karen Rigley

Imagine an eagle

circling the sky

zooming upflying high

Soar above cliff

soar above mountain

a symbol of strength

a spiritual fountain

Born in a nest

hungry and weak

right from birth

determined to seek

promise of destiny

Rise to succeed

rise to fulfill

plan of the Almighty

Gliding toward heaven

the eagle soars

through the sky


my spirit since

even an eagle

must learn to fly



Copyright 2011 Gordon Kuhn

Poet in the Rain Productions


Purple streaks slowly fed

A fire slowly licking,

As the days dying clock goes ticking.

Grey in shreds hanging drifting forward from the back.

Beyond comes star-lit sprinkled black.

Rolls of fat pastry fill and take up the slack

Fast in the forefront of the attack.

Fat, orange-red pillows,

Steady on solid, no need for billows.

A fire beneath the hidden blue is raging

Yet no one beneath the vision is paging.

No fire station its staff is staging,

To fight the flares of flame so raging,

Following there the setting of the sun,

For the day is simply come to be done.

The death in passing within a violent explosion,

A treat for eyes this sweet essence of ambrosian.

Great rolls of orange and of red

The sky in violent glow my vision fed

As if the horizon engulfed in flames

A reflected blaze consumes all it claims.

And yet no damage below was done,

By the sinking, the settling of the sun.



Copyright 2011 Gordon Kuhn

Poet in the Rain Productions

The following is a poetic reflection on “All the Beautiful Things” written by author Andrew Meek.

The flames licked and sucked upon the food,

T’was fed the crackling heart of fire lent;

As papers, memories, laughter, all the beautiful things, love’s past mood,

Orange, red, and curling grey rose and ate until all was spent.

Nothing there was to be kept.

All there over each had been wept.

A slender hand fed food the glowing, hungry, naked beast,

Which ate so hungrily the memories stained with fallen tears;

And, how oddly, she, the igniter of the flames, not in the least,

Came to realize, burning memories set her free, reduced her fears.

Nothing in memory or tangible she brought there was to be kept.

All brought there over each had been silent wept.

That all that had been or was to be, had come and gone now with the

ticking of passing time,

As memories had failed to stand with her neither strong nor true;

Alone, now, she watched dreams reduce to ashes, and heard a distant

church bell chime,

And then, in deep and stark awareness knew, she had stood true to herself

and seen the issue through.

Nothing else in memory had been for her that day was kept.

All that was or could have been over each had been silently wept.



Copyright 2011 Gordon Kuhn

Poet in the Rain Productions

Along the meadow’s fairy edge,

Lightning no longer threatened.

Thunder no longer crashed.

Now, gently, she was pulled out into the dark.

An invisible hand took hers tenderly in tow.

Drew her out from the safety of her home.

Drew her naked out onto the waiting grass.

A thrill shot through her there.

Bare skinned the journey began,

Bare skinned she bent down the leaves of grass

Beneath her body, back arched, as she lay soft beneath the stars

To gaze at heaven’s washed clean-slate

And, sensed she then, nature’s singular desire, its wish with her to mate,

She relaxed.

Opened her body.

Opened her mind.

Opened her soul.

Her legs, slowly, in growing passion unconstrained did spread

Stroked by, warmed and kissed by,

She accepted the wisdom offered, given

While she was lifted beneath a thousand distant suns

Cradled by hands unseen,

And lying there acknowledged the gift

Surrendered to the knowledge therein delivered,

Acknowledged what was so gently given, what was so gently accepted.

While somewhere close a violin sang out a single soft note

That pierced not only the night but drove deep within her soul

And her voice did rise from within her depths

And she sang out her woman’s single song

As she and nature, there upon a bed of grass fresh cleaned and dewy wet

Lay together then in peace and slept

Now, where she lay, that day, a blanket of flowers now carpets the spot,

And, if you listen carefully, you can hear the violin’s single note

Played in the trees at the meadow’s fairy edge.

Played softly, a cue for her to sing her woman’s single, simple song,

now heard dancing on the wind.

Dancing at the meadow’s fairy edge.



by Jim Goddard

Chocolate is good for curing:

The flu

Stomach pains


Broken bones

Broken hearts


All ills related to everything

(other things might be needed to help cure, but  chocolate should ALWAYS be regarded as the main source for wellness)

Chocolate cures depression

Bad moments

Brain malfunctions


Near insanity

Absolute saneness

Opens up grey cells

Clears the air

Makes frowns turn the other way

Is always a good way to make people smile

The time you eat chocolate is not counted against your life  (sorta like fishing, only you don’t have to gut anything disgusting)

Chocolate bridges gaps

Explains theories

Sends the soul into ethereal never never lands

Explains the sexes

Chocolate takes you places you never would have gone if there were never any

chocolate to begin with

Chocolate has the distinction of never ever being the cause for war

The Beatles wrote a song “all you need is love”, but the original title was “all you need is chocolate”, unfortunately that didn’t sound quite right, so they

shortened it to “love”, and the rest is history


When you think of chocolate, just substitute the word love…and all your problems will vanish

When you think of love, just think of chocolate – but the greatest of these is still….




by Jim Goddard

Do you like to lie underneath an ethereal sky

Close your eyes and dream you’re some place else

Another time

A world apart from your own

Do you ever wish

For simple times, and gentle winds, lapping on your face

Blowing your hair

Do you like to lie underneath an ethereal sky

Upon green grass, looking up past long oak tree limbs

And seeing the deep blue sky

Wonder if you can fly?

And leave the landscape, the grass, the oak, and disappear

Past the clouds

Past the earth

And into the stars…

Do you like ice cream

On warm summer days

Basking in the moment

Mountain or beach, park or shopping mall

Taking in the simple things

And laying aside

The madness of the day

Do you ever disappear

Into the moment

And find yourself taken away

To yesterday

Or toward future dreams

Do you like to lie underneath an ethereal sky

Without a thought

And just find contentment….

In rest

And the Glory which is God

And the miracle which is you


Never Would I Meet You

by Jim Goddard

If I had never met you

I would not know

How warm

The sun could be

Nor would I know

How beautiful the song birds are

If I had not met you

I would never have smelled the sweet summer rain

Nor known….

What love could really be

Oh, love…why do you linger

Why don’t you stay away?

No more room for love,

No more risk taking

Love responds “Fool! I can never leave you…”

…I will never allow you to give up hope…”

Alas, poor muse, play upon me more awhile

Ponder, too much thinking!

I should be drinking

My heart has been sinking

Yes, I need a wife…I mean LIFE!!!

Did Robert Browning ever become depressed?

What would Dracula do?

Or Elvis?

Or Marilyn?

Or Ronald and Nancy?

I’d become a monk

If I could rid my heart

Of love sonnets


And romantic dreaming

Love has a choke hold on my soul

It is impossible to be rid of

“No room for love!”

“Fool x 70,” love replies. “If you have no room for love –

“then you have no room for life.”


Don’t spare the coffee

The chocolate nor strawberries and wine

I am your slave

Oh love, hopelessly so, mere knave am I!


The end of the rhyme

by Ian Boreham aka The Sandman

I wish I could write like poets and muses

But for some reason the brain in my head just refuses

It seems to be wired to some weird kind of circuit

… No matter how hard that I push it and work it

It simply won’t let scribe things that don’t rhyme

And this happens time after time after time

Trying to find things that sound like crustacean

It’s driving me mad, you can see my frustration

I want to write beauty, some passion in prose

But this is that hand I’ve dealt I suppose

It’s not going to happen; I am stick in this rut

But the dream is still open, there’s no ending, but

There is still hope that I could make amends

And learn to write like my imperfect friends

Elizabeth Wolfe and Philip Van Wulven

Who writings are very clever and oh so cool, then

The great Hannah Warren whose pen is so sleek

To the dark and mysterious Mister Andrew Meek

If just for one minute I could write like these people

Then my name would be sung from every spire and steeple

Praise be to Ian AKA The Sandman

And just for once I won’t be called the madman

Who only writes stuff where endings match or are similar

I recognise his style it feels so familiar

The quill is waiting for that famous day

When two lines don’t rhyme and I’ll be able to say

Sincerely and honestly and most of all factually

I have broken the mould and that’s a fact………..



Sex on the Ceiling

by Ian Boreham


My wife likes to moan when we’re making love

But it’s generally about the cobwebs above

On the ceiling the gossamer catches her glance

She might enjoy it if she only gave it a chance

For her it’s a duty she has to perform

… For me I’m a hunter and find it the norm

As I finish my show with a sexy manoeuvre

She says “That was great, now fetch me the Hoover”


Doors and Windows

by Linnie Buhman


It’s like a game they said

when I decided to play.

You’ve got a door or a window,

you’ve got to choose and move on.

Once I looked back,

only to find the window closed

from the other side.

A neon light showed a glimpse

of what had been.


Make mistakes –

forget to read the direction?

It’s all a part of the game.

Right or wrong, up or down

it’s not all black and white –

sometimes it’s striped.


“Can Billy come out and play?”

“No, because he can’t make up his mind.”

“Poor Billy Fourwalls.”


Hard to Breath

by Linnie Buhman


I would climb the iron curtain

just for a chance to make you mine.

Make paths through the desert

for a moment of your time.

Has the apple become bitter

blackened by the tears you weep?

Do the mountains cry for mercy

for the ashes that  you keep?

Life is all around me,

but I find it hard to breath;

until I know you’re here beside me,

and not some other little creep!



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