Between the sand dunes and the sea,
A path of course.
And there's a wide bay.
The headland - something sharp on the map -
Might be a point on the coast road.
There is no conceit here.
No metaphors of travel - of sea, sky, time.
I know where I am going.
Elizabeth Oakley
A Dursley Poet





As children we knew

It was the sound of the

Sea and the wind when

You held it up.


It had to be from the 

Effort of holding

Such an object.

Holding and not just

Leaving there as

If life was not made

From the imagination

As well as from what

You found there.


There, inside the

Spacious world of a

Seashell bountiful with its

Sounds of the sea 

And the wind,

And the silence -




Elizabeth Oakley





Ground mist ebbing and flowing in lower valleys.

Sunlight strengthening overhead between

Bright soft clouds, blue sky.


But time passes

And ever-changing views are always a delight.

Wide fields cropped of grain and
Short stubble glowed bright gold in low sunlight.

Surrounding hedgerows and trees exhibiting dark greens of

Late summer with a small tinge of early autumn colours.


At the long descent - looking down the steep
Hillside into the whole wide valley completely wreathed in

Fine mist - creating an amazing glow, but little visible substance.

By the end, the streets were shrouded in a bright
Pearly-white fog.

On market day stallholders were only just setting up.
The sky began to brighten and low ground fog disperse.

Walking down the hill towards the old market cross

The sun was warming. Some fruit and flower perhaps

To place within the well.


A winding path leading down to a series of cul-de-sacs.

Within the wide grassy areas several small but old

Apple trees hung with green fruit.

A bunch of deep purple grape-like Mahonia aquifolia

Came from the hedgerow.

So too did the horse chestnuts.

It was quiet and very peaceful -

The small waterfall and cascade -

The fruit was placed in the stream and

Camera set for slow shutter speed

Which would blur the flowing water.

Small stones blessed by immersion in the sacred stream,

Placed alongside fruit in flowing water.

Then atop a cherry leaf itself on the water, impregnated

Iron-oxide rich stones.
Placed too a young swan (cygnet's) primary wing feather.

The splashing cascade covered the strong feather

With glistening drops.


Such a contrast between sunlight areas and
Deep shadows beneath old trees around

Fruit and flower covered wellhead.

The usual blessing was held early morning before

The grounds were opened.

Luckily, the day unfolded, the sun was
Warming, and there was no hurry.
It would be interesting to picture the garden in winter -
Perhaps with a frost - and place a candle-lantern into the stream.




New Worlds


The picture had a stone arched frame.

But it was not normally framed like this.

It was just that the age of faith

Had worked itself to the bone

To create this still standing stone beast

Of a bountiful beautiful building.

Birdsong added to the impression

Of focus of sound and light.

But the impression was incidental really.

Did they have need to bother with the stonework?

For other than the frame

My vision could else have been more

Horizonal than vertical.

That horizontalness did not have a 

Tower or a spire.

It did not really float either.

There was plenty of light.

There was birdsong for sure.

Of my strange longing there probably is no cure.

For now.



Elizabeth Oakley

A Dursley Poet


.LETTER OF THE DAY:Waiting, a poem by the Dursley Poet | Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard (