Finding sanctuary, p.1
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Finding Sanctuary
Finding Sanctuary

  Copyright 2017 Judith Lesley Marshall


  Thank you for downloading this eBook. This book remains the copyrighted property of the author, and may not be redistributed to others for commercial or non-commercial purposes. If you enjoyed this book, please encourage your friends to download their own copy from their favourite authorized retailer. Thank you for your support.



  In 1809 Charles Darwin dropped anchor off the coast of New Zealand and declared it: ‘a chaos of delight.’ More than two centuries later I fulfilled a lifelong dream and embarked on a motor home tour of ‘Godzona.’

  Poems inspired by that journey are woven into this collection which originally evolved from exploring the theme of ‘sanctuary.’ They can be read either as a series of steps or as a single story that can be enjoyed in one sitting.

  They are dedicated to dreamers, travellers and explorers everywhere. I hope that you find something to surprise, amuse and delight you within their lines.


  Table of Contents

  No Entry



  Carrion Call

  No Exit

  In Godzona


  Festival Season

  Night Walker


  Alien Rock


  Rainbow Serpent

  Fly Away Home

  Address Unknown

  Into the Pit


  In the Stillness

  Finding Sanctuary

  Porte Disparu

  About the Author


  No Entry

  Sliding home the bolt

  I turn to find

  a flight of stone steps

  descending into darkness,

  fumble for the switch,

  which flickers with a click

  flooding the cellar

  with violet light,

  inhale the dank dust,

  tiptoe to the bottom,

  peep around the corner

  of the white-washed walls.

  I did not intend to trespass

  on your private world

  but the door was unlocked

  and I needed a place to hide.



  It was not murder

  when you banished me

  to my room,

  nor manslaughter

  when you grounded me

  for a month,

  Just a slow suicide

  until I dissolved

  into the shadow

  of a spectral self,

  which mirrored me

  like a twin.

  Nails bitten to the quick

  I scratched nadia

  into the frost

  frozen on the inside

  of the leaded glass –

  aidan appeared in the pane.



  You were the first

  to see me for what I was,

  a canary in a cage.

  You would take me out,

  but a bird with broken wings

  cannot learn to fly,

  Even in the arms of a lover

  with enough free spirit for two.

  You were my light,

  my air, my insight

  to the world outside.

  The day you ceased to call

  I fretted, lost my singing voice.

  (First published in Masquerade: 2013)


  Carrion Call

  It all changed when the raptors moved in.

  Not that I could see them,

  but I could smell their stench,

  could feel their blood red eyes

  itching for the chance

  to strip flesh from bone.

  Pegged out by breed

  and country of birth,

  their eldritch screech lased

  my mind, rattled my teeth,

  shredded my walk

  through the pine tree trail.

  There was no more peace

  in the old walled garden,

  by the lily pad lake

  or waterfall steps,

  saturated by their carrion call.

  It all changed when the raptors moved in.


  No Exit

  An echo of footsteps

  betrays each tread

  as dust motes spiral

  like a cloud of midges

  in the musty air.

  From the top stair

  torchlight reveals

  a tumble of boxes

  matted with cobwebs

  and mouse droppings.

  Floorboards bend and bow

  as I press a path

  through the spill;

  clothes, shoes, records,

  bags and books.

  Strips of wallpaper

  peel from the wall

  like the bark of a birch,

  fail to conceal

  a forgotten door.

  I fit the last key

  into the lock,

  turn the knob,

  knock ‘rat a tat tat’…

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