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Paul Hansford Feb 2018
Into a dull day
you came all unexpected.
My afternoon shone.

Look into my eyes,
see my whole world reflected,
you at the centre.

In your eyes are tears
but your smile overcomes them.
Where is the rainbow?

There was so much more
that we could have said and done,
but we said goodbye.
Some will read these as authentic haiku, because of the 5/7/5 syllable count. Others will have noticed, since they are not related to nature or seasons, that they are not really haiku at all, but senryu.
Paul Hansford Dec 2017
in Sanskrit
of saying
r a i n b o w
and among that richness one
that would perfectly describe
the magical light that fleetingly
shone from your face as,
tears welling in your eyes,
you turned to me
and smiled.
'The vocabulary in Sanskrit is so rich that some words,
such as rainbow, have over two hundred synonyms.' Raja Rao.
Paul Hansford Jul 2016
If I seek your monument, it is only
The violet and the nightingale
and the rainbow all remind me,
even the wild strawberries, though they
happened long ago.
All are part of you,
being in that part of my mind
which is yours.
If I think about you, it is only
all the time.


The inscription on the plaque in St Paul's Cathedral to the architect Sir Christopher Wren – "Si monumentum requiris circumspice" – translates as "If you seek his monument, look about you."
Paul Hansford May 2016
The function of a violet is to grow
out of dead leaves,
turning decay
into itself.
A poem too builds a little sense
from the rubble of life (what branches grow
out of this stony *******?). One and the other
flower according to their nature,
seen by those
who know what they are looking for.

A violet is not a poem,
but the message is the same.
The quotation in brackets is from TS Eliot's "The Waste Land".
Paul Hansford Jul 2016
I saw you again today
going shopping
I knew it was you
how could I not recognise you?
your hair
your height
your walk
you were there
but I could not catch up with you

it's always the same story
I see you
too far away
and you disappear
why will you never stay
and let me speak to you
hear your voice again
look into your eyes?

it's a long time
I know
ten years?
half a lifetime?
but you are always close by
just out of reach
never out of mind

I miss you

please come back
Paul Hansford Jul 2016
I gave you violets;
you gave me your smile.

I gave you elderflower wine;
you gave me wild strawberries.

I gave you a small brown bird
that hid in the white shadows;
you gave me the nightingale
singing to the summer midnight.

you gave me almost-tears
and rainbows;
I gave you my poems.
Paul Hansford Jul 2016
How can I tell you what is in my mind,
how can you know what is in my heart,
when I cannot express it?
The words that do come to mind, again and again,
words that are few and simple,
are not appropriate for the situation, only the feeling,
and even for that they are not enough.
Then I remain silent, or talk of other things,
and so do you, but whether for the same reason,
or different, or none at all,
I cannot even ask, nor could you tell me.
The words would only get in the way.
Paul Hansford Aug 2016
I cry out your name silently
over and over in my head
and hope that no-one will hear
except you.
Paul Hansford Sep 2016
What is this feeling,
overwhelming, new, yet somehow
half remembered,
uncomfortable, ferocious,
and where even fear is not unknown?
Is it the same when I look deep inside you?
when I touch your hand?
when I know you want me to be there
(even though you do not speak or look at me)?
when you struggle for the words to tell me
what you want to say?

My heart races, I want to shout, laugh,
cry, hold you, be still with you.
I have known happiness,
but this goes much further.
Happiness belongs to the world;
like the things of the world it can fade.
Joy is of the spirit;
it exists of itself, intense, in the spirit,
yearning and fulfilment in one,
and it will not let me go.
Paul Hansford Sep 2016
I called your number and
your voice answered –
“Sorry I’m not available.
Please leave a message.”
I put down the phone
without speaking,
and hoped you might pick up
my thoughts.

I called your number and
your voice answered,
sounding tired and lost.
I wished I could hug you better,
but the voice said,
“Who did you want to speak to?”
– It wasn’t you,
but I still wanted to hug you.

I called your number and
your voice answered,
and this time it was you.
I said hello,
and you said hello,
but what could I say
(that I wanted to say)
that you didn’t already know?
So we talked about trivialities
until we said goodbye.
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