Scott Langston

Authoring Adventures

Page 3 of 6


Words capturing feelings

Like drawing the Mona Lisa

With hopscotch chalk

On a gravel path

Whilst the model grimaces, coughs

And rearranges herself

Finally leaves, as clouds mask the sun,

Dances in the rain

And returns, soaked and uncooperative,

To scowl at the artist

And even then

Just as the outline form seems right

The rains wash eveything away

Other patterns form and reform

And the hapless artist

Can only watch

And drop is useless tools to the ground.


This – from 12 November 2005

I received a link to on online diary website I had forgotten I ever joined. It has taken me back to Viet Nam…

Beethoven’s ‘Ode to Joy’ is beginning to sound  recognisable, although he probably never envisaged the  distortion from the amp or the effects of the whammy bar…. I’’m also getting to grips with a jazzy version of ‘Happy birthday’ for Munch’’s big day in only three weeks’ time.  Two already – …hard to believe.

I’m teaching full time now. So the book is grinding to a  halt. Who am I kidding? It ground …ages ago. It’’s not  really a writer’’s block – -more a writer’’s apathy. This  project is in danger of slipping out of sight and mind. I  just can’’t get to it.

Sometimes I just look at my daughter and I think, ‘’That’’s  it. I’ve  achieved. Anything else I do from here on in is a  bonus.’…’ And it’’s not a bad thought.

Thoughts on this, 12 and a half years later…

  1. Beethoven’s Ode to Joy is still on the agenda. Guitar lessons have been revived as I invested in an electric guitar for my mid-life crisis.
  2. The book – The Year of the Monkey – never got back off the ground after a return to full time teaching. Other bits of writing, as this site is testament, do surface from time to time.
  3. Munch is now 14, and I still look at her and think the same thing.


Coaxing Sunday morning flames

From a pre-laid fire

Dawn’s feeble rays

Glistening on flowing water


Its never-ending journey

Boy and cat doze

Stirrings and purrings

Sofa-greeting the day




Snowflakes swirling at lamps

Like Vincent’s stars

Blue black skies

Replete with unimaginable uniqueness

An infinite array of different

Settles on the ground

In homogeneous perfection.


We’re back in Saulzais for the holidays

As another year draws to an end

Shedding my workaday malaise

We’re back in Saulzais for the holidays

Forward looking or reflecting on yesterdays

Darkness to forfend

We’re back in Saulzais for the holidays

And another year draws to an end


A poem for a goddaughter

This, your first communion,
Gives no assurance of celestial reunion
It’s a yoke you choose to wear
The empty promise of unheard prayer
Its tenants and rituals offer only confusion

I’m feeling tarnished and somewhat complicit
In this indoctrination, this illicit
Eight year old’s promise of servitude
An abuse of childhood, crass and rude
This institution is humanity’s deficit

This s no tool of education
This is simple subjugation
This supplication to the divine
Subjecting the child, a crime
Colluding in foolish fabrication

Perverse, this virgin creed
A cloak for mankind’s greed
Grown of nomadic superstition
Deaf to rational petition
Not a solution, not the one we need

A god who needs your pledge of devotion
And delights in such frivolous commotion
Lifted not a finger nor cried
For all the babies which today have died
He feels not, cares not, lacks emotion

This ritual, this cultural veneer
Superstitious nonsense to mask the fear
Of no purpose beyond that which YOU create
You have no need of divinity to make you great
You life, you can learn to better steer

Trees and trains

Trees are flying, blurring into the past

Metaphorically, literally

The train tracks its clanking route too fast

Trees are flying,  blurring into the past

But the fuel it’s using cannot last

Are we seeing reason, finally?

Trees are flying, blurring into the past

Metaphorically, literally


Folkestone, England.  June 2017

Black coffee

Black liquid flows, dark and revitalising,

Jump-starting and igniting me

Hard disks and systems reinitialising

Black liquid flows, dark and revitalising,

Myself, my present moment recognising

Invigorating and re-booting me

Black liquid flows, dark and revitalising,

Jump-starting and inviting me.

The vineyards roll…

The vineyards roll down these luscious slopes

Row upon manicured row of false hopes

Hail this domain, my life to sustain

Whilst sunset falls and off the dreamer lopes


‘Lost in thought’ seems such a common refrain

As farmers plough their routes up the lane

It hangs on the vine, this nectar devine

Usurping nature across this plain


And what does it bring me , this thirst of mine?

What does it bring you this thirst of thine?

Illusion of relief, cruel and brief

Release of Dionysian design


Dijon, May 2017



Back to poetry, the gwawdodyn is a Welsh poetic form with a couple of variations. Both versions are comprised of quatrains (4-line stanzas) that have a 9/9/10/9 syllable pattern and matching end rhymes on lines 1, 2, and 4. The variations are made in that third line. One version has an internal rhyme within the third line. So there’s a rhyme somewhere within the third line with the end rhyme on the third line. Here’s my first attempt:


Get up on your bike, beseeches the song

Accoustic motorbikes can’t be wrong

Foot on the pedal, who needs a medal?

Wind in your face, primevally strong


OK, I might have made up the adjective ‘primevally’, and I inverted the syllable pattern to 10/9 9/9… (The notion of the accoustic motorbike, and the line ‘get up on your bike’ is from a song of that name by Luka Bloom, hence the poem’s title

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