Daily Archives: December 11, 2015

Freedom: a cliche

You ask me what is freedom,
setting my thoughts in motion,
taxing my over-wraught brain;
filling it with broken ideas.

Free to roam, free to leave, free the soul,
Free love, free with my affections,
wild and free, free as a bird, freefall,
freedom of thought, freedom of speech,
a free-for-all fight
for freedom;
a free country.
Freedom comes at a price.
After years of imprisonment they freed Nelson Mandela.
He freely undertook the duties of a hero and diplomat,
working tirelessly for the concept of freedom.
He died quietly,
and now his spirit soars free.

Written for Writing 101 Poetry – Day 5:

It’s already Friday for some of you; let’s head into the weekend with the wise words of @impossiblebebong, whose Day 5 prompt is on the theme of Freedom.

©Jane Paterson Basil



He said goodnight to the driver, and leapt from the bus, fingers clutching his greasy chips. In his haste 
for the savour of salt on his tongue
he ran into the road,
blind to the light
of the car's headlights 
and moving too fast to stop as I shouted a 
         terrified warning. The breaks screeched, but the car 
                            didn't stand a chance of halting.
                                        In my screaming brain
                                                   all motion
                                               the dire crack 
                                     of head-on impact.
                             My son;
                    my son was bounced into the air,
             flipped by the nose of the bonnet;
        his chips scattering, cascading.
     I saw him hurtling head first towards the ground
    and my brain raced.
    I saw his head shatter on the tarmac,
      the splash of blood
         and the scarlet puddle that swelled
             around his lifeless self.
               My anguish was too great to contain
               so, from a distance,
              I watched my feeble frame
           crouch beside my child,
        lift his broken head onto my lap,
     hearing keening sobs erupt from within me.
   a siren wailed.
  They took my dead son away.
 as I watched the tail lights recede
a sudden movement clicked me back to reality
his death had been no more
than a vision of the expected future
and he was still falling, but; 
in a split-second miracle
he had contorted in the air,
raising his shoulders and his head,
giving him a safe delivery.

               wasn't dead.
       He wasn't dead or even hurt.
  As his incredulous audience marvelled    
I hugged him close,  crying out my relief.
Over and again,  the poor car-driver said                      
“he was right in front of me. I braked but 
 there was nothing I could do!” I uttered 
   words of comfort and agreement, but 
     I knew only time would heal his 
      unfounded shame.  While Paul 
       struggled to free himself 
        from my shaking embrace 
          I clung to him tight,
           hearing a muffled 
            complaint leave 
               those lips:
  “I was really longing to eat my chips.”

Written for Writing 101 Poetry – Day 4

This really happened. Paul was thirteen years old, and it was his second close brush with death, but years later,  more were to follow…

©Jane Paterson Basil