Charm Bracelet


Beneath the dust of rusted dreams
the precious bracelet swings and gleams.

No simple trinket this,
no tinsel sliding from a wilting tree,
no lace that slips from silken locks
to rot, forgotten, in the street.

The blood of ancestry
pulses through this eager chain, its genes
sown in the root of love, its links
tempered in the knitted cogs
of mutual reality.

We can not know
when first we join the clasp,
or as we add each precious charm,
what fist might grip the slender wrist,
or what corrupted implement
might chip and scrape its dancing gems.

We do not always see the claw
before it locks upon a treasured one,
but of this we can be sure;
we hear the thud as it hits the floor.

The lessened weight upon our arm
might give an instant of relief,
but as we rub our tender flesh,
our innards crease and we are flipped
into a keening

Above is the raw version of a poem I wrote today.
Beneath is the start of a more traditional cooked version.
Which do you prefer, salad or stew? Is it worth persisting with the poem below?

Beneath the dust of rusty dreams
the precious bracelet swings and gleams.

No tuppence ha’penny trinket this;
no tinsel on a baubled tree;
no flimsy frippery that slips
from careless tresses to the street.

Within this chain run veins of blood
whose links are tempered through the years;
Knitted loose ’round roots of love
and seasoned by our joy and tears.


©Jane Paterson Basil

17 thoughts on “Charm Bracelet

  1. I do like my meat cooked, the first 2 stanzas of the second one are looking promising. Although I liked your raw version too. Going to be hot again today here, so maybe just cold meat and salad will do !!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I have a confession, Jane. I was taken by surprise just now. Genuine surprise.

    Naturally, i dropped by today with the noble and just purpose of announcing that I’m back to reading blogs after a few month’s absence by, of course, heaping snark on your pathetic efforts to pass as a credible poet. But dang you, Jane, you defeated me! Defeated me without you even knowing I was on my way to your blog!

    For — and I could not make this up if I tried — the moment I began reading your work I felt just as if I had returned home. Your words — your writings — I seem to find a home in them. I have no other explanation for how I felt just now reading you for the first time in months.

    Disgusting, I know. You’ll probably never cease laughing at me for this blatant confession of having a shred of human warmth left in me. Worry not. I’ll recover shortly.

    By the way, sorry to see scrolling down that you recently got hit with an attack of depression. Ugh! Hope you’re much better now.

    And this:

    “The blood of ancestry
    pulses through this eager chain”

    I really like that.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Paul! How strange that you should pop up today. I was thinking about you earlier and almost emailed you, (“Hey, Paul whassup? Isn’t it about time you came out from under that table and faced the world like the shamelessly virile man you claim to be?”) but I got tangled up in a child’s birthday party. Seriously, I’ve been concerned about you.

      No need to apologise for your weakness -call me old fashioned if you like, but I prefer my victims to contain a shred of human warmth. They burn better when I throw them on the fire. Please don’t be shocked; it’s winter in the UK.

      As for depression; Since making a few changes in my life I’ve been recovering well, and hearing from you has blown away the last vestiges of the blues. I kid you not. It’s great to hear from you.

      Oh, and thanks for the amazing compliment. I’d send you a million kisses, but I don’t do kisses. How about a million well-meaning punches on the arm?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m back like a bad case of herpes!

        Thank you so much for the warm welcome, Jane! I’m sorry I was a cause of concern to you. Next time I disappear I will be sure to post that I’m just taking a break first. Should have done that before.

        You couldn’t make happier than to tell me I’ve helped elevate your spirits. Means this is a good time to hit you up for money.

        By the way, I am working on a colossal poem. About 2000 words which I intend to inflict on you in draft form before I dare finish it up and post it. I need a real a pro’s opinion on it – -and maybe even some help. Which means you. My demands are non-negotiable! So don’t try to run and hide. It’s no use, I’m already got your email.

        Seriously, no worries if you don’t have the time or inclination to mess with it.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Luckily for you, my services are free, provided you send me your address, car keys, bank details and the location of the gold bullion from the armed robbery. I’m sure you understand it’s just a formality – nothing to worry about. But don’t try to back out of the deal; I have some video footage that Interpol would be very interested in.

          I’d be both thrilled and honoured to assist you with whatever you wish, Paul (as long as it doesn’t involve me taking my clothes off. I haven’t inflicted that torture on anyone for ten years), but slap me on the wrist if I start trying to take over. I have an obsession with alliteration and assonance, which I might sometimes take too far. You and I have different poetic strengths, for example, you have a real talent for metaphor, but you don’t over-use it – the phrase ‘put another onion in his pocket’ is still running through my brain from reading your blog last night.

          If we were to team up we could rule the world with words… or kill each other in a quarrel about details.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. I’m back! And I’m twice as horny as before!

            “If we were to team up we could rule the world with words… or kill each other in a quarrel about details.”

            I’ve to to agree with you. Totally agree with you there, Jane. I think we could do some wonders — either create wonderful poetry, or create a wonderful crime scene.

            We should each take a deep breath, offer up appropriately snarky prayers to the silent gods, drink a bottle of some single-malt to fortify our courage, and figure out just how to at least give it one good try.

            We’ll muck through this, Jane. We’ll muck through this in the very best British tradition of mucking one’s way into the possession of empire! We’ll rule!

            Thank you so much for agreeing to take a look at my epic 2k draft. I confess a strategy for dealing with your insufferable tendency to take over has popped into my head! [s]Arsenic in your mail! Where the hell now are my postage stamps![/s] The poem is divided into sections. If your changes get out of hand, we’ll just start adding them on as new sections! Might work. Don’t know, but it might work.

            I’ve already dedicated the poem to a friend of mine. Someone I’ve wanted to do something worthy of her for years, but haven’t managed to. I love it that you’ll most likely help me raise this poem up to something worth her attention. It’s about time.

            Of course, I anticipate I’ll learn tons from you even if every last one of your ideas crushes my ego. Which I’ll wager is the most likely outcome of all this.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. If we’re doing this the British way we need to divide up labour fairly. You blow up the bridges. I’ll make tea and butter the scones. I’ll watch our glorious victories from the comfort of the officer’s tent. I want to see villages burn, women weeping, children screaming, men gurgling as scarlet foam bubbles from their throats. Afterwards, we’ll pick poppies and speak in lowered voices of the horror of war, and promise each other that we’ll live in peace until we come across another nation we want to possess.

              Or f you’re not man enough for that, we could just stick with the poetry.

              I don’t wanna bruiseyour ego
              or to break your heart.
              If I stay here just a little bit longer
              if I stay here you will see that I’m a tart,
              ohh-ohh a tar-ar-art.

              (Insincere apologies to Rod Stewart. I’m forever re-writing other people’s songs in my head)


Thank you for dropping by. If you have any thoughts, questions, treats or cures, you're welcome to drop them in the comment box.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.