illuminating the shadow

for Kaz


You offered me a smile
when I stopped to speak
I guess it was all you had
to give away.  But I will carry
your smile with me and hold
it close.  You were wrapped

in your duvet and woolly hat
clutching a small handful of
change. I was wrapped in my
concern for direction clutching
a device designed to connect.

You asked me for nothing. In
those precious minutes our
worlds collide.  You will have
forgotten my face in the crowd
that passes you by.  But I will carry
your smile with me and hold it close.

For I dared to turn aside from
the world across the street with
the well heeled whose eyes don’t
break their focussed concern

Amidst it all:
I heard you cry.  ‘Scuse me?
And your gift, a simple smile
carries me on, lightens my heart.



A small town cannot cope
I tell you – we’ve never been busier!
Every room taken from simple lodge
to high class hotel. Not even a cave
can spare its shelter.
No room to lay a head for a night.
No room I tell you,

No room for a saviour,
No place for a son to be born
of God of Mary for all…
to have room in our hearts.
To offer a place to lodge for all time,
not just this night in December,
but each night.

Perhaps there is room,
a corner
to cradle
the King of Love.


Written for 2016 Carol Services reflecting on the unseen homeless residents of our towns and villages.  With love and much respect to all at:  Hope Restored

What you see

Can you hear the cry of the city?

‘ Big Issue ‘

‘ Big Issue ‘

Is the cry of the street vendor and they are right, there are so many Big Issues.  And Yet,  There is a way of walking in the city, purposeful, focussed, absent.  Does the ‘Shelter Cymru’ fund-raiser, (with the red bib and clipboard) make this even more ironic?  As dogs with their companions occupy vacant doorways – how many there are, yet how silent the city.  Gangs of smokers lurk at back entrances to offices, the new staff room.  Eager concert goers queue by the Taff.  Families set out blankets on Bute Park and the campaign against greed, blankets, sleeping bags, dread-locks, wakes up in the grounds of the Castle.  Big Society?  Not until all belong it won’t be.  How quiet it is as joggers go round, allotments grow, leather hits willow, and ordinands study in Llandaf.  The cry of the street vendor muffled, diminished by the walls – so many walls.