On the Inexorable Rewilding of my Garden

I admire gardens well-maintained
Every year mine just leaves me drained.
Why is that, you want to know?
All mine does is grow and grow.

Fancy-named flowers, a veggie crop?
All I did was cut and chop.
I never planted any seeds,
I’d never tell them from the weeds.

I have every tool that the market produces,
Hedge trimmer and chainsaw both have their uses.
But could you really say that my fingers were green,
When all I did was use cutting machines?

And since my “bump” I’m such a slob,
Where maintaining the garden’s a full-time job.
But with just one working hand, it’s clear,
That operating chainsaws is a bad idea.

for Fandango’s One Word Challenge (FOWC) of 20 September 2020, inexorable.

Fandango’s One Word Challenge (19 September 2020)

I knew immediately what I wanted to do today, but it took me ages to find this mix on YouTube. It is very long but I liked it – I listened to all 11 minutes, but I can happily listen to Marvin all day. Actually, there’s another really good version by Usher, but you’ll never top the original.

This song is fifty years old. Don’t kid yourselves that we never knew.

for Fandango’s One Word Challenge (FOWC), climate.

The In-Laws

inspired by Fandango’s One Word Challenge (FOWC) of 18 September 2020, reconcile.


Where women were concerned, Paul’s mother, Mary, just wanted her son to be happy. There were various “nice to haves”, but in general, if Paul was happy… Even as a youngster, when he was seeing a woman, it tended to be a big deal – Paul did not go much for “casual”. She had seen him marry Beth, incredibly young, but she seemed to be a stabilising influence on him, although Mary no longer saw as much of him.

When grandson Jake arrived, she was ecstatic. Wasn’t it about time?

But then came the divorce. Divorce was not really a word in Mary’s vocabulary – socially conservative,  she believed that life was life, although she had sufficient experience to know that relationships are never as smooth as we would like. In the months following the divorce, she had witnessed Paul retreat into his shell. He argued that it was a good thing, but she saw the negative effects.

Mary learned about Anna, therefore, in dribs and drabs. The biggest indicator was when she happened to see a shirt, which clearly belonged to a woman, on the floor in Paul’s bedroom. Paul would tell her in his own time, but she was pleased he was meeting people again.

Over the next couple of weeks, Mary teased information from Paul, little by little, until it became an established fact. Paul could have guessed what would come next – Mary would like to meet this new woman.

It took a few more weeks, but Paul convinced Anna to meet Mary. Apart from Jake, she would be the first “family” person anybody had met. The date was set for a Sunday lunch, one weekend when Jake was staying with Paul – all three would meet and head to Mary’s. Mary would provide the main course, Paul dessert.

On the day itself, Anna had slight butterflies, but really, she need not have worried. So long as Paul liked her, it did not matter to Mary.


I’ve written a background to these characters, in the posts below.

Fandango’s One Word Challenge (17 September 2020)

The cat looks very introspective,
Reviewing life from her perspective,
From time to time I hear her sighs,
And then I see her close her eyes.

Dreaming no doubt of mice, she lies content,
her energy drained her gusto spent,
It causes unnecessary trouble and strife,
When you try to discover the meaning of life.

for Fandango’s One Word Challenge (FOWC), introspective.

Fandango’s One Word Challenge (16 September 2020)

On days when she’s working,
have the house to myself.
No excuses for shirking,
Get those books off the shelf.

I like peace and quiet,
When I’m doing my thing.
Concentration Required,
For lots of reading.

But when in the house,
I feel I’m fair game,
My incredible spouse,
Just serves to inflame.

I feel myself raging, from within,
As my wife sees me and comes in to chat,
Or I hear her music – an unholy din,
This is something I need to work at.

Okay, I want to explain the poem but straight from the off, I want to say that I understand that this is my problem, it is for me to get my head around, not my wife. I’m not complaining.

As regular readers will know, my wife is a nurse. She works in a doctor’s surgery. So, she has this tidy demarcation – the surgery is “work”, and home is, well “home”. Her space to relax.

For many years, I was the same. “Work” was my office in London, home was “relax”.

In my case, my work required a lot of concentration. It probably says something in the blurb, but my main role was designing computer systems in the finance sector. Yada, yada (wasn’t that a prompt for something the other day?), dull as, but the bottom line, it required a nice, dark room, and plenty of quiet.

Having got back after the stroke (I am too young to consider myself retired, I still want to work), I’ve been building my professional skills once again. I do this from home. Even though I’m no longer working for banks, so the projects I do now are far less grand, I still appreciate that quiet.

So, I’m in a tricky situation. Ideally, I want the place to be silent, but this is my wife’s home, too. Her “relax” space. What’s more, she is the main breadwinner at the moment, her income never used to be important but now, it keeps us afloat.

So I can’t say anything, I have to bite my tongue. When I hear the loud music, I suck it up. When she comes into my workspace on her day off and starts chatting to me, breaking my concentration, I suck it up. But inside, there is this silent “Grrrr”.

Anyway, that’s about as “peeve” as it gets.

Oh, and there was a din in the poem somewhere, to fulfil Fandangs’s One Word Challenge (FOWC).