The Great Alone

The well had run dry for some days.  But, this morning, this free-verse came to visit me.  We all know people like this. Sometimes it is ourselves.  A celebration of the bittersweet taste of being unique.


The Great Alone


Might we reach them,

Those in

The great alone?

Off in the fog,

Weighed down,

By their darkness,

Dampened in spirit,

Hunched and huddled

Into the day?

What is it

That cuts them off,

Casts them into the mire,

And makes them not able

To be reached?

Why they may not

Have their hand out,


For another’s hand,

To reach and grasp

And draw them in.

They feel so alone,

Cut off

From others,

Yet unable

To speak their pain.

They seek another,

But who can truly share

The depths

They hold within?

How much of this alone,

This measure on the scales,

Is unable to be offered,

Shared with another?

How much

Is that a unique alone,

That ‘just me’,

That no one else

Can truly comprehend,

Because they are

Someone else?

How do we hold them,

Their damp, dark spirits,

In the fog,

When they realise

That we each

have an alone

that is unique to ourself,

and no other human

can truly dwell

with us

in that beautiful

yet alone




Simon C.J. Falk 26 April 2014



For Those Who Celebrate Easter and all of Good Will

May the light of the risen Christ arise in you this day,
May it warm the cockles of your heart,
Shine in the eyes of all you meet
And light a path to your loved ones.
And may the Risen one, the morning star,
Roll away the stones of your fears, doubts and sorrows,
That you may walk on in peace. 


Simon C.J.Falk. Easter 2014


This little verse has been posted before. I repost it as it is relevant to a potent and meaningful ritual that takes place in Christian Churches at this time.  It commemorates when Jesus Christ washed his disciples’ feet as a humble sign of giving one’s life in service of others.




On the floorboards


The path

Of pilgrims’ lives.

Each footprint

Bears an imprint

Unique to our world.

And yet

They come

From the same creator’s hand.

Feet were washed

Kissed and wiped

After the Master’s example and care.

Each bearer

As they placed their foot

They showed

The grounding of their stand.


Upon their generous service

Loving others as Christ has loved.

Can they see

Their gift

To their sisters and brothers

Is seen and noticed

Both here below

And above?

As we washed

Those pilgrim feet

A teary smile alights the face.

At this Assembly

On Holy Thursday

Three generations

Witnessed grace.


Flowing through

Water and towel

At the Saviour’s

Example and command.

Yet they know

Not just the ritual

For they live

The service somehow.


Simon C.J. Falk

Ariah Park,

Holy Thursday, 28 March 2013.

Reminiscences of Romano’s Fairfield!

On a recent visit to Canberra I was struck by how a coffee shop that didn’t look that cosy still had a sense of community.  The architecture and decor was harsh and hard. But…. there were regulars streaming in who were obviously known by the baristas.  It reminded me of days in Melbourne of when I had my own ‘regular’. I wrote them a poem for when I left Melbourne and have posted it here. Cheers!

Reminiscences of Romano’s Fairfield!

Beautiful baristas! Some coffee for me please!

My eyes are heavy,

My limbs flop limp,

I’m weakening at the knees!

I wandered in one morning,

Seeking a coffee for my way,

Something broke right through my yawning,

And stayed with me from that day.

No doubt characters cross the threshold,

Of the glassy welcoming doors,

Some may be shy, some may be bold,

They may come in sunshine, or shuffle in when it pours.

But when I entered Romano’s,

Something seemed to click,

It was more than just coffee and milky flows,

Whatever – it seemed to stick.

Is it the bouncy family way,

With kids gawking at the cakes?

Or those seeking to ease the day,

With the Age or Herald Sun news breaks?

Or is it the staff of friendly face,

Who kindly spread their cheer?

Who know their regulars around the place,

And who ordered what in here.

It’s more than just the grind and steam,

Of the coffee they tenderly give,

But an ambience in the scene,

That helps you want to live.

Romano’s helps you greet the day,

With a good and spritely start,

Whether sitting inside or take-away,

It helps to lighten the heart.

Coffee beans might pick up your rate,

And milk might give your bones strength,

But Romano’s staff add a pleasant state,

And boil an atmosphere in their cafe length.

The atmosphere percolates through little gestures,

Like giving a coffee card,

Which might give no frequent flyers,

But makes walking past real hard!

You might give a tip to them,

But here’s a tip for you and me:

Count your blessings as well as your money,

And with your gratitude be free.

So, as you in the morning greet

The bustle and Melbourne breeze,

Make your way to Station Street,

To Romano’s, if you please!


Simon C.J. Falk      Commenced 10 December 2010

Out on the Pier

We all know people who feel alone in the plight of their pain. Some are beset by tragedy.  Some tortured by their own struggle within.  This is dedicated to those people we all know.  It is particularly for those who feel they ‘must keep it together’.  Or, for those who, because of their role, struggle to find the forum where their vulnerability is allowed to be tended.  May they find someone to sit with them ‘on the pier’ and listen to their voice with the honesty of accepting them as they are. 

Out on the Pier


On the pier


Hunched over knees,

Hugging the shins,

As windy rain seethes

Upon the skin,

Smarting, like the rasp of wet sandpaper.


Tensely perched

On the damp, weathered timbers.

The fading light

Of dusk slowly settles

As if taunting a small hope

But washed to a slow fade.

The painful alone,

The unreachable

It wears down

Who can listen?

Who can companion?

On this bleak verge,

This precipice above the foaming frenzy

Of ever blackening waters.

Driven from the inner sanctum,

Away from the competent,

The cocky and the compliant.

Weakness is not appropriate

Except in clinical mode

To designated ‘professional ears’.

Watched by the umm-ing and arrh-ing of superiors.

Can peers perch with us

On this perilous pier?

Logic and decency says they could

But existentially

Can we let them in?

Do we risk weakening them more?

Letting the side down?

Not ‘taking one for the team’?


We sit upon the pier,

Waiting for the weather to change,

Willing the weather to change.

The sun will rise tomorrow.


Simon C.J. Falk 11 April 2014



Finding your Voice

It is a delight to see writers finding their voice and then publishing that one, wild and beautiful voice.  The free verse that follows is dedicated to those just finding their voice and publishing now.

Finding your Voice

Our first sounds,

Those goos and gaas,

Enthral our dear ones

As they begin

The journey with us

Into the labyrinth of language.

In time

The tone,

the timbre,

and tenor,

of our own voice

will form

uniquely in each of us.

People will recognise us

By the sound

Of our one unique voice.


Seek to draw from the stream

Of their voice

Beneath their voice.

To dig and draw deeply

Into the well of themselves

Finding the expression

That is their source

Of refreshing our language.

They find a voice

That may be spoken


As if

Opening an inner ear,

They resonate

In recesses,


Into our hearts, minds and souls.


As we listen,

We are enthralled

Like those parents of little ones

As the sound

Of another voice

Drums on our inner ear

And we stop

And savour

Its tremoring vibration

Feeling deeply

Smiling within

Celebrating in our soul

That another voice rises

Into the fresh air.



Simon C.J Falk 11 April 2014

Dinner Table

Dinner Table

Dinner table
In the room.
Plates laden
With steaming mash
To soak up the juices
Of the hard won chops
Arrayed beside the veg.
Practised hands
Sinewy and tensile
Their strength replenished
By the proteinous provender
On the porcelain.
Welcome faces
sharing joys
Of simple pleasures,
Like the meat tray,
Spoils of a few swings on a fairway.
Little children
Bounding off the chairs.
Using the toy table
As a stage
For their latest production.
A vaudeville vaulting
With forty giggles amid the curls.
Inventive children,
One moment an esky,
The next a makeshift bed
On the infant floor show.
Dinner table,
Departed from now,
A pantry of potency
For the next gastronomic adventure,
Of small-town stories.

Simon C.J. Falk 2 April 2014



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