Tag Archives: poetry

Behind the #Poet Chosen for Invictus Games 2018

Those in Australia, and other participating nations, would be aware that Sydney just hosted the Invictus Games 2018.   The Games website reveals that there is a story behind the Games:

The word ‘Invictus’ is Latin for ‘unconquered’ and embodies the fighting spirit of our wounded, injured and ill servicemen and women. They have been tested and challenged, but they have not been overcome. They have proven that by embracing each other and the support of family and friends, they can reclaim their future. They are Invictus.

Most of us will never know the horrors of combat. Horrors so great that many servicemen and women suffer life-changing injuries, both visible and invisible, while serving their countries, while serving us. How do these men and women find the motivation to move on and not be defined by their injuries? How can we challenge perceptions and send a positive message about life beyond disability to an international audience?

More of the story can be read on this link.

But, I wish to look at one of the, shall we say, back stories behind the poem ‘Invictus’ chosen as the poem for the Games.  The poem is by William Ernest Henley and the Invictus Games website tells us that Henley…

was himself an amputee and the poem reflects his long battle with illness. The title means “unconquered” and the 16 short lines of the poem encapsulate the indefatigable human spirit, which is at the heart of the Invictus Games.

For more about Henley see The Poetry Foundation biographical notes.  An excerpt of his poem, ‘Invictus’ is below:


Out of the night that covers me, 
      Black as the pit from pole to pole, 
I thank whatever gods may be 
      For my unconquerable soul. 
In the fell clutch of circumstance 
      I have not winced nor cried aloud. 
Under the bludgeonings of chance 
      My head is bloody, but unbowed. 

The full text can be found here.


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Beauty is Found- Lines on the Camino


Beauty is found in airline seats

Where a little family greets us

On their way to London Town.

Their mother’s eyes aglow with the beauty

One may know is her love for her little ones.

Beauty is found in an accent recognised

In a bustling bus queue

As a lovely Darwin female says

“Join me here.”

Beauty is found in the methodical air of

A stewardess following the line

Of passengers to check that all

Are there to enter the deck aboard.

Her beauty is seen in her assiduousness 

To not leave out a single one.

One other scene of beauty is enjoyed

By staff employed in a restaurant 

As the first diners arrive.

All care descends as they strive

To share and explain all there is to name

On menu and wine list.

It wasn’t to be missed

But miss them we did after retiring from their care.


Simon C.J. Falk 28 September 2018

He Entered My Decapolis


He Entered My Decapolis

A ‘hearing’ of Mark 7:31-37

He entered my Decapolis

My region of haunts

All populated with complexity

On opening

My ears

Oh! My ears


And, my heart pounded

As I was loosened

I was not the same

And words came

Flowing and flowing

Until growing

Into written reflections.

I heard

And found voice

A moment to rejoice

And bask

In freedom.


Simon C.J. Falk September 2018

Riding the Adrenaline Bus


Image: Freepics on the net

Riding the Adrenaline Bus


Riding the adrenaline bus

Fueled by a ‘Red Bull’

Mentality and actually

Rocketing along

With ‘Mother’ as a

Bumper sticker

Holding fast,

Yes, fast

As the heart will pump

And the greater

The thump

When the crash


Harrowed eyes

Through road maps

The viewer spies

Darting balls this way

And that way

And every way

But shut.

Riding, clinging amid the


Why us?

Shut off

The engine and coast

On a quiet roll

Or a rhythmic stroll

At a measured pace

There is no race

For you to face.



Simon C.J. Falk 13 August 2018


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Even They – When Our Supporters Suffer



Image: Videezy https://www.videezy.com/free-video/sea


Even They – When Our Supporters Suffer


Even they

Have their down days

Those ones who often

Buoy us up.

Yes, they too

Are dashed and smashed

Upon the rocks of life

Having their share of strife

They too have grown weary

At times swimming with


Seeming to show little fuss

As they tread water


In the power of the great


Their strokes tire

And waves wash them



Will have a day

Where the tumult of life’s sea

Catches them in

The melee


If they could be free

And drift gently, gently


And moor

Upon the care

For them

That we all share.



We all have those days, at times, even weeks, where life seems against us. This poem arose from moments when we see others cast upon the vicicissitudes of life and, is for them. For some musical accompaniment, you may like to listen to Eric Genuis’s The Tempest.

Simon C.J. Falk 9 July 2018





Ginger Cat at Play

Ginger Cat at Play


Ginger cat at play,

Whirling on the concrete,

As the eve gives way,

To night on the street.

Blissfully unaware,

The mere humans

Swerve and swear,

As they astride it with their load.

“Coming through!”

With a bundle to be stowed,

As stocks renew.

Ah, but do I detect?

A glimmer of a grin?

Or some glee do we suspect?

The cat will win.

For any day,

A moment of play,

Gets us in.


Simon C.J. Falk 27 May 2018

Davy Crockett’s Hat

Davy Crockett’s Hat


Davy Crockett’s hat emerged

From the doorway of the mall,

Perched atop a visage

Bearing features from great nations

Of Asia.

Limbs carried it all,

While clad in advertising,

Free for sporting companies

Of sports

The wearer may

Or may not



Yes, what a play it showed

In an Australian mall.

Dramatis Personae:

Davy Crockett’s Hat (and wearer)

And us

Co-adventurers all,

Exploring rivulets

Of consumables.

Consume that scene.

Don’t mind if I do.

Simon C.J. Falk 27 May 2018





The Infinitive Split It Was

The Infinitive Split, It was. Stopped

The infinitive

Split it was.


For does not

Language describe


And infinity paused


In that moment of

Immanent rapture


Where the infinite

And finite

of time

Was stilled


We were.

Simon C.J. Falk 29 April 2018


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Ah! Coffee!

Ah! Coffee!

Ah! Coffee!

Steaming, creaming




For me

And you

By deft baristas

And amateurs


Coffee makes

A morning start

A widening eye

And zinging heart

A reviver after

A post-noon doze

Ah, the aroma

To the nose!





Do yourself a favour

Get one


Simon C.J. Falk 25 April 2018

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Lines On An Abandoned Shoe In a Driveway




Image: Google

Lines On An Abandoned Shoe In A Driveway


Foot loose

And fancy free

We had a dilly

And a dally

On our dilettante.

Ah, the nocturnal hours

Of decadent pleasure

All night


All night

Movie marathons

Shouldn’t end

Like this.

We walked

The red-eye special


With a limp.


Simon C.J. Falk 20 April 2018


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