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And when we burned like fires bright,

In open hearths on winter nights;

Restless, reckless, reaching higher,

Fuelled by such strong desire.


Risking all in midnight chases,

Moving with the horses paces;

Ducking, jumping ever faster,

First the mistress then the master,


Leading, as the chase cascades,

Through woodland paths and moonlit glades;

Across the stream, then slower paces,

As we near our secret places.


Bleeding from the thorny chase;

Clothing torn, indecent haste;

Bodies hard against the tree;

Needing, thrusting, wantonly.


When at last our hunger fed;

We fall upon a soft sweet bed,

Of meadow grass and fairy rings;

Of soft green moss and unknown things.


Earthy musky smells pervade,

And with your own sweet taste invade,

Our moonlit bower by swift stream verges;

Where a gentler mood emerges


Kissing, stroking everywhere,

On ivory breast and golden hair,

On soft white thighs and maiden mound;

A deeper sensual love is found.


Horses rested, inner glow,

Walking, talking homeward go;

Laughing now with happy banter,

Urging forward into canter.


Reaching home our bodies tire,

And fall before the open fire;

The embers glow, the rich red wine;

Your body, folding into mine.


To dream of reckless midnight chases,

Woods and stream, the horse’s paces,

Feel again the dark earth traces,

Where the swift stream current races;


Feel your lingering embraces,

In our sweet enchanted places.


Ted Stanley


Published in "Balancing Act"  2012









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I am not the romantic novel you curl up with on a winters evening by a roaring fire.


I am not the inspirational biography that speaks of courage, fortitude and love.


I am not a guide to self-improvement, your road map to a perfect life.


I am not predictable or certain, safe or sure.


I am not the happy ending that you seek………….



I am the Sunday papers that clatter uninvited though your letterbox, landing with a dream shattering thud on your welcome mat


I am the Sunday papers, full of biased views, social gossip, cryptic crosswords, strip cartons and horoscopes.


I am the Sunday papers, with exotic recipes for lavish meals, that you cut out and keep, to make for other friends on other days, that lay forgotten, gathering dust in kitchen draws, until discovered sometime later, fading print and curling edges, and you wonder why and where and when and …..who


I am the Sunday papers, now discarded, strewn across your still warm rumpled bed, while you pursue the romantic dream that enslaves your heart and defines your life.



Ted Stanley


Published in “Poetry Aloud” 2005

Performed at the Southwell Literary Festival 2005





April finds me in the woods again

Dark earth sifting through my fingers

Rich memories drifting through my mind


All that is lost

All that  remains


The dark earth hue

The flowers few

The shades of you

The colour Blue

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