The Playground

Do we look at our children – the miracle – and wonder?


tyre swing

In Parliament Hill Playground  (1983)

Children, tender-lined
splash and tinkle sweet flesh unfinished
on water, sun and sand.

Mothers with breasts and veins
and fathers with hidden lusts and large legs
among their offspring, wander watchful.

On the other side of the sunny screen
is the Dark world of love,
the memories and messages in dreams.

Here are tall poplar trees, the grass,
the splash
and the screams
on Sunday, a picnic lunch;

and there, twelve daughters comb twelve heads
of the wizard who plans in pasha sleep
their marriages.

A drawing by R.A.Brandt from "Why the Sea is Salt" and other Norse fairy tales, 1946

A drawing by R.A.Brandt from “Why the Sea is Salt” and other Norse fairy tales, 1946


Across the sea from those tranced islands
that little brat in the sandpit’s mine!
Fresh and strong as a sunflower, she runs and plays.

I bore her from an island
into whose ravine I sank with a man
from a different world
in sad and catastrophic collision.
Within its crater,
with debris and by shattered wells
he wrote his alien sign
imprint of peace and pity scalpel sharp
within my sleep.
And seas of time and settling sands
did drown them in the deep.

High tide brought today, the messages
clear writ, unfaded, scraps within my keeping;
water sheds …  to whom can they be told?

That little one with a brand new friend in the sand,
is my child!

tyre swing 2

They called me, come see their print –
their peak of sand with flagpole twig,
stick drawn circles, scuffed cities of play.

Lightning strikes
my life up till … and yet to come.

All our messages are these same
scraps of stories.
Sad adults play with them too
from one dark island to another dark land.

Mothers with breasts and veins
and fathers with hidden lusts and large legs breed
from their treasure chests

the mystery,
combat, tedium, joy
of their childrens’ sunrise.



The background of this poem is the genesis of the Watershed Tales.  It was a summer’s day in 1983.  The day before, I unearthed from the back of a cupboard, a large pink ring-binder containing carbon-copies of hundreds of recorded dreams during the 1970s.  I had forgotten  it.   The rediscovery opened Pandora’s Box.  They woke.  There were stories !  There were dimensions !  I was in shock, and couldn’t sleep all night.  I worked with them – on and off –  ever since.   They are my raw material, my esoteric garden.

ringbinder 2

ringbinder 1


cotswold stone

Here is a birthday card from my daughter this year.  It is called “Cotswolds Wall” and the photo is by Catherine Ames, but it reminds me of the dry stone walls on the Yorkshire moors, and my recurring early-childhood dreams of birth.  It was hard work to cross the garden of sorrows, to reach my mother, who stood at the wall, by a tree, and called me.

crossing the garden of sorrows


A demand

This is a drawing of “a demand” – a troubled relationship – a hand outstretched which could or would not be filled.  The woman in the wall is the shape of an ear, but the man doesn’t know she hears him;  and so she grieves.


Sisters in Bransdale, Yorkshire

Sisters in Bransdale, circa 1954



Parenting 1999

Heart strings

… and stretching heart strings.  (1999)


vera and iona

A friend, who gave birth at 42 (1983)



Lambing, at Bransdale, 1954.  My father midwifes the ewe.  We called the lamb “Rossita”.  Behind him in the third photo, you can just see Moss, the watchful border collie, who taught my father everything he knew about sheep.



tree on mountain

And here is a peak of sand with flagpole twig:  I Ching 53 – Wind over Mountain.  “Mountain” is “keeping the back still.”  Wind is “Gentle”, Wood, and thus a Tree whose roots penetrate the rock and it is seen far and wide.  The Hexagram is called “Development – Gradual Progress.”  It came up in the oracle early this week.   (As it did last November – see “Mandala, A Demonstrated Democracy“).  Tensions fall into place and are fulfilled.  It is serene.   My bottom line is found again – profound, beautiful and unplumbed:  for GIVE.  It is the Tree of Eden and all its fruit of all the worlds, silence.  Silent night.  I felt a shift deep down.  It dropped and fell open.  Something extraordinary happened this week.

Watch the tree, and even a whole wood on a mountain, visible and growing slowly:  the long term project.   The attitude of oasis.

Ecology is a science of echoes.  Keeping still, let the woody veins of the weather guide the field.  In the keeping still is warmth, life, light, vibrance.  Tao, the Middle Way, finds itself, or is found, like divining the river in the night.  The magnetic threads “draw together” as dharma, the right way to swim with, and for things to grow.




My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books). Watch this space.

See also the Aquariel Link – “On Gaia as our Self” – a landmark article about Autopoiesis.

All art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address

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