realistically magical

orange and white shoes
Photo by Aidan Roof on

Rooted in this dreary afternoon

There are the spells of wild imagination

That open doors onto the wider thought,

The things we wonder when we’re tired,

Ruminating on those frightening questions

On who we are and why we’re here.

Too big to deal with in the here and now,

We need to shrink, to boil it down

To something easy to digest, medicinal

And cures the common colds of mind.

They’re the stories that I need

To help me understand this world

Of complex joints and clockwork parts,

That no one really truly ‘gets’

No matter what they say.

I’ve self published a few books and it’s funny to see this element of magical realism that seems to thread itself through most of my work. I feel that might be for the same reason that I enjoy writing poetry: because I need to simplify the complexities of the world so that I don’t enter in on an existential crisis.

Whenever I teach symbolism and imagery to teenagers I get all excited because I feel like I’m going to open up a whole new world to them. Unfortunately, that never seems to happen.

I love to understand how the world works and how other people view it and I do like to think about what my purpose might be. I do think that we will have these questions answered at the end of it all. But while we are here, a bit of magical realism will help us to grapple with those ideas.

Now, I just need to find a way to get fourteen year olds to care about such questions. Ideas anyone?

Much Love

Rachel xx

wandering around a national trust property at 4:46pm

close up photo of assorted books
Photo by Leah Kelley on

The house is cold, it’s always icy, even in the midst of summer

When the world is stripping layers, craving ice creams

And we are trailing through the gaping halls and marble steps

With wrought iron rails that once were touched by kings and queens

And now they’re gripped by older ladies and their grandchildren,

Neither seeing what the other does, but then we all take from the world

Exactly what we want. Some will see the history layered,

Like wallpaper, one sheet on top of the other, peeling in the corners,

Showing just what needs to be shown. And some will see the art,

While others long to run down tended lawns, screaming with joy

And tumbling as our mothers yell, worrying needlessly

About the grass stains that will cover our knees.

But at 4:46pm, when volunteers are looking at their watches

And thinking about that well earned cup of tea, I gaze

From a window where an Austen adaptation filmed,

Something grand with Colin Firth, that made the women swoon.

I’d like pretend for just a few more precious hours,

That I’m an Austen lady, Miss Bingley or Miss Bennet,

Either, I don’t care, as long as I can cling to that ideal

That love is real, and men out there will offer up

The magic this house saw, in days so distant from such times as these.