Art Angel Writers Online AWOL Week #6 Exercise

AWOL Exercise #6

This week’s exercise was all about opposites. Here’s the opening paragraph of Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities:

It was the best of times, it was the worst of

times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the

age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief,

it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the

season of Light, it was the season of

Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was

the winter of despair, we had everything

before us, we had nothing before us, we

were all going direct to Heaven, we were all

going direct the other way

The exercise was to write something on the topic of opposites, but not necessarily sticking to Dickens’ examples.


AWOL Week #6 Responses:

Hello/Goodbye.   by Barry



I see you in my nightmares

When once you were a dream

A sudden sinking backward thinking 

Milk that’s skimmed of cream. 


A substance known to others 

As a caustic risk they fear

They wished you’d exit unannounced 

Bring peace from war, as cheer. 


Sunlight shimmers in her vase

Where once blooms gifted shone 

Perfume traced with memories

To reassure you’re gone. 


Yet pride and calm erase you

From my ever nurtured sleep 

And brighten every waking day

For fortune lingers deep. 



The Saturday Treat   by Jodi Glass

The Saturday Treat


Turn left on Cleppie road, walk and plain walk.

Closies to the left, closies to the right, 

Bus stops and hedges never colliding.

Pounding the pavements, heavily, to clear lockdown blues

But just past the Kings Cross and the B&Q

Uniform gives way to the unique.


A hidden nature reserve, formerly, filled within

With a train track.

Humans intervened and made it a haven,

The trees grew tall, towering over walkers

Soaking in the sunshine, safely.

Birds are dancing on branches, singing their Saturday song.

Footsteps soften, slow and step in tune to 

Breezes blowing softly above

To enjoy the colourful eye candy, thing we cannot hold.


Cleppie road is a boring journey, needed to 

Reach the urban Miley nature reserve, a hideout needed

On the weekly Saturday walk. 


Opposites are near, opposites live side by side.


Jodi Glass


The Whole Shebang….   by Kathy Low

We enjoyed Kathy Low’s fascinating introduction to her poem so much that we decided to include that as well – it says so much about the why and where of her writing:


“I’ve written pages this week not knowing where it would lead…” when you don’t know where you are going any road will do…”.  I just started writing, train of thought really, and with the help of google info it meandered somewhat through the corridors of my mind and experience and soon led to science via biology,  paper tech, and the contentious petrochemical industries and eventually I came to my first science love, the stars and planets. I’d like to mention Les Goodridge, my dad, for all the science stuff…and Dr Roddie McKenzie for his wonderful introductions to the fascinating genome….   And to the single thread that connects the whole shebang…and all its apparent opposites and paradoxes….”


The Whole Shebang….

                   a single strand of RNA and some complex polypeptides…..

                                tightly bound up with some wee molecule spikes….

                                and a remarkable ability for invading human cells….

                        Beautiful images under a scanning electron microscope 

                                             and making itself known to all of humanity…….


                    cosmos: containing all and everything

                                     nothing is created

                                     nothing is lost

                                     All is conserved.   

                                     energy is transferred….


                                                          ….in ways we cannot begin to imagine.

                                     containing time…and timelessness

                                     and the endlessness of the night sky and the mind’s reach and if you stand on a hillside in deep midwinter night….

                                                 ……….it may just offer you a glimpse of infinity…..


Kathy Low


Song Of Songs   by Elisheva Katz

Song Of Songs



You are my summer and I am your winter never to come again!

I gave you my love – you gave me your hate.



How could any man fall in love with winter.



Winter I may be…. but shine I a brighter star than ever you will.



When you came into my life you brought chaos and madness.



When I came into your life I saved you from stagnating into yourself.



I told you to go!



You told me to go so I went with a dagger in my back and when I found a new way of living, manipulated me back again did you with your bewitching charm.



That is all done with now! Time has since moved on, a new story do I live.



So why in your dreams do you call out my name? Call for me to come back again.


Written by elisheva katz

April 25th 2020


Horehounds   by V. Rivers



Lindy’s grandmother, all whiskers, wisdom, and turpentine found me in the corner. She sat me on her lap, and whispered that the best way to open a piñata, is to wait, and let it tell you how. Only then could it reveal the real treasures hidden inside.


I watched the other children being instructed by their elders, to beat the hanging pony until bolts of colour and sweetness rained down. They stuffed the gifts into their hands, mouths, and pockets – their eyes as bright and sticky as horehounds. The piñata, now a shell of tissue paper deadened of its lustre, lay forgotten near the skirting board.


That night, I dreamt of another celebration. I stood with my back to the edge of a loch, and watched a congregation of folk milling around in the forest clearing opposite.  There was a blanket laid out with fruits, pitchers of milk, and a suckling pig. Each adult, and each child wore a mask of their own design, and carried a cane in their fist. My bare feet were planted to the ground, as I looked for the missing piñata, then a waft of turpentine lured me to turn, and face the mirror of the loch.


In its waters, I saw a forest clearing with a blanket laid out with fruits, pitchers of milk, and a suckling pig.  Surrounding it, was a congregation of paper-skinned piñatas – their masks fallen to the ground. With the loch’s edge lapping over my toes, I turned around to face them. I waited, and listened.

V. Rivers


The Flirting Game   by Lotty

The Flirting Game


After a long and difficult journey of self-discovery over these three years; after many battles with frosty -toned voices of self-doubt,  winding one up with taunts about the depressed and darkest fears of my heart ,yes it’s true, at times I’ve found it hard and rough but finally I am at a point where I can at last say with growing confidence that that she is an easy person to love  because it is something everyone including myself deserves to experience throughout their lives.

This past weekend as I was going about my normal day and myself and friends were chatting away I suddenly brought up the topic of flirting and the fact I slightly misses the thrill, and the feeling of excitement I get as I indulge in this particular activity. But I’m out of practice, so when an opportunity comes around, hopefully I’ll still be able to play flirting game


by Lotty


hero   by Peter Marshall



rainbows splay delight –

opposite direction sun

like panto villain


2020 04 28   Peter Marshall


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