A manifesto is a public declaration that spells out a set of ideals and intentions. Have you ever thought of writing one?

Manifestos are often produced by groups, such as political parties, religious associations and art movements to make obvious their views and plans. But individuals can write them too.

A while ago I started to think about the value of writing a personal manifesto. I wanted to sit myself down and get some things clear and straight. I needed to regroup and reset.

At the time I felt that my life was messy, gridlocked and overwhelming. I thought it might help to pin down what I value and how I want to move forward. I figured if I ever felt lost again I could read my manifesto to get back on track.

It took a few days to draft and refine what I wanted to say to myself and finally my manifesto took the shape of this poem:


like haiku

live in a hut swept clean

in a garden with a fence 

on a hill with a view

like a hand written letter

unfold the past with care

wrap goodness in ribbons 

burn the rest

shake the ashes off your shoes

trust yourself

to remember

to decide

to bear up

to heal

to learn

like a lighthouse


sweep the darkness

beam through 

be true

like water

finding its course

be sure

and deep too

like dirt

holding seeds

of hope 

wait long for rain

be tender

gaze on each day 

with its newborn face

wonder at the Earth

who tends to you

look now in the eye

hear its pulse 

let it smell your fear

ruffle its mane

be leisurely

over cups of tea 

sit with silence

let mystery linger

count your breath 

and all your bones

balance all

that pulls

and pushes 

tango with possibility

dine with diversity

fly daydreams like kites 

grasp adventure

like the hand of a beloved

listen to the broken parts

they will tell you

what is needed

you will have the courage

to live forgiveness

to believe in pearls

to expect beauty 

in the wild

to give love away

to let it run 

through your fingers

like honey 

and not call it back

to be all

you were imagined

to be

Β©2019Belle Perry

Remembering Grandma

We farewelled my grandma six years ago. This poem captures that time of saying goodbye.


braving the grim sky

we head out together

her grand and great grand

bundled like babushkas

atop the tram

guided by the faithful plod  

of a long lashed equine

rain spits across our cheeks

we look back on the hillock 

where yesterday

under canopy from the thunder and torrents 

decked in roses

she was lowered down

then at the house we sat in her room

just how it always was

looked through her wardrobe

at her dresses waiting neatly

for her 

now on the island we scramble up the rocks

stare out at the wild sea

and there 

bright as her decades of dresses

colours stretch across the sky

we imagine she is beaming

having gathered us like chicks

once again

Β©2019 Belle Perry