ken head

Prospero's Bowl

for Peter Hawthorn, woodcarver

it was mine art let thee out.
William Shakespeare:  The Tempest, Act 1, Sc. 2

Turned from a piece of venerable oak, it's a simple bowl,
a bare four inches wide, as cross-hatched,
grooved and whorled to give the grain its due
as leathery skin, but soft and warm as summer to the touch.

He offers it across his bench on an open palm as a piece
we might afford and silky with a final sheen
of oil, it sits there, rotund, unshowy,
glowing under the anglepoise like light before a storm.

In the lane, a tractor's grinding uphill towards the farm,
two collies bark from the bed of the cart
as it brushes a tangle of flowering elder overgrowing
the workshop window.  So what do we think?

The bowl sits waiting.  An acorn dropped a millenium ago
lies doggo, bides its time, finds room to breathe,
stays put during centuries of seasons while tides roll in
and history moves on.  Take me or leave me, I'm not in any hurry.

Ken Head's work appears regularly in magazines, ezines and anthologies.  In addition, he is a reviewer of new poetry for Ink, Sweat & Tears and The Journal.  He has featured as Poet Of The Week at Poetry SuperHighway and Poet Of The Month at The Poetry Kit.  In 2011, he won Cinnamon Press's micro-fiction competition, while his chapbook, Finding The Heart, was commended and placed in that year's Indigo Dreams Press poetry competition.  Online, Ken may be heard reading at Poetcasting.  His website is at

Dawn Bauling, editor, Indigo Dreams Publishing, says:
"Few people bring together natural observation and political comment as compellingly as Ken Head.  He has the skill of an artist, the sharp focus of a photographer and the wisdom to stand back as he observes the world:  its natural beauty, its people and its hypocrisies.  Although what he sees can be uncomfortable, you will want to walk with him.  Addictive." .

If you have any comments on this publication, or questions about it,  Ken Head  would be pleased to hear from you.