One Word by Stephen House

Carpe Diem Series

I cannot think of a more elegant piece of work to end the Carpe Diem Series than this inspirational poem by Stephen House! What better way to seize the day than to put our attention towards love!

My Favorite Line, “ocean wander shares deep thought
hold all said in one word read
appreciate the gift to grasp
know well the word arrived by wind”

one word

stop my walk on empty beach
sit to rest on flat rock seat
breathe in fresh morning air
sun and waves give calm relax
gaze out horizon blue green frame
white cloud sky on glimmer sea
screwed up ball of paper blowing
stops soft against my foot

pick up the paper not sure why
maybe drawn to colour lemon
unscrew scrap dry faded torn
smooth out straight on naked knee
first notice image tight embossed
a flower i think a rose
top left corner slightly ripped
words hand-written underneath

can’t make out smeared ink scribble
only one word clear remains
love it says unmistaken
then blurs into greying swirl
the spelt out single message
reminds of love in my life near
the special ones friends and family
that without my life hang barren

paddle slowly in icy shallows
ocean wander shares deep thought
hold all said in one word read
appreciate the gift to grasp
know well the word arrived by wind
but also sure was meant for me
for in the weeks preceding here
a struggle in my days sat heavy

and just the chance to reflect upon
those ones dearly close to me
brings a smile and warm of heart
at how fortunate i am
the crumpled paper piece i hold
feel it gently in clasp fingers
fold it twice a treasure now to keep
slip it in my pocket cherished


Stephen House is an award winning Australian playwright, poet and actor. He’s won two Awgie Awards (Australian Writer’s Guild) , Adelaide Fringe Award, Rhonda Jancovich Poetry Award for Social Justice, Goolwa Poetry Cup, Feast Short Story Prize and more. He’s been shortlisted for Lane Cove Literary Award, Overland’s Fair Australia Fiction Prize, Patrick White Playwright and Queensland Premier Drama Awards, Greenroom best actor Award and more. He’s received Australia Council literature residencies to Ireland and Canada, and an India Asialink. His chapbook “real and unreal” was published by ICOE Press Australia. He is published often and performs his work widely.

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