The month of January is named after Janus, the Roman god of doorways and new beginnings. It’s a time to look to the future with hope even when times are hard (and it’s dark and cold outside). The poem I’m hoping will brighten your New Year is by Gaia Holmes.

Gaia Holmes is a Halifax-based writer who has published 3 collections of poetry and won many prizes and awards for her work. She runs ‘Igniting The Spark’, a weekly writing group at Dean Clough and many of my own poems have been inspired by these wonderful workshops


Though it seems so dark

and the ceiling of the world’s a wound

and so many hours have been bruised,

and so many lives have been broken,

there are stars up there tonight

and we must name them,

we must love them,

we must whistle them down like dogs

in faith of their shine

and they will be loyal.

They will show us where their bones are.

They will teach us

their soft, bright tricks of devotion.


And even on the blackest nights,

when hope and protest

are knotted in our throats,

when our smiles have been tarred

and buckled with the weight and stain

of shadows,

we have to remember they are there,

those glittering sky-hooked prayers,

prickling and humming,

embedded in that thick and lovely blue,

guarding us from spite,

keeping the moon from slipping,

herding the pale lamb-like dawns

into our sleeping houses

where they flow

through all our rooms

fluent and loving as milk.


To hear Gaia say her poem, please follow the link

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Gaia’s latest poetry collection, Where the Road Runs Out, is published by Comma Press and can be purchased from Book Corner at the Piece Hall.