Dr Rory Ridley-Duff

Support for the thinking business


Rory and his wife, Caroline, have been writing poetry since their university days.  This page contains two examples by each of them. 

Pink Rose

Behold me I am a crumpled pink rose,
Wet with the sensual dew of love,
Gorgeously fragranced by nature's own hand,
Caressed by nature's own lips.

Spread my petals, drink my nectar.
Make me bloom again forever.

© Caroline Ridley-Duff, 1989


Blind to our thoughts, we talked through the night
And sensing the truth in our hearts
We closed our eyes to the past,
Opened doors to the present
And, in allied terror,
Walked through to face our dawn.

On that day we learned the meaning of Fear.

Blind to our words, we talked through the dawn,
And seeing the truth in our minds
We closed our eyes to the present,
Opened doors to the past
And, trembling with intimacy,
Relinquished ourselves from our pain.

On that day we learned the meaning of Trust.

Blind no longer, we talked through the day
And knowing the truth in our souls
Our eyes looked to the future. 
Opening doors to eternity, 
We lay in the light of the moon
Until tired and weary, lids closed, 
We dreamed together of forever.

On that day we learned the meaning of Love.

© Rory Ridley-Duff, 1987, 2002.

To Bethany

I love the way you curl your toes
I love your double chin
I love your soft, dark, wispy hair,
Your silken baby skin.

I love your quirky, furry ears,
Your big enquiring eyes,
Your slender fingers, wobbly head,
Your chubby, mottled thighs.

I love the fact that loving you
Is such an easy thing to do.

© Caroline Ridley-Duff, 1997

"L" Plates

Let loose in control of a little new life

Oh boy!  Have you any idea? What strife!


Back at the start, our first bundle of joy,

Who we’d renamed ‘Tasha’ (if a girl, not a boy)

Would sleep for five hours with barely a sound.

Within three, now she’s up, taking great giant bounds

As she lands in my lap and a ‘Daddy’ rings out.

‘Computer – switch on’ are the words that she shouts.

‘No!  This PB Bear’, she tries to explain

as she gets me to reload the software again.


‘Wick-were-where-we’ is her cutest expression.

To begin with, you’d guess, it caused quite some confusion.

Until you work out the she’s not being contrary;

She wants you to put on her ‘dic-ti-on-ary’.

From one year and on, she’s spent hours on each word.

‘yes’, ‘no’ and ‘hello’, then ‘baby’ and ‘bird’

are amongst those discoveries of which she is proud.

It’s a shame that she does not yet understand ‘LOUD!’


Square-eyes will not be a problem she has –

She’s too fond of running and bouncing, alas!

Off to the gym – or to ‘tots’ as she says,

Through the door, ‘cross the floor, up the stairs is the way

To her favourite corner, the one full of spring.

Can you guess what is it?  A big white trampoline!

Jumping up high, she lands on her feet

Again – and again – it’s her once-a-week treat.


In summer the park is her favourite place.

Running, exploring the wide open spaces

And driving the toy car, then steering the train,

We play there for hours, unless it is raining.

In which case we rush home, and out on the floor falls her

Bricks’; along with a wish – ‘Daddy door?’

It’s time to start building an unusual house

And keep up my sleeve a good dose of nous

‘cos a few seconds later, she stares long and hard.

She’s just change her mind – now she wants a farm yard

For her pet wooden pig, her toy cat and a bear.

I stand there aghast and shout out “it’s not fair!”


Yet still I adore her, my mood is not dark.

She’s pretty as a picture, yet bright as a spark.

After lunch when she’s tired – on a pillow she’s lying –

Out comes ‘Daddy cuddle’ and my heart melts with loving.

Ah, rest!  Oh what bliss now at last she is sleeping

And gives me a break from her hiding and seeking.

My shoulders and legs (as well as my head)

Feel relief as they carry us both off to bed.


© Rory Ridley-Duff, 1996.