There are things that we see and hear that are forgotten in a moment, and other things that stay with us for many, many years.
The things that stick with us can come from any number of different sources and, while some may be profoundly important and shape the way we see life from that moment onwards, others are as trivial as a phrase that continues to echo in memory or a scene from a TV programme that has no relevance to anything at all.
Continue reading “a sense of scale”
The new General Data Protection Regulation came into force in the EU yesterday and the topic of security – albeit cyber security – has been in most people’s minds, which makes the photo at least slightly apposite.
The poem – written in Spain seven or eight years ago – is a repost, but it’s the best fit for the photograph – taken recently in England:
In the greystone shadow
of the old jail, three men share
smokes and anecdotes. Two
wear drab and polished black,
the third raises his cigarette
between cupped hands.
Metal glints at his wrists.
Years ago, I belonged to a mixed-genre writing group. I was one of the few members who primarily wrote poetry, so I was delighted when another poet – Don, an American university professor – settled in the city for a few months and started to attend meetings with his wife. (I can’t remember what she wrote; it may have been academic writing rather than creative.)
I’ve often thought that poets get short-changed at writing groups as they are expected to give feedback on all the other members’ work in a range of genres, but frequently get no useful comments about their poems.
Continue reading “a little background”
I think ideas are a bit like buses: they all come together in a bunch and you can’t catch them all, and then there isn’t another one along for ages.
Perhaps I could follow that conceit a little farther and talk about double-decker ideas, which have more layers and more space to explore than others, or articulated ideas where one connects directly on to another: the first is essential as that’s where the engine is, but it’s incomplete without the second part.
Continue reading “a little history”
Recent posts seem to have been quite text heavy – somewhere around six or seven hundred words each for the last six posts. So perhaps it’s time to fall back on photos again, especially given the season and the fact we’ve had some decent weather and I’ve had a fair number of opportunities to take pictures.
Despite the fact that, as I write this, the church bells seem to be playing “deck the halls”, with the May trees in bloom and daisies – including these fluffy ornamental ones – growing thick and fast, I think summer must be very close.
Continue reading “more flowers, fewer words”
I lived for many years in Spain and I don’t remember ever having a discussion about potatoes. In the UK, though, I’ve discovered that they are a perfectly valid topic for conversation.
Back in the day, there was a joke about the girl potato whose father forbade her to marry Eamon Andrews – presenter of Sports Report on BBC’s Light Programme – because he was “only a commentator.”
Continue reading “the joy of spuds”
Bank Holiday weekend gives me the opportunity to write an extra blog post.
While looking for something else entirely in my old files a few days ago, I came across a series of short prose pieces; I had forgotten writing them, but recognised them all, as they were based – some quite closely – on free-verse poems I’ve written.
One piece in particular has gone back and forth between poetry and prose a number of times since it originated as a children’s story nearly thirty years ago, being adapted to different forms and lengths depending on how and where I was going to use it.
Continue reading “a memory”