“there was an old lady…

…who swallowed a fly.”

I expect many readers will understand that “I don’t know why she swallowed a fly.” Many will also be familiar with the range of extreme remedies the old lady pursued.

First she swallowed a spider to catch the fly.
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poetry and prose

My poem El inquilino (the lodger) was a runner up in the MsLexia poetry competition this year and has just been published in the magazine. That should have made it easy to find something to write for the blog today, but although copies have already been delivered to subscribers, the terms of the publishing agreement mean that the poem can’t appear here – or anywhere else – until after the official publishing date of September 1st.

That said, the poem was inspired by the wildlife at the house en el pueblo when I lived in Spain, so here is a rather different account of “the lodger”, adapted from notes for the fictionalised memoir I eventually hope to write, which will be in the house-as-life-journey genre.
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neighbours and other animals


When we first moved here, the village seemed to be home to a surfeit of satanic and unholy animals. Some belonged to neighbours, some were just wild visitors.

Emilio had a half a dozen goats and his lad used to herd them across the unfenced part of our land to graze in the olive grove: an enduring image is that of a sleek black goat poised, watchful, on a rock or stone wall, or up on two legs under an olive tree. ( I am glad to say that despite the ease with which he assumed this vertical posture, I never heard the horned one speak.)
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