Tuesday, 1 August 2017


                           Bridge over Mill stream -  The Hollies    1925, leodis.com                        


                                                                     The Hollies
                                                                       sad lives
                                         staining the walk-ways and promenades
                                                 the arboretum and boulevards.
                                               Sorrow spilling like an oil slick
                                                               like hot black tar
                                                            over the whole area
                                    A clinic for the ‘unmarried’ mothers and babies
                                               see the Lord’s face in this place.
                                           The mill-stone in Meanwood Beck
                                                         it sits by a bridge
                                                                  under
                                                                 Water
                                               Weighing down the gossip
                                                       the grief of girls
                                                       and their babies
                                                            separated
                                                                alone
                                                               bereft,

                                                               empty. 

Thursday, 8 September 2016

A lecturer at Leeds college of Art (AKA Jacob Kramer)  found this - the Leeds College of Art Magazine from 1935 wedged between some books about tartan! There's loads of prints inside including this one of the stairs at Vernon Street! 

Saturday, 18 June 2016

Icon Gold



God is reflected in the gold and God is reflected in everything.
The fogbank and the gold
Gold of heaven
Gold of Ophir
Gold of infinite space

Mists of presence
Light of memory
Shadows of infinite space

The paintbrush on the glaze
The gold leaf, the size
It doesn’t matter which
Between the gold and the paint there is no hitch

And so to reflect
In the water glass glaze
And the matt sheen gleam of gold

The forgetfulness reflexivity of gold
The infinite space and the true presence
How much longer will time rule my day and night
Show me a glimpse of that timeless place
Peace and rest.


Tuesday, 10 May 2016


Fiddling Friday midnight

Playing airs and jigs
A round of verses and choruses
Halls, rooms, pubs and clubs
Connisborough Castle, Kirk Sandal, Denaby Main,
Grandmas in walkers, kids in wedding shoes
Men with pints, buying shorts for the ladies
Orange, purple, gold, glitter
Sunday bests, going-out-outfits
Heavy chains, chain-strap handbags
Jaden tattooed on a man’s arm in fairground typeface.

The songs like hymns
Black Velvet Band, Galway Shawl, Wild Rover
Mixed with 80’s saw Doctors and Pogues
Requests from ladies to click up their heels to
Half-remembered Irish dance steps from their 12th year
Men happy to watch and sing along
Young girls mixing line dancing, Irish dance, ballet
Wild swinging and harmonic singing.

Through it all I stand
I fiddle,
Two hours, three hours, five hours
I just keep going,
just keep playing
Don’t forget the bridge,
keep playing it if Ged forgets the next verse
A short instrumental is required while Christian and Benedict jog their memories for the lyrics
Keep on it
Keep awake
Christian on bodhran
Benedict harmonizing on guitar, Ged sings.
Keep playing
Once more for ‘Dirty old Town’, once more for the North
Once more for the ‘Green Fields of France’
And at last

Those ‘Fields of Athenry’.

Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Three Funerals and a Veil: Dream Poem 16


It was her Father’s funeral
Again
She was all in black, white tights and a long black veil
She wrote her name in black – on her shirt hem - over and over.
She lay on the floor
People were a bit shocked but just looked.

And she was thinking, ‘I only have to do this one more time and that will be three funerals for Dad’.

Sunday, 13 March 2016

The water III

Strange and strong
Not fragile
Fragmented – the elements
Fragmaformation
Transforfragmented
Oily roiling of the waters
Mighty roar
To

Ripulous ripples.

Saturday, 12 March 2016

A Birthday in Rydal Mount.


Shifting clouds
Like sand through a time glass
All the shades of blue night
Morning never staying still
And behind the mountain
The rock
the bedrock
The place of scrub
Herdwick and hardy flocks
And amidst it all the rain

Softly wet.