Poet Introduction I appreciate all kinds of poetry. I think any form can have value if it's used well, though I hate the notion that poems are just outpourings of emotion. Even free verse needs a craftsman's eye.
Once at a family barbecue - in my brother’s back garden, it was, back when he lived just down the road - the conversation turned to a terrible murder in the news.
A man had killed his girlfriend’s granddaughter. Strangled her. She’d turned him down, it appeared, and so to keep the secret of his paedophilic bent he ended everything she was. Poor girl was only 12.
You’d think her mother, finding out, would be in pain enough, yet gossipmongers came about and chucked up all that British stuff: “Why was the...
"The stories are brilliant and the imagination is fabulous. Unfortunately, there is, in all of them, an underlying streak of cruelty and macabre unpleasantness, and a curiously adolescent emphasis on sex." - Noel Coward
The more I learn how terrible you were throughout your long career my fascination grows. Maybe that's a privilege of race and sex and class. I can't say I'd have stood by you when dropping anti-Jewish filth, or any of the other crass remarks that got you banned from your...
In the corner of the churchyard nearest to the house, directly beneath a darkly presiding yew tree, was a worn, flat stone. Here nothing implored the passing tribute of a sigh. There was only the bare inscription:
And beneath in different lettering the words:
God grante that she lye stille.“ - Lady Cynthia Asquith, 'God Grante That She Lye Stille'
I chanced across you in a book of ghost fiction selected by Roald Dahl. He talked of meeting you when you were of advancing years and confined largely to your bed. He also...
Memory infects the trees. God’s mortar stains and what was once pleasantly green, Jerusalem in patchwork fields, becomes a yard of ghosts hidden behind each oak or thistle, rock or chalk.
Haunted England bows to you and yours, created as it is by human eyes and hands. The world is our design, and if the cries of owls fetch forth an impression of life pulled in to outer time, those phantoms may as well be.
Fear and need make of our deaths a crime, so shades are seen from land to naked lee.
"... for five hundred years, during which religion was in a more prosperous condition, and a purer doctrine flourished, Christian churches were completely free from visible representations" - John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion
From Eve in vines about her legs Like fetters forged in Paradise, To saintly men in grief reposed, We see the brass bull teem with lice.
The Christ Himself a sack of rice, Held in his mother's drooping arms, Will grease your eyes in Roman homes. God is...
Today I learnt of Edward Colston’s fate, the statue posed with hand on chin and one knee bent, as if the old man holding dear the city his philanthropy benefitted long ago, knew his seat in history would always be a golden throne.
He’s now been toppled in protest of what brought in and broke his bread: the legions of the stolen dead, traded like meat, and salt, and lead.
The apologists, of course, came out in flippancy, arguing that ages pass and make of crimes a frippery. Why should we judge our...
Inspector Blades surveyed the tea room. Detective Burke, meanwhile, surveyed the cat-heads and follow-me-lads of a tea girl, Shilly, named no doubt for her failure of decision. 'Well, erm, it's like this, Mr Burke... or is it? Oh dear, I wish I knew...' At least she wasn't hysterical, Burke thought. Goodness, he and Blades were shallying worse than Shilly. 'That's all well and good, Miss' he said, 'but I ain't asking much now, am I? All I want to know is, did you see the professor 'aving a collie shangles with the meater or not?'
The two detectives put off their delicate duty with what can only be described as a vulgar bashfulness. They perched on Lady Beckinsall's chaise longue like shaggy dogs confused by their sudden allowance on the furniture. The Lady herself was paused in her afternoon tea, with bated cup, and growing impatient. Sensing this, the more working-class of the two detectives, Burke, decided to exploit his social privilege by coming straight to the point. 'Well, ma'am, it's like this, you see... your fella, the good Lord Beckinsall, is currently, ahem, at 'er Majesty's pleasure after being caught -...
A young Israeli found a pocket-sized tablet depicting the torture by a Canaanite guard of his captive, a chap with hands tied behind his back, naked and frail as earliest man.
In the desert, near the Gaza strip, this little tableaux and monument of Pain, that oldest and most feared of Gods, was plucked by child's hands like the current generation's inheritance of what's been passed on since we first saw ourselves and consciousness was born.
Source of picture: "EMIL ALADJEM/ISRAEL ANTIQUITIES", published at...