Embers

I By the elder clump its sharp claws waving but so brittle, long grass has strangled a magnolia whose waxy flowers, curled tan and dead lie by peeps of nightshade and budlea husks, their lights gone out for winter. Everything in this corner awry and sickly and in my human way, I must raze it. […]

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West country architecture ii

The Milking Parlour, Sharcott They built the parlour in thirty five, with new machines for evacuating udders. Whatever would they think of next? Four farm workers stood there on that first morning, wincing at the hospital tiles, remarking on how the floor lent bounce to the lowing, the inside streams of yellow piss so unseemly. […]

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Notes on Dubai

Sunday AM A taxi driver called Maithripala (not his real name) gives me a lift into town from Dubai’s International Airport. M is in his thirties, smart, apparently upbeat, anxious to be helpful. He is a fine driver but it is not hard to imagine him doing equally well in less monotonous work environments. M tells me that […]

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Suzerain

All March practising marksmanship, the plink of lead pellets against the upturned wheel barrow: plink. The target’s bruised middle, the barrow dimpled by spent pellets – shining catastrophes flat against its steel. Seen though cross hairs April is precision greens and browns, all the wind blow and flagging skies reduced to one intersection, a thin black centre. Plink. I […]

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Notes on overnight walk around Salisbury Plain

On the night of September 26/27 John Clark and I walked 30 miles to raise money for two refugee charities. More information on the walk, including a radio interview I did with BBC Wiltshire radio, can be found here: https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/212hR4/ab/b59ZP4 These are my notes of the experience: John and I leave by the garden gate; it […]

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Mediterranean

Do you remember that glorious morning before the war when I swam you out into the sea, against your mother’s warning of urchins scouting the rock water for rays? You holding too tight around my neck, laughing, encouraging me over the blue space beneath our feet. You were not punctured by urchins that day. Or, […]

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North

I Lonely on deck, the day in embers on Oslofjord I am riding the city ferry home. An islander from south of here, my temperate curiosity is catching cold in the autumn wind. And there is little drama on deck, just the lighthouse playing on wet rock, on the silos for international wheat, light play […]

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