Monthly Archives: July 2011

Every year I rise again from the dead

On Easter Sunday a figure appeared in my inner world; he took me aside and showed me how often I acclaim myself in triumph there, manifesting as the special one. We looked at the times also that I betray myself, … Continue reading

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Little boy of nine

Little boy of nine, grieving for your father, I know what faces you, but only my love reaches back through the years; I cannot tell you what you must discover for yourself. He is dead, he is dead. It is … Continue reading

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So I never saw his body

So I never saw his body, waxy, white, and still; and I never saw the coffin, heavy wooden box, lifted carefully from the hearse by unknown men in black suits; and I never sat in the utilitarian crematorium chapel, and … Continue reading

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The troubled North Sea, 1942

Psalm 77 Verse 1 I cried unto God with my voice, even unto God with my voice; and he gave ear unto me. Verse 16 The waters saw thee, O God, the waters saw thee; they were afraid: the depths … Continue reading

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the deep upwellings of the night

the deep upwellings of the night In the deep upwellings of the night you ooze into me. My struggles against you are in vain and I retain only the aches and pains of resistance. My defences pop like tacks out … Continue reading

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A moment of pattern and novelty

A moment of pattern and novelty Yesterday I was a man who knew everything; today I am a man who knows nothing. Yesterday I sat in the coffee house among friends today I am in the alien territory I thought … Continue reading

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The offering

I heard this question one time in the island grove, where we were gathered in the early morning: ‘How does a perfect teaching work?’ An offering dropped gently into my being, as though into the clarity of water; it was … Continue reading

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And what happened to you, little boy?

And what happened to you, little boy? And what happened to you, little boy? The last time that I saw you, you were kicking your legs out with joy, in the stackyard, while the geese ran past, and the adults … Continue reading

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I will wait for you in the dark

I will wait for you in the dark And I will go with you into the caves: into the darkness, under the earth, leaving this world for another, by the flickering light of torches We will encounter petrified columns, slow-formed … Continue reading

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the emptiest field in the world

the emptiest field in the world On a path by the river, in a lonely valley with trees and birdsong, having left behind our home, we come to a gate. We stand at the gate and pause; beyond lies the … Continue reading

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The school gate is near enough, thank you

The school gate is near enough, thank you At first you are glad when your mother holds your hand and takes you into the classroom at school; later on, the school gate is near enough, thank you; at eighteen you … Continue reading

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Rules of engagement

Rules of engagement When you snipe at me I will not disappear. I will dodge your projectiles make clever use of ground cover and approach close enough to disarm you When you strike at me I will not run away, … Continue reading

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A melodious burst of water drops

A melodious burst of water drops A melodious burst of water drops hits the surface of the water next to me, wakening me to my surroundings. In stillness, I am on a narrow strip of land surrounded by a profusion … Continue reading

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No favourites

No favourites Like the loving mother who has no favourites, amongst her large and lively family, we can sit at the noisy kitchen table with our brood and dispense love and attention where needed: to the one who works hard, … Continue reading

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Pain

Pain When pain afflicts you, it can be difficult to think. However, if you are able to, you may care to reflect upon the following: If you are feeling pain, it is proof you are alive; you may like to … Continue reading

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Adding another dimension

Adding another dimension It seemed to be the pine that opened my eyes and more. I was looking down over Leighton Hall and Leighton Moss with Morecambe Bay and Arnside Knott beyond, and the Lakeland fells in the distance, a … Continue reading

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Snared by tradition

Snared by tradition We found the old snares in the barn, thin nooses of twisted wire that slid easily through a loop at the end. We were boys excited by the possibilities of action, and the long tradition of the … Continue reading

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a mind of its own…

a mind of its own… I thought I was in charge of my own mind, but this turned out not to be the case. I thought I would change my mind, but it turned out my mind decided when it … Continue reading

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There is nothing about you that I do not love

There is nothing about you that I do not love There is nothing about you that I do not love. And in being with you I have learned that there is nothing about myself that I cannot love. In your … Continue reading

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Homeward bound

Homeward bound I was twenty-one years when I nearly wrote this poem. I’m fifty-eight now but I won’t be for long… ready or not, life hurries on, and my youth, that was green, turned to brown. Hanging out in a … Continue reading

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