Category Archives: offering collection

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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The first home of your own

The first home of your own Do you remember yours? Mine was in Bardwell Road, a top flat in a big house, entered through a thick curtain with a bell on it. The space inside was perfect, because it was … Continue reading

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The praises of older women

The praises of older women in the dark cold of midwinter, we will walk through the snow and gather with our families in the building that our ancestors made and we will sing praises and we will sing praises tonight … Continue reading

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As, on a starry Christmas night…

As, on a starry Christmas night… As, on a starry Christmas night, with the sharp cold pinching at your nose, and the frosty snow crunching underfoot, you may co-operate with your family to set fire to a waxy card at … Continue reading

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Today we started to plant a wood

Today we started to plant a wood It’s not every day you set out to plant a wood. In that dead time between Christmas and New Year we set off down the field with tubes and stakes and a bag … Continue reading

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