Explorer , North Canada

North Canada- Explorer

It seemed idyllic, dappled sun light through boughs. Beautiful alder, sycamore, lime. The shade of leaves canopy- scent-clear rivers. Slopes of fallen pines and beech kernels. However the scenario may not be exactly quite as you envisioned.

In the Red Lion with Craig;

Oh the malnutrition
The porous wrinkled skin
The stage by stage merge with living death
The timid frightened black bear I chased away
The rapidly growing abscess on your ankle
The numbness down your left side
The unexplained blurred vision
Your tattered jeans hanging soaked
The raw red rashes on your legs caused by wet trouser friction
The dissolution of language facilities
The inconsequent mousse you stroked
The alpine hare you chased for two hours, but couldn’t quite catch.

North Canada Echo 

An Irish man goes to a doctors. I have this terrible pain. Where? Well everywhere. Can you touch your nose. Yes. Does it hurt. Oh yes. Now your chest. Oh the pain doctor. Now your knee. The pains terrible. Well. Well? You’ve got a broken finger.

North Canada  Echo Two

It was poorly thought through. I accept that suburbia is debauched and disingenuous. But there are better less radical ways of fighting back. To carry on after James Dyer realized it was a barren and bleak enterprise is somewhat admirable. If James Dyer where a real explorer and attempted to for instance walk to the north pole, he would die.

north canada forests









Spikes- Victorian Era

Homeless, Victorian Era

Workhouse had special quarters. For tramps/vagrants/travellers. Sometimes called Spikes. Work could include picking oakum- reducing old rope to constituent parts. Or breaking rocks into stones to be sold for road making. Casuals were not allowed to return for 30 days. There conditions where worse than in poor houses. Food was bread and guel.

Were soldiers of the gutter and heaven
I think, I Frank am supposed to feel grateful

For the straw bailed bed
His last thought before a guttural deep sleep
Another days work. Then the soft hay of the bedstead
Tomorrow I will walk to Leigh spike
No one says nowt- so I guess this is our lot
A frown from the missus in Gaberdine and umbrella
A scowl from the man in top hat
Av you a penny sir for the poor
Its not much of a laugh I can tell yi
We don’t drink as we can’t afford to
Walking to next spike, in the biting cold. 













Blackhouse , Scottish Borders

Blackhouse, Scottish Borders
(Former residence of poet James Hogg 1770-1835, “The Ettrick Shepherd”)

The Snow slips down on Christmas day
We have been marooned by snow for one month
Her face on the mountain slopes in summer and winter
The sky knows no one’s names. A gossamer duvet.

Love starts again, the finches in the woods
The fire warms us, guitars resound in the mountains
A snipe zig zags to paradise. Then the snow and snow
A naught nestled cottage, becomes a one.

You see here in the Border mountain’s there are no cities
Between here and the North Ocean
Snow buttercup, sun, brambling wings
To bleach the north with orange.

Then love begins again, with dawn and snow
Rice like bread like wine like incense like grass
A gale of clouds and waiting, and icicles of hope
Looking into her face on the mountain slopes.














Explorer Arctic

Your dark blue tent and green sleeping bag

Stand out like splashed hued colour

Against the white cold duvet of land

White outs- wind whipping snow, a wall of angel white

If you had a capuccino, the stenght of the vivid smell would kill you

You are attuned to walking stooped at 30 degrees

Pulling the sledge via a harness

Leaning on sno poles

You wear skis, sometimes snow shoes

A packed underground station would be overwhelming

Another colour added to the landscape eg a red crocus could prove fatal

You know the types of ice, the ocean underneath

The types of snow, crevasses

Better than Wainwright knows Harters fell.

Or a cartographer, or a child a play pen

Alaska Range

Arctic, Alaska Range


Explorer Mars

Blood on Mars – Explorer


First there is no oxygen

But you walk with the last breath, you took in the landing craft


Then there is no gravity

But you cling by violent ravid faith to the planet rock


The suns radiation blisters your skin

Splits it open and flesh burns like a fragmentation bullet

Shot at by your brother, with an AK he kept hidden under the bed


You like the aloneness of Mars

You like the red dust and rock/ softer red than human blood


You chuckle- “Martians not here”


Then you lie on the ground

As the flesh squirms, through your disapearing skin

You turn on the I pod

A Priests sentimentality at death

And listen to “nothing else matters” by Metallica


And this sun which they lied about and said was life giving

The decrepid hypocritical incas, and debauched celts, and deluded indians


Melts your eyes in marriage

The most beautiful and real moments of your entire existance.



poetry progress

Trying to write themed poetry pamphlets on micosoft office word. But still need to put in a lot of editing if say four are going to be publihed before 31/12/16- in progress in some sense “myth”, “politics” at moment past British prime ministers. “explorers” “industrial revolution” drawing a  lot on memories of my grandparents and research on web. “Israel”

I dont think  there is a right and wrong way, but it seems a good idea at the moment for poetry to be about something concrete, and other narratives can play in or not. They still need months of work

Read Katrina Porteous-  Two Countries, Jean Spackland-Hard Water, John Burnide- All One Breath, Ted Berrigan- Sonnets, Xavier Villaurrutia- Nostalgia  For Death. Had poem in Dawntreader- Indigo Dreams, Dial 174, Dandelion Arts Magaine


picture of Marrakech where i’ve never been


poetry events

Went to poem and a pint in grenodd ulverstone lake district on Saturday. J O Morgan was the headline act. He read from  his accomplished book “interference patterns” in different accents which made his poems interesting and enjoyable to listen to. Met  the lovely Kim Moore who published “the art of falling” to much well deserved acclaim

Attended wire writers warrington on Friday where we did a well formulated exersise.And two new? members  and i  read out works in progress.

Looking forward to seeing Anne and Peter Sampson read at the brewery in Kendal. But after a two hour drive realized its next week not ie today! So looking forward to seeing them next week. Booked ticket  to see Sarah James at Ledbury poetry festival  in early July. And thats all the news on the last week of poetry events. I think actually writing is more important than poetry events. But its nice to go somewhere particularly in summer.

lake district 3

lake district picture



2015 in poetry

Round up of my year in poetry. Plus one last post before 2016, so i’ll have done 12, one a month

Thanks to my 19 followers. I only had 17 poems published this year including The Coffee House magazine which pleases me and one short story in Carillon. That’s the worst yearly total for five years. Probably due to moving house. I’m pleased with my new house.

So hopefully do better next year, via more submissions. And to magazines more likely to publish me. Been to a lot of writers groups and open mics in Lancashire which I enjoyed

Got two poetry pamphlets “homes” about homes. And “narratives” at first proof stage and sent files for second proofs. And “the love songs of James Dyer” is sent to first proof. So hopefully all will be self published with printers early next year

Started painting watercolours (not very good) I have no expertise!

Hope the readers new years will be prosperpous. In the  words of the editor of Pulsar magazine in Swindon “poetry is all there is.” Will see what can be achieved poetry wise next year. I still havn’t found a regular format for this blog.


kidsty pike? lake district






American realist paintings three

Third instalment of American realist paintings and my poems on

Maybe in much  edited form a future poetry pamphlet


  Wilmslow Homer- Blown Away 1888


Two brothers in a boat

The white sail against silver sea


Soon it will be pitch black

Moon stars waves murmering  to each other

The salt sharp, blissful ecstatic shipwreck


But oh the silver sea, the silver sky, the white sail

The stories we made to be told and re told

blown away wilmslow homer

John Singer Sargent- depicting Rosina Ferrara


White blouse pink skirt


She looks back


Jet black done up hair


Carrying a string of onions

She embraces enchantment for us


Her smile contains a thousand rivers

Is bridgeless


Then I imagine she turns and walks away


Carrying jouessance with her


What sublimity to catch the moments she made

In a painting



sargent rosina


Raphael Soyer- Passerby


The manequins heads are lifeless

And she

Anxious walking home from work

The sidewalks are alien

And she is hurried

A hat a done up coat collar against the cold


A husband sits in a flat lounge, smokes a woodbine


And upon her arrival

The city cascades into cello and clarinet snow drifts


And shes walking through the mined corridors of tall steel scrapers


Another person in the crowd hurrying home


raphael soyer passerby






fanny howe Second Childhood favorite passages

Some of my favorite passages from Fanny Howe- Second Childhood

Weary fears, the

usual trials and

a place to surmise

blessedness.                         from For the Book

“Philosophy should only be written as poetry.”

Each person or place wants you as much as you want another


and replicated, sucked or kissed into the lips of strangers


the total machine of retribution presses on.

Regardless of prayer or what a person did


Your scissors are spit your fiddle is cracked its strings are thin

and your mouth is dry your cloths American.        from The Monk and Her Seaside Dreams

i tried the night after

but woke up struggling with machines.       from Why Did I Dream

Of learning  the secular rule of life         from Born Below

I came without a plan empty handed except  for my

notebooks from preceding days.                   from A Vision