Friday 28 December 2012


Here in Somerset, the rain continues to fall and the ensuing chaos leaves us all over the place. The train line between Taunton and Exeter is closed, the levels are flooded, the rivers high and still it pours down. Not that this state of affairs is confined to Somerset and Devon.

The extremely wet summer meant that the ground everywhere is saturated, as I noticed last Friday coming back from Avebury. I was following the satnav on my phone only to be met by flooded road after flooded road.  It does take me some interesting ways.

Yesterday I went to look at the Somerset Levels. It must be twelve years or so since they were this flooded. Here are some photographs. 

Burrow Mump, an old church seen across fields of water

I’ve been playing with form recently. Here are some poems I wrote in Plymouth the other week, I say wrote I dashed this one down in the back of a taxi. You know the deal, you are waiting at the lights and the car next to you is determined to get there before you.

aggressive clio at the lights in the night taxi right of way bus lane change and you so not looking pedal to metal accelerate beyond cool just because you can

This one was sparked by the shenanigans of that car. I remembered how years before, when I was a student, me and a friend had hitched a lift into town with these lads in a new car. They clashed gears and kangarooed at traffic lights, my friend got out very quickly but I rode into town with them, oblivious to what it all meant.

stolen car boogie

kate said after she got out of the car she hugged the wall and laughed in hysteric relief
why did you not get out could you not see they had stolen the car
those days i could not drive paid no heed to the crashed gears or jumping car at green light go
I knew they were bullshitting assumed them as stoned as we were kate you got out i stayed into town walked off saw all that jazz caught a bus back home for no one gave rides out of Plymouth
to be truthful i’d had weirder lifts

Both poems came out in a sprawl on the paper and as I attempted later to make sense of the words I thought I’d go with the flow. Similarly with this one.

there are days when Monk will sound exactly like a migraine settling over your left eye nerves then twitch and shudder under a skin that feels like anothers from then on the day will deteriorate

The monk is Thelonius Sphere Monk, that wonderful pianist. Have a good week. If this means the start of another year for you then I hope it is everything you could want and more. 

I will be back next Friday.


  1. Great stream-of-consciousness poems, Paul!! Very much enjoyed them!

  2. I hope the flooding goes down soon. It looks like it's pretty severe from the photographs!

    I like your experimentation with form. It's an interesting change.

  3. I like the fresh approach and that matter of factness in the way that thoughts are not punctuated but roar ahead and double back and sit breathless in their own slipstream. As for the floods - well its pouring again here.I want to write about rivers. Good photos too.