Friday 8 August 2014


I was looking for a workshop idea for Juncture 25 the other week and went to my usual source for ideas The Guardian - who ran a series of workshops about five years ago. The task that was set was to take a person, a location and an event from a list, then write a poem. 
I took Ringo Starr, the sands of Mars, and has discovered a great secret. Needless to say, I threw half of the ideas out and ran with my own thoughts. What chimed with me was Mars and the idea of isolation. This led to the image of an isolation hospital and the fact that Ringo spent two prolonged periods of his childhood in hospital. The second time with TB. The fact I have been reading the first book in Mark Lewishon's magnum opus on The Beatles probably had something to do with it

Richie Starkey missed his ma,
is as isolated as if by the sands of Mars,
hears the regular tick of the reliable clock,
all this boring afternoon,
as long as a TB hospital corridor
and he'll be here the whole year.
One day there will be screaming fans,
and after having survived fame will sober up.

But for now,
the evening will advance imperceptibly.

This second poem is even more recent. I wrote it the other morning and present it as it is.

the earth sings
a different tune to each of us
from the quiet energy of old trees
to the magpies' cry on the wind
once we would sculpt the landscape
to magnify every note

we have lost our ears 
call it progress
claim we are better than the ancestors

the earth still sings
open your window
give thanks

I leave you with The Beatles Get Back. Even as they fell apart they were magnificent.

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