Friday, 13 December 2019


The title of the post could as easily refer to the result of yesterday's General Election. I do feel like Christopher Isherwood at the conclusion of Goodbye to Berlin...
My daughter, a midwife, texted me as the result became clear: there goes the NHS. It is a bleak future. 
Another poem started on my brief weekend in Roscoff. The island in the title is a beautiful, small island just off the coast.

Île de Batz

the sea has removed itself
in the dirty bay the upright boats are patient
the sea wall
built by hand in my grandfather’s day
long and strong
speaks of a winter tide
gestated mid-Atlantic
angry impatient
no laughing matter

they have to close the door a second time
as if surprised it did not shut itself
or that the mere act of pulling it towards them
should be sufficient in itself

the wind ever opportunistic
barges through the space
to remind me I am
thin blood cold

This is the view from the cafe where I wrote the second poem about the door and the wind.
In the first poem I simply tried to describe the bay. I had a different last line:

I look up from the page
the sand is now a mirror

I rejected it partly because I don't think it works and partly because it anchors the poem in the present and the chosen ending heralds an ominous future.

The second poem I wrote in the bar watching people fail to close the door as they left. To be honest part of their difficulty was the ferocity of the wind. 
The photographs are from a beautiful church on the island.
I love stained glass and think it is at its best when the sun shines through it.

I'm choosing to end this post on a note of hope and beauty. This is the Incredible String Band from 1968 reminding us of the eternal.

Until next time.

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