Filed under poetry

A Radical Priest, R.I.P.

A Radical Priest, R.I.P.

With declining church attendance, fewer of us are aware of the differences between the various Christian churches, especially the various branches of the Catholic church. When I was researching the history of South America, I became fascinated by the Jesuits, who founded missions there t protect the native peoples from slavery. Their group was founded … Continue reading


A Poem on Sprites, From 1600

This is a small piece from Hobgoblin & Sweet Puck Fairy Names & Natures by Gillian Edwards In old wives’ dais, that in old time did live (To those odd tales much credit men did give) Great store of goblins, fairies, bugs, night-mares, Yea, far more sprites did haunt in divers places Than there be women … Continue reading

Thomas the Rhymer

This is from Highways & Byways in The Border, in which Thomas Spottiswood: …wrote of him early in the 17th century: “Sure it is that he did divine and answer true of many things to come.” Fact regarding the Rhymer is so vague, and so beautifully blended with fiction that I doubt if most Borderers do not … Continue reading

The Kelpie of Slit Rig

This is from Highways & Byways in The Border Slit rig takes its rise on the Lindbergh Hill, on the northern side of the Liddesdale watershed, a hill of old the known resort of the Good People, whose piping and revels might often be heard by the solitary shepherd. The rivulet is said to well … Continue reading

A Poem to Save a Tree

This is another piece from Highways & Byways in Northumbria The Keyheugh Scars are a lie over the moors in a wild and beautiful district where the Grasslees, Darden and Keenshaw burns run riding places for badger, fox and otter. In the sandstone cliffs or scars the raven and falcon are said to nest. The … Continue reading

Singing Together

I’ve been enjoying reading singer fro Everything but the Girl’s Tracey Thorne’s book ‘Naked at the Albert Hall. She has a lot of great insights into the art and craft of the vocalist, but also of the importance of signing to us as people and as communities. Something I never thought about is why kids … Continue reading

Last Will of Edward Ward

I’ve never seen a will in the form of a poem until this one. It’s from 11 May 1732. The Derby Mercury: In the name of God, the King of Kings, Whose glory fills the mighty space, Creator of all Worldly Things, And giver of both Time and Place,   To Him I do resign … Continue reading

Ode to Misaddressed Warning Systems

Ode to Misaddressed Warning Systems

The latest discovery from my bookshelf is Paul Jennings’ ‘the Living Village’, a survey of scrapbooks produced to celebrate the anniversary of the Women’s Institutes. This concerns the giant golfballs that are the early warning radar system of North Yorkshire, claimed to be in Fylingdales, but are in the adjoining parish of Lockton High Moor. … Continue reading

Word of the Day: Goliard

I stumbled upon this word, and the more I discover about it the more I like it. The OED describes a goliard as a disreputable vagrant medieval cleric given to revelry, buffoonery and satirical Latin versifying, a follower of an imaginary Bishop Golias. Another source describes them as renegade clerics of no fixed abode more … Continue reading