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Monthly Archives: March 2013


On the Ning Nang Nong 


On the Ning Nang Nong 
Where the Cows go Bong! 
and the monkeys all say BOO! 
There’s a Nong Nang Ning 
Where the trees go Ping! 
And the tea pots jibber jabber joo. 
On the Nong Ning Nang 
All the mice go Clang 
And you just can’t catch ’em when they do! 
So its Ning Nang Nong 
Cows go Bong! 
Nong Nang Ning 
Trees go ping 
Nong Ning Nang 
The mice go Clang 
What a noisy place to belong 
is the Ning Nang Ning Nang Nong!! 

Spike Milligan
I must down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel’s kick and the wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea’s face, and a grey dawn breaking.I must down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.I must down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull’s way and the whale’s way where the wind’s like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick’s over.By John Masefield (1878-1967).
(English Poet Laureate, 1930-1967.)
Wonderful poem.
Sent in by Stephen Holloway.
What are days for?
Days are where we live.
They come, they wake us
Time and time over.
They are to be happy in:
Where can we live but days?
Ah, solving that question
Brings the priest and the doctor
In their long coats
Running over the fields.

Philip Larkin


I have always enjoyed Philip Larkin; he writes about the smallness of life and the larger events that affect us all.
Stephen Holloway.

What’s your favourite poem?

The Bronte Birth Place March 23 2013



Spring is here, the flowers are in hiding and snow is falling snow upon snow. We were meant to be antiquing at the Arley Hall Antiques Fair today, but the Great British Weather had something else in mind for us – about 18 inches of heavily drifting snow! So having risen early to go to an antiques fair and finding ourselves stuck we decided to go for a health giving walk instead. After trudging for what seemed like miles and having had to recover ourselves and the dog from man sized snow drifts a few of times we eventually made it into the local village, Thornton, whose name to fame is being the birthplace of the Bronte sisters. Thornton didn’t look as if Spring had sprung but it did look quite picturesque under a blanket of snow. See what you think.



Top – The Bronte birthplace, Market Street Thornton, Bottom…

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Snow poems for a Spring day


Sue Dymoke Poetry


On a snowy day, when tree limbs thicken and shrubs bend double in our garden, there is nothing to do but stop and listen. Here are two great snow poems from the Poetry Archive

They both capture different aspects of snow in suburban settings.

The first ‘Nobody’ is by Michael Laskey and the second is ‘Snow’ by Robert Hull. Have a listen.


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Wallace Stevens was regarded as one of the most significant American poets of the 20th century. Stevens largely ignored the literary world and he did not receive widespread recognition until the publication of his Collected Poems (1954). In this work Stevens explored inside a profound philosophical framework the dualism between concrete reality and the human imagination. For most of his adult life, Stevens pursued contrasting careers as a insurance executive and a poet.

The Snow Man


One must have a mind of winter 
To regard the frost and the boughs 
Of the pine-trees crusted with snow;

And have been cold a long time 
To behold the junipers shagged with ice, 
The spruces rough in the distant glitter

Of the January sun; and not to think 
Of any misery in the sound of the wind, 
In the sound of a few leaves,

Which is the sound of the land 
Full of the same wind 
That is blowing in the same bare place

For the listener, who listens in the snow, 
And, nothing himself, beholds 
Nothing that is not there and the nothing that is.




Icicles hang like chandeliers

Melting raindrops on the ground

Children playing having fun

Making snowmen in the park

Hat,scarf, and carrot nose

Trees stand in an icy pose

Children play until its dark

Now they’ve come to close the park

Thomas Sims


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It’s Snowing


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Look out of the window

Look, look it is snowing

People are all slipping around

All of them towing and frowning


Nature has created a picture

A panoramic view of sheer delight

Covering everything with snow

O my what a wonderful sight


Children riding on their sledges

Careering down the hill

The air is filled with laughter

Giving everyone a exhilarating thrill


Transport all at a standstill

As the weather begins to freeze

The frost has painted a picture

Upon the pavements hedgerows and tree’s


We all get excited when we see the snow

We endure the problems it does bring

Then we know after it’s all over

We look forward to he coming of the Spring


Malcolm G Bradshaw


Dylan Thomas ” Do not go Gentle into that good night ” Your Favourite poem.

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One of the best-known poets of the twentieth century, Dylan Thomas was born in 1914 in Swansea, a small industrial city on the southern coast of Wales, one of the countries of Great Britain. Thomas’s father, a school teacher, gave him the name “Dylan” after the name of a sea god in Celtic mythology, little knowing that the poet’s eventual fame would help make this name such a popular one today. Thomas’s father also gave the poet an early awareness of the native Welsh traditions, as well as the classics of English literature. 
As a boy, Thomas was athletic and impressionable, and spent much of his time outdoors. He loved visiting the beautiful seaside near Swansea and staying duringsummer vacations at a relative’s farm, a scene that inspired one of Thomas’s most famous oems, “Fern Hill.” The imagery of the Welsh countryside and coasts reappears throughout Thomas’s poetry. 

Thomas was a very precocious poet. His earliest recorded poem, a humorous piece entitled, “The Song of the Mischievous Dog,” was composed when Thomas was just eleven years old. As a teenager, Thomas kept on writing, and once claimed that he had “innumerable exercise books full of poems.” Leaving high school at sixteen, Thomas went to work as a reporter for a local newspaper, the South Wales Evening Post. Unhappy with this occupation, Thomas moved to London where he was finally discovered as a poet when he won a poetry contest. But Thomas’s early poems in his notebooks were not empty exercises: in later years, Thomas kept returning to these poems, collecting and reworking many of them for inclusion in later publications. 

Thomas’s first book of poems was published in 1934 when Thomas was twenty years old. Thomas went on to publish three more books of poetry, as well as a final collection of his poems near the end of his life. It turned out that Thomas was gifted in other kinds of writing too: he wrote short stories, some of which are collected in A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Dog; a radio play, Under Milk Wood; and various scripts, lectures, and talks. Among these prose writings is Thomas’s story, A Child’s Christmas in Wales, a beloved childhood remembrance of the holiday season. 

After beginning his literary career in London, in 1938 Thomas moved back to Wales where he spent most of the remainder of his life. Here Thomas, who had married Caitlin MacNamara in 1937, had three children. His home in Wales was now the small seaside village of Laugharne (pronounced “larn”) on the river Towy (pronounced “toe-ee”). Thomas’s home, called the Boat House, was located right on the estuary of the Towy, and if you visit Wales you can see this same house preserved as it was, including the small potting shed that Thomas used for writing his poems. There you can look out the same window with its beautiful view of the water and the sea birds. 

As Thomas became more and more popular, he was invited to come to the United States to give readings and talks. Those who attended these recitations recall the intense voice that Thomas used for reading his own poems, as well as reading poems by others. Some of these readings were recorded and, if you listen to them, you will hear the song-like quality of Thomas’s voice, which some called the voice of a “wild Welsh bard” (bard is an old word for poet). However, several years of the reading tours began to take their toll. After a heavy bout of drinking, Thomas died in New York in 1953. He was only thirty-nine years old. His body was returned to Laugharne to be buried. 

Although his life was short, Thomas made a deep impression on those who knew him or who read his poems, or who heard them read by the poet. Although he was born just as the modern age of literary culture was beginning, Thomas wrote poetry which often used traditional forms of rhythm, rhyme, and meter, and this seemed to represent a welcome return to an earlier and happier form of literature. Thomas was also one of the modern writers who helped return English poetry to its roots in its own language. Rather than choosing long words derived from foreign languages, Thomas preferred to impress readers with strong, short words from native English. But what Dylan Thomas will be remembered for most of all are his many poems which insist that life will carry on from generation to generation, all with the same vigor as before. 

Thomas wrote one of his more famous poems, “Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night

Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on that sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light. 

Dylan Thomas

I look to you

When I feel I can’t fight the world any more

I look to you for an open door

Your shoulder to lean on

Your hand to stroke away my tears,

Your soft voice to console all of my fears,

Your reassurance that you will protect

Me from harm and neglect,

I look to you for an open door

When I feel I can’t fight the world any more,

I need your gentle hand

To guide me through

The rough exterior of this land

I look to you for an open door,

I know you will understand

I know I will be safe and secure

I know you will be there for me

When I feel I can’t fight the world any more

I will be reassured

I won’t be hurt any more

Once I have entered your open door

Gillian Sims

Moving On

This is my time,

I’ve lived your time,

I’ve found a new rhyme;

Time to move,

Time to groove,

Time to search a new life,

Turn my back on this strife.

Searching and spinning,

Looking and waiting,

This is me, moving on,

Old life gone.

What’s on offer?

Something new?

Something for the few?

Time for a life review?

Think you know me?

Looking cool I see,

Happy are we?

Searching and spinning,

Looking and waiting,

This is me, moving on,

Old life gone.

This is me, living a new life,

Say goodbye to old life.

This is me, moving on.

Why not come with me?

This journey’s free.

You know you can,

I could be your man?

Searching and spinning,

Looking and waiting,

This is me, moving on,

Old life gone,

Old life gone,

I’m moving on.

by Simon Icke
Aston Clinton, Bucks. UK

Competition 10 2012

The peasants revolt



It took place in the year of thirteen eighty one,
But the origin of it had been many years before,
It had started when the “Black Death” plague swept the land,
And festered due to the landowners treatment of the poor.
The plague decimated the manpower available to work on the land,
As a consequence the serfs were able to claim better pay,
The landowners did not relish this at all,
They used Parliament in order to rule the day.
In thirteen fifty one a new law was passed,
To ensure that labourers’ wages would not increase,
This caused widespread anger amongst the working class,
Especially when they heard their freedom to move would cease.
.Some of them had moved to find better jobs,
Now they were forced to stay and work where they were,
The landlords had demanded their Manorial Rights,
The conditions the Peasants faced were quite austere.
In thirteen eighty a Poll Tax was imposed,
Which incensed the labourers who faced further poverty,
Peasants from Essex and Kent marched to London to protest,
And demanded that they should all be set free.
They were met at Mile End by the young King Richard,
Who readily listened to their demands for freedom,
He managed to persuade them to disperse,
When he promised fair rents and abolition of serfdom.
In thirteen eighty three some of the rebels led by Wat Tyler and John Ball,
Went to London and captured the famous Tower,
They beheaded the Treasurer and the Lord Chancellor,
Who had imposed the Poll Tax and who in other things exercised much power.
Then they met the King at Smithfield to demand,
That the Church should be divested of all of its property,
Wat Tyler exchanged blows with the Mayor and was arrested,
He was quickly found guilty and forced to pay the penalty.
For leading the revolt he was beheaded,
The Government were annoyed they had been provoked,
The rebels dispersed and the revolt was quickly over,
And all the promises made by the King at Mile End were revoked.
The peasants were still bound to spend their lives in serfdom,
What the revolt sought to achieve finally came to naught,
The name of Wat Tyler still lives on in legend,
And we still remember the aims for which he fought.
Ron Martin

Rumi > Quotes > Quotable Quote – Your favourite poem


“Be helpless, dumbfounded,
Unable to say yes or no.
Then a stretcher will come from grace
to gather us up.

We are too dull-eyed to see that beauty.
If we say we can, we’re lying.
If we say No, we don’t see it,
That No will behead us
And shut tight our window onto spirit.

So let us rather not be sure of anything,
Beside ourselves, and only that, so
Miraculous beings come running to help.
Crazed, lying in a zero circle, mute,
We shall be saying finally,
With tremendous eloquence, Lead us.
When we have totally surrendered to that beauty,
We shall be a mighty kindness.”

― Rumi

The Life That I have – Your favourite poem


The life that I have 
Is all that I have 
And the life that I have 
Is yours 

The love that I have
Of the life that I have 
Is yours and yours and yours. 

A sleep I shall have
A rest I shall have 
Yet death will be but a pause
For the peace of my years 
In the long green grass 
Will be yours and yours and yours. 

Leo Marks

A Walk Through the Gardens of Hatfield House

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Paper and Ink

We love this!


It doesn’t matter which century we live in, or in which country. It doesn’t even matter that we write on our laptops and PDAs rather than on paper. Fountain pens are eternal; forever.

I needn’t mention that I love to write with my fountain pen. They are so elegant, regal almost. Writing something–anything, even a to-do list–with a fountain pen somehow makes me feel like a real writer. As if I’m leaving something valuable for posterity; even though I know said posterity will sooner throw away my scribbles than publish them, and even though paper and ink are destructible whereas electronic storage is almost immortal.

I go so far as to buy hand-made journals for the specific purpose of filling them up with my genius literary work (well,  genius in my head), inked with a fountain pen of course. It’s a tale for another day that I haven’t yet written a word in…

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Slow to judge By Ron Martin

Early in the morning


It’s early in the morning

Sun light steams through the curtains

That’s half open wide

The birds outside are singing

I lift my weary heard

And rub my tired eyes

Some tea and toast for breakfast

I find a half clean dirty cup

To put my tea, milk and sugar in

Then let the kettle boil

The bread is in the toaster

It pops up It’s only burnt both sides

Scrape and butter it

Then add a little jam

That should taste good

I haven’t woken up yet

Its early in the morning


Thomas Sims

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