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Daily Archives: September 9, 2014

In My Garden


 When I work in my garden

I feel the sun on my face

I listen to the birds singing

For my garden is a magical place


When I start to dig my garden

The worms are tossed around

The robin sits down beside me

Eating the worms from the ground


When I cut my lawns with the mower

There’s a sweet aroma from the grass

Patterns made by the mower blades

Through time they will not last.


I find peace within my garden

For there is so much beauty around

The sound of the songbirds singing

Creating such a melodious sound.


Next time you are working in your garden

Remember you are not alone

Thank Mother Nature for her bounty

Allowing you to be working in her home

Malcolm Bradshaw

Mohammad Ali’s poem to Johnny Cash.


Did you know Mohammad Ali wrote a poem for Johnny Cash which Cash later recorded as a song called“What Is Truth?”

I always liked how Johnny Cash always wore black on stage. He was a very single-minded man. Cash recounts the story in his autobiography. He met Ali on a flight when Ali crashed first class to see who had taken up all the seats forcing him to fly economy. It turned out to be JC and his entourage. Ali then sent him this poem which Johnny kept locked in a vault until the right opportunity arose to record it.

Here are the words of the poem Ali, another single-minded man, wrote to Cash. Mohammad Ali, boxer and poet!!!

The old man turned off the radio
Said, “Where did all of the old songs go
Kids sure play funny music these days
They play it in the strangest ways”
Said, “it looks to me like they’ve all gone wild
It was peaceful back when I was a child”
Well, man, could it be that the girls and boys
Are trying to be heard above your noise?
And the lonely voice of youth cries “What is truth?”

A little boy of three sittin’ on the floor
Looks up and says, “Daddy, what is war?”
“son, that’s when people fight and die”
The little boy of three says “Daddy, why?”
A young man of seventeen in Sunday school
Being taught the golden rule
And by the time another year has gone around
It may be his turn to lay his life down
Can you blame the voice of youth for asking
“What is truth?”

A young man sittin’ on the witness stand
The man with the book says “Raise your hand”
“Repeat after me, I solemnly swear”
The man looked down at his long hair
And although the young man solemnly swore
Nobody seems to hear anymore
And it didn’t really matter if the truth was there
It was the cut of his clothes and the length of his hair
And the lonely voice of youth cries
“What is truth?”

The young girl dancing to the latest beat
Has found new ways to move her feet
The young man speaking in the city square
Is trying to tell somebody that he cares
Yeah, the ones that you’re calling wild
Are going to be the leaders in a little while
This old world’s wakin’ to a new born day
And I solemnly swear that it’ll be their way
You better help the voice of youth find
“What is truth”

Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy’s new War Poem Last Post


Carol Ann Duffy (pic: Getty)

Carol Ann Duffy

As we prepare for the funeral of Harry Patch, the last British soldier to fight in the First World War, new Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy has marked the occasion with a sombre yet supremely uplifting poem.

Poetry and war have long gone side by side in English literature.

Harry Patch (Pic: Getty)

Harry Patch 

Some of our greatest poets were also soldiers, including of course Wilfred Owen. Drawing inspiration from this link, Last Post recalls lines from his most famous First World War poem Dulce et Decorum est, before moving into more metaphorical territory.

In an exclusive interview, Carol Ann said: “These poets who were also soldiers did not glorify war but responded to it.

“In the 21st century, whether we are women or men, soldiers or non-soldiers, we should all contribute a voice to the tragedy that is war.” She added: “I felt I should also honour that great tradition of poets who were also soldiers. I had been thinking about Afghanistan and trying to enthuse new war poetry among contemporary poets.”

At its core, Last Post imagines what would have happened to those millions of soldiers if time was reversed. If they hadn’t been scythed down but got up, returned to the trenches, to the cafes of rural France and ultimately to homes and loved ones. In essence Carol Ann is saying that this is what would have happened if poets had been in charge not war-mongering empire-builders.

She said: “I imagined the dead of the First World War rewound.

“So, had they not been slaughtered, had a young man not been killed by shrapnel, my poem brings him back to life.

“It ends with the image of a poet putting away his notebook and smiling. In a way it’s an attempt at healing and being at one with the world.

“The poem is a tribute and blessing, even an apology, on behalf of poetry and all poets.”

Her message – as relevant to today as yesterday – is that no one should forget Harry Patch’s contribution or Wilfred Owen’s.

And in the years and decades to come, Carol Ann’s voice will also be heard with a swift relevance.


In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,

He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If poetry could tell it backwards, true, begin

that moment shrapnel scythed you to the stinking mud…

but you get up, amazed, watch bled bad blood

run upwards from the slime into its wounds;

see lines and lines of British boys rewind

back to their trenches, kiss the photographs from home –

mothers, sweethearts, sisters, younger brothers

not entering the story now to die and die and die.

Dulce – No – Decorum – No – Pro patria mori.

You walk away.

You walk away; drop your gun (fixed bayonet)

like all your mates do too –

Harry, Tommy, Wilfred, Edward, Bert –

and light a cigarette.

There”s coffee in the square,

warm French bread

and all those thousands dead

are shaking dried mud from their hair

and queueing up for home. Freshly alive,

a lad plays Tipperary to the crowd, released

from History; the glistening, healthy horses fit for heroes, kings.

You lean against a wall,

your several million lives still possible

and crammed with love, work, children, talent, English beer, good food.

You see the poet tuck away his pocket-book and smile.

If poetry could truly write it backwards,

then it would.

Carol Ann Duffy

Off the Shelf – Promote Yourself


Your hello was my sin
Life just tricked me thin
The miseries grew off the shelf
With the time passing all by itself

I want to be a simple girl
With her prince at her side
Prince charming to hold her hand
And walk the million miles beside

Of the sort of attention I got then
I felt to be in a whirlwind fix
Am I performing a road show
Or walking on the ramp giddy?

No one asks me what I want
They tell me this time it’s different
But every fall they leave me
After promises and their vows

Craving for a simple straight life
Your hello became my sin
But why I am the one to pay
With every single fling!!




She Is The Ocean – Promote Yourself


I love the depth of the ocean

As it matches your gamut of emotions

Darkness, mystery, abundance and devotion

To those who strive for vivification

I love the vastness of the ocean

As it matches your eyes description

So wide, so pure and lacking fiction

Calling me to dive without vacillation

I love the alterations of the ocean

As it match your unexpected actions

That makes each scene with different dimension

To lubricate the wheel of our interaction

I love the breeze of the ocean

As it matches your fascination

I feel King in your captivation

And you are Queen of my passion

© Chaouki Mkaddem
April , 2011

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