I did not expect to survive,
earth suppressing me
Snowdrops: Louise Gluck
They sparkle. Even on dull days they light up the ground beneath our trees and this year they are putting on a particularly heroic display, defiantly poking through hard ground compacted by our long winter of construction work. They survive! Do not be deceived by their dainty, demure flowers, dear garden visitor: snowdrops are a truly tough bunch.
Don’t be afraid. The words shine in a dark space at the end of the Seamus Heaney exhibition. The words he texted to his wife shortly before he died in August 2013
Some passports arouse an obliging smile
While others are treated as mud. Vladimir Mayakovski
A passport can conceal or reveal, open or close. Who knows how the true-blue British passport will be treated after Brexit, but right now Russian travellers are likely to be attracting more than average scrutiny at border control. And none too many smiles. Continue reading
Women may be from Venus but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy the occasional trip to Mars. On a dreary, rain-smeared midsummer night, I land on a sociable planet light years away from Brexit Britain, and find the perfect holiday poem for my husband. Continue reading
The North wind doth blow though not very hard. Our windmill acts like a weathervane even when it’s not turning and it is facing resolutely north. We shall have snow. Continue reading
Over the Years, a poem about ageing and Alzheimer’s, stirs a sad, sweet memory but also hope. Dementia is part of family life – and loss – for so many of us now and I remember how it silenced my once sociable father. Yet Paula Jennings’ poetry, drawing on her work in a nursing home, invites a new way of talking and listening.