When It Isn’t Playing.

I suddenly realise that I

Need the lights on, the

Candle’s  insipid, greasy guttering

Is no longer sufficient.

Into the left,

Across to the right:

Who could have guessed it?

The juggler tastes his throwing apple;

Thunderbolt runs down kite-string,

Water no longer fits in the bath-tub,

Frustrated scientist goes gamma-green.

Maybe the best dancers

Don’t need the notes?

it’s about the white matter –

Less is more –

A disembodied voice informs me. –

Does she know I can hear

Music when it isn’t playing?





On a March-frost night when

A comet nobody has ever seen before

Will change the skies, alter science;

After the horizon wide

Heaven-sunset-bonfire ride:

A little to the left of the moon

And just above the hills

There’s a story nobody’s ever heard

In which a star turns into an urchin.


“Who are you?”

The caterpillar asked … and

Alice made another mistake –

Thinking she was being questioned –

When in fact the creature

Was talking to itselves

(All the ones it had already been,

The final one it was yet to be).


Because maybe what you are

Used to seeing in the mirror

Is not your true form.

There are un-numbered swarms

Of shock-to-the system forms

Behind the familiar mask …

If you but dared to ask the

Carroll-caterpillar question;

Dared to remind your self how wantonly,

Disrespectfully you took so very,

Very much for granted;

Dared to remember

All that you have lost.




Photo source: en.wikipedia.org

Gene Sirman*

We are going

To stand on a fossil

Billions of heartpulses from home;

To stand on the no-weather dust horizon

And look down the future

Where new stars will be conceived…


… and we will still

Fear the dark,

Question the invisible.


* The last man -so far – to stand on the moon



Honeybees and Honours.

This is taken directly from a BBC news item on the internet. I am posting it here because I was really priviledged enought o work for/with Geoff in education. He gave me opportunities and had,when we worked together

(he was clearly the superior, but never made it feel anything other than working “with” him, not for him) a superbly friendly, intelligent, articulate and impish sense of worth,

always considered theneeds of teachers and children – something that is increasingly lacking at present.

He truly deserves this honour and I wish him well.

“A veteran beekeeper is among those from Staffordshire named in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.

Geoffrey Hopkinson, 84, from Walton-on-the-Hill, will receive the British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to beekeeping and environmental education.

Mr Hopkinson said he was delighted for himself, his family and his friends.

Mr Hopkinson took up beekeeping regularly despite a rough first experience when he was stung dozens of times as his cousin was moving bees in 1948.

‘Folk hero’   He said: “I got 60-odd stings… My mother didn’t recognise me when I came through the door. I went to bed, slept for 24 hours and then I got up the next day – beekeeping was for me.

” I was actually a bit of a folk hero because word got around that ‘Geoff Hopkinson nearly got killed yesterday’.

“I thought ‘the bees are not going to beat me’.”

Mr Hopkinson added that as a beekeeper “you meet a lot of interesting people here and abroad”.

He said: “You have your disappointments, you have your thrills, you have your successes, you get your first prize at the honey shows.”

Now the quandary: I was talking with some other local beekeepers a couple of weekends ago (honeybees and other wild bees here are suffering and numbers dropping)

and mentioned Geoff, who is still very active.

Should I get in touch with him?

A congratulations card would be good I think.