Connections,maps and roads

Roman roads connected in straight lines
The cities they had built in wealthy times
The remains of one  goes past my garden gate
Do ghosts of Roman legions pass at night?

I like to see connections,maps and roads
Others  love  old cities ,walls and moats
My road ran to Lincoln  near the Wash
Migrating birds and swans  go there to rest

Going South, there is the Pilgrim’s Way
Canterbury, Becket,murder, prayer
Julius Caesar, Deal,  the Roman hordes
Boudicea,  and her fighting Lords

Layers of history, meaning,love and death
Still we argue  what should be our path

In honour of Paul Tillich

Paul Tillich gave our spirit proper place.

He showed us courage as a  space to dwell.

He wrote for us and left us with   his  grace

With hope he might  well speak and he might tell.

So many people ignored Fascist speech

And lived with mind cut off from  their own soul

With pen in hand he wrote his soul to reach

And touch us as we strive towards the whole.

Expelled from his own country, he wrote on

Continuing during  tortuous war long years

He lived, he loved ,he wrote, he died and then

His books continue to dispatch our fears.

For many men have lived and have destroyed.
 Tillich showed  us how to face the  void


Someone other takes charge of our boat

The kindness of  our neighbours helps us cope
With life, with death,with many shades between
When we despair and  can’t imagine hope

When the sailor takes us in his boat
When he rows us on a  night-blank sea
The kindness of  our neighbours helps us cope

The world  seems  made to hurt, and then frustrate
The mind confuses   dreams , reality
When we despair and  dare not even hope

 Love is built  as we restrain our hate
Sailing well   a new country we see
The kindness of  our friends helps us  to  cope

Persistence in the virtues   gives us scope
Start again, the angel said to me
When I despaired and  lost my  threads of hope

In our mind love’s buried and unseen
Yet we can raise the dead with energy
The kindness of  our  frriends helps us cope
When we are lost and  mapless is our hope.

Virtue rendered void

Envy poison, friend of vicious hate
We know Cain for he still lives within
Society is built on hellish states

If not so, how can we lay love waste
When time is short, why cut it down with sin?
Envy, poison, friend of vicious hate

Do not  hide it, saying  this is “fate”
Through brilliant Sylvia,Ted  asked spirits in
Marriage too is built on awful states

Only with her death, did he relate
One had to go to let the other win
Envy, poison, friend of vicious hate

We suffer when we  think  that we need fame
All paper one day ends up in a bin
Society  too is built on loveless states

Comparison and judgment are  no game
Virtue rendered void, our hearts are lame
Envy, poison, friend of vicious hate
Can society be built on other states?


Grace may come as small as  grains of sand

Material wealth can come in many ways
Inheritance, good luck, good work and pay
But with  the spirit, will power cannot win
Only those who’re humble,admit sin

Pain and grief , companions  of our life
Married to the losses as a wife
Grace may come as small as  grains of sand
Or like the wren that hovers near our hands

In imagination  breathe  as then
Slow, protective, patient and human
See in your mind’s eye the perfect wood
The trees  sing out as sun  warms sap, their blood

We can  research the wealth in figures, charts
Envy  not  the rich who have no heart



And bless

From Ausschwitz rose not only leaking gas
But also  ash from Jews and recent dead
But  rose the holy souls  of those who  had just passed

In the  great Cathedrals  priests said Mass
Turned the host  to Jesus , ate  the Bread
From Auschwitz rose not only leaking gas 

What use is worship, prayer,  can the good last?
What can Christian minds do when we’re mad ?
Oh,see  the holy souls   weep as they pass

Bodies piled in heaps  no human trust
Jesus needs  salvation ,God is dead
In Auschwitz   human beings  gassed ,now dust

Eat your dinner,Daddy,   keep abreast
You worked hard , a Nazi,  gas,  fire, blood
The holy souls fly on, they find no rest

We think that we are better  than a God
For he permitted sin, Job understood
From Auschwitz rose not only  smoke and gas
But holy  souls oh,  find their bones and bless



Throw your money into a black hole

The sky is yellow ochre tinged with grey
The sun is gone and we felt stark dismay
We can’t meet friends in person any more
Only shout as we stand by the door

I think the source of Covid  is just cash
Money laundered less, the notes unwashed
The coins are black as coal in devil’s  claws
Don’t leave  the tip that kills , nor money gnaw

I used to suck a shilling while I worked
I  tapped my  fingers  where it would not hurt
But now the sight of pounds makes   me feel sick
Never use old notes nor lovers lick 

Throw your money into a black hole
You may starve but this will save your soul

They could not wear bikinis on hot sands

In the Jewish ghettos and Death Camps
Did Jews complain they  had no holidays?
They could not wear bikinis on  hot sands
Nor did they ask for somewhere they could pray

We can’t go to Spain  nor Singapore
We must stay  near home,oh  such dismay
I ache so for the poor in tower  blocks
Where violence and harsh words  erupt each day

We can get our food if we have friends
We can read  or write or even pray
Why  complain, the poor  bear heavier loads
Will we be sympathetic on such dreadful days

Our sadly narrow views  don’t serve us well
When other people  in  confinement dwell

Oh,summer comes to to please

The year will rise as sap does in the trees
Bringing life back,giving us new heart
As Bees wll hover, humming  on the breeze

In February frost, the sap may freeze
But soon the higher sun makes life restart
The year will rise as sap breaks gravity

But in hypnotic worlds who should believe
The utterance of the leaders, graphs and charts?
Still Bees will hover, humming under trees

By summer we hope viruses will leave
And leaders false should quickly  be pushed out
The year will rise as sap does in the trees

Let us hope no Fascists  more deceive
Do we believe the voters are not smart?
Though Bees shall hover, humming mysteries

In the sky we see the swallows dart
Possessions tie us down, our souls cry  out
Oh, year rise now as sap does in the trees
As Bees will hover, humming symphonies

Few resist 

Why would wealthy Europe world wars fight
While Popes in cloth  of gold  writhed  as they sinned?
Few resist  the diamonds for the Light

Ambivalent love   split,  what sight  could  be found
When we spend too much time with our own kin
Missed experience shapes our eyes and minds

Those who cannot see, the wholly blind
Feel their deep emotion and may win
Love was offered  then returned as  Strikes

Yet in cultured Europe God has  died
We waged war with ardour, this was sin
Desire  overwhelms our eyes , oh  god, oh plight

Fell three Empires,states unplanned designed
Christians fought each other with new guns
So love was   never offered, simply feigned

In the eyes of infants light is dim
Wars are  made by  pschopaths at whim
Why would    proud, glad  Europe world wars fight?
Few resist   tempation , black the Light

Never write a letter full of spite

The consumer age is passing   with the dead
I tried to shop  again but Sainsburys have said
You can’t shop twice a week or twice a day
We will have to learn once more to play

Learn another language,read good books
Help another,  teach them how to cook
Go outside and  breathe the   purer air
Write a poem and then write one with flair

Walk around the street when it is clear
Drink from cans  filled up with   freezing beer
Take a photo of a tree you   like
Never write a letter full of spite

Surely we can gradually adapt
If we survive the madness and the traps

Shame is bitter, wrecks our feeling heart

I see  down in  the  valley of the Lea
Tower blocks  and numerous tiny homes
Here the Vikings came, oh, savagery
The valley is so ugly it alarms

As I look at  my books, it’s unfair
I feel sad for children who have none 
Our average reading age  grows lower  every year
I   feel angry at our leaders nothing  done

During Lockdown where shall  children play?
Those who have no gardens  shut indoors
The  end point of  such suffering is dismay
Humiliation grows   right in a  heart’s deep core

Shame is bitter, wrecks our feeling heart
A home for Satan made with   thoughtless art

What we do depends on what we see.

What we do depends on what we see.
By writing, I can change my own fixed view
Gain perspective, focus less on me

And to others, make an simple  plea
We can look again and see anew
What we do depends on what we see.

How the world is, how it ought to be
In my writing, I make my own review
Gain perspective, focus less on me.

Replace the  “ought” by “possibility.”
A little change beats crying, feeling blue
What we do depends on what we see.

If God exists, will she with me agree?
No doubt she’d have a wider, higher view
And share perception with someone like you

Would our world be shared by love, virtue.
A willingness to wish ,desire the true
What we do depends on what we see.
Perspective, focus, possibility

Theatre forms the soul

When the fruit has rotted on the stalk
Bruised and broken like the poor in need
When  leaders meet  but rarely truly talk
When children caught in cross fire lie and bleed

Don’t we see God’s Kingdom is a joke
One hundred million deaths in two world wars
Not quick death but tortured bodies broke
They lost once and  love dies in their gore

Utopia, evolution, grandiose plans
Sacrifice yourself for those to come
We saw  the  little children hand in hand
Ground mines blow them up, they could not run

One thing’s clear, God’s here or not at all
The  future’s fiction, theatre   forms  the soul


God, at last

Human sacrifice had disappeared
Would God bring it back to  strike with fear
The hearts of children washed in Jesus’ blood
His heart so sacred died, does that sound good?

Why stress the Cross, the  crown of thorns, the fear
As if God is a sadist,  cold yet nuclear
Who  might wish to   propagate this myth?
In Eden  dwell to hear the snakes that hiss

Jesus, kind and brave,  had no cruel wish
To feed a crowd he conjured loaves and fish
He  walked on water,  perhaps he loved to tease
No Caesar he,  his stories were decrees. 

And in the night, he wept  but never cursed
God, at last, knew humans at their worst

The poor can’t take this lockdown for too long

The poor can’t take this lockdown for too long
They have no back gardens, no birdsong
Their  bed rooms shared, or they have none at all
No privacy, no silence, it appalls

I hear them talked about in cruel ways
“They go into McDonalds every day”

Would you  cook your meals in red wine bathed
If you had   only got  a  microwave?

They  can’t keep warm in winter  in their homes
McDonald’s is a luxury  they earn
Clean and neat  with heating and hot drinks
They sit and look at me , like I’m the Sphinx

The   average reading age in Britain’s only nine
They can’t read Boris’ letter, that’s malign


If Boris Johnson  frequently told lies
This is very common  nowadays
No-one sane would be at all surprised

If  Boris Johnson could not breath ,so died 
Everyone for his soul might now pray
Though Boris Johnson  told some  dreadful lies

Even Peter , Jesus thrice denied
This was human, of such fears we’re prey
No-one sane would be at all surprised

If Boris was with women, he  was wry
But not enough to  stage one in his  play
Oh,Boris Johnson you should not have lied

   Oh Boris  has more children than his bride 
   Now he wants another though he’s grey   
   No-one sane admits they are surprised

I dreamed  of him last night,  he was so gay
To my surprise he charmed me  with love play
If Boris Johnson   lost his head and died
The  people would be frightened and ignite





In deep water, luminous as fog

If I should live again, I’d be a frog
For tadpoles ,insubstantial, cause no fright
Yet they change but not into a log

They change their being, leap up from the bog,
As bread is changed by holy, priestly rites,
If I should live again, I’d be a frog

In deep water, luminous as fog,
The frogs live on the edge of human sight
Yes they croak but not till we’re in bed

As lovers lie down naked on their rug
They tempt the frog, the adder, the termite
Then they rage upon the death of God

As the wheel turns, see, it drips with blood
The human race is ground up, we’re a blight
Yes, someone, somewhere, once did something good

Oh dark, oh grey, oh where is the new light?
Seems like the frogs, the Lord leapt out of sight
If I should live again, I’d be your god
I’d save the world by turning us to frogs

Love keeps the rules

Reality itself is like a dream
Where people die at random. some unseen
People flout the rules while others scheme

In ancient times,what did an omen mean?
A God enraged,his people sinned,unclean
Reality itself seems like a dream

Social life and conversation ruined
My words fell backwards, into  trash were heaved
People flout the rules while others scheme

Still, we have the sun,oh glorious beams
And in  a coup d’etat remainers leave
Reality,a huge collective dream

United by the wish to help,  streets form new teams
Love is shown, regardless, I believe
Some people  like the rules while others scheme

As the world’s  own web  in silence weaves
Stay at  home , give aid to those who grieve
Reality ,a universal dream
Love keeps  the rules, but death’s  still on the scene



God  is murdered daily, we perceive

How precious is the life that we will lose
The joy of senses open  like new leaves
The  holy sun, the air,  our attitudes

Our boundary, our skin  protects, is bruised
By those who  claim to love but soon deceive
How precious is the life that we will lose

The mind  and body open  for new views
Are vulnerable, yet glad, as they receive
The  holy sun, the air,  our attitudes

And Jesus came to Earth, a holy Jew
God  is murdered daily, we perceive
How precious is the life that we will lose

We are   torn apart, love, hate ,confused
Yet every  moment, God   is re-conceived
In  holy sun, in air,  in gratitude

First we love  our neighbour , then believe
The web of  holy actions, who can weave?
How precious is the life that we will lose
The  holy sun, the air, its magnitude