Earth is burning



Last verse of four verse poem


Etudes 4 (Après Arvo Part – Stabat Mater for Choir and String Orchestra)


Earth is burning

my heart is crying

Earth is in flames

and there are not enough tears

to put the flames out

Earth is burning

my heart breaks

Earth is burning

There are no tears left.




Jules Verne Zucchini

Men are walking on the moon today,

planting their footsteps as if they were

zucchini in a dead world

while over 3,000,000 people starve to death

every year on a living one.



July 20, 1969


Rommel Drives On Deep Into Egypt

Richard Brautigan.

Cae’r Blaidd or ‘field of the wolf’.

DSC_9043 (2).JPG

Cae’r Blaidd or ‘field of the wolf’.


The last wolf died in this place

but the hour of the wolf remains

and the wolves call for us, call for you

calling haunting us with their calling

calling for us over and over again


It is the time when we cross over

as some people say of the passing away

in the early hours when coldness

an imperceptible drop in temperature

loosens our will, loosens our grip on life

and the wolf crosses with us too

it has nowhere else to go after all.


A time we no longer speak of

the easing of souls young and old

the hour of the wolf remains taboo.


It is a way with our family at this time

that we sit in vigil, a candle burning

talk of remembrance, of memories

of life and the sadness of leaving.

But whatever we say the wolf remains

at the door until our time comes too.


And the wolf patiently waits for the hour,

waits at the door to call as it must do.



Published in The Learned Pig 2017


Death trap Anzio

Watching the D-Day commemorations reminded me that in January 1944 there was another landing – Anzio. And there are no commemorations:

“When Lucian Truscott’s 3rd Division was first selected for the operation, he pointed out to Clark that the position was a death trap and there would be no survivors. Agreeing, Clark canceled the operation, but Prime Minister Churchill revived it.”

The Irish Guards Battalion in which my father served was almost wiped out at Anzio – he was lucky to survive. He then was a prison of war – Boyd Clack – to return to hear soldiers of the Italian Campaign called “D-Day dodgers”.

Ironic too listening to historians talk about Churchill’s anxiety about D-Day because of the disaster of his making at Galipoli – when he was also responsible for the more recent disaster at Anzio and placing men in a “deathtrap” – helped by the incompetence of the American Generals in command.

But no commemoration for the Battle of Anzio – albeit deleted out of history!