I confess to living my life

Lifted from pop songs, poets, fools

Taking every chance I get

Wandering where I choose

Secreting in my pocket

Those most precious of jewels

Stolen seconds of Time

To be wasted with you


n.b. www.napowrimo.net Day 13 prompt: All poetry is theft.

Christopher Perry

13th April, 2020

Time Travellers

Since Columbus sailed, has anyone heard?

What did he find?  Eden, Hades, or a New World?

He left all he knew behind, but what was it he took?

Coughs, sneezes, The Holy Cross, The Good Shepherd’s crook

Any people he meets will be innocent of these:

The Spanish Inquisition and Europe’s most common disease

“Hell is other people” wrote Jean-Paul Sartre

Three ships sailing from Europe were simply the start


n.b.  www.napowri.net Day 6 prompt an ekphrastic challenge.

Hieronymus Bosch painted ‘The Garden of Earthly Delights’ around the time Cristoforo Colombo sailed for the East Indies by heading west.  Colombo had touted his unlikely project around the kingdoms of Europe for years until Isabella and Ferdinand of Spain finally agreed to fund his adventure. 

Did Bosch the painter know of this far-fetched expedition and the subsequent discoveries by the Genovese sailor? Is this nightmarish painting a portent of what would be visited by Europeans on the peoples of these lands that were to be labelled after the Florentine, Amerigo Vespuscci?

The images in the painting begin with the Garden of Eden. This pastoral setting, our collective past is always imagined to be better than today, if not perfect. The Garden of Earthly Delights, is the present; always a time of excess and pleasure seeking. Hell is the future; a fearful extrapolation from the worst aspects of today.

But what is Hell? In Jean-Paul Sartre’s 1943 play ‘Huis Clos’ (‘No Exit’) he sets up Hell as being only populated by three people. He wrote;

 “All those eyes intent on me. Devouring me. What? Only two of you? I thought there were more; many more. So this is hell. I’d never have believed it. You remember all we were told about the torture-chambers, the fire and brimstone, the “burning marl.” Old wives’ tales! There’s no need for red-hot pokers. HELL IS OTHER PEOPLE!

Source: https://www.the-philosophy.com/sartre-hell-is-other-people

Christopher Perry, 6th April, 2020

On the Threshold

About to step out

A new day, another world

Close the door gently


n.b. This advice from a colleague of many years ago, whose name I do not recall, but whose face and kind words I have never forgotten. I pass them on here, admitting that it not always advice I followed when younger. I pray that when my final stepping out comes I am able to close that door gently.


Dedicated to Simon at APG.

CLP 14/01/2020