Milton Park

Yellow and purple crocuses

Shiver in the humid wind

Fierce rattle of branches above

Dogs trot and squat

Their owners bowing down

In homage

Gathering up the shit

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n.b. You have to hand it to dog-owners, they really love those animals. Thank you for cleaning up as they go.

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CLP 15/02/2020

Doing the Rounds

Bognor, Chichester, Portsmouth and Southsea

Men and women, your local posties

In all weathers tramping the streets

Sensible shoes on hard-working feet

Besides a red top without which they’d never be caught

It’s de rigueur for them to wear shorts

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n.b. It’s part of the way the posties on the South Coast seem to dress for work.

Postal delivery staff are a group of public service workers that have really been put through the mill by the demands of privatisation. They deserve our respect and thanks for their part in the fabric of our society.

They visit every front door in the country. They know stuff.

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CLP 15/02/2020

Valentine’s Night

I’m so happy

After this Friday night with

Saturday to come

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n.b. Friday evening’s have a special energy. I rather enjoyed this evening in watching ‘Dr No’ AND there’s still the footy to come tomorrow. Too excited to sleep!

CLP 15/02/2020

Stoopid

At what point should I

Admit defeat and turn back,

Robert Falcon Scott?

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n.b. When you are in a hole it’s best to stop digging. If you need to ask someone, it’s best to ask somebody who knows what they’re talking about.

In 1912 Robert Falcon Scott, racing to be the first expedition leader to reach the South Pole, led his men to their deaths. Roald Admunsen and his light-footed Norwegian explorers had got there first at the end of 1911.

A remarkable piece of music written by Vaughan Williams was commissioned in 1947 for a film (Scott of the Antarctic) about this ill-fated expedition. Williams extended the score into a symphony, ‘Sinfonia Antarctica’

Admunsen, by the way, disappeared in the Barents Sea in June 1928. There must be something about explorers, perhaps not knowing when to turn back.

CLP 14/02/2020

By Tomorrow

Valentine’s Day will

Have slipt over horizon

And football returns

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n.b. Perfect timing, a home fixture on 15th February! A good excuse for a quiet night in and an early night, for tomorrow there is a match to be played and all this 🌹forgotten.

(Of course, everyday is Valentine’s Day. Love to everyone, where ever you are xx).

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CLP 14/02/2020

Westerly

Fast runs the West Wind

Clouds straggle, trees pulled east

Umbrellas useless

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n.b. Wrap up. Storm Dennis gathers strength as it approaches land.

“Umbrella” is rooted in Latin and the word for shade. This should make it clear that this implement is more of a shade than a shield. It is suitable for light rain in light breeze, not torrential downpours in Atlantic gales.

Best to get a decent bonnet for Storm Dennis and its followers.

CLP 14/02/2020

On la mode de nos jours

Narcissistic days

Isolation rooms for hearts

Where did the “Love” go?

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n.b. Open your heart to Love; look out, not in. If you love someone and they love you, there will be room for you both to blossom.

Love is not a steel trap closing, but a gradual opening of windows where air and light pours in.

CLP 14/02/2020

Crow

Light spreads into the night

First movement

Swooping from the highest crown

Black shiny crow

Floats nonchalantly to ground

Stretches wings

Lands with a bounce

Moves into a walk

Tilts its head to have look

Arrogant creature

Taint of the dark

What’s there to eat

In Milton Park?

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n.b. Mornings are noticeably getter lighter now, but the weather is too cool for sparrows, or blackbirds to announce the dawn. The first bird call this morning was a three-part drawn out caw of a crow. A bird happy to move in the early light of day before shadows form.

Crows are jostling for nesting positions in tree tops now. Despite the incoming series of storms that disrupt their building, crows are busy collecting twigs to weave nests before tree foliage arrives. Fascinating.

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CLP 13/02/2020

Fever Ship

Voyage of a lifetime

Three and a half thousand folk

Unforgettable

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n.b. Not your normal newsworthy cruise with an outbreak of norovirus, but now a rogue coronavirus on board, roaming between decks, seeking out the weakest.

My thoughts keep returning to these unfortunate passengers, confined to their cabins, isolated on the ship, but I also think about the workers on board serving them.

The British media seems only to consider the elderly fee-paying passengers, with the crew as bit players in the story. In India and the USA this nightmare story is more roundly reported.

CLP 13/02/2020

“Football? I don’t get it”

Our talk turned to football

As it would sat at “The Cricketers”

In Small Heath on the hill

On a February afternoon

Carrying snow in the air

Close to frost on the ground

“I follow The Blues. Ever since my father took me along.

I was twelve then, in 1954

But I like football generally

You know?”

‘I do’ I said

And our match was made

For 90 minutes

With time added on

For good company

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n.b. Either you get it, or you don’t. Danny, aged 77 is still 12 years old when he talks football. “Owh! Just look at his face! Look at his face!” as Barry Davies re-marked during a BBC Match of the Day commentary many years ago. You can see the light in the eyes.

I only met Danny yesterday and probably won’t ever see him again, but what a great conversationalist.

CLP 12/02/2020