• RSS Versifier

    • Questing
      I am a strong believer in renewable energy, but it’s not a free lunch.  Significant amounts of energy has to be used to change quartz sand to silicon.   Silane gas produced during the manufacturing process is extremely explosive, and explosions occur.  Another risk is that we currently have no safety masks that can prevent […]
    • Blyth Estuary Evening
      There is a wonderful walk along the line of the old narrow gauge railwayline to Southwold, where it runs alongside the Blyth estuary.  I led a walk for a group of poets there this year, and this was one of the poems that I read on the walk.  We had a very enjoyable workshop after […]
    • As The Light Changes
      The East Anglian Daily Times ran an article entitled ’22 beautiful poems about East Anglia’ in their Saturday magazine insert on March 18th this year. I was very pleased to see this poem of mine on the same page as poems by Sir Walter Raleigh and George Szirtes. TO HEAR THIS POEM PLEASE CLICK ON […]
    • The Last Word
      By way of a change, here is a short piece of prose: In a writers’ group this morning we were challenged to write a short story in 150 words.  The story below contains exactly that number.   The light was starting to fade, and breaking soft waves seemed even quieter.  He stopped collecting pebbles and […]
    • Moving Hands
      How many things that  seemed eternal early in life, have completely vanished?                         TO HEAR THIS POEM PLEASE CLICK ON THE ARROW ABOVE   Sometime in the nineteen-fifties it perched on the hundred-foot workshop,  where Waitrose’s  entrance is now. It would pace the working lives of hundreds. […]
    • You know you are worth it
      I wrote this poem in mid November this year, then my e-mail inbox started to fill with ‘Pre-Black Friday’ offers, then ‘Black Friday’ offers, followed later by ‘Post Black Friday’ offers, and now I am seeing ‘Black Friday repeat offers’!  Reality has overtaken imagination.   TO HEAR THIS POEM PLEASE CLICK ON THE ARROW BUTTON ABOVE […]
    • Poems for a portrait
      I agreed to sit as the model again this morning for an art group producing portraits.  We had a cultural exchange as at the end of the two sessions as I recited the Haikus composed in my head during the forty minutes of the sitting.  I then exchanged a book of my poetry for the […]
    • Last Orders
      This poem won a ‘Commended’ award in the recent 2016 George Crabbe Poetry Competition.  The competition judge, Moniza Alvi, wrote of ‘Last Orders’ “Tragic and hard hitting, I found this poignant poem compelling.”  ” This is a poem with a real sense of urgency”. PLEASE CLICK ON THE ARROW BUTTON ABOVE TO HEAR THIS POEM […]
    • Irony
      During a few days in Liverpool we visited Crosby Beach, to see the Antony Gormley sculptures arranged as  ‘Another Place’.  Two friends had been examining the work, and turned to walk off the beach.  I took the photograph below, and the poem was written after I examined the image, using an  element of artistic license. ‘Communing’ […]
    • Illuminating Longing
      Here is a shared experience from the night of the full ‘Strawberry  Moon’ on June 20th.  A warm evening after a wet morning promised the sight of Nightjars hunting, and the moon was a bonus, PLEASE CLICK ON THE ARROW BUTTON ABOVE TO HEAR THIS POEM   The mist quilt  slips across the sodden heath […]


This site is written and operated by Ivor Murrell, who lives in Coastal Suffolk with wife Jean and has been writing poetry for over 50 years.

Ivor reading at Sutton Hoo Poetry Day, June 28th 2009.

The site is called Versifier because poetry is the writing form that I am drawn to, and the word simply means to write in verse.    I am aware that for some people the word also suggests overtones of indifferent poetry, but perhaps you will give me the benefit of reading from the site, and then making your own decision on that.

My poetry is drawn from interactions with others and events in this brief but crowded existence, which I hope will chime with readers. Whilst each person’s life is unique there is much overlap of experience and emotion.

In the last few years I have been trying to link images to my words.  Sometimes the images relate directly to the poem, sometimes they are images made or found after the poem has been written, either way it makes a website an ideal way to display them.

The background I draw from is reasonably varied.

I attended a well known Suffolk Grammar school, but was so involved in self indulgence that I overlooked the possibilities of later benefits from academia, left school at sixteen, and then took a five year engineering maintenance apprenticeship with the British Sugar Corporation.  A decision I have never regretted, for the introduction it gave me to a completely different adult world, and skills which have saved me a great deal of money over the years.

At British Sugar I became one of their first ‘Utility Men’, people who could operate any part of the factory process, and act also as ‘trouble shooters’ for problem solving.  Having already mastered two career skills, I then took up a third, by joining a traditional floor malting company, making malt (the basic raw material of beer) for supply to many UK Breweries.  After the hurly burly of a modern continuous process factory, this was like becoming a Victorian industrialist, with the need to learn a range of empirical skills, some taking years to master.  I had the time; I was a floor maltster for twenty five years, ending up as the company Managing Director.  Various attempts at diversification of the company involved me also being involved with computers, building golf buggies, and retail ladies fashion, but we need not explore further in those directions.  We eventually closed the floor malting company in 1993; as such traditional method of malt production was making it difficult to compete financially with modern malt production methods.

Then I was asked to manage the operation of the malting industry’s trade association, The Maltsters Association of Great Britain.  For the last thirteen years of my working life, as its Director General, I was involved in any issue that involved that modern industry, a fourth career in fact.

I retired in November 2006, after working almost non-stop since September 1960.

In 2009 I finished my distance learning course at the Open University, to earn a BA Honours degree in Humanities, so I finally finished my formal education at the age of 65.

This wide range of different experiences has given me a rich seam to mine, that time now allows.

You can contact me by e-mail:  ivor@versifier.co.uk

Leave a comment


  1. Ann Follows

     /  March 18, 2010

    Ivor it’s really good to see your poetry on-line like this ….well done! I look forward to contemplating your verse, some of which I’ve heard you read or talk about. The value of your presentation here is that I can see the photos you’ve chosen to put with the verse together with comments and background which contextualises it. Quite an inspiration yourself!

  2. christina van melzen

     /  March 25, 2010

    What a beautiful, restful and stimulating (can something be both?) site. The combination of poems and images is very exciting.

  3. hello Ivor,

    I’ve read the funeral for a previous generation and I love the words ‘weigh their flesh against the steep slope’. I look forward to reading more of your work and enjoying the versifier site. perhaps we can find a way of working together…

    best wishes


  4. Kate

    I am intrigued by the idea of my poetry and your painting, I know you paint both the inner and outer landscape

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