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    • 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 […]

Migration Counterpoint

Sandlines  ( www.breakingnewground.org.uk ) operated a series of writers workshops in The Brecks, to promote the rich variety of landscape, fauna and flora that can be found in this special landscape.  I took part in one, which was based in the BTO centre in Thetford, and led by Lois Williams and Melinda Appleby.    In spite of fairly constant rain the event was much enjoyed by all those taking part.  The key theme was ‘Migration’ and this poem found its first flight there, and has subsequently had its plumage smoothed.

This poem features in an anthology  of  poetry arising from those workshops, ‘Voices From The Brecks‘, which was  published by Sandlines in September 2015.


This poem was one that I read at the second Suffolk Poetry Festival at Stowmarket in May 2015

Ivor reading at the 2015 SPS Poetry Festival. Photo by Colin Whyles

Ivor reading at the May 2015 Suffolk Poetry Society Festival.Photo by Colin Whyles


Reading at Bury Apex

Reading at Bury Apex

Sue Wallace -Shaddad took this photo on January 14th 2016 of me reading this poem at the ‘Breaking New Ground’ celebration of the Breckland, in The Apex, Bury St Edmunds.




In my autumn I seek assurance in cyclic tokens of the spring:

blackthorn’s first white blossom, siskins’ restless gathering,

leaving for the warming North, supplanted by southern migrants.

These endless cycles ease my fear of journey’s ending.


I try to cram each day with tasks, irrelevant peripherals,

stretching time that’s left, checking for signs of senescence.

Do birds sense time’s passage migrating above deserts, guided

through the featureless by  North’s magnetic presence?


What power draws the crozier of each fern’s new uncurling,

poised, a green flexing my elderly joints can only envy?

The swoop shriek of returning swifts, like circling kids on bikes,

teases me that simple joy is now in very short supply.




The anthology published by Sandlines

The anthology published by Sandlines

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