New book….

I am pleased to announce my new book of poetry “The Last bus to Clifden” from the good people at Abraxas Press   Help is at hand   No need to worry We are all trapped in the same June Between the dais and the floor   Hands of fate …

Bashful…

Bashful is one of those wonderful words without an opposite. Try as you might, nobody will ever call you bashless. Which poses the question: what the devil is bash and how did you get so full of it? To answer that question one can turn to the Old Curiosity Shop where Dickens mentions …

Godwottery….

Once upon a time there was a truly terribly Victorian poet called T.E. Brown. His verse is filled with the three Victorian vices: unnecessary piety, unnecessary children, and unnecessary medievalisms. His most famous work is probably the following: A GARDEN is a lovesome thing, God wot! Rose plot, Fringed pool, Ferned …

Etiquette…

Once upon a long time ago in France, there was the word étiquette. But it didn’t have the meaning that it has today. Etiquette was nothing to do with passing the port the right way through a revolving door. An étiquette was just a small piece of paper. So far as anybody can tell (and …

Glumming…

‘What moved thee’, quoth she, ‘hither to come?’ ‘For sooth, quoth I, to buy some of your ware.’ And with that word on me she gave a glum With brows bent and ‘gan on me to stare. – Skelton The Barge of Court (1499) Before glum became an adjective it did steady trade as a …

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