PLAGUETIME 8


ON ‘THE ESSAY’ Why do I call these posts ‘globs’? Because I wish to dissociate myself from the word ‘blogs’ – they are essays – but that’s a word distinctly out of fashion… From September1968, at the beginning of my time of being what’s called a ‘teacher’, I taught briefly (though it seemed like forever) […]

PLAGUETIME 7


I’ve just read JBPriestley’s They Walk in the City (1936) Edward Greenfield refuses to go along with the kind of life that his smug brother Herbert has designed for himself. The latter had made his great gesture when he had determined to be an analytical chemist and, in face of many obstacles, lack of money […]

PLAGUETIME 6


META-I : TIME-LINES & WRITING HUTS This afternoon (28th May 2020) one of my ‘I’s suddenly had the idea that perhaps Meta-I could step outside of tick-tock time. It had been reading JBPriestley’s account in Midnight on the Desert (1937) of the moment in America when he chanced to find in a secondhand bookshop a […]

PLAGUETIME 2


DREAMING It seems that the isolation called for to combat the current Global Plague is affecting not just football but the way people dream and the quantity and quality of what they dream. Since, in six weeks, I’ve noticed no change in my sleep patterns or in dreaming, I wonder what others are experiencing; I’m […]

THE HUMAN PREDICAMENT


Early on in The Fox in the Attic Richard Hughes steps aside from his narrative to consider how the experience of the First World War played on the consciousness of those who were alive at the time. I understand this completely: reviewing my own war-time experience at the age of 3 to 8 (!) I […]

The Quest


Pursuing my private intention to discover what it is in Hilaire Belloc that I love so much, I’ve read some of his minor novels and returned to the essays. Apart from some supremely outstanding poems, his verse is negligible but the man is a poet through and through – a ‘maker’ of profoundly affecting prose […]

Richard Jefferies & Zen Buddhism


THE INTRODUCTION TO MY BOOK OF FOUND HAIKU FROM RICHARD JEFFERIES SOMETHING BEYOND THE STARS MORE OR LESS AS IT APPEARED IN 1993 Something Beyond the Stars may be of interest to at least three kinds of people: Richard Jefferies enthusiasts; adherents of Zen Buddhism and haiku fanatics. Assembling it, I found myself wearing all […]