PLAGUETIME 17 Slap-happy Painting


I’ve just finished reading JBPriestley’s book of small essays published in 1951 called Delight. It is truly full of delight. In her biography of JBP, Dulcie Gray wrote: ‘…Priestley was lucky to be writing at a time when essays were popular – he was one of the last great essayists…’ I was lucky enough to […]

PLAGUETIME 12


Five years ago I visited Simon Weir who still lives in Burley, Hampshire in the cottage where his father Peter Weir lived till he moved to Needs Ore, Beaulieu. Peter Weir was born in 1915 and I had written a personal account of his masterpiece The Island as a Centenary Celebration and which can be […]

Plaguetime 10


Rain Upon Godshill Nothing is truly real in this world but living creatures… (JBPriestley 1939) All the talk about ‘not going back’ to the toxic normality that existed before [the Plague] will be tested by the ruling class’s insistence on reasserting a world where their profits and their power prevails. (Socialist Workers’ Party 5th July […]

PLAGUETIME 9


I write a fairly regular ‘essay’ in a series called RANSACKING THE PAST for display on The British Haiku Society Website. Sometimes I dredge books of my own early haiku for ones I could have done better (most of them) and write a critique, sometimes I look at old articles in Blithe Spirit (the BHS […]

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 […]