The Ossuary, St. Leonard’s, in Hythe, Kent, England/A Postcard From The Volcano

Medieval Bones-2064

Medieval bones. A Postcard from the Volcano  Children picking up our bones Will never know that these were once As quick as foxes on the hill; And that in autumn, when the grapes Made sharp air sharper by their smell These had a being, breathing frost; And least will guess that with our bones We left much more, left what still is The look of things, left what we felt At what we saw. The spring clouds blow Above the shuttered mansion-house, Beyond our gate and the windy sky Cries out a literate despair. We knew for long the mansion’s … Continue reading

Worried About lies and Fake News? Start with the Mainstream Media

A week on from the earthquake of Donald Trump’s election victory attention is being drawn to the influence of “fake news” on social media amid speculation that stories such as Pope Francis endorsing the Republican candidate or opponent Hillary Clinton murdering an FBI agent might have influenced the result. Both Google and Facebook  bosses have had to make public statements on how they are tackling the phenomena and play down the influence such stories might have had on the outcome of the election. Meanwhile Trump himself has been reining in on some of his pre-election pledges, notably the building of … Continue reading

KEN LOACH’S ‘I, DANIEL BLAKE’: A BRIEF NOTE ON TWO ILL FOUNDED CRITICISMS

(1) ‘It’s sentimental‘ . No, it isn’t. ‘Sentimental’ is when you focus on how much you are enjoying your own sensitivity. Sentimentality’s essential object is oneself, and it’s faux, inauthentic, self indulgent. ‘Love Story’, for anyone who can recall it, was sentimental. IDB is emotional: its object is on the people portrayed and yes, it aims to upset you and make you angry – that is, if you are emotionally alive as a human being. This is not ‘sentimentality’. (2) ‘The working class characters aren’t realistic: they don’t swear, scream or drink’. This one says more about the assumptions of the … Continue reading