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john davies
notes from a small vicar
from a parish
in Liverpool, UK

    Monday, December 02, 2002
    What good poetry does
     
      God knows how I adore life
      When the wind turns on the shore lies another day
      I cannot ask for more
      And when the timebell blows my heart
      and I have scored another day
      Well nobody made this war of mine
    These words open Beth Gibbons and Rustin Man - Out of Season which I bought from Probe today. Perfect mood music for impending winter, beautiful with it. (Beth does have her own website but it seems to be down at the moment).

    I spent the morning with other poetry. As a member of the Iona Community's Publications committee I had a stack of papers awaiting me on return from Ireland, and I waded through them after breakfast. Waded - well, it's only my opinion but some of them seemed to lead into quicksand, I had a sinking feeling reading them.

    However, most of them offered journeys through clear, refreshing waters. Particularly those supplied by Jan Sutch Pickard who has published a number of titles of an inspirational nature (including one of Advent Readings, with Brian Woodcock), and who at Corrymeela for the Ecumenical Spirituality weekend rustled up a wonderful prayer-poem in a free hour in the Croi (Corrymeela's special underground space, meaning 'heart'). When Jan read it to us later, a small part of me envied her achievement. But much more of me was grateful for it. That's what good poetry does.