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

    Sunday, September 26, 2004
    Unbalanced diet
     
    Another 'if only'. If only I weren't so skint I might just take up the invitations which have come to me from (a) Lloyd Robson himself and (b) the Dylan Thomas Centre to go see (a) at (b) this coming Thursday. Wouldn't that be great? Live in Swansea: "Iain Sinclair's bastard son, his roots in the alluvial slurry of Cardiff"... maybe next time.

    Nevetheless there's poetry in the offing this week in a variety of forms.

    First in North Wales where we're having a day's retreat at St Beuno's, noted for its Gerard Manley Hopkins connection. He wrote much of his celebrated poetry at St Beuno's, while studying for the priesthood there. This will recall for me my much-loved visits to Little Gidding to get the authentic T.S. Eliot vibe. I'm wondering if St Beuno's may do the same for one of my fave scouse poets (after leaving rural Clwyd, Hopkins served as a Liverpool priest).

    Then at the weekend, a real northern treat. February's postponed Fall gig at the Academy supported by Mancunian punk word-magician John Cooper Clarke. Greatly anticipated.

    It will be quite a journey this week, you may be thinking; what on earth will a diet of Robson - Hopkins - Eliot - Clarke do for my sanity?

    Robson
    easy on the olives: not keen on them little black babies in me food but doan wanna be rude so jus leave em at tha foota me bowl soakin up all that olive oil like coal nuggets marinatin in diesel

    Hopkins
    My heart in hiding / Stirred for a bird, - the achieve of, the mastery of the thing!

    Eliot
    the children in the apple-tree / Not known, because not looked for / But heard, half-heard, in the stillness / Between two waves of the sea

    Clarke
    the rain whips / the promenade/ it drips on chips / they turn to lard / i'd send a card if i had a pen / i mustn't go down to the sea again