Tag Archives: spoken word


This philosophical prose-poem is part of a series I wrote after a brush with cancer eleven years ago, something that not only focuses the mind but sends many patients on a path to discover answers about life and the purpose of life, I remember wondering what the point of it all was? Who am I really? What have I been put here for? What happens now? What is death like? What is sleeping about? What should I do? Of course I tried to be positive too and never stopped working at that. I did everything I could to help my body and mind. On my journey I realised that we are all the sum total of our experiences, and ever will be, and that there is a higher consciousnous of life that we can lead, one of awareness of life itself. I realised that every person is given a gift. My poetry is often complex, containing many layers and signposts, but words are much like tapestries and embroideries, each stitch, each part renders the whole, and sometimes after looking at the detail we see how it all works when we actually stand back and take it all in holistically. If one accepts impermanance as part of this great gift of life, then what matters is not how long we live, but the quality of life we lead. This very much relates to the title of my poem. Thanks for listening. I may post the others in the series where I explored the concept of immortality. Meanwhile thanks for listening to this one.
To listen just click on the orange link below. Best. Neil




This poem is about the difficult subject of dementia. The poem refers to a couple who are together from childhood into old age and first I wrote the poem then later I explored tonal pictures via my midi keyboard until I felt I had found a complimentary melody that echoed the imagery of the poem. I think it’s interesting to combine words with sound and music. Perhaps music is also about putting across subjects in a certain light, just as words do. We all develop our own imagery listening to music alone, but when it is given a more narrow focus via words too then it plays a slightly different element in the combination, supportive I believe, contributing to the overall tone of the creator’s intention, a point that isn’t lost on film makers and advertisers of course. Anyway, here’s to you in your own creativity and I hope this rather poignant piece is similar to an interaction with a form of music-gallery. Just click on the orange link to hear the poem. Thanks for listening. Best wishes. Neil


Separation…a poem about dementia

We hear the notes
repeated. Repeated,
as the blind piano tuner
merges his world with ours.
We marvel, two children
in a school hall
not knowing our song has begun.

Now sixty years on
I clasp your hand.
You don’t know me anymore
and I try to give you back our children’s names,
repeated. Repeated,
like a blind piano tuner
searching for an echo
to a familiar note.

My Darkling Kiss

This poem was originally written about a painting that featured a woman holding a syringe. It seemed logical to place it as a performance piece into the scene of electronica, reflecting the club scene’s darker elements. In the tone of it I tried to put across musically (my own composition) the insistence of addiction and the seediness of the world of drug addiction.  Please click on the orange link to hear it and thank you for listening.


Best. Neil


My Darkling Kiss

Dealer dealer where art thou?
Give me thy needle pray,
within the life you give to me
I’ll die again today.

Bloody thing that I behold
and clutch unto my bosom,
a viper’s syringe
a single fang
my life in microcosm.

Into my vein I drive your succour
‘aagh my sweet,’ the bliss.
Never has a human touch
surpassed this darkling kiss.

In my arms and dear I hold you
with lifeless eyes I cry.
Let mortal man as one behold you,
my shame, this vein and I.

Some hours of respite dearly bought
I need not climb the wall.
Through glassy eyes I gaze upon you,
beyond perdition’s pall.


The Shepherd Boy







The Shepherd Boy

a small piece of Victorian style  poetry

As both set out that afternoon
to find the early lambs new born
they skipped and played a youthful tune
not sensing looming raging storm.

Their joyful search led far from home
O’er hill and dale on paths well worn
now wind and snow chilled to the bone
and desperate fears bred thoughts forlorn.

They both lay down behind a stone
the boy held tight his trembling dog
driving snow barred passage home
to roaring fire and crackling log.

Numb from cold and howling wind
the boy knew well their safety lay
in praying for a path to find
that they may play another day.

The worried shepherd paced the floor
his gaze fixed on the cottage door
that he should see his son arrive
wishing son and dog alive.

Then came a scratch so feint and light
but heard above the howling snow
the shepherd dashed into the night
excited hopes allowed to grow.
Just one small dog is what he saw
near to death, froze to the bone
a thorn stuck deep within his paw.
He knew his son was all alone.

Behind the dog the village paced
heads bent low in steady stride
fearful of the sight they faced
to search the hills for shepherd’s child.

With limping dog their eyes and guide
at last they came upon the stone
and tearful eyes they could not hide,
the boy lay still but not alone
a little dog lay by his side.

They looked around, their eyes agog
but no one saw their guiding dog.
Just shepherd boy and faithful hound
embraced in death as they’d been found.

Now many folks say as they ramble
they see a young lamb leap and gambol
then run as if in simple joy
to the side of a dog and a shepherd boy.

On The Death of Tony

On The Death Of Tony

My last memory of Tony

was a chance meeting

in a supermarket,

laughing as friends do.

His handshake wouldn’t let go.


Time, sometimes I hate you

because of your insistent march,

your incessant boom

marking where you are

and where you were.

I see where you are going

parallel to what is happening,

and where you’ve been too.

I see the distant helicopter

and hear its strange throbbing

history written by you.

An empty shell,

a fallen poppy,

burning orange against

a cold worn slab.

I see the church, the yew,

the eulogy,

organic prayer rising

from the earth

as trunk and branch and leaf.

I see a giver, and a thief

but sometimes I hate you

for all my reunions,

my handshakes that won’t let go

and sad imperfect endings.

Death it seems, is our missing season.

In Tony, did I see you Time,

laughing for a reason?

The Song of Running Away

This is a video poem made on location, the place, the  subject of the poem. Please click on the orange link to see it.


Robert Lowell, the poet, once said ” Meaning varies in importance from poem to poem, and from style to style, but it is always only an element in the brute flow of composition. Other elements are pictures that please or thrill for themselves, phrases that ring for their music or carry some buried suggestions. For all this the author is an opportunist, throwing whatever comes to hand into his feeling for start, continuity, contrast, climax and completion. It is imbecile of him not to know his intentions, and unsophisticated for him to know too explicitly and fully.”

Thanks for listening.







Agincourt is a poem written and read by me through the eyes of one of the five hundred Welsh bowmen loyal to the king who took part in the battle of Agincourt. There are various figures for the total archers present but five thousand is typically given. Goose feathers were a good feather for the making of arrow flights. The battle is also infamous for the slaughter of the French wounded and French prisoners which occurred when King Henry thought another attack was iminent and they would take arms again.  To listen please click on the orange link below.  Hope you enjoy sharing this venture into what I call sound-imagery. Thank you for listening. Best wishes. Neil