Category Archives: Blog

Poem for Epiphany

 I'm indulging myself by re-posting this poem of mine as it has Epiphany
allusions.
The wonderful image is of a capital in the Cathedral of Saint Lazare,
carved by Ghislebertus of Autun in the twelfth century: an angel awakens
the Magi.

CHRISTMAS STARS

The stars, a rowdy, cheerful crowd,
Ran to their places, prompt to the call,
And how they sing! since then,
A nightly choir.
Only the comets − their slow tears −
Betray the sorrow underneath that steadfastness,
For haven’t they seen it all?
− what we do down here,
Warping the darkness that they love
Into sly coverts for our filthiness.
Poor stars. Don’t grudge them their reprieve
Each year, when their paragon,
Their Star of stars, leader of kings,
Sets out once more and triumphs,
Finds his place, finding the child,
Perfect as every new-born.
Here! the Star declares to each of us,
Surely you see – surely – that you
Are a Child Awaited, you
Arrived − naked and loved − and you,
Gift-bearer of nothing,
Can stoop under this lintel,
Step clean through the needle’s eye.

3 Poems for Christmas 2018

CHRISTMAS

The smallest words mean the most

            Joy

            Hope

            Love

These things

Not things

May you receive them all

            A star              of particular promise

            A light             that has sought and found you

            The child         of your heart

Arrived

Waiting beyond the door.      

NADOLIG

Nos

Seren

Addewid

Cyflawniad

Twyllwch yn llawn lleisiau

Diwedd unigrwydd.

                        Christmas

Night

A star

A promise

A fulfilment

Darkness full of voices

An end to loneliness

CHRISTMAS STARS

The stars, a rowdy, cheerful crowd,

Ran to their places, prompt to the call,

And how they sing! since then,

A nightly choir.

Only the comets − their slow tears −

Betray the sorrow underneath that steadfastness,

For haven’t they seen it all?

− what we do down here,

Warping the darkness that they love

Into sly coverts for our filthiness.

Poor stars. Don’t grudge them their reprieve

Each year, when their paragon,

Their Star of stars, leader of kings,

Sets out once more and triumphs,

Finds his place, finding the child,

Perfect as every new-born.

Here! the Star declares to each of us,

Surely you see – surely – that you

Are a Child Awaited, you

Arrived − naked and loved − and you,

Gift-bearer of nothing,

Can stoop under this lintel,

Step clean through the needle’s eye.

3 poems by Angela Graham 2018

AN ULSTER PSYCHE

AN ULSTER PSYCHE

I was shocked by her photographs. How could she dare? As well as projected slides she had a dozen cibachromes on display whose marvellously luminous surface makes the paper itself a fresh lens. It becomes a pool of water in which everything is gently enhanced by the limpid medium. And yet, this pool is pinned to a wall.

I had to leave the room. Such things should not be shown without a warning. Continue reading AN ULSTER PSYCHE

Short Story in ‘The Honest Ulsterman’

I am particularly pleased to have my short story ‘Runner’ in The Honest Ulsterman, online on Thursday June 28th. Launched 40 years ago as ‘A Handbook for Revolution’, it has showcased world-class writers such as Seamus Heaney, Medbh McGuckian, Michael Longley, Louis McNeice – an amazing list.

Time to pay a personal tribute. Continue reading Short Story in ‘The Honest Ulsterman’

Eborakon: Gwyneth Lewis – Henaint/Old Age

Gwyneth Lewis – Henaint / Old Age, a double pleasure in Welsh and English.

Pleasure despite excruciating pain. I find myself recommending a tormenting thrill. Gwyneth Lewis’s Welsh poem Henaint and her translation of it into English, Old Age are excellent examples of the wonderful double enjoyment that a poet working in two languages can offer. Continue reading Eborakon: Gwyneth Lewis – Henaint/Old Age