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Tag Archives Guildford

MONKS AND TOURISTS

Sheltering from a summer shower

beneath the portico of the Tunsgate Arch,

Guildford, I looked down the steep High Street

towards the bridge over the River Wey

and saw three bespectacled Buddhist Monks

emerge from Dolland & Aitchison and,

lifting their saffron robes, run to Jigsaw.

 

Enjoying my pan fried sea bass and Guinness

in The Faulkner, Hoole, and watching the rain

trickle down the Walker Street Co-op’s facade,

my view was suddenly blocked by a coach

from which a party of middle aged

Japanese tourists descended and,

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AT PEAK’S POND, GUILDFORD CASTLE

The castle was one of the first the Normans built.

Its earthen motte rises some fifty feet

or so above this late Victorian pond –

the keep, with its Romanesque windows,

built from local golden Bargate stone and strips

of knapped flint for decoration, fifty more.

As yet she is innocent of all that –

only what moves, makes noise, can be held, climbed

or eaten: like the lemon drizzle cake

a pair of lovers offers her; like the steps

by the pond she ascends and descends;

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SILENT POOL, MARCH 2013

The pool is off the Dorking-Guildford road,

at the foot of the North Downs; is fed

from a spring, which seeps through chalk and flint;

is so-called for allegedly no birds sing

in this glade of ash, oak and yew;

a place of legend, of Druidic worship,

rumoured deep enough to drown secrets.

A sharp March wind rattles twigs and branches.

 

By the side of a flint pathway – that leads

to the top of the Downs with its Pilgrims’ Way,

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SEASONAL GREETINGS

Door, Marrakech © SCES 2009



GUBBIO, WINTER 1992


Where the tourist buses turned, the Werhmacht

had murdered partisans – La Piazza

di Martiri Quaranti.  The cold from the hill –

old, old rock – rose from the cathedral’s floor

into our very soles. Outside, February seemed mild,

seasoned with wood smoke. We bought a hand thrown,

hand painted jar with an ill fitting lid.


Since then: earthquakes, marriages…



GUILDFORD,

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