Suns and Moons

The T’ang poet Li Bai loved to write about moons and about moon shadow. I know how he felt and how changing light can influence composition.

Suns and Moons

The rising of the sun
A brilliant orange sky
Now this long day’s begun
You tremble and you cry

The passage of the sun
From dawn through to midday
With journey that’s half done
It carries on its way

Noon sun in late July
The light and humid heat
Shimmer before the eye
When cool drinks are a treat

Noon sun in December
A bright light without heat
It’s a cooling ember
A brilliant lurid cheat

The passage of the sun
It’s run to west from east
So soon each day is done
And we’ll sit down to feast

The setting of the sun
A vivid ruddy sky
The long night has begun
But there’s no need to cry

The rising of the moon
That’s presaged by its glow
Its full disk is seen soon
What secret will it show?

The passage of the moon
Her sensuous glowing face
Like some foretelling rune
There’s glory in her grace

The moon’s shrunk to a crescent
A gentle subtle glow
With honeysuckles scent
All stress may fade and go

The moon has waxed to full
A fulsomeness of grace
It has a mystic pull
Reflecting light from space

The passage of the moon
From moonrise to moonset
It’s glow may go quite soon
But there is no regret

The setting of the moon
The dying of it’s light
The depths of darkness soon
The stars a glorious sight


The arsenic waltz

Had a great visit today to the National Trust property at Killerton in Devon.  This included a  display on the history of dyes. One display moved me to write this:

Green Dyes
In a display at Killerton there was a description of early green dyes. There was a problem with fixing green dyes so large amounts of arsenic were used. This could be interesting, or dangerous, or deadly consequences when the cloths were worn.

The Arsenic Waltz

Your dress is pure green
So your skin’s turning white
With blue lips – how they sheen
You’ll be dead by tonight

© T.Morgan



Cup of coffee

I must confess to a caffeine addiction.  I am down to two cups in the morning and an occasional espresso when out and about.  However not at any of the big chain coffee shops and tax dodgers.


Hot coffee for the slightly tired
May well soon turn the spirit up.
From slowing down to full hot wired
It’s all there in a steaming cup.

A Limerick for Lagarde

Now that Lagarde of the IMF has joined in on project Fear that is trying to scare us all into staying as a peripheral province in the European Empire of the Oligarchs. I am not moved to feel any fear.

The IMF that she runs has a track record on economic predictions. More often than not they are wrong. They did a good job with Greece and have ongoing works in progress in Portugal, Spain and Italy and have brought economic misery to lots of places in the impoverished third world. They have long been unfit for purpose.


A Limerick for Lagarde

The IMF has loudly now said
By leaving we will end all dead
In the past all their predictions proved wrong
Yet they harp on and sing this daft song
Poor Lagarde has gone quite off her head

The Midwife of change

Some things seem repeated themes in history.  Bede in his History tells the story of the British King Vortigern who hired mercenaries to do his fighting for him.  They won his wars then they turned on him and he lost his kingdom.  I guess the moral of this tale is fight your own fights.
The idea of war as a midwife I got from Capital by Karl Marx


The Midwife at the birth of change

“This land so pregnant here with change
Once then faced the starkest strife;
The birth of change is not so strange,
Where wars act as midwife!

The Picts would rally and rage down,
The Irish too would raid;
Then plague would empty many a town
As trade and wealth decayed.

One tyrant felt he could hold sway
With troops he got for hire.
These men they gained much more than pay;
That tyrant felt their ire.

For once they’d put the Picts to flight
And drove the Scotti out;
The hirer, then, he felt their might,
That tyrant faced his rout.

Why risk your life to fight for pay
When you may gain much more.
The ways of old have had their day
These lands would now know war.

New powers would be slow to rise
Like tides things ebb and flow.
They fall from Grace who are not wise,
Proud hearts should know true woe.

The roots of trees may slowly spread
And topple any wall.
Ah, Pride, it has been often said
May cause the great to fall!

This land so pregnant here with change
Had then faced such deadly strife;
The birth of change is not so strange,
Where war acts as midwife!”

Extract from a tale about Norse invaders

I have written a lot of tales in verse about our history between the years 410 and 1065, the so called “Anglo-Saxon” period.

This is a sample:

From the tale of the half Dane child


Ingvar’s Prayer to Odhinn

“What has been done can’t be undone
The dead are with Dark Lady Hel
There are great wars that must be won
Odhinn you’ve shown me this full well!

Guide me in all the fights ahead
Guide every arrow from my bow
Help me to leave these Christians dead
Help me destroy this loathsome foe

Show me good Odhinn all the ways
That we may fight these wicked swine
I promise you through all my days
I’ll sacrifice them as a sign

They have their symbols and their creeds
For everywhere they bring their cross
May I now show them by my deeds
That theirs will be the greater loss

If their lands should fall to your might
I swear that I’ll Blood-Eagle kings
I pray you will enjoy that sight
That special joy that vengeance brings”

He “cut an eagle on the back”
Of Edmund now a Saint
Nowhere was safe from his attack
Vengeance knows no restraint

He waged his wars across the land
With guile and with speed
His every battle was well planned
He made the Christians bleed

The Norn accepted Odhinn’s deed
Was passive for a while
But she would sow another seed
For she had much more guile

Now Ingvar was a mortal man
His time came and he died
All men may only live their span
At his death no one cried!


The wrongs of righteousness

As men go out to right each wrong
Then new wrongs they will do
The weak may well become the strong
But vengeance can’t be true

The righteousness of those wronged men
Will simmer deep inside
And will do much injustice when
It gets puffed up with pride

To justify each brand new wrong
Old wrongs are pointed to
Then vengeance will career along
And has so much to do

Some hungers cannot be fulfilled
Past wrongs can’t be put right
It matters not how each gets killed
In each new pointless fight

Before men seek to right a wrong
They may wish to refrain
New enemies may soon grow strong
And cycles they repeat again