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Showing posts from January, 2016

The Infant (a sonnet)

The Feast of Presentation (also known as 'Candlemas') is celebrated on the 2nd February by some churches, on the Sunday between the 28th January and the 3rd February by some others, and not at all by churches which (like mine) uphold a steady tradition of eschewing tradition. It marks the occasion when, 40 days after Jesus' birth, Mary and Joseph take him to Jerusalem to present him in the Temple in accordance with the Torah. It is here that Simeon, a man 'waiting for the consolation of Israel', meets the infant Jesus and recognises in him the outworking of God's promises.

Here is a sonnet I made about that encounter. Because (as Christmas celebrations sometimes seem especially designed to obscure) the Incarnation isn't "nice", it's awesome ...


THE INFANT I saw the preparation of my death
And life, lie crying, cradled in the arms
Of maiden motherhood. I heard alarms
And consolations in each wailing breath,
And recognised that many, wise and fo…

What does the dog say?

There was a time before YouTube – remember? – when people relied on the television for humorous video snippets. And if you wanted to watch one again (and again and again and again) you'd better hope that somebody had set the VCR.

Well, my family were utterly entranced by a dog called Domino that said "I want one". He starred in a 1988 episode of the BBC's 'That's Life' and my dad has been doing impressions of him ever since. (In fact, I'm pretty sure we didn't catch it on tape – which means we probably only saw the actual footage once; it was dad we had on repeat).

Unsurprisingly, by nowit can be found on YouTube, comfortably at home alongside a selection of tortuous wannabes – talking dogs just aren't what they once were. It's an odd experience watching it for real for the first time in all these years. Like most memories, it's evolved in the retelling; for something so embedded in our family culture it seems strangely unfamiliar. (T…

Maker in the poeting

The story poem of my life...


i am through with words let me make something of myself. i am through with words; let me make something of myself. i am through – with words, let me make something of myself. i am: through/with words let me make something of myself. i am; through with words let me make something of myself. i am through with “words let me make something of myself.” i am – through with words – let me make something of myself. i am through with words let me make something of myself. i am through with words let me make something of myself. i am through with words  let me make something of myself. i am through with words let me … make something of myself. i am through with words let me make something of myself.
carolyn whitnall, twenty-fifteen.

Our English word 'poem' can be tracked back to the ancient Greek 'poiema' meaning 'a thing made; workmanship'. It is the word used in Ephesians 2:10 "For we are his [God's] workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God p…