In praise of donkeys

Four-legged beast of burden
Rough-haired or smooth
Piebald, brown or dun
Long-eared and skinny-tailed
Capturer of our hearts,
Nudging at our pockets
And snuffling for a carrot.
Baring teeth when moody
And singing your own song
Loudly braying and laughing
At the human it does not want to please.
Beast of burden
Reliable until that point
When stubborn will intercedes
And nothing will move him.
Jack the father
Jenny the mother
Led by man for 5000 years
Bearer of Christ and His mother
And a cross to prove it.
And now beach companion
On a summer’s day in Europe
Fun to be with,
Loving, faithful, knowing friend.


Words and photos copyright Englepip©

WE TWO

We two,
Born within an inkling of each other;
We two,
Seeded from one father;
We two,
Sheltered by the warmth of one mother;
We two,
Thinking as one; doing each as the other;
We two,
Together in spirit and mind, forever.

A dull day today but one to visit the park and see the swans. These two acting together like twins or maybe they are a pair for swans mate for life. When one preened the other preened; when one fed so did the other. I have friends who are twins – their thoughts echo each other and their actions are so alike!

Poem and photo copyright Englepip©

Glass and steel

Bush and grass;
Nomadic units.
Mud and thatch;
A season’s shelter.
Timber, wattle and daub;
A whole community.
Stone and flint and brick,
Lots of brick and stone;
Built to last;
A permanence:
Solidity, reliability
Cities and government
Confirmation of continuity
Substance, dependability.

Cold steel;
Reflective, shiny
Repellant
Outward gloss;
Hard.
And glass
All revealing
Transparent glass.
Windows to the outside
Portals to the inside.
Transparency and truth
Everyone can see;
Everything.

 Words , poem and photo copyright Englepip©

The last few decades have seen a new architecture throughout the world. There is a change in style and feeling and I wanted to express how our architecture says a lot about us socially. This is a picture of Basingstoke, once a small market town evolving into a commercial hub – the place where Burberrys were invented in a small retailers; where Eli Lilly and Smiths industries and Lansing Bagnall led the way; where the Automobile Association still is based in what was until recently the tallest building between Hampshire and America; where the bank note printers De La Rue still has its headquarters on the edge of town. But as we move away from industry and manufacturing, – this is on the edge of the Uk’s silicon valley – to ethernet and internet and the need to face each other and work together physically, so architecture has changed. From solid stone with a ‘built to last’ feel, we have moved to glass and steel. Does it represent the unforgivingness of the working environment today? Does the transparency of glass mean that – yes we can see you are not hiding things but that you are being watched all the time? Does the brittleness of glass reflect the ease with which our individual worlds can be smashed and broken?

The Wolf Pack

Baying at the moon

AS dark night closes upon the day
And the wolves of the forest stir
Sniffing the air and snuffling each other
They stretch their legs
Nuzzle sister and brother.
And as they move from tree to tree
They scent their path
On the ice pine sap
Then turn to the pack
With the faintest yap
And leap ahead through the forest gaps.
For a light beyond the pines is their guide
The moon, where it hangs like a queenly orb
Shines bright on a sparkling world almost blue
A light irresistible, bold and true,
Which calls all the spirits of the night.
And the wolves halloo its naked light
As the huntress moon reveals herself
And lightens the darkness
And grips the hearts
Of those who seek their kill.
Take pity on their prey tonight
Be fearful for the timid
For the moon has aroused their hunger; how
Saliva has flowed in their gullets
Their lolling tongues and killing fangs
Will taste of blood and flesh and gore
Before this moonlight night is o’er.
For the call of the wild cannot be resisted
No wolf would be sane if he desisted
It’s nature’s way to clean up the forest
To rid the place of the old and infirm
Keep all the herds pristine and well
Yes the wolf brings release
When it howls their death knell.
But be assured it’s all for the best
That the presence of wolves rejuvenates all
From the vegetation to the waterfall
Having top predators can save the day
And the year and the century from decay
Ecosystems will be renewed
And our earth could be saved by letting them kill.
So when the wolf bays at the moon in the night
Feel safe not fearful; she’s saving our plight.

Poem and painting copyright Englepip©

Wolves are fascinating creatures. They are top predators in many parts of the world and there are children’s stories designed to make us fearful of them – eg – Little Rad Riding Hood. However, I wonder have you read about the reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone Park. here. It is incredible the difference that is being made.



New Year 2019

We cannot see the future;
It’s not for us to view.
It’s hidden in the mists of time
Along a path that’s new.
Though we can learn from past mistakes
Our future is always obscured
By an unknown gulf of wonder
Whose outcome is never sure.
But with hope and heart
And willingness to strive
For what is best
Our prospects can be joyful
Fulfilling; truly blessed.

Happy New Year for 2019.

Verse and photo copyright Englepip©