The Edge of the Known Universe

We always called this place the edge of the known universe,Expecting to step off it as we got closer to the islands.Little Eye, Middle Eye and Hilbre hanging in the air, out thereWhere the sea becomes the sand became the sky and left the land,At the edge of the known universe.Today however, the known universe …

A Year on the Allotment

A year ago now, as 2020 was arriving, Sarah and I had spent most of our Christmas working on her allotment. Digging out, restructuring and getting her plot of Liverpool land ready for a productive year. Taking advantage of the short amount of time when hardly anything is growing to get various pieces of work …

On Boxing Day Afternoon

I like these two days. Even though Sarah and I don't do Christmas we don't usually do anything else particularly special. Unless you count living quietly together, reading novels and doing nothing at all that looks like work. Which we definitely do count. So these are days with space. To do the things we might …

On Christmas Morning

The neighbourhood and the almost ritual walk around it that has defined my year. In lockdown times walking into town has been only occasional but this walk, around the local streets, has been my meditation and my breathing space. From home down to Smithdown, along Penny Lane to Greenbank Road, through Ibbotson's Lane, round the …

Seaport: Inside the North Docks

For all of my life I've regretted the fact that we couldn't get to most of our river, the river that caused Liverpool to exist in the first place. So this is a walk into somewhere I can only remember going once before, one docks-quiet Sunday when I was very small. My Dad showing me …

Gratitude: A letter from Sarah

A rare, in this year of years, letter from Sarah. About her life and the things she loves. "Herring gulls eating starfish" are involved. Elemental, like hope. * All the normal things I usually do in my life have, this year, been harder. The pandemic arrived like a whirlwind in my life, like all of …