Sunday, 22 January 2017

Ind v Eng ODI - Sky Coverage

Phew! That ODI today reminded me of  this poem (in my 'Momentary Stars' collection):

Sky Coverage: Green Timepiece
(Self-regulating Cricket Model 5Day/T20)

White figures on a green ground,
the hours turn, the hours turn.
Some say it was designed
to give impressions of eternity.

Though slow, though very slow,
through orbits, spheres and time
it will come round, will come round,
though the end seems very far,
five hours, five days, five years.

Trajectories and paths are tracked
(fall of sparrows is not recorded)
under the all-covering sky.
Charted from above
the colours mark their value,
the highest by striking red.

Now everything turns again,
the figures change to red and blue,
the shadows grow.
Towards the end,
time is compressed,
seems to accelerate.

Now they swarm and run
and very soon it is the last.
Authority in black and white declares:
'Over - right hand!'

A lot is left to do
in little time and space
and it comes down to this:
'Twelve off six, twelve off six!'

The stars will rise, revolve and fall,
limited overs, timeless test.

Thursday, 10 November 2016

Poems from Momentary Stars

Here's another poem from my "Momentary Stars" collection:

Another Life

Home past the house we lived in
what seems a lifetime ago.
The Japanese cherry I planted
almost overwhelms the front garden.
At the back a newish car
on a concrete driveways -
the grass and bushes
and old brick wall have gone.
But upstairs a young man stands
in the half-lit window
rocking a baby in his arms.

Different When Cycling (from Momentary Stars)

Here's another poem from my collection "Momentary Stars" (Clydesdale Jefferson Press 2016):

DIFFERENT WHEN CYCLING

"Slow down, they're green!"

Cycling you often see the lights
a long way ahead. If they're green,
you'll never make it. But relax
and time it nicely for the next phase.

"Speed up, they're red!"

Push on when they're against
and you should be there
for the welcome change.

Another Poem from Momentary Stars

 I'll post another poem from my collection "Momentary Stars" (Clydesdale Jefferson Press 2016) here soon:



Saturday, 20 August 2016

Momentary Stars: Poems by Edward Vanderpump

  My poetry collection "Momentary Stars" is now available from Clydesdale Jefferson Press. It is a 72-page book with a lovely painting, "Flow", as the cover. This is by my daughter, artist and jewellery-maker Sally Vanderpump. I'll put a picture on Twitter. The poems range from those written this year back to 1962. There's family life, love, death, travel, art, current affairs (horrors included), but cats (sometimes sinister rather than cosy), and cricket (with astrolabes), too.

Retail price is £10 but I have copies, so discount at readings or in person - and postage and packing free in the UK if you send me a tenner or a cheque (payable to me, Edward Vanderpump). DM me on Twitter or Facebook if you'd like one. Half the first edition has now sold so let me know if you'd like a copy, signed or unsigned.

Thursday, 26 February 2015

He, Cromwell

 I enjoyed the BBC's "Wolf Hall" in the end and went back and got into "Bring Up the Bodies" - even finished it. Mantel and publishers took note of criticism and made it a lot clearer, at the cost of having "He, Cromwell" on nearly every page. (They might almost use it as a subtitle in the reprint.) It was obvious ("clunky") - and annoying when it wasn't inserted but was still needed. And why not just "Cromwell said..." or whatever? It smacks of crisis or even panic editing or revision.

 Mantel reminds me of a neighbour who talks about her many friends as if I know them and thinks I understand their backgrond and histories as well as she does. I'm sure Mantel knew who she meant and identified with Cromwell but why not write it as him, in the first person, if "he" is (nearly) always "he, Cromwell"?

  I enjoyed Rylance's performance but he had to go with the overdone hagiographic line on Cromwell. The evidence, including Holbein's portraits, suggests that he was much nastier - cunning, ruthless, very hard-bitten. I disagree that Rylance gives a minimalist performance. For me, he overdoes the eye movement, the surprised or fearful looks. I imagine the real man was much tougher and stony-faced. But that wouldn't be so theatrical or televisual - or interesting, perhaps.

  Rylance is made to call himself  explicitly "a banker", rather than a lawyer. The parallels are obvious but wouldn't it have been interesting to emphasise also the medieval mindset, rather than the modern British sensibility and idiom? And more emphasis on the religious fanaticism of the times might have tolled a dreadful bell and added significant depth, with continuing topical relevance, unfortunately.

Friday, 23 January 2015

Why Wolf Hall?

 As my friend and follower here and on Twitter @IvorSolomons has pointed out, not a single wolf has yet been seen in this series. But watch this space.