Nether Field

Not the Bakers field 
Or the town of Carl
Not the Gelding misspelled 
Nor Loud ham or ley of Lambs  
Not the Calver Town or the Red clay cliff

But… the nether field
You know? The lower one,
The one that floods!
The one where all the trains go to unload all their pile of goods

No cosy nook of Joyce and Bert 
Or Southerly minster well 
No ford placed west of Bridge for me
Nor Thorpe of Gun to tell…

But a village built fast 
Industrial revolution 
When the industry went
It just left wild confusion

Such a maelstrom of people 
From diverse situation 
Makes for such embittered folks 
In dark times of inflation

Single parents, congregate 
Natter over garden wall
Refugees seek solace here
Maybe it is peaceful after all!

Six o’clock the bus stop’s full 
Of lipstick, heels and pecs
Who leave behind this no hope town 
And it’s Mapperley rejects

Charlie Red potent up on top floor
Of the old faithful green number 20
Their LBD’s glitzy as they head off to Ritzy
To dance and drink MD2020

Left behind, Beggars, drunks and layabouts
And kids who want to play about
Behind the old community centre
And boys like me who still climb trees 
In search of some adventure.

Window cleaner cases houses
To know which ones to rob
Dole queue stretches round the block 
Cos no one’s got a job

Towns of industry
Hubs of community
Left behind till Retail Park revived

So offspring of the factory girls 
Walk aisles with cheese and chives
And top up Pringles on the shelves 
Now that Morrisons has arrived.

And still the cries of drunken yells
Seep deep into the night
As fearless yob rolls up his sleeves 
For Friday’s Fight Night Fight

And as I close my eyes to hear 
Another drunken groan
I smile, 

Perfect it may never 
But Netherfield is my home

P J Deakin 2016 ©

India

On endless rich, deep carpet pile

To endless polished marble mile

Excitedly we stride

Towards a wall

Of glass and steel

Which effortlessly glides

 

Assaulted by the heat and smell

The noise, the fuss, the clamour

The poorest-poor lie unnoticed

Besides the gold and glamour.

 

I taste the air, its fragrance thick

With car exhaust and turmeric

A thousand fossil bonfires

Fill the air and shroud the glow

Of burning incandescent orb,

Translucent orange/yellow

 

The taxi swiftly zips along

The fresh new tarmac highway

With little dwellings here and there

And kids in every byway

 

Holy cow!

The hornéd one

Strolls slowly down the middle

As if she knows she’s deity

And we’re all second fiddle!

 

Incessant drone 

Of blaring horn

From tuk-tuk, car and lorry

Don’t sound in anger

But to say “I’m turning right or overtaking,

I’m really very sorry!”

Permanent the smoky haze

Hangs low like ochre, cigarette days

The cricket wing cacophony 

I cannot get it off of me

The memory of that magic land

That river valley

That henna hand

Is permanently etched upon my very soul

A land so young, so curious

And yet so very old

So wise and yet so much to learn

As dreams take me back 

Still smouldering it burns

Our silver bird punches right through

An arrowhead to skies of blue

And what beholds me 

I’m agog!

A string of pearls 

Beyond the smog!

Just north of this smoky dome-like layer

Lies the entire Himalaya

A chain of snow-capped rocky mounts

These craggy forts the very founts

Of a thousand little tributaries

Which feed this vast expanse

As stream becomes a surging torrent

The mighty rivers all advance 

A mighty warlike tribal drum 

The beating of her steady thrum 

The twisting canyons she has carved 

Tower high above and barely halve

The distance down to where she flows 

Each bend a turn which petrifies 

As down you look into her eyes 

The snarling crocodilian river

So sharp, so fierce it makes you shiver

Yet high on Gangtok’s verdant top

A city stands so tall so bright

A city bursting full of light

In ‘Switzerlandish’ type Tibet

This Alpine paradise is set

The mists which here 

Taste oh so clear 

Are far removed from distant Delhi

Make poinsettia grow to 6 feet high 

And flora blooms a’plenty!

So haunting is this ancient land

Her vibrancy, her laugh, her dance

She penetrates my night visions

And puts me in a trance

I’ll always cherish knowing her

Her song, her joy, her art

Eternally her sun will burn

Within my aching heart.

P J Deakin 2016 ©

Roots

On Sunday my Pastor spoke about the Parable of the Sower.

The seed fell all over, on the path, the rocky soil, in amongst the thorn bushes and on good well-tilled soil.

We know the story, and over-familiarity can mean that we lose the crux of the story. That we forget to look at things afresh.

Dave further explained how the seed that fell on the rocky soil was shallow, and that like shallow people there is no root and so when hard times come they shrivel up and rarely thrive.

The seed which fell among the thorns represents those who are easily distracted by the pleasures of life and so become choked by the pursuit of happiness through a hedonistic, materialistic lifestyle.

As I reflected on this over a coffee after the service, I recalled the number of times my faith has become stunted due to my shallow nature.

Without roots we die.

I’ve also been guilty of pursuing the pleasurable aspects of life, selfishly… often at the expense of those I should be caring for.

Whilst I considered this, I was looking out of the window and I saw this:

  

You may not see it at first but this is a (rather blurry) photo of a small tree stump which we pruned right back about 18 months ago when a team of us did some gardening work in the grounds of our new church building.

Look closer and you will see that a small slender branch has sprung up out out that branch and has soared higher and higher! It has grown at least 7 feet high in only 18 months!!

Why? Because despite the tree being removed, the roots still remain! And while the roots remain there is an irresistible instinct within that tree to grow! Roots will always lead to growth!

At the very top of that tiny slender branch there is a single leaf. New life is budding and bursting forth out of the shell of the old.

As I looked on I realised what God was saying to me, “get yourself rooted in me, then whatever life throws at you, you will always come back stronger!”

I realised that I will not pursue selfish pleasure if I am rooted. I will not seek man’s approval of I am rooted! For myself I pray the words of Paul in Ephesians 3 and trust that you will too…

“For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”

‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭3:14-19‬ ‭NIV‬‬

God Bless you!

Phil

Don’t Lump for Trump!

If I lived in AmericaI wouldn’t vote for Trump
I’d rather vote for Pootle 
In fact, any of The Flumps 
Than sit and twiddle with my thumbs
And watch that redneck lump…

I couldn’t let him have that power
And stand by like a chump!
I couldn’t idly watch that businessman
The US economy gazzump

With his modern take on Nazi prose 
Where African or Mexican can legally be thumped
When I look back on our history 
Consider Hitler, I’m stumped 

As to how a man with so evil an agenda
Could rise to power, yet Trump
Blames all the problems on the Muslims 
And Mexicans who jump

Across the void of poverty 
To make a life like Gump
Where shackles can be overcome 
And you don’t end on your rump 

But Mr Toupee wants to take your dreams
And throw them in the dump
For two centuries your great nation built 
On immigration pump
Yet now you say enough’s enough
You’re greedy and a grump!

The end is nigh, the eagle high 
Lies quivering in a clump
Because of evil, selfish agendas
Of that wicked Mr Trump!

P J Deakin 2016©