Author Archives: Ian

In this world and the next

There was a poetry in the hymns we sang at High Ham Primary School.  Apart from the entirely banal When a knight won his spurs, the choices from our hymnbook were weighty in theological and literary terms.  Even to someone … Continue reading

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In memoriam: Private Henry Lines

‘Their name liveth for evermore’. It was Rudyard Kipling’s idea to put words from the Hewbrew Scriptures’ book of Ecclesiasticus on the Stone of Remembrance in each war cemetery.  Kipling similarly composed the lines, ‘A Soldier of the Great War. … Continue reading

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I knew I was right

The girls of my tutor group were  trying to choose a song for a spring concert. To my surprise, the first song they considered was Candi Staton’s  Young hearts run free. ‘Ladies’, I said, ‘this song is forty-eight years old’. … Continue reading

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Callers recalled

‘My brain is addled’. A third bout of Covid during the summer has left my mother in a fog, short-term memory has become patchy at times, but recollections and anecdotes remain clear ‘It was after the war. We used to … Continue reading

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Bread and butter

Salt, mustard, vinegar, pepper, French almond rock. Bread and butter for your supper, That’s all mother’s got. The words of the skipping song surfaced in my memory. Perhaps primary school was the last time I heard it sung. Of course, … Continue reading

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