Author Archives: Ian

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

Posted in This sceptred isle | Leave a comment

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

Posted in Unreliable memories | Leave a comment

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

Posted in The stuff of daily life | 2 Comments

Above the waters

‘Risk of road flooding’ declared the black letters on a bright yellow sign. The persistent rainfall would undoubtedly top-up the already filled ditches and rhines that criss-cross the landscape of the Somerset Levels. It is hard to imagine how the … Continue reading

Posted in Out and about | Leave a comment