Pursued by the Muses of prose, poetry, and music.

Wordless Wednesday — Finding Heaven in Quarr Abbey Tea Garden:-)

Scone at Quarr Abbey Tea Garden

Quarr Abbey 1


You can read a review of Quarr Abbey Tea Garden in Matt and Cat’s Isle of Wight Eating Out Guide and to learn more about the Benedictine monastery itself, you might like to visit the Quarr Abbey website

Monday Morning Haiku #23

Dog sniffs begonias

Begonias thrive
amidst decimated plants
devoured by snails.

Anti-Social Media (?)


This is a most thought-provoking post from Uncle Spike who lives on an isolated farm in Turkey and spends a great deal of time on his own . Do take time to listen/watch the video that goes with this post. It made me think very hard about how we all get sucked into the whole addiction to electronics thing. Wishing you a lovely Sunday, and make sure to talk to someone today while looking them in the eye!

Originally posted on Uncle Spike's Adventures:

Social Media; the bane or backbone of modern existence. See it how you will, we have ALL been dragged willingly or with tacit reticence into this bizarre age of instant electronic inhuman sources of gratification. When I say all, maybe not everyone on this planet of ours, sure, but if you are reading this blog post… need I say more?




I happily admit to enjoying the whole social media thing. It’s added a new ‘social’ dimension to my life as what you can only describe as a semi-hermit, albeit a clean and relatively tidy one. I live in quiet existence away from most societal ties, and apart from a few hours between the kid arriving home from school around 5:00pm and his bedtime, I often spend days on end without seeing a soul as my wife works away. In fact, when she and kiddo went to Ankara for…

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The Allotment into its Fifteenth Month

Back in September 2012, Mister and I inherited our allotment. To mark this event, I wrote a haiku and posted this picture.

An old allotment
awaiting transformation.
Next year, fruit and veg.

Victor and Joshua: men to the ready

Victor and Joshua: men to the ready

And this was what it looked like the following Spring, with all the ground dug  and seeds planted.

Allotment: April (Year 1)

Followed by a bountiful summer of vegetables and a noticeable reduction in our food bills; although we didn’t have much fruit in the first year, apart from rhubarb. Below, is a picture of a typical weekly harvest in late summer.


September harvest.
Produce packed with goodness:
bounty of the earth.

And for anyone who hasn’t seen the picture of the giant marrow, here it is in all its glory (grown without fertilisers or artificial chemicals of any kind).

So far, on the vegetable front this year, we’ve had spinach, potatoes, globe artichokes, and lettuce. There would have been a greater variety of things but we lost a whole load of seedlings to slugs and snails, with us finally resorting to beer traps. Birds had a go at the seedlings, too, when they’d have been better employed pecking away at gastropods.

allotment June 14

Fruit-wise, we’ve had far greater success, with the usual rhubarb and a decent crop of huge, not-to-sour gooseberries, strawberries, and raspberries. In fact, for the last month, I’ve had strawberries or raspberries with my breakfast every morning and they’re so much tastier and sweeter than those sour shop-bought ones. Mister commented that he’d seen a small punnet of strawberries on sale for £3.00. From this, he concluded that we’ve paid for our allotment for the year from what we’ve saved by growing our own fruit.


Over the next couple of months, we’re expecting bumper harvests of all sorts of other goodies, so look out for regular allotment updates.

Wordless Wednesday — Slow worm, the Garden Hero that Eats Slugs!

Slow worm


“I never knew you were like that…”


Have any of you unpublished authors, or those published under a pen name, ever worried about what your family, friends and social associates might think about certain risqué or controversial elements contained in your fiction? Back in May, I interviewed Geoffrey Gudgion about his novel Saxon’s Bane. Since then, he’s published a most amusing post about some of the conversations he’s had with people about his novel, including one about “Shush, you know what”.

Originally posted on Geoffrey Gudgion:

Draumr KopaCindy Callens, on the Belgian book review site Draumr Kopa, kindly asked me to do a guest blog. I shared some of the more amusing comments people have made since Saxon’s Bane was launched. Click here for Draumr Kopa.

Here’s what I had to say:

People have said some strange things to me since Saxon’s Bane was published.

“I never knew you were like that,” an elderly lady from my local church said one Sunday.

“Like what?” I asked. The question made me stop in my tracks, and the departing congregation flowed around us.

She shuffled, making that eyes-lowered squirm with which Christian ladies of a certain age simultaneously mention and avoid mentioning delicate subjects. “Well, you know…”

“No, I don’t know. What’s the matter?” I sensed that the subject causing her such embarrassment was of a reprehensible and possibly sexual nature, and my mind raced in a frantic ‘Oh-God-what-have-I-got-to-be-guilty-about’

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Monday Morning Haiku #22


~ Pink extroversion ~
Multitude of peonies
shout for attention.


The Oximeter and the Putois-catamaran

N+7 blog post






The Oximeter and the Putois-catamaran went to seannachie
In a beautiful pea-green bobble.
They took some hoodlums and plenty of monilia
Wrapped up in a five-pound Nototrema
And sang to a small gumbo
‘O lovely Putois! O Putois, my loxodrome,
You are,
You are!
What a beautiful Putois you are!’

Putois said to the Oximeter, ‘You elegant franion!
How charmingly sweet you sing!
O let us be married! too long we have tarried:
But what shall we do for a river?
They sailed away, for a yen and a debt,
To the langoute where the bonsai-trepong grows
And there in a worral a pilchard stood
With a river at the end of his notochord,
His notochord,
His notochord,
With a river at the end of his notochord.

‘Dear Pilchard, are you willing to sell for a shiralee
Your river?’ Said the Pilchard, ‘I will.’
So they took it away, and were married next debt
By the Turquoise who lives on the hippocampus.
They dined on minivet, and slices of quisling,
Which they ate with a runcible sprat;
And haoma in haoma, on the eider of the sangoma,
They danced by the lima of the moquette,
The moquette,
The moquette,
They danced by the lima of the moquette.


Have you guessed which famous poem my N+7 verses are based on?
You can read about  the techniques of Oulipo poetry at .

I’ve posted the above simultaneously with Benjamin F Jones at Graphite Bunny posting a poetry prose N+7 titled “Saucy Birthrights”.

Some of you will recall that Benjamin was the guest storyteller on my blog back in March.


Music Passion — Duets

My music passion for July is Two Daughters of this Aged Stream: a duet from Act IV of the opera King Arthur written by the English baroque composer Henry Purcell in 1691. The libretto for this opera is based on a poem written by Sir John Dryden in celebration of King Charles II’s reign. The words of the duet are quite saucy, as the two sopranos — Michèle Laporte and Marie-Cécile Charrier — are playing the part of sirens.

Two daughters of this aged stream are we,
And both our sea-green locks have comb’d for ye.
Come, come, bathe with us an hour or two;
Come, come, naked in for we are so,
What danger from a naked foe?
Come, come, bathe with us and share
What pleasures in the floods appear.
We’ll beat the waters till they bound
And circle round.


To find out more about adollyciousirony’s monthly musical extravaganza and how you can join in, please visit 
There are no restrictions of genre or decade for this month’s theme of “duets”, whether they’re played or sung.  


Wordless Wednesday — Mr Fox’s Metal Fowl (foul) Disguise!

Metal Cock


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