Archive for October, 2015


Previous posts on this blog covered the investigation of a range of early texts: ancient Egyptian and Sumerian tales; medieval tales and stories; more modern books.

I examined them all to highlight their structure of composition – I was investigating the use of chiasmus in texts.

Chiasmus is a way of structuring: think of an arch way – each side mirrors the other as it builds towards the middle. Mirrors, that is, in that the first arc builds up to the keystone, and the other arc repeats the same steps away from it. There is a ‘crossing over’ from one arc to another.


In a text this occurs in a line, say:

“I flee who chases me, and chase who flees me.”
“Fair is foul, and foul is fair.”
(William Shakespeare, Macbeth I.i)

Or you may display it like this:


But to structure a whole text/book that way…!
And Yes they did. Not all, but enough to make it matter.

And so, I have gathered all my researches together, worked them up, and rounded off the whole enterprise.

The result is this ebook: GIFTS OF RINGS AND GOLD.

It will be due out on Amazon in December.

I will update regularly to keep you posted.



Posted: October 9, 2015 in Chat
Tags: , ,


Circa ninety-five, a hot long evening
the Edinburgh Festival, the auditorium
of a Peter Handke play with no script;
scanning the crowd for a feel
of the vibe of the night, saw
a man decked out in a Bob Dylan shirt,
from circa sixty-five.

‘Hey!’ I said,
‘scuse me, ‘scuse me, Hey….’
‘They were big in Berlin. Last year’, he said,
then the house lights dimmed, and so crept
to my seat, my son, and the set
of a desert town: was it Mexico?
The actors passed hesitantly, afraid,
more boldly; or so we read, misdirected,
a character, storyline, place;
stringing together a time-line as the desert ebbed
and flowed in the light over… Sinai? The Negev?

Back in the back places of England
where nothing ever happens, more than twice,
I saw one, that shirt –Yes!
heart in hand, hand on card, card flexing in the reflex
over debits and credits… bought it.
Black, with large white spots. That’s it!
‘In the press photos’ my son said, ‘it’s green.
With white spots.’ ‘You misread it!
You’ll have the shirt off my dream!’ I snapped,
‘with your new generational take
on an older generation rap!’

The child is father, and I the man, he pointedly didn’t say
before leaving for the city; where things happen,
they say, every day.