Like a man who wishes to be buried with his horse


Horse statue by David Cerny, Prague. Photograph by J. Mellor.


The Honey Baron


The Honey Baron carries a jar of light in his pocket. He says, Look at this and tell me you don’t understand. He offers it as a cure for hay fever and says it was used to heal wounds on the battlefield at the time of the Iceni. The Honey Baron is a man who knows his history. He boasts, This jar bears my name and the substance it holds can withstand time. Open it 100 years from now and it will have lost none of its potency. He pronounces potency in a very solemn voice, like a man who wishes to be buried with his horse.

I’ve been waiting for the right opportunity to share this photograph, which I took in Prague last Easter. Now the pamphlet is out, I’ve posted an extract from my poem The Honey Baron, to go with it. Of course, you have to buy the pamphlet to read the whole poem, although it first appeared in The Interpreter’s House earlier this year. The phrase, ‘a jar of light’ comes from reading Jacob Polley’s poem, A Jar of Honey, one of my favourite short poems.

Last night was the local launch of my pamphlet, Out of the Weather, and it was good to share the reading with so many local poets. Next week is the official launch, Tuesday 4th July at The Fat Cat in Alma Street, Sheffield. I’m reading with Suzannah Evans, starting at 7.30pm in the upstairs room. Free entry. All welcome. Hope to see some of you there.


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