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Issue 606 10th Oct 2019

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Random Words : awake, crumbs, stable, flask, booth, once, converse, nervous, pizza, pepper, Parmesan Assignment: Harvest

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Random Words: Flood, alert, on-duty, medieval, rose, different, surprise, soil, greengage, fish, mushy peas olive oil. Rose Topping lived in the lovely medieval town of Chester. She worked for the Environment Agency and was on flood alert because of the heavy rain which had waterlogged the soil. Luckily, it was a false alarm, so she went out for the day shopping with her friends They walked down the famous Chester Rows where she bought some French bread, cheese, olives, olive oil and a greengage tart, in a delicatessen, for her evening meal. She thought I will surprise my friends and do something different and buy them all fish, chips and mushy peas in a nearby chip shop. Later on in the evening when she was sitting down, she thought what an enjoyable day it had been. Assignment: Alphabet soup. As you are well aware alphabet soup is another bit of jargon to describe acronyms. Let us proceed to a business meeting in Trentby where Trentby Industrial Products(TIP) are based. ‘Over to you George,’ said Nigel Bluddschott CEO of TIP. ‘I have been OOO but LMK if I OT.’ The other directors looked baffled, but it was like the famous fairly tale of the King’s Clothes. George was on a roll and carried on. ‘What we all want is a decent BS not in DR.’ More worried looks from the management. ‘Yes, we have a project is SMART and with a decent OS.’ At this point a new director, Gloria, who recognised BS when she heard piped up: ‘What I want to know is WIFM I know about WOM. I have always been told to KISS,’ she interrupted WEG. George looked baffled at the acronyms bombarding him. He had mugged up on the latest jargon and now he was being outgunned. ‘I think you are talking about CRAAP,’ interrupted Vera. George looked offended . You don’t CRAAP, ‘Currency Relevance, Authority, Accuracy , Purpose. Oh dear you are out of touch,’ laughed Gloria. ‘Indeed, WGAS and IDGAS,‘ Nigel Bluddschott said to Meeting, ‘Let’s have a drink at the bar and continue later when George has learnt some English.’

Explanation OOO out of office CEO chief executive officer BS no not that, balance sheet DR debit SMART specific measurable authoritative relevant time WIFM what’s in it for me KISS keep it simple stupid. WOM word of mouth WEG with an evil grin WGAS who gives a s**** IDGAS I don’t give a s****

Poems The Flood John Clare (1793 -1864) On Lolham Brigs in wild and lonely mood I've seen the winter floods their gambols play Through each old arch that trembled while I stood Bent o'er its wall to watch the dashing spray As their old stations would be washed away Crash came the ice against the jambs and then A shudder jarred the arches - yet once more It breasted raving waves and stood agen To wait the shock as stubborn as before - White foam brown crested with the russet soil As washed from new plough lands would dart beneath Then round and round a thousand eddies boil On tother side - then pause as if for breath One minute - and engulphed - like life in death Whose wrecky stains dart on the floods away More swift than shadows in a stormy day Straws trail and turn and steady - all in vain The engulfing arches shoot them quickly through The feather dances flutters and again Darts through the deepest dangers still afloat Seeming as faireys whisked it from the view And danced it o'er the waves as pleasures boat Light hearted as a thought in May Trays - uptorn bushes - fence demolished rails Loaded with weeds in sluggish motions stray Like water monsters lost each winds and trails Till near the arches - then as in affright It plunges - reels - and shudders out of sight


Waves trough - rebound - and fury boil again Like plunging monsters rising underneath Who at the top curl up a shaggy main A moment catching at a surer breath Then plunging headlong down and down - and on Each following boil the shadow of the last And other monsters rise when those are gone Crest their fringed waves - plunge onward and are past - The chill air comes around me ocean blea From bank to bank the waterstrife is spread Strange birds like snow spots o'er the huzzing sea Hang where the wild duck hurried past and fled On roars the flood - all restless to be free Like trouble wandering to eternity Note Lolham Brigs is now called Lolham Bridges and is about one mile (about 1.5km) north east of the cottage, in Helpston, where John Clare lived. The location is now a busy level crossing and road, not the wild place on the fens that it used to be. Helpston is midway between Peterborough and Stamford. Every year in June there is a John Clare festival which is well worth visiting. Here is a link to this year’s festival.

This is picture of John Clare’s cottage from Wikipictures.

A link to John Clare’s cottage website

A picture of John Clare’s statue at John Clare’s Cottage Museum. He was very short at around five feet (about 150cm)

Research Nigel Peckett



. Let those who are in favour with their stars Of public honour and proud titles boast, Whilst I, whom fortune of such triumph bars Unlook'd for joy in that I honour most. Great princes' favourites their fair leaves spread But as the marigold at the sun's eye, And in themselves their pride lies buried, For at a frown they in their glory die. The painful warrior famoused for fight, After a thousand victories once foil'd, Is from the book of honour razed quite, And all the rest forgot for which he toil'd: Then happy I, that love and am belov'd, Where I may not remove nor be remov'd.

XXVI Lord of my love, to whom in vassalage Thy merit hath my duty strongly knit, To thee I send this written embassage, To witness duty, not to show my wit: Duty so great, which wit so poor as mine May make seem bare, in wanting words to show it, But that I hope some good conceit of thine In thy soul's thought, all naked, will bestow it: Till whatsoever star that guides my moving, Points on me graciously with fair aspect, And puts apparel on my tatter'd loving, To show me worthy of thy sweet respect: Then may I dare to boast how I do love thee; Till then, not show my head where thou mayst prove me. The Shakespeare sonnets are to be found on PROJECT GUTENBURG and are reproduced here for educational purposes and are nfp.


Image SCC website publicity release

New Poets Laureate for Staffordshire were announced at a poetry evening in Stafford Main Library to celebrate #NationalPoetryDay Well known, performance poet, Mel Wardle Woodend from Stafford is the new Staffordshire Poet Laureate while Ollie Hulme aged 17 from Weston Coney becomes the Staffs Young Poet Laureate. National Poetry Day 2019: SCC Libraries: New Poets Laureate Announced! Mel Wardle Woodend in her own words... Thank you to everyone who came to Stafford Library’s National Poetry Day 25th Anniversary celebrations. The library was packed with poets sharing beautiful words and a wonderfully supportive audience. I am absolutely honoured to be appointed Staffordshire Poet Laureate 2019 - 2021 and I hope to be able to help make Staffordshire a vibrant, exciting poetry destination and to make the people of Staffordshire even prouder of poetry than they already are - I want poetry to be accessible to all and I’ll do my best and work my hardest to try to find ways to help achieve this. Tonight, when my laureateship was announced, the response in the room was so uplifting, I have genuinely never felt this level of acceptance for just being me and I would like to thank every single person in the library tonight for making me feel this way. A huge thank you and congratulations to Emily Rose Galvin for being the most amazing Poet Laureate for these past two years, and to Lily Massey for being outstandingly brave, and hardworking in her role as Young Poet Laureate. Thank you to all the poets who came tonight to support the National Poetry Day event and share powerful words to make tonight such a celebratory event for poetry. And, thank you to Mum, Patricia Wardle, and my husband, Brent, for supporting me every step of the way on my poetry journey. Facebook Page Share


Background to Galaxy Odyssey. The Year is 2300. Trentby is a major Earth metropolis sited on the River Trent, a few miles from the small quaint village of Derby. On the outskirts of Trentby is the huge space drome where space ships of all sizes take off to visit, trade or explore all parts of the galaxy. The space drive warp coils enable space ships to travel faster than light and they can reach the farthest parts of the galaxy in less than a fortnight. The space drive was invented by Neils Schrodinger Bluddschott in the year 2250; a member of the famous space pioneering Bluddschott family. The Earth is Member of the Space Confederation of planets. The Confederation’s space ships are named after famous events, people or Gods. Some examples are: The Marie Celeste, The Flying Dutchman, The Ancient Mariner, The Chaos &etc. The flagship of the fleet is the SSS Trentby Sir Cloudesley Shovell. SSS stands for Super Space Ship. ‘The Cosmos’: The last place to explore. These are the expeditions of the SSS Sir Cloudesley Shovell. Its continuing role: to discover bizarre new worlds. To explore new worlds and new societies. To boldly split infinitives as never before!’ Characters Position Captain/Commander


Nickname etc.

Nigel T Bluddschott


1 Officer

Mary Jonah or Number One

Number Twos


Arthur Brain



Ivana Waxov

Lost in Space or ‘Losp’


Roger Wilco



Jane Ladrone



Laurence McHammer

Lump (Hammer)


Vera and Gloria

Ouch and Ow


Pierre Haricot

Mr Bean or Half-baked


Android — CLOVER

Attitude issues


The characters personalities and relationships will evolve as the story continues. Technology The space-drive warp coils enable space ships to travel faster than light and they can reach the farthest parts of the galaxy in less than a fortnight. The space-drive was invented by Neils Schrodinger Bluddschott in the year 2250; a member of the famous Bluddschott family. The space-drive coils and associated technology enable the spaceships to travel in hyperspace. Hyperspace does not contain big lumps of things like stars and planets, so spaceships do not bump into things. However, navigation is tricky, get it wrong you can arrive on the wrong side of the universe or arrive before you left and possibly both. It might mean meeting yourself before you set off thus causing trouble in temporal causality.


Not going boldly where anybody sane had gone before With a sinking feeling in his waterworks, Nigel Bluddschott, decided in his infinitely flawed wisdom not to share the shuttlecraft’s destination with the trusty crew, in case any jumped ship while they still could.

This departure from procedure caused Number One to declare she was “gobsmacked” and frown with wrinkles. So it fell to Clover to upload the destination co-ordinates into the ship’s aged computer system, so aged Number One wondered if in its much updated core there was a sneaky analogue interface laughing its socks off. Now recovered from concussion, Number One resembled a space pirate with the jaunty head bandage across one eye, it was a salutary lesson she vowed never to repeat, until the next time a straight flush happened involuntarily to appear in her hand. The throbbing headache didn’t stop her from realising that anywhere their destination required the crew to “nod off for a day or two” to paraphrase Captain Nigel, was a seriously long way off their usual Moon to Mars round trip in a day or two shuttle parameters. In security, where the kettle was always boiling, Vera was taken aback when word reached her shell-likes: ‘Stasis!’ It crossed her mind those dusty old pods in the storage hanger bay were going to be a very tight squeeze for someone of her generous proportions. However, it was Gloria who put their disquiet into words: ‘If he thinks I’m getting my kit off and wriggling into a sardine tin for a couple of days in hyperspace, he can whistle through his...’ Vera interjected, ‘I’ll have a word with Number One.’ She too was a bit queasy in confined spaces. Number One, herself, didn’t fancy stasis, ‘I’ve every sympathy,’ she confided. She kept to herself; that a bigger concern than her tubby crew’s embarrassment of lard rolls being on full view, was for the engines. The old crate hadn’t attempted a hyperspace jump in decades. It was technically possible for the shuttle to jump, but... that was in theory and that theory was written down a long time ago. ‘Captain,’ she asked very quietly, ‘have you ever tried a simulation?’ Nigel flushed crimson before he realised the first officer was waving a tech manual and not a certain type of magazine usually found on the top shelf of newsagents. Clover replied, ‘Negative, the shuttle has never attempted a hyperspace drill, contrary to regulation...’ Nigel shut him up, ‘Not necessary, too time consuming for a shuttle only puttling about inside the solar system, eh?’ Number One surreptitiously had a butchers at the time codes, it didn’t take her long to work out, the “day or two in stasis,” was more like five months in stasis. Comatose hurtling through the void with only Clover to rely on. She shivered at the thought. They were going way off grid. It was Clover who delivered the next shocker. Captain Nigel was rooting through his drawers trying to find a T-shirt that didn’t smell of onions when Clover snuck up behind him and said helpfully, ‘By the way, the commander has sent an addendum to her message.’ ‘A what?’ asked Nigel. ‘The shuttle will be taking on a passenger on Moonbase III.’ Number One loitered in the doorway to Nigel’s cabin: ‘Of course we are,’ she muttered, thinking of the number of pods and that someone, naked as a cherub, would have to share like sweaty spoons, or they’d have to run split shifts and juggle pods and crewmembers in and out of sleep mode. What a nightmare! She wasn’t going to be the one to tell Vera and Gloria, she’d instruct Clover to break that bad news.


Alternative Reality part 4 As they all hid in the bushes as two huge feet tramped by, heading towards a castle not far away. The giant’s head seemed to reach right up to the crowds ‘We had better escape from here,’ a voice whispered. ‘Who said that?’ asked Gloria. ‘Me, Jack,’ the bush replied. ‘Not Jack and the bean stalk?’ Gloria muttered. ‘The very same. Now let’s leg it as the saying goes,’ Jack said. ‘Why?’ carried on Gloria. ‘I’ve stolen all the giant’s gold, set fire to his castle and upset his wife.’ With that smoke billowed out of the castle’s window. The giant shouted and bellowed and generally let the world know he was upset. He ran out of the main gate with a club made from an entire oak tree. The crew of the Sir Cloudesley Shovell ran for their lives after Jack. The giant was gaining on them when Jack started climbing down the bean stalk followed by the crew. ‘I wish I’d brought my parachute, we must be hundreds of feet from the ground,’ wailed Vasco de Bluddschott. The bean stalk started to shake as the giant put his feet on the topmost leaf. The crew accelerated downwards aided by the grip of gravity and terror. At the bottom Jack started chopping at the main stem. Gloria and Vera pushed him aside and Vera took a mighty swing and the bean stalk started to fall. ‘Run for your lives,’ screamed Vera, ‘when that big blighter hits the ground anyone underneath will be instant pancake.’ The giant did indeed fall but unlike the fairy story he landed on his feet and was even less gruntled than before. Fortunately, the old-time spacer was right this was a universe where fairy-tales came true. A fairy godmother built along the lines of Vera and Gloria appeared, waved her magic wand and ‘POOF’ everyone found themselves in the middle of a pumpkin patch. The giant and Jack were nowhere to be seen. ‘Who are you and what are you doing in my story?’ the buxom fairy godmother demanded, ‘I shall turn you all into mice ready for Cinderella’s pumpkin coach.’ Vera looked at Gloria and Gloria looked at Vera, they nodded. The fairy godmother was promptly coshed and knuckle-dustered and de-wanded. ‘Let’s try this thing out,’ suggested Vera. ‘Bish bosh bash, I want a lot of cash,’ came the chant. A pile of gold appeared. ‘Whim whom wham, I want a man,’ laughed Gloria. A handsome prince appeared. ‘Hey this is fun,’ said Vera. ‘Inky tinky winky, I need a drinky,’ shouted Vasco. A crate of whisky appeared. ‘Oody woody, doody, I want a lot of foody,’ Nigel Bluddschott suggested hopefully. A banquet appeared laid out on a table. Everyone sat down, ate drank and was merry. The fairy godmother slept soundly. Number One said, ‘this is all very well, but I want to go home.’ ‘Well, we have a wand and we know where we should be going. I have the coordinates in my head,’ the new navigator, Ivana Waxoff told them. ‘Give it a go then,’ ordered Nigel Bluddschott giving her the wand. Ivana stood quietly thinking about what to say and then had a brainwave. ‘She clicked her heels together, waved the wand and said, ‘there’s no place like home, there’s no place like home.’ With that the crew felt like the world was spinning madly. Indeed some felt very sick. Then with a flash of light they found themselves on the trusty Sir Cloudesley Shovell with danger beacon in the rear viewscreen and all the stars in the right place and the Planet of Surprises on the front viewscreen. The wand had disappeared. ‘No more shortcuts Captain,’ commented Vasco.


‘No indeed,’ replied Nigel Bluddschott.

Next episode: Where will Nigel Bluddschott take the Mystery tour next, what will happen to Gloria’s prince, will he have the stamina to last until the next episode, what will the hemp smelling, ring nosed crusties do next? (NP)

Enduring all in silence: our tired hero, constant friend, scarred warrior, battered against life’s shores. Caring of all his kin. Giving of his best. Giving of his all. Asking nothing in return: held in high regard: loving, giving, caring, kind, let of this be our memory. SMS 2018 remembering a true friend


Drawing To A Close In the coming days I will be sowing my Broad Beans that will harvest next Spring, but they will be ready a little earlier than everyone else’s and so will generally avoid the problems that Black Fly create. Normally I put in the Aquadulce type and this year I forgot to get any in time resulting in everywhere being sold out when I did look. However, I did find a packet of an older variety called “Bunyards Exhibition” which can also be sown Spring and Autumn. Also going in will be Garlic Cloves. These definitely do need to go in now as they say that they need a cold spell to make them properly form the Cloves instead of making just one solid bulb. As Autumn sets in and we get colder nights with the leaves starting to turn and even drop, it is time to think about cleaning out the old fashioned, but solid, brick built, Cold Frame on my Allotment. It needs to be clean, tidy and weed free, ready for later in the month when I dig up my Chrysanthemums. They will be roughly put into pots in the Cold Frame and buried in a Wood Chip blanket. This seemed to work well last year with them needing very little attention all Winter other than the occasional spot of water. Last year I was able to leave my Korean Chrysanthemums in the ground as they are supposed to be fully hardy. The only real drawback with growing this type is the fact that the flowers, although very attractive, are quite small, look more like Asters and grow like Sprays. They seem to grow into decent sized plants though and put on a good show, so I shall definitely be keeping them. The colder weather is also bringing other plants to an end including the Runner

Beans that have already finished flowering at the time of writing this. It is just a matter of waiting for the last few Bean Pods to develop before they come down. One problem that I did have with my Runner Beans this year was that I planted them too close to each other which made it difficult to pick them properly. They really do need to go further apart next year. I did do some things right with them though. For one I used organic string rather than a nylon, or plastic type of string to tie the Canes up with. Consequently, all I need to do is just strip them off the canes and chop them up with garden shears before putting the whole lot into the compost heap. No need to fish out bits of plastic! The other thing that I got right was to tie diagonal bracing canes against the uprights with one going either way on different sides. Every year, my Bean Canes collapse a little, sometimes going right down to the ground, due to the pushing of the persistent winds that we seem to get on our Allotment. This year, with the braces on, they stayed up and erect much to my delight. I had seen braces put on like this on one of the gardening programmes on TV and it definitely works. The Courgettes started to develop powdery mildew, a week, or two ago, which is a sign that they were just about finished and the couple of cold nights that we had at the beginning of this month finished them off anyway, so they had to be cleared up as well going into my compost heap. A couple of weeks ago I turned both of my compost heaps noticing that one was really ready to dig out. So, the mature compost was turned out and will be used to top up my Strawberry and 14

Asparagus beds. The Strawberry beds need replanting anyway and they say you should mulch rather than weed your asparagus beds as although deep rooted they also put up roots close to the surface.

will come into its own though and that is “Bare Root.� This includes not only most Fruit Trees and Bushes such as Apples and Raspberries, but also things like Strawberries. As I have said I do intend to replant my Strawberries, but other than that I myself, have no plans for planting Going into my freshly emptied compost bin was any more fruit this year. another lot of turfs from my garden at home as I finally got round to making a new, narrow border under the front window. They always say that composted turfs make good compost and they certainly bulk out my compost heap! I am planting the new bed with Hostas, a Hydrangea, Hellebores, a Fuchsia, a couple of Primula Denticulata, (The Drumstick Primula) plus some self set Cowslips that were rescued from the back garden. As the season draws to a close there will be less and less planting, or indeed growing of any kind, but more tidying up jobs to be done, although of course Leeks and Brussels Sprouts will continue growing and will be ready for harvest much later in the year. One type of planting

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RBW Online issue 606  

New Staffs Poets Laureate

RBW Online issue 606  

New Staffs Poets Laureate