Pilgrimpace's Blog

October 18, 2013, 3:40 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , ,

Here’s a draft of a poem.  I’ve been wondering for a while about the nature of the poetry of outer estates and I heard this.  As ever, comments welcome.  It’s good to be writing after a fallow period.


in winter

someone wrote fleetingly

until it melted

on the side of the flats

“Snow is a peace of heaven”


here where

the bedroom is taxed

the food is banked

the pub is closed

the deal is done

the child screams

the damp crumbles

the bill is not paid

and I hear the slam, slam, slam, slam

of the window

crashed in frustration


here where

the food is shared

the party held

the elders lunch

the visit made

the school rebuilt

the park planted

the women meet

the space is made

the football played

the lonely loved


here, in amongst all this

the state of this estate

I remember that

at the heart of it all

there lies

quiet and hidden

difficult to see

a particular holiness.

10 Comments so far
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I think there are the makings of a very good poem here, Andy.

How about changing ‘in amongst all this’ for something slightly more direct (in keeping with the whole style of the poem)? Maybe it’s just me, but I rather shy away from the word ‘amongst’. (Whoops, I think I may have used this word myself in a recent poem. Must check back..!)

Perhaps there is the odd rhythm you could improve, for flow and effect, but I’m so impressed with those 2nd and 3rd stanzas — the contrast yet their meaningful and intentional similarity — and I love the ‘particular’ in the last line.

Great stuff. You made my evening!

Comment by The Solitary Walker

Thanks Robert – I’m so glad you enjoyed it! And will put your comments into the pot for redrafting

as ever


Comment by pilgrimpace

Lovely, Andy. Thank you for sharing, and greetings from across the pond! I’m studying a Masters in ritual chant and song at the University of Limerick. Blessings of peace and grace with all you hold and may you as ever walk on holy ground.

Comment by Lucy

Thanks Lucy. If you’re ever on this side of the Sea, let me know! (also, I’m leading a week’s retreat/pilgrimage to Santiago at the beginning of February if you’re up for that)

enjoy the singing


Comment by pilgrimpace

Hi Andy,
I really like this. May I use it and stanzas one and two especially with my literacy students.

I work in an Australian version of an estate and I think this format would be a great way of getting people to express their experience.
Belinda from the via de la plata in 2009

Comment by Belinda Cole

Hi Belinda,

lovely to be in touch with you again! Please feel free to use it now. When I come up with a more final draft, I’ll email it to you. I hope the work goes well


Comment by pilgrimpace

A lovely poem, Andy. I enjoyed both the structure and essence of it.

Comment by george

thank you George

Comment by pilgrimpace

Thanks for a poem that gets us to look at the place (and the people in it) seriously, and lovingly

Comment by Mark Coleman

Thank you Mark. I really appreciate your insight. Andy

Comment by pilgrimpace

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