Monday, March 24, 2008

Poetry by Stephen Morris

Last 22nd February the Maltese Poets Association ( of which I am vice-President organized a Poetry Evening in Birgu (Malta). As usual members of the Association and the public in general were invited to read their poetry in different languages or just to listen and have a nice evening. Even though I was not present, I got to know that for this Poetry Evening there was a special guest, poet and artist Stephen Morris, who talked about his experiences as an artist and read some of his verse.

Stephen Morris was born in Smethwick, which is on the edge of Birmingham in the West Midlands of England. He attended Moseley Art School, Fircroft College, Marieborg Folk High School (Sweden), and the Universities of Cardiff and Leicester. His poetry has been widely published in the USA and Britain and it has appeared in numerous magazines, newspapers and periodicals, including The Sunday Times, The Observer, Peace News, The Daily Mirror, Tribune, The TES, Poetry Wales, Rolling Stone, and The International Times. He has undertaken poetry reading tours of the USA, Denmark, Holland and Sweden, as well as poetry readings in Britain, at Universities, Colleges, Schools, Folk Clubs and Poetry Societies. Stephen Morris has published over twelve volumes of poetry and has had numerous solo exhibitions of his paintings, visual poetry and sculpture. See also,

(From The Kingfisher Catcher, Aquila Poetry, 1974, 1975, 1976)


Autumn is a season of pain
When the days slowly shorten
And the evenings come in early.
Cruel winds whisper Winter,
As they swirl fading leaves
In ritualistic dances of death.
The mornings are bleak and cold
And in the soft twilight
Coughing workmen hurry
For wet clean buses,
Thinking of warm white beds
And quietly dreading the day ahead.
The city carries to the country
Seeking common ground
But the farmers plant for Spring
And the squirrels hide for Winter.
It’s Autumn and the workers shuffle on
Towards a new year and the finality of death.

(From Limbus of the Moon, Pale Horse, 2005)


Forget all the promises
Fold away the dreams
Close all the windows
Nothing is what it seems

The love no more than words
Coated in hypocrisy
The hiss of a seductive serpent
Ignored of course by me

Now months and years have passed
My ring it has no finger
The song was fine and wonderful
But not alas the singer

Forget all the promises
Fold away the dreams
Open all the windows
Nothing is what it seems


Shutters closed
Aperitifs taken
Experiences exchanged
Late film
From bathroom
To bedroom
To bed
Warm body
Savouring the other
To sleep
A peace
Broken by sunrise
A new day
To sunfall


Toy plunge your hands
Deeply, towards a greater good.
This provides the eternal dilemma.
The pitch-darkened waters
Shroud a bleeding heart.
Morality disappears in slaughter.
Scruples are extinguished in flames,
Acts of terror perpetrated,
Making you worse than your vanguished.
You then thread fear into the innocent,
To concede a truce of false promises.
Another circle of life is completed,
An icon of ideology shattered,
As the peace dream explodes
On distant hills.

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