Poems 15 and 16 Tyrrell Hector Anthony, mountains and monsters

Tyrrell!  (Pronounced Tie Rell)

Welcome to England, fresh from Canada!

When you  messaged me from Canada, I think you’d just left your job on the railways in the Rocky mountains.  It sounded like you were looking for more than just a change of scene. After all, the scenery must be pretty amazing from those trains in the Rockies. 

Sure,  you can look out and see elk, moose and bears…It’s really beautiful.

So you’re not regretting being here in Victoria, London? 

Well, to be honest, I thought it was time for a real pilgrimage.  Like Bilbo Baggins, it was hard to leave, but I needed to do it. 

So it looks as though the poems that have come to you today are quite appropriate then?  ‘I will go out now’ and ‘I must leave you’

Let’s have a listen…  to the first one. 

So yes, these lines especially  

and the straw we would have spun to gold, is straw still at the last, and breaks in my hand’  ..I really relate to that because there comes a time of recognising that you are truncated. Life might have been good, but it isn’t  making you a better person.   I know I was repressing my desires for my dreams, just for the sake of just making a good social image, You can end up feeling like a zombie.. the living dead. 

Did you know that zombie walks are really popular now? And growing? A poet friend of mine Sarah Fordham  told me there’s a huge Zombie Walk gathering in Crouch End.. maybe it’s an image of a contemporary experience – lots of people staggering along in a group, but all alone.  There was an really perceptive talk by Symbolic World on that very topic – I think you’d be fascinated. 

The weekend after I heard the talk on youtube, I was on the pier in Brighton.  And there was a booth with a father with his little curly haired daughter (who was about 3 or 4) on his knee and they were both shooting zombies in the head with guns – with plenty of gore and sound effects.

 I couldn’t help photographing the outside of it, because I could hardly believe it!  Just another contemporary day at the seaside.  How did we get here?  I suppose it’s an effort to make the break from the group. 

I read this book called ‘My Name is Asher Lev’
He made that journey to express himself in art and he had to make the sacrifice of being rejected from his community, but a lot of people benefitted from it.
That’s what you experience in the second poem.. The Freedom after the pain of departure.

Let’s hear I must leave you – 

 This summer I heard a talk about Disturbed Discipleship.. It’s like Mary’s Fiat. Her Yes to God’s proposal.  You have to be disturbed.  Only when you surrender everything… Only then are you running beneath the sky.

You’ve lost so much but you’re cleaving in order to cleave to something better.  What’s the name of that word, that means both itself and its opposite? 

Auto-antonym (I had to look that up!)

Well ‘cleave’ is one of those!
So there’s this nostaligia, the yearning for the true homeland.  And geography awakens that. And you have to go out to find it, in order to return to a true home inside yourself.  Like also in your other poem about the sky – La Villette. (Poem 11) Looking up at Pegasus, you become part of his realm and suddenly you get a taste of the real.
I guess it’s sacramental.

It sounds very Tolkien too… and CS Lewis.  Let’s see that book you have there! Tolkien’s sacramental vision, discerning the Holy in Middle Earth.  I’d love to read that.

So have a magnificent pilgrimage to Oxford and also to Wales and then hopefully back to London,  because I’m longing to hear this segment of the Frankenstien play you put on in New Brunswick – when you were at University.

Yes, I took the script from the  Nick Dear adaptation..

And your production too became a legend!  Everyone was talking about it back in Bruno Saskatchewan, when I was there this May teaching Bard School. 

Thank you.  It was a monster!  I’d love to do a monologue based on it, when I’m back from Wales.

There and back again.  Thanks Tyrrell and congratulations for making the leap. You’re booked.  We’ll let people know when that monologue gets an airing. 

‘I walk towards the mountain
Till I hear another cry
The waterfall calls distantly

And I run beneath the sky.’

If you’ve enjoyed these this,  you might enjoy these too –

1) The Audio book, out now on Audible for only £5.59 or free if you join Audible.  The only reason it’s so cheap is that they price according to length, which isn’t too sensible for poetry. However it is the length of 3 albums – at 2 hours and 35 mins.  But it does mean that the book and audio together are very affordable, which was the point of making the audio, so that you could listen and then read if you wanted to remember or study one poem in particular.  You can also listen as you read;

2)  My Poetry and Prosecco night at the St Michael’s Arts Festival in Stockwell – Invite friends and let’s have a poetry party with plenty of discussions afterwards.  You can book here – Books will also be available to buy on the night. Places limited.
The Artistic Director of the Festival writes on the Eventbrite page –

An evening of seemlessly blended sparkle, profundity and joy, with performance poet and inspirational story-teller Sarah de Nordwall, back at the 2018 Festival by popular demand.
Sarah held us spellbound last year with her wisdom and wit, poetry and sheer delight at the universe, and StMaf18 is thrilled she has agreed to come back to charge our glasses for a second time…


  1. Greetings from the Great White North, eh!

    I recently read in the poem “Annunciation” by singer and songwriter, Malcolm Guite, the line “The Word Himself is waiting on her (Mary’s) word”. I find this intriguing, understanding that the all omniscient God does not act fully independently from His creation but instead invites humans to play key roles in His plan of salvation. This thought reveals to me the fact that I’m part of a larger story! God has ordained a path specifically for me to tread; He’s written a chapter where I’m a essential character to the development of the plot. And so, I too, Like Mary, must not keep God waiting on my word (my fiat). I too must totally surrender my preconceived plans for my future by being willing to be (w)holy disturbed by what God is asking of me.

    It’s not easy listening to the call set upon our hearts. It’s often a call that demands sacrifice. It asks us to sometimes totally surrender over our families, friends, careers, future expectation and personal dreams to Christ’s heart. This is the hard reality proposed by Sarah DeNordwall in these two poems: this concept of cleaving in order to cleave. This is shown in the following line: “I shall shut the door behind me so I cannot hear you call…”. This stimulates a gut-wrenching reaction. We don’t want the person to close the door; we hope there’s some solution which will insure togetherness and harmony. The hard reality is sometimes the only cure is amputation. It hurts; it’s a death. However, if the amputation does not occur eventually the whole body will become infected and ultimate death will take place.
    God sometimes demands a server cleaving because He ultimately wants us to freely “run beneath the sky”.

    Thank You Sarah for your wonderful poems! Poetry is indeed a place of encountering the sacred and the truth!

  2. Thanks Tyrrell for your profound observations and also experiences. I would add that sometimes the break comes in order that a greater harmony and a more meaningful relationship results. This is what I have experienced in nearly all circumstances in which the other group/person is also willing to grow. I'm really excited about the journey your embarking on and the new job that has already appeared!! And near to some remarkable people. So as the poem I'll be blogging about today says – it looks like you also are being caught by dolphins rather than by rocks, after what may seem like a terrifying leap but is in fact a response to a well prepared invitation! Bon Voyage!

  3. by the way I love Malcolm Guite. I went to a great performance of his last year of the Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner.. and then I bought his book Mariner – You are going to LOVE it! All about the poet's imagination and how it pushes out a space into which that person and even the society he lives in then has a chance to grow. The prophetic connection between the poem and the later life of Coleridge, was extraordinarily well drawn in the talk and also in the book, which I've not yet finished! But do check it out… ots of ecology in there are wonderful anecdotes.

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