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  • Saint Dominic's Flashback: Van Morrison's Classic Album, Forty Years On
    Saint Dominic's Flashback: Van Morrison's Classic Album, Forty Years On
Previous Journal Entries

The Night Of The Round Stable

Copies of the first Mr Phigg book, ‘The Night Of The Round Stable’, are now available.

It is written with the 9-12 age group in mind but is suitable for anyone who hasn't properly grown up - like its author.

Looking very smart in their glossy Ruth Holland-illustrated covers, copies can currently be purchased for the bargain price of £6.99 through Feed A Read here. The book will also be available through Amazon shortly and can also be ordered through bookshops then.

Kindle readers can get an electronic copy for just 99p from here or from here. You can also get the first few chapters as a free sample.

 UPDATE: books can now be obtained from and


Mr Phigg

Work is underway on a new collection of stories for children (of all ages).

Mr Phigg already has his own website and Chapter One is available to read here.


The Road Will Run

Here's the picture from the second verse, together with Bear Road for those who don't know it...a very steep hill with lovely views over Brighton and the coast and country out to the west.

Bear Road on a cold December morning.

Sea and South Downs lit by icy sun.

Downhill between houses and allotments

From the racecourse to the crematorium.

Roll up, place your bets:  take one step and the next.

You reach to grasp the moment and it’s gone.

Along the shining shore, the road is all we are;

And through all we have to come, the road will run.

The road will run.


Two stripes and a smile for happy endings:

My father’s picture hanging by the door.

Caught and frozen, younger than my daughters,

Eyes alight and heading into war.

Hear the backbeat of his song, from 1941:

Every father’s still somebody’s son.

Dig your patch of ground, try to make them proud.

And when you’re dust and done, the road will run.

The road will run.


And, yes, I will leave the landing light on –

But you must always steer by your own stars.

Wheeling through the night to find new mornings,

Your road will take you on from ours.


From Clitheroe to Salisbury Plain to Brighton,

And two girls waiting for a London train.

The winter road as short days start to lengthen:

Ghosts are close and the living live again.

On a frozen New Year’s Eve, with the dog down on the beach,

Jogging seven steps to match my one.

Through the skull beneath his fur,

Through a good life’s golden blur,

Through its frankincense and myrrh,

Through all that we once were,

Through all we have to come, the road will run.

The road will run.


(listen here)


50 Things

Not far off being the most recent song I've written, reflecting on hitting 50 - which it makes it over three years old. About time the muse came calling again...

On this trip it comes down to connections:

The lines we find to join up all the dots.

The lines that move in different directions

Across the treasure map to mark our spot.


History forms our frames and pictures fill them:

Old places and old faces here today.

Schools and college, bands and jobs and children;

The friends we’ve kept and lost along the way.



Take me back to Spike’s Spit on the Ribble.

Take me back to swim at Monterey.

From the shock and thrill of an early summer river

To moonlight on a warm and waveless bay.

Rise up with the magic of the music,

Levitate from wood and steel strings.

Listen to the rhymes that twine around it.

Listen while I sing…..these 50 things.


The sun burns morning BC mist from Dutch Lake,

Turns a stark noon spot on an old town wall in Greece.

It sinks into a red sea off Key West, FLA;

Leaves a Dordogne sky to shooting stars and peace.


Each day lights a new, familiar ocean;

We find fresh tides while older currents run:

As we catch a glimpse of two blonde children

In the bright eyes of the women they’ve become.



(You can listen to an acoustic demo here.)



My first stab at writing film dialogue was in a Harriet Jordan-Wrench classic...  See film here.

Happy birthday, Harriet.