Bordeaux Bay

Bordeaux Bay
Bordeaux Bay by Guernsey-based artist Tony Taylor

Friday, 29 May 2015


A fleeting visit this week from my good friend and fellow writer, Brighton-based, Peter Kenny, who arrived with his lovely wife, Lorraine, to stay at La Barbarie, a quaint old hotel hidden in the labyrinthine lanes of picturesque St Martin's Parish, where Peter grew up.
As always, we managed to meet for a chinwag, not once but on two occasions, and discussed matters as diverse as poetry, the meaning of life, and my latest passion, baking.
Peter visits the island frequently and has written of it often, both in prose and poetical form.
He and I co-authored a collection of poems, entitled A Guernsey Double, which was published in 2010.
This photograph shows us proudly posing outside one of our local bookshops where the book was on display. How young we both looked then.
Peter is currently sporting an exquisitely-trimmed, silver beard, which gives him a faintly piratical appearance and he looks suitably bard-like as he stands gazing seawards from the rugged cliffs of Icart Point.
You’ll find a selection of Peter’s more recent work in a slim volume called The Nightwork, published by Telltale Press in 2014, but for now, check out the poem below, one of my favourites from A Guernsey Double.


Snatched at by a current from the dark surging sky
far from my house on my island of safety
I catch onto hedgerows, to handfuls of grass,
to the grasshopper kingdoms that might keep me among them.

Grass roots wrench away from the anchoring soil,
their succulent wires cannot earth me forever.
The country lane lurches under my shoes,
even the stone Gran’mere by the graveyard can’t ground me.

Twisted by updrafts, I’m torn up by currents,
a splintering glider all paper and balsa:
above gorse-yellow cliffs I bank and yaw,
hollow-boned orphan, I shriek like a gull in the gale.


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