David Gascoyne, one of England’s greatest 20th century poets, was born 100 years ago on Oct 10 1916.

A David Gascoyne Centennial is a free and open forum event to mark the occasion.

It is taking place at The Junction pub in Harrow-on-the-Hill, Gayton Road, the street that Gascoyne was born on.

Anyone who cares about Gascoyne is invited to participate. Just turn up on the night and a slot will be alloted.

The function room at the Junction has been booked from 8pm to midnight. At about 11pm we can stroll down Gayton Road to the house where Gascoyne was born.

Gascoyne is an enduring poet who will become a big presence in the 21st century. Public homages such as this are helpful, as they were helpful to Blake in 1927 (the 100th anniversary of his death).

Harrow on the Hill is not difficult to get to and from. It’s only a few minutes from Baker Street, and the pub is very near the train station.

Proceedings will commence at 8pm. Please forward to interested parties.

The Junction, 9 Gayton Road, HA1 2DH http://www.thejunctionharrow.co.uk/findus





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Chaucer mural

An inaugural Chaucer walk through the 600-year-ago London of England’s most celebrated medieval poet.

The route begins at Aldgate and ends at Southwark, the departure point for his own imagined Canterbury pilgrims.

Learn how Chaucer survived the Black Death, the Peasant’s Revolt and miscellaneous regime changes.

Meetimg at Aldgate tube, Sat 30 July, 1pm. (NB Not Aldgate East). 5 Groats

With Niall McDevitt.

The poet Robert Montgomery will read a new poem – THE KILLING OF ENGLAND ITSELF (BREXIT POEM FOR CHAUCER) – at a suitable point en route.

Sey forth thy tale, and tarie nat the tyme,
Lo, Depeford! and it is half-way pryme.
Lo, Grenewich, ther many a shrewe is inne;
It were al tyme thy tale to biginne.’


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call of participation (Mr. Niall)


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Work in Progress by Matthew Couper


Matthew Couper

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The Spirit of William Blake Kicks the Developers Out of Bunhill Fields


Christopher Twigg

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Urizen Heights 5

Dear Historic England

I’m writing to express my disappointment at your decision to support the development of more tower-blocks around Bunhill Fields.

It was a striking pose that you would not join other groups such as the Ancient Monuments Society, Blake Society, Georgian Group, Victorian Society, Blake Society, and John Wesley’s House in an outright condemnation of the plans.

I have read the Historic England statement in which you “acknowledge the increase in height but do not believe that this is excessive or harmful to the setting of the registered open space.” You also claim the current buildings will be replaced with “buildings of much higher quality”.

This is spin. Offices are being replaced with offices. Mediocre architecture is being replaced by mediocre architecture. The most important difference is that sky is being replaced by skyscraper, 10-storey and 11-storey towers. You write of “perceived harm resulting from the increase in height” and yet you cannot perceive the harm yourself.

Watching the film Selling an Icon, I was doubly surprised to see a man from Historic England again taking a different view from campaigners by arguing the case that the iconic white chimneys of Battersea Power Station should be demolished.

What kind of association is a Historic England that argues for skyscrapers to go up by a Grade 1 Listed Park and Garden and for the most distinguishing features of a Grade II Listed Building to be destroyed?

How much longer do you think the public will have any trust in a heritage organisation that keeps taking the side of construction companies rather than the public?

A petition has been started to ask Greg Clark to call off the development. So far 3000+ members of the public disagree with Historic England.

Yours sincerely,

Niall McDevitt

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The buildings of Kensington Modernism are covered in a thin 2cm layer
of glass and sunlight
Sunday the 28th of February 2016
The sun is held up in an optimistic high for February
2 til 5pm mimicking May
All the buildings whitewashed in neck sun

In Pound’s cul-de-sac we notice
The blue plaque itself includes glass
Alexis gestures up, across and to diagonals
Points to
Cartesian pockets
Remembering the 45 degree options of
The Blue Ensign

[the flag the British forced colonised ships to carry]
Like a sulk in the corner of their flags
And I wonder why Niall has brought us here
To this such England
Then he gives us Pound as The Hyacinth Girl
[“You gave me hyacinths first a year ago;”]

Here, bell-annoyed Pound found
A bunch of put away or dropped violets
And he took them with his wrist like
Alex Hurricane Higgins and
Lifted them to the church fence
Highed them up slightly

I’ve watched for sun in windows behind them
[that might reflect angels]
When Niall and Alex have stopped at houses
And usually found them
Nothing though on Pound’s window
It’s cul-de-sac lowness

The wind unbreathed now tho and
A lower middle-class loveliness
To the dimensions
The room he received DH Lawrence
Touchable from where he might have
Parked the Rover 200

No Angels however
At Pound’s last London house
No sun-comprehending glass
McDevitt notes that
This is a 21st Century blue plaque
Just put, faraway enough from Pound’s 20th Century scandals

And THEN I notice the plaque is not ceramic
Like the others
Pound’s plaque is cast glass or cast with some glass in it
The comprehending window is inside of it
Not above it
Alexis, explains Pounds anti-semitism as madness
And corrects my Rapunzel to Rumpelstiltskin
[kindly, and correctly]

And I realise I don’t really care if Pound and Eliot had bad politics
They protected English against the ordinarisation of English
And protected magic in English
They are nothing
To apologise for
The Englishness of the brackets of the rhetoric
Are all that

England has to apologise for
Joyce, Pound, Eliot and Virginia Woolf protected the English language from
The English for a century
And 2 of them were American.
Niall has to filter this through a psychogeography the English would understand
Which means respecting the architecture

I don’t give a fuck
Joyce, Pound, Eliot and Virginia Woolf
Saved and preserved a sense of Magic in English
Strong enough to survive Modernism,
When Modernism came back on them like a bad joke
In the popular culture, 1980 approximately
[When we accepted Thatcher as Modernism,
instead of Michael Heseltine (who would have been much less disastrous I now think- thought I hated him at the time and wanted Kinnock like everybody)

At least Heseltine was a pro-European and a moderate Tory
In retrospect he would have been a blessing
Keith Joseph was an anti-intellectual
[the Nigel Farage of his day]
Looking for a Patsy
Thatcher was a grocer’s daughter from Norfolk
Any old-Harrovian who talked to her she would
Cream in her pants

This is the history of how Britain
Adopted the Reaganomics that would
Fail and collapse our
Consumer banks
The “de-regulation”
That collapsed Lloyds and RBS in 2008
28 years after it destroyed
All the industry of the North

Wastelanded the North
I gulp at all this and ask David what
We can do to encourage the burst of
The property bubble that makes doctors now
Unable to afford to buy houses in London
As well as and after teachers, nurses, pyschotherapists, policeman, rubbish collectors
Postman and priests

Sullen quiet and cherry lip shoulder boned
Fruit cup rise of things
Velvet denim ghost rush
I realise this is
A Yeats Hulk Resurrection

pushing cold drank wind
always someway else abandoned
the embrace of the fading
never more than a silvered taxi passing

this is why we lose the horses of our dreams
they crawl up into themselves
and never the howl haunts
the howl haunts of west london

the foxes that were once wolves
and the bone-remember of the wolf in the skull of the fox
a warehouse domain
crumbing out of control
all shinbone and reddened

let me go and white up the moon
white up the nascent night
if this were only something we could say
and not be more than the word fading

If this was only something we could just say
and not have to be
Forza to earthly Paradise
Forza to Italianate pretention
and all the blood of the priest
and all the blood of the family
Insolent, abject and unapologetic
Lightning cuffs
And all whirled Europe
Keys to fairies and
before-renaissance Italies
framing the pavements of thieves
not anything like they imagined
just sleeping and fading
downing the roads like waterfalls

I give you tears
And an idiotic 20th Century
\and this is only the 21st
and there is lots of reused rehearsed
ratting and ashed-up rain
which never ends like the maps of flowers
that are just like clunching families, always
Slunting like tired Christs
Towards anything

Trying verse,
noting the smiles
regaining peace
lying to each dream
gracing all the light which fades
gracing all the slag lands
sunbathed insolents

These days are grassed up
there have been so many
all slooped things
There have been so many assaults against us
Our children remain unkillable
We are the poor intellectuals who want the King
of England guillotined constanly
And until then our children will not rest

stars like dishes
serving out more lighter
and do not let the dust pour further inwards
giving only Stonehenge visits
forever the done given day

This is a poem
In support of Ezra Pound by
Robert Montgomery and Greta Bellamacina

Forza the crosses in things or their violet ghosts
Forza the trees
Forza weed lined ambition
Forza sons of women


Poetry: Robert Montgomery and Greta Bellamacina

Photo at St Marys Church, Kensington: Julie Goldsmith

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