Friday, 25 February 2011

Poems on the iPhone, iPad, iPod

The Kindle version of Heres and Nows is now available at a bargain price of £3.45 including VAT. It is also available from Amazon.com and via direct download to your Kindle.

It looks as though there's already an app for the iPad, iPod and iPhone that allows you to read Kindle books, so it should be possible to download and read David Henschel's Heres and Nows on your iPad, iPod or iPhone already.

The formatting of the sample pages on the Kindle is very odd, and the authors are listed in the wrong order in the product description, but when you actually download it, all is well.

e-books should look beautiful, and I think this one is. It is as close as I could get it to the original paperback version.

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Kindle edition of Heres and Nows ready!

Finally, after a steep learning curve, I have David Henschel's Heres and Nows in a format suitable for the Kindle Wireless Reading Device
and other e-readers using the Mobipocket format.

The reason it has taken as long as it has is that I wanted the look and feel to be as pleasant as possible, while at the same time using the features that make using an e-reader a different experience from reading a book. For example, there are no page numbers and instead there is a linked table of contents.

Because there are no physical pages, I wanted to make it clear where the end of a poem is, rather than have to turn the page to find out if that was the end or not. To this purpose I have put small printer's leaf ornaments at the foot of each poem.

The link above is still to the paperback version, but the Kindle version should be available by 1st March, and when it is I shall change the link if necessary.

I also have a version ready for the Sony Reader and iPad, iPhone and iPod, so my next thing to learn is how to make it available on those machines.

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Link with Blue Logic


Narrow Gate Press is now teamed up with Blue Logic so that we can tell you about all their unusual books and eBooks on esoteric subjects.
Click the link!

Friday, 18 February 2011

Thoughts welcome

If you have a comment on one of these blog posts it is welcome. If the comment is on an old post I shall link to it from a new post, so that your wise musings are not lost. Time passes in the blogosphere like a shadow.

Thought water


A little late, here are my thoughts on David Henschel's poem Thought water.

I need a pool of thought
to dip my mind in
cool and clear and sweetly springing
from some deep source on some high mountain.


We all have thoughts and plenty of them. The overwhelming majority of them are useless.

Worries about things that may never happen, anxieties about what we think other people think of us, resentments of things that could not have been otherwise, dreams unaccompanied by the least intention of working to realise them, items in the news that we're powerless to do anything about, impotent opinions based on no knowledge, churning in the mind of last night's television or a tune that we don't like that won't go away. That is why the denizens of hell are said to gibber.

This is not the pool of thought that the poet is asking for.

The poet is asking for a pool cool and clear and sweetly springing.

It seems to me that there is no room for such a pool unless we first detach ourselves from the thicket of our usual thoughts. I like the idea of the pool being up a mountain. As we climb higher, the thicket of useless thoughts is still there, but we pass through it, it is below us.

Another thought: in the fairytale Sleeping Beauty the prince has to make his way through a thicket of thorns. But those who had gone before perished in the attempt to hack them back. It is an effort doomed to failure. But because it is the right time, the thorn thicket separates before him, without effort. No doubt he came prepared, with a sword and ready to do battle. But no battle was required.

The poet goes on:

There is no pool unless I make one
from depths of spirit in the heights of mind.
It can only be cool if I am clear
only as clear as my own seeing
only as deep as my own loving
only as high as my own thinking.


My commentary: seeing is not thought, love is not thought, and thinking is a ladder, rightly used.

How we wish we could be clear.

It seems a last reality
necessary to truth
to recognise what living water
can only be drawn from one's own well
and nothing comes out
of nothing put in.


Lewis Carroll recommended making the effort to learn a poem by heart. That way, at least there is a corner of the mind that is filled with something worthwhile, something that becomes part of our own inner singing.

The impressions we expose ourselves to - literature, music, theatre, films, the clouds in the sky, the birdsong that even a city has, the smiles of strangers - make our thinking what it is.

Of course it is not I alone
who conjure rain into my earth
or trickle truth and understanding in;
but I am sand to parch my givers
thin earth which gives scant blessing back -
yet I have caves
and through my fissured rock
slowly the water gathers in my dark.


If we have received something then we can only be grateful. We can do nothing of ourselves, though we should like to think otherwise. Even so, I am richer because of these poems made by someone else.

I wish
it lay less deep and more accessible
I wish it lay upon the mountain side
and had the colour of the sky -
in which to bathe would be to fly.


Friday, 11 February 2011

Heres and Nows - price increase

Well, I tried to hold the price until 26 February but between the printer and Amazon it's already been put up to £10 and then marked down again by Amazon to £9. This is outside my control.

Since I said I'd keep the price down until 26 February, if anyone wishes to contact me direct before the end of the month I'll send you as many copies as you like at the old price (£6.50). Click the email link and send me your postal address. Don't worry, I'm not going to spam anybody!


Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Thinking, swimming and flying


Thoughts on this next week. Meanwhile why not add your own perceptions? What are thoughts that live in dark caves? Is the best thought so much like the sky that it is nothing at all? What would it be like to have no thoughts?

Commenting on this blog is free! Someone has.

Thought water


I need a pool of thought
to dip my mind in
cool and clear and sweetly springing
from some deep source on some high mountain.

There is no pool unless I make one
from depths of spirit in the heights of mind.
It will only be cool if I am clear
only as clear as my own seeing
only as deep as my own loving
only as high as my own thinking.

It seems a last reality
necessary to truth
to recognise what living water
can only be drawn from one’s own well
and nothing comes out
of nothing put in.

Of course it is not I alone
who conjure rain into my earth
or trickle truth and understanding in;
but I am sand to parch my givers
thin earth which gives scant blessing back –

yet I have caves
and through my fissured rock
slowly the water gathers in my dark ...

I wish
it lay less deep and more accessible
I wish it lay upon the mountain side
and had the colour of the sky –
in which to bathe would be to fly.