Relocating - please follow the link for new content

This archive will stay here - but you can find new posts (as well as this archive) at my new website which is at It's the new home for Stuart Eglin Online - including the blog, musings, and details of the publications and services which I have available. Take a look - it's worth a visit!

Friday, 22 July 2005

Four-Fold Way

Four-Fold Way

I was pointed to this site from Dave Pollard's blog (How to save the world - see the list of sites to the right). Angeles Arrien has developed the Four-Fold Way. It sets out four ways - the way of the warrior, the way of the healer, the way of the teacher and the way of the visionary.

Well worth a visit!

Thursday, 21 July 2005

Blogsome - is it better than blogger?

I stumbled across this weblog host, based in Ireland. The system is based on Wordpress technology. I use blogger at the moment and have done for over 2 years now. I like what blogger does. There is just one key thing which blogger can't do. It doesn't have the facility to sort posts into categories so that readers can select all posts in a certain category and browse through them. I think this is really important. I emailed blogger about it some months ago and got a bland response saying they were working on it. Well, I emailed them again earlier today to ask when they are planning to introduce it. If it isn't soon, I may consider switching to Blogsome. It has categories!

Thursday, 14 July 2005

That poetry reading

I mentioned recently that I was due to give a reading at our local poetry group on the first Thursday in July. There were about 60 people gathered for the evening. It was the same day as the bombings in London, so there was an air of sadness and shock hanging over the audience. Earlier in the evening I had begun to wonder whether reading poetry felt like the right thing to do in the circumstances. In the end, like many people that day, carrying on as normal felt like totally the right thing.

I read 8 poems, including a number of poems included on this site recently. They were all taken from the "28 poems in 28 days" cycle which I wrote earlier this evening. I find that reading poetry to an audience changes my relationship to the poem. I hear it differently. In this reading I heard some lines as really strong, which I had not noticed before. I heard rhythms which worked, and some that didn't. Overall I was really pleased with the material - I was taken by its intensity. And I felt that I had rediscovered some of the playful side of using language again.

What did the audience make of the reading? It is always difficult to tell at a poetry reading. Unlike a live music concert, it does not conclude with booing or frantic cheering. Poetry readings are an altogether more polite affair - at least where I come from they are.

I felt an empathy from the audience. As I looked around whilst reading there was an attentiveness which is always helpful. And there was a good level of applause at the end too. The highlight for me was after the event, when one of the organisers came up to me and said "that was fascinating. Thank you."

The rest of the evening was excellent too - there was live music from a duo playing accordion and bagpipes, another poet reading, a poem of the month, and a talk about the poetry of Edward Thomas.

One good outcome from the evening was a resolve on my part to travel further afield and do poetry readings. Further reports here as they happen.

Monday, 11 July 2005

The day job tyranny

A change in job circumstances is having an impact on my usual habits and patterns. Regular posting will resume once I have some rhythms and timings sorted out.

Tuesday, 5 July 2005

John Cale - Five Tracks

Yes, I know that this is a 2 year old piece of music. Sometimes CDs sit in my collection for a while - I think they are good and enjoy them, but don't really rave about them because I haven't had the time to listen to them for long enough to draw out what is going on.

'Five tracks' was an EP released ahead of the 'Hobosapien' album - it contains the most beautiful music filled with contradictions. Each track has a menacing air to it, tinged with soft girl choruses. The lyrics meander around all sorts of things including September 11th New York, the reputation of Ezra Pound - one of the tracks ('Wilderness Approaching') is taken from a film. 'E is missing' has an eerie voice singing 'Nowhere .... was not here / nowhere's not there / nowhere is nowhere' to the tune of an almost Christmas carol. I love it!

Why did I put this CD on after a couple of years? I was watching 'Later with Jools Holland' at the end of last week. This is a fantastic music programme on the UK BBC. The series finished recently, and is now being supplemented with a few programmes taking best bits on different themes. It was 'loud music' last week. John Cale was on playing a version of the Velvet Underground track 'Venus in Furs' - it was an incredible performance, and has stayed with me over the last few days.

As a result, the EP has reached my play list. What now? Well I also have another album by Cale, which I haven't explored much - called 'The Academy of Peril' - a strange album with full orchestra.

I should have realised that John Cale takes time to understand. Years ago (about 30 years, I think!) I bought a second hand copy of 'Vintage Violence' on vinyl, listened to it and was bewildered. Over time it became one of my favourite records.

John Cale, a welsh viola playing genius, with one of those rock voices that waivers on the edge of tuning in an unnerving way.