Robin Ford is from the Isle of Wight where he was born. He didn’t start to write poetry properly until his mid fifties after recovering from a serious illness but ten years on is still hard at it. He has published a poetry sequence, ‘After The Wound’ and a collection, ‘Never Quite Prepared For Light’ with Arrowhead Press and Cinnamon Press will publish a further collection in January 2010, to be called ‘On The Brink’.
Robin is quite philosophical about being too late to make a ‘name’ and in any case suffers a lot from considerable doubts as to his ability. He’s read that you should never do yourself down but, what the hell, this is true. Because he is a full time carer he finds it difficult to get to events in ‘Big England’ but writes away and has quite a good publishing record in magazines and websites. He organises a poetry writing group basically for survivors of mental illness, although this has broadened out to include a much wider group. He also organises and hosts an Open Mic at Quay Arts, Newport, Isle of Wight.
THE OXUS, THE INDUS AND THE ARAL SEA
When I am well again I will lie on a chalk hillside,
breathe calmly, turn my head to see sunlight fall
on sedge, burnet, harebells, float on scent of thyme
and marjoram; spring will warm my bones and over me
crossbow swifts will wheel and tumble. My eyes
will rejoice with hawkbit, speedwell, harebell,
bloodspot orchids will be the only stain the world knows,
my mind will be a new-hatched butterfly
testing unexpected wings. When I am strong I will fly
to the Indus and the Oxus, I will fill again the Aral Sea
to proper bounds, cleanse and fill it with fish again
for I sense miracles in these oscillations, like those
strange landscapes I wandered in my storm of sickness.
And if I can resurrect the Aral Sea, why not try
to conjure into form those I loved, even the dead
and disappeared, so that they pass in frieze along
the lovely, ancient lane? When I call they will turn
and smile on me and their eyes will smile also.
Published in The London Magazine
One thought on “Robin Ford”
Great poem, Robin. Only just discovered you write poetry – me too. I remember you from working in the office at Cowes High School (1990) where I was able to join your English classes in preparation for applying for uni! The essay I did for you on T.S. Eliot got me a place at Sussex – I’m so grateful. Hope you get this message. All best wishes. Julia Duke