John Donaldson photo Paddy Summerfield

John was a brave and remarkable man...there is real vision in his poems

      - Kathleen Raine


Broadest Canvas - Extracts

Link to full texts

Voice 1 Freed of false legacies
and hypocrisy of built in environments
man will spurn for ever
hates that eat at the very innards
of creative yearnings.
He will scorn wanton destructivenes,
conditioned heroisms
falsely channelled doubtful histories,
with facts born of fiction
and the fiction of friction.
Yes, one day he will release dormant senses
live new horizons,
without curbing the needs of each individual
and will fragment each now into accepted appraisal.
What a thought! To start like a child again.
I didnt say that ... .

Voice 2 No, for if you had
you would have wept with anticipated joy,
compassionate saviour of yourself.
You, in your rebellion, wisely
seek the structures within,
and from the wasted energy
and the pain that tore you apart
conceive a glimpse of the wine of freedom,
that has yet to come your way to taste,
but with balance born of self control
it soon will be yours to embrace.
Arise and with full-bellied sail,
accept the sight of land.
Let not your mood be lowered
by the grim wind outside
for that same force, with a bright sun,
will ripen to-morrows corn
to feed mans body first
and then perhaps his soul.
Yesterdays steep inclines lie far below,
the inclines which the morrow may not know,
and if life created love and laughter,
or stole them from you,
they are gone,
but even if you peer from an empty shell
there is still hope,
to regain what you once felt,
a workable worthiness,
no matter how different things appear to be.

The following pages are to be read sequentially - please proceed.

Betty Donaldson 2006-11