I originally started this blog as a repository for all the poems I came across while reading the old books I love. I had noted that these books often referred to poems in a way that suggested they had been so well known at the time of writing that there was no need to name the poet or mention more than a line or two for the reader to catch the reference. Unfortunately, the passage of time meant that this was no longer the case and I started using various search engines (mainly Google) to track down these poems which led to the genesis of this blog. I still tend to park poems or lyrics that I come across and want to remember here as I have discovered the hard way that there is no guarantee of being able to find something twice.

About a month into the blog, having hunted down my current stock of poetic allusions, I made the decision to try and do the “1001 Nights” thing – as in the collection of stories – with the difference of trying to find 1001 different poets. My way of doing this was to find one poem per poet, although I never intended the poems of any poet to be a representation of the poet’s work. I admit to wishing I had made that decision before I had picked certain poems – after all, much as I love Macbeth, if I had been aware that I was only going to allow one of Shakespeare’s poems onto my blog I would have picked one of the sonnets (probably Sonnet 116 which is about love is not love which alters when it alteration finds) rather than The Witch’s Song.

I try not to make value judgements about the poems I put on the blog – some of the poems evoke strong feelings in me (either love or abhorrence) and some I regard with what could be best described as mild indifference. I have enough literary education to be well aware that many of the poems I have chosen (and many more that I will choose) would be dismissed by the poetic boffins (ie “experts”) as being valueless. I would (if in the mood) debate such a judgement as value seems to me to be firmly in the eye of the beholder and may not only change from person to person but also from hour to hour for any individual.

I have a very broad definition of poetry. Thanks to various teachers in both primary and secondary school, I tend to the belief that songs of any description are poems and that speeches and epitaphs are also within the definition of poetry. I try to always add the tag “lyrics” to songs (if they were not originally a poem which was later set to music) but I haven’t marked speeches and epitaphs when I have posted them.

The blog necessarily reflects many of my own interests and beliefs. I do post poems that reflect value and belief systems different to my own but where I look for poems and what I find when I look is always going to be heavily influenced by the way I look at the world. I think that is inevitable.

None of the poems I have posted have been written by me and I don’t expect to ever post any such poem in the future.

The “1001” mark will be reached in July 2014 but I will continue trying not to duplicate poets as I post daily poems. I am curious as to how long this can continue – I suspect indefinitely and I sincerely hope I’m right. I may allow myself to post more poems by those staples Anonymous, Traditional and Unknown – it felt like cheating to post too many of them while I was aiming for the “1001 Poets”.

I love hearing from the blog’s readers so please feel free to comment on any poem. I would also appreciate being notified if errors are noticed in the indices (WordPress has trouble maintaining the formatting) and if typographical errors are picked up in the posts.

Finally, a word about the title of the blog (From Troubles of the World; its URL being From Troubles of This World as somebody else had taken the original URL) which comes from the first poem ever posted here (Ducks by F. W. Harvey which was written in a prisoner of war camp during World War I). F. W. Harvey turned to ducks to escape the troubles of the world, I turn to poetry. As Eva Ibbotson in A Company of Swans (1985) expresses it: there was always someone who understood it – it was just that so very often they were dead, and in a book (p. 22).

I hope you continue to enjoy the blog,


Julie (aka FlusteredDuck)

15 Comments to “About”

  1. I have long liked this poem. Aiken was really cool and very astute.

  2. John Bayliss’s poem Reported Missing is a classic. Facing an ignoble end some of the finest human qualities are displayed in a hopeless situation ie bravery.

    Would you know who owns the copyright on this poem who I may contact?

  3. In Meskwaki tribal language, ke te bi, thanks for posting my Aegis poem. My sixth book is due this year MANIFESTATION WOLVERINE.

  4. Awesome site!

  5. Delighted to have found your blog.

    Much exploration in store. Regards from Thom at The Immortal Jukebox.

  6. Julia, your blog is wonder-full. I found you when searching for a work by Martin Carter – and found so much more beside that. Thank you.

  7. Hiya Julia. Edward Burger here. I got a message from cordite that you posted a poem attributed to me called ‘They all agreed, a kite was he,’ but it’s not my poem. Cordite didn’t attribute it properly when they archived it. A poem by me appeared in Cordite 31:EPIC, but the poem you’ve included came from the following issue – 31.1:Post Epic, in which other poets responded to the last line of one of the poems in the Epic issue. The poem you included was inspired by my poem. Anyhow that’s cool you would publish a poem by me, but I can’t take credit for this one. My poem was an illustrated poem called ‘The Sirens and the pesky knave,’ but unfortunately they removed all the illustrations when they archived it, which were intrinsic to the piece. Anyway, just thought I should let you know.
    Thanks! Eddy

    • Thank you so much for letting me know it wasn’t your poem. I removed it as I couldn’t find whose poem it was (which I sooooooooo hate). I posted your Cordite poem “Better than Nature” instead (as illustrated poems are too hard for me to format in the time I have). I hope this is okay and thanks again for the correction.

  8. I have just had the pleasure of reading Christopher Pillings’ “The meeting place” at our church Christmas service. It was transcribed to me, and I was perturbed that there appears to be at least one word missing at the end of line 27. “…..and what were to make of…” I notice this is how you have presented it too. Has it been a misprint along the line, and has no-one else noticed it?
    Seasons greetings

    • Thanks for your comment, Freddy. I have chased up ‘The Meeting Place’ and I can only find it as I have it making me think that’s how Christopher Pillings intended it. It originally appeared in ‘Poems for Christmas’ by the Peterloo Poets published in 1981/2. I haven’t been able to find a copy of that online but it might be worth checking it if you can find it anywhere. I’d be really interested in hearing if it is a misprint after all.

  9. Thank you for including my old poem here on your comprehensive blog. I’ve changed very much since then, my English skills were worse those days and my poems evolved a little bit. By the way, I am 2 years younger – I was born in 1971, as far as I know.

    • Thanks for correcting your date of birth. Can’t remember where Google told me it was earlier but I have corrected it here so at least that’s better here. And I liked your English in that poem but get what you mean about it evolving. It does that even if it’s your first language.

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