Author Archives: PoetJanstie

About PoetJanstie

“Life is short and art long, the crisis fleeting, experience penniless and decision difficult” ~ Hippocrates. As a young man, John enjoyed being fit and sporting. It was then as much his recreational therapy as a cappella harmony singing, music, walking in the hills and writing is now. Playing Rugby Union for over twenty years, encouraged in the early days by a school that was run on the same lines as Gordonstoun, giving shape and discipline to a sometimes precarious early life. This fitness was enhanced by working part time jobs in farming, as a leather factory packer and security guard, but probably not helped, for a short time, by selling ice cream! His professional working life was spent as a Metallurgical Engineer, Marketing Manager, Export Sales Manager, Implementation Manager and Managing Director of his own company. Thirty five years spent, apparently in a creative desert, raising a family, pursuing a career and helping to pay the bills, probably enriched his experience, because his renaissance, on retirement, realised a hidden creative talent as a writer of prose and poetry. He also enjoys music, with a piano and a forty-nine year old Yamaha FG140 acoustic guitar. He sings bass in three a cappella harmony groups: as a founding member of a mixed voice chamber choir, Fox Valley Voices and a mixed barbershop quartet. He is also a member of one of the top barbershop choruses in the UK, Hallmark of Harmony (the Sheffield Barbershop Harmony Club), who, for the eighth time in 40 years, became UK Champions in 2019. He is also a would be (once upon a time or 'has been') photographer with drawers full of his own history, and an occasional, but lapsed 'film' maker. In his other life, he doubles as a Husband, Father, Grandfather, Brother, Uncle, Cousin, Friend and Family man. What he writes is sometimes autobiographical, often political, sometimes dark and frequently pins his colours to the mast of climate change and how humans are trashing the Earth. In 2013, he published an anthology of the poetry (including his own) of an international group of poets, who met on Twitter in 2011. He produced, edited and steered the product of this work, "Petrichor Rising", to publication by Aquillrelle. His sort of strapline sort of reads: “ iWrite iSing iDance iVolunteer ”

An Invitation

For all those who knew Jamie Dedes, who may ever have encountered her humanity, who may ever have written an essay, a poem, created a piece of art for inclusion either in her personal blog, ‘The Poet by Day’, or … Continue reading

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Anti-dystopoem

(for G Jamie Dedes) United we stand, divided we fall. Together we rise. Alone, we hear only the call from sirens of an alternative kind of destiny, where attention seeking soldiers of fortune, their collegial architects and faceless shadows construct … Continue reading

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Posted in Compassion, Free Verse, Hope, Love, poem, poetry, political, wisdom | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Barbershop is …

Barbershop is a much misunderstood musical force for good. A kind of Westminster without the politics. Ambassadors without the Ferrero Rocher. Zero8 with an ironically high score a Hallmark of Success, ringing true to their art, on a journey without … Continue reading

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Posted in Music, Performance, Pleasure, poem, poetry, Singing, story | Leave a comment

Winter Song

A diaphanous veil of mist had settled sensuously in the valley below. The upper edge of a jigsaw wall, its silhouetted frame that lay beneath a cloud streaked blue, was stark and sharp as the frozen chill of air that … Continue reading

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Posted in nature, poetry, Weather | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

A Poem for Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

~~~~~ “Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.” ~ John Donne (1572-1631) from Meditation XVII  ~~~~~ My grandpa is quite old, … Continue reading

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Posted in children, family, Iambic Pentameter, poem, poetry | Tagged | Leave a comment

Lost Gardeners

There was such hustle and bustle where now reflective calm. In the thunderbox room nearby the melon yard haunting echoes of silent voices once green fingers that pressed a trigger for King and country, gently call from an early grave, … Continue reading

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Posted in conservation, courage, Death, Elegy, Free Verse, green, History, Hope, Love, melancholy, nature, nostalgia, poetry, War | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Dēmokratía

Have you ever felt the mocking tone of those who disagree with common sense whose point of view bears truly little weight. To deny understanding. Socratic debate. For whom jocular bullying is their choice of stick to avoid a dialectic … Continue reading

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Posted in conversation, experience, poem, poetry, political, wisdom | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments

The Festival

In a field somewhere, full of stars, enchantment you could almost hug, cupped in hands, with sparkle and dust, you can carry it off in your pocket. It’s magic, so catch some you must. Catch a glimpse of follies too … Continue reading

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Posted in Culture, Folk, Free Verse, Music, Pleasure, poem, poetry, recreation, Roots | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Last Year

(Same River, New Waters …) Last year passed me the golden glove You know, the one with a fist of iron. She wanted no more of it.    Nor I. Those glossy, glittering, glistening, shining products of a golden age … Continue reading

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Posted in poetry | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

Pine Cone

… in a world beleaguered by well healed negligence …
… your unconscious prayer for a better world … Continue reading

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Posted in 100TPC, children, Free Verse, Hope, Love, poem, poetry, Wonder | 5 Comments