The Three Orders



The Three Orders

In architecture, from Greeks to the now
There are only three orders to choose:
Doric, Ionic, Corinthian columns
Are all that will ever be used.
Yet each has a world of variety in it,
From Bassae to Capitol Hill;
So Tuscan and Composite aren’t so unusual,
They’re Doric, Corinthian still.



Moody Lintels

Demolition by Greg Phipps


Moody Lintels

This building, is it still so great ?
No masterpiece or pioneer;
And now it’s looking quite a state,
And none too safe in brick and slate –
It really ought to face its fate,
Admit the end is near.

It did it us proud, it served us well,
But now it’s really past its best;
And as its city-centre dwell
Has far more worth as bank, hotel,
Or office block – we had to sell,
In public interest.

So down it comes, and in its place
Development beguiling new:
A fresh design this site will grace,
A source of jobs and conf’rence space;
We may yet choose to save the face,
And gut the insides through.

These architects with magic touch
That turns the golden into shite –
Their helping hand’s a concrete clutch
Which crushes, smothers eversuch
And chokes the life they hate so much,
Because it shone so bright.

And when they try to match the theme,
They cannot think along that line –
Just vague pastiche and stripped-down scheme.
Yet form must come from vein and seam
As penetrating all like steam,
And scream these forms are mine.

Their new designs cannot be stood
Besides the old, for both then wilt;
So segregate each neighbourhood,
And save the past whene’er we could
For once it’s gone, it’s gone for good –
Will never be rebuilt.



In Finity

landscape nature sky person
Photo by Pixabay on


In Finity

“I’d rather believe in an absolute something
Than trust in an absolute nothing at all.
And thus I choose faith in an undefined coming,
Than ponder the empty and chanceful and small.”
But how can an absolute anything be
In a finite and singular universe host ?
And as for an absolute nothing, well see,
That nature abhors of a vacuum the most.



Four Thousand Million Years in the Making

image by Shattered Horizon


Four Thousand Million Years in the Making

Unbeknownst to exis’tence,
Who lived in bodies, firm and dense,
There looked upon with apprehence
An unknown entity.
Beings of a diff’rent class,
Not formed of solid, liquid, gas:
For not one atom had they mass,
But weightless energy.

When they looked upon the Earth
In hill and cave and brook and firth,
They found the rocks had given birth
To life most tangible.
Life alive as mould and trees,
And slugs and crabs and honeybees,
And frogs and crows and chimpanzees,
With tooth and mandible.

“This is outright blasphemy !”
They screamed in thought-like energy
“For never life can ever be
Built with a hard physique.
And they live at such extremes
In ocean depths and fissure seams
And in another’s fluid streams.
With mutant-gained technique.”

Terrified by solid life
They blew apart this world-midwife,
For only there could such be rife,
And now it was destroyed.
Rock and lava shattered thence
And sped across the void immense,
Without a single thought or sense:
A thousand asteroids.

Thus were ended carbon forms
In fumigating magma storms,
Biomass now dusty swarms;
Extinction voracious.
But all this life is hard to kill,
And even in the deathly chill
Of outer space, it’s clinging still:
Patient and tenacious

As the debris drifts afar,
So come the tugging of some star
Upon this frozen reservoir,
And bring about a thaw.
Let them countless orbits make,
And with an endless time to take;
One bacterium shall wake,
And life resume once more.

The Gods of Melodrama

light people white black
Photo by Skitterphoto on


The Gods of Melodrama

I swore I’d never once again be fool
For the lies of actors.
To open up like that, it’s all too cruel,
To be only actors.
But when they looked at me with such a look,
Like we’re likeminded;
And yet the stalls were dark, and I mistook,
We both were blinded.
And yes, I know, I know, I’ve always known,
Yet fooled I always am;
They make me feel and feel in ways
Alone in life I never can.



Parable of Architecture

Royal Ontario Museum
Royal Ontario Museum infected by a wanger parasite


Parable of Architecture

Imagine that you’re sat at home,
Lis’ning to some Bach, let’s say –
When thudding through the party wall
Comes Iron Maiden, ev’ry day.
Now perhaps you rather like
To mosh from time to time;
But not at home – for home is Bach:
Subtle, delicate, sublime.
You’re not a snob, there’s room for both,
Though Eddie’s really out of place
At festivals of lilting strings –
They ain’t the stage to show his face.
And Glastonbury’s Pyramid
Is likewise not the perfect gig
For chamber-orchestra-quartets
To strut their stuff and make it big.
But ah, you say,
There’s shuffle-play:
A random stream shall come our way.
But if you try another’s Pod,
I bet you find their choices odd.

But now imagine, ev’ry day,
Their music blares until it bleeds –
They always crank it to eleven,
Cos that’s what our music needs.
And all your pastiche must be crushed,
For that is old and we are New;
We are the only tune allowed,
Cos all your heathen hymns are through.
But long before they moved next door
There used to live the sweetest song –
It’s gone forever, now, that air;
Alas, the future came along.
They took the song and stripped it bare,
Then slowed it down into the grave;
They tore its notes out, cleared its score,
To build their tune upon its stave.
But ah, you say,
That’s what we pay
To progress through to come-what may.
But I say we can play them both
If we just learn some civil growth.