On seeing bluebells beneath Clifford’s Tower, York
there are definitely one hundred and fifty Jews
bluebells, oaks, sandwiches at night seeking protection
sunlight on cut wheat on this site in the royal castle
York is a lovely city, I know, I spent over three years there as a university student back in the 60s. One of its commanding sites is Clifford's Tower (see pic below), a round stone keep once part of a much bigger castle, but with a particularly cruel incident in its history that took place on the eve of a special shabbat in the spring of 1190. So the poem is about that, and about a childhood memory which also took place in a village near York where I spent childhood summer holidays at the farm where my mother came from. Of course bigotry-inspired killings continue to happen - only today I heard of gay activists being killed in Bangladesh, and people seeking refuge from war or persecution in the UK are demonised. Physical attacks increase on Jews, Muslims, minorities.
|With thanks to Michael Clarke for the use of|
his bluebell photos (which I have manipulated)