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  • Names on Lanes No One Knows Now


    By Paul Steffan Jones AKA, 2021-04-16

    On his laden career bicycle

    Johnny Onions or Sioni Winwns

    meets paramours and cousins 

    the names the lives of names

    the routes of commerce

    way from Armorica to corner Cymru

    an unnamed lorry driver

    flat cap trim moustache

    hooded eyes 1956

    registration number PO 5384

    brake lights brighten pre dawn hedgerows

    in the squeal of stopping

    on a stretch where the farm is unseen 

    he carefully steers metal milk churns 

    from the concrete stand

    to the flatbed of his vehicle 

    replacing them with empties 

    the mornings will lighten then darken

    then back again for this employee 

    dependable essential anonymous 

    on leaving these lanes forever or so

    our Emrys as Ambrose as Ambrosius

    us as Arthur yr arth the bear

    is he with Glyndwr awaiting the perfect dawn?

    I don't know but sometimes pretend I do

    to conceal my plastic bag full of fault lines

    I don't happen I don't occur I don't figure

    I a mere carrier of bags

    a haunter of yesterday's hedges

    nearly everything’s changed 

    but the grass still grows

    in places it should and should not

    and the land that sustains it is unmoved

    I walk away from away 

    I thought I recognised you 

    but I was someone else



    Posted in: Poetry | 1 comments
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    Paul Steffan Jones is a Welsh poet and author.

    Paul Steffan Jones was born in Cardigan in 1961. To date, two collections of his verse have appeared, Lull of the Bull (2010) and The Trigger-Happiness (2012), both of which were published by Starborn Books. His When You Smile You’ll Be a Dog No More won first prize in the 2012 West Coast Eisteddfod Online Poetry Competition.

    Over 100 of his poems have been accepted for publication by periodicals and anthologies including Poetry Wales, New Welsh Review, The Rialto, The Seventh Quarry, Roundyhouse, Red Poets magazine, Seren Books, Hanging Johnny, The Slab, Eto, Poetry Cornwall and The Western Mail.

    He has recently worked with the artist Chris Rawson-Tetley on a project entitled Gwaelod which responds to the Cantre’r Gwaelod history and other notions of identity and diaspora. He has also collaborated with Glenn Ibbitson and other artists in a work called Room 103 which attempts to consider the relevance and importance of the ideas of George Orwell in a modern world of inequality, surveillance and manipulation of information. He is in the throes of assembling two new collections of verse under the working titles Otherlander and I Thought I Had More Time and regularly performs readings in Northern Pembrokeshire and adjacent areas.

    Paul has had some success in writing song lyrics. His most recent is Ar ôl Yr Angladd/After The Funeral, a response to a request from the rock group Datblygu. A song he co-wrote with the late Charlie Sharp, Bombstar, was released on the AA side of a single by Datblygu, Cân y Mynach Modern/Song of The Modern Monk, on Ankstmusik Records in 2008. He was one half of the underground folk-punk duo, Edward H. Bôring, who achieved a small amount of notoriety and a session that was broadcast by Radio Cymru in 1980. A track he wrote and recorded in 1981, Byd Heb Tywydd (sic)/World Without Weather was recently re-released on Recordiau Neon.

    He used to be a Civil Servant and Trade Union activist. He believes he is descended from Owain ab Afallach, the semi-mythical originator of the Royal House of Gwynedd, Alfred the Great, Charlemagne the Great and William the Conqueror and is pleased to count Owain Glyndwr and St David as distant cousins.