Biography of Eric Ratcliffe
educated Kingston Grammar School and Birkbeck College.
Career as bench and information scientist (list of papers is in website below) . World War 2 service London Blitz assisting removal of unexploded AA shells; and India as ammunition examiner. Discharged end of war as Warrant Officer Class 1.
Founded and edited poetry magazine Ore for 4 decades (see my website for history of Ore) . Divorced. One daughter, who died in her thirties, International (though not well known) poet. Reviews for New Hope International, England.
Eric Ratcliffe's Works:
see my website - poetry and prose. http: //homepage.ntlworld.com/chessmaster/eric/Page_1.html
special interest in WE Henley, Victorian crippled poet and friend of RL Stevenson.
Other interests, life after death, occultism.
Eric Ratcliffe Poems
The Maiden Of The Moon's Boat
Behind these yellow leaves I see the maiden of the moon's boat, her smile straying, her light throat bent over the path of suffering. Inside a convent of trees she rides, the Bride of my God, floating a silver mile below her shining side,
The Green Man
In the essence between dragnet day; in the peace betwen dwale and poplar; in the twig and near holy things; by Earth's deep sluices, in enormity
Before The Puffin Swam
Long, long ago, before the puffin swam, neither sun nor sail bewildered those who, simple in their sleep, walked to a day of golden trees and apples in the air,
Escape Of The Slave Girl
A low arrow, I search the land for her silver feet moving leaves as she follows through spiced fields, runs, or turns to a bird cry.
Halting and walikng in strange dead seasons through the weak light of ghost Octobers, surrendered to the final lute they sing from melodies unborn
Humility Of The Sea Gods
Of the northland wind I told my green daughter, and of the red wine that sometimes came down
Let us form our words in some October room and let the meanings run, rounded and foretold by the eyes' long glances, or quickenings under white and gentle eyelids.
Nurse, Teddington Hospital
They taught her to cure, not by the cradled arm, but by sharpness of heart in face of illness; she learned the cheerful delicate trade of orders, moving from bed to bed on the dull parquet,
In the land of fish and heron and white candle maidens, a dancing queen of five wings collecting sea coral
Outside The Roman Palace At Fishbourne A...
Whose feet in careful sandals moved past my oil lamp in the Palace? My window eyes can see no shape against the lights of the Western Wing:
Taking to your hands the torpedo blossoms, the earth-buds and flowers of the dell, you are the earth's apostrophe, standing free; the wind's daughter, holding to sky and sea
God And Mammon
Into the book the images disperse as publishers perform their Act of God. In subsequent appraisal of the verse the critics' heads may either shake or nod
I shall walk to the girl-cave across the marsh of the eastern water-birds, my torchflame riding the earth of cold cousins, to sit and talk by spices and iron.
Lady Kneeling For Holy Communion
The red heathen faint beneath her skin, she kneels; dark as a pagan brooch the shade around. Nightbrush, God in a myrtle tree, the wine of wonder
Halting and walikng in strange dead seasons
through the weak light of ghost Octobers,
surrendered to the final lute
they sing from melodies unborn
They have chanted how they remembered
the first sleeping diamonds of dew
on the white flowers left weeping
by the wall in the graveyard dawn.