British Wild Flowers. The Lesser Celandine.

Lesser celandines are one of the earliest wild flowers to appear, blooming from late January until the end of April.

They are small, growing to a mere 2-3 inches, but form masses of flowers. They look gorgeous when in bloom. A veritable carpet of yellow stars.

They are found on banks, at the edges of woods and paths, in grassland. In fact, almost everywhere. One might be tempted to put some in the garden, but think twice. Although they are lovely little flowers and bloom when there isn’t much else, they can be invasive.

They spread from tiny tubers which grow in the leaf axels. Rooting them out can be a problem as it can help them to spread! My suggestion is to enjoy them where they are. I did see some for sale in a local garden centre. They were lovely with unusual dark, reddish leaves. Very tempting.

I understand, from reading on the net, that their leaves are a rich source of vitamin C. Useful at a time when, in past ages people hadn’t had much green vegetables during the winter months and may have been suffering from scurvy as a result. I have no experience of eating these leaves, and so cannot recommend them as a salad vegetable. ALWAYS CHECK FOR TOXICITY BEFORE EATING ANYTHING GATHERED FROM THE WILD.

Here’s a little poem to the celandine.


Little stars litter the grass.

Have they fallen from the sky?

They are shining when I pass

Reflecting sun’s rays from on high.

Celandines are here to say

Winter’s gloom is nearly past.

Spring is really on the way;

Warmth will soon be here, at last.

Bright and cheerful little flowers

Covering the woods and banks  

Creating lovely yellow bowers.

We should all be giving thanks.

I hope you enjoyed this little post about one of our early spring flowers. Feel free to share it with anyone you think might find it interesting, but please link back to this blog if you do.

If you want to read more of my poetry, you can buy my first poetry anthology, Miscellaneous Thoughts, by clicking on the book cover in the side bar or the title in this paragraph.

I just looked at my poem on the preview, and the breaks between the verses does not appear even though I added them when writing. this always happens and I wonder why. Does anyone know why?

Please leave your comments in the comments box. I love hearing from you.

Review of Danny the Dog by Andrew Joyce


Danny is a dog who lives with his human, Andrew, on a boat in Florida. He wrote a series of blog posts, and many of the adventures in the book appeared on his blog. This book is a compilation of Danny’s adventures, and how he trained Andrew.


Danny the Dog is a prolific writer. He’s written articles for bloggers around the world and has his own very popular blog where he dispenses his wisdom on a monthly basis. He’s humorous, clever, charming, delightful, and sometimes irascible. Or, as he would phrase it, “I’m a purveyor of wit, wisdom, and words.”

In My Name Is Danny, Danny writes about his real-life adventures living on a boat in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with his human, Andrew. He tells of their trials and tribulations … and the love they have for one another.

Fans of The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein and A Big Little Life by Dean Koontz will enjoy this book.


The main character is, of course, Danny. 

Danny tells his tales in an amusing way, usually at Andrew’s expense. 

One cannot help but like this little dog, with his many ‘brave’ exploits.


The writing is good. We get a clear picture of Danny’s character from the tales, and laughs from the many humorous adventures he relates. 

Have you read this book? Do you know Danny from his blog?

I would be delighted to hear your thoughts in the comments.

I would also appreciate any reviews of my books, too. Reviews are important to authors as they help let the readers know about them. Millions of books are published each year and getting people to know they even exist is difficult.

If you wish to purchase any of the books, simply click on the cover in the sidebar and you will be taken to a page where you can buy from your favourite store. (The ebook versions of the first in each series is FREE.)

Sunday funnies

Some hilarious thoughts on biblical personnel, courtesy of Bluebird of Bitterness.

bluebird of bitterness

Pastoral Search Committee Report

The committee thanks everyone who suggested candidates for this position. We have followed up on each one. Here is our report: 

Adam: Good man but has problems with his wife.

Noah: Prone to unrealistic building projects.

Joseph: Obnoxious braggart with a prison record.

Moses: Has a speech impediment and a bad temper. Rumored to have left an earlier position over a murder charge.

David: Had an affair with a married woman, then had her husband bumped off and used the power of his office to avoid charges.

Solomon: Good preacher, but our parsonage would never hold all those wives.

Elijah: Bad temper, prone to depression and occasional suicidal tendencies.

Hosea: Good man, but our people could never handle his wife’s profession.

Jeremiah: Emotionally unstable, alarmist, negative, always lamenting things.

Isaiah: Claims to have seen angels in church. 

Jonah: Refused God’s call until after he’d been swallowed…

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Pettic. A poem

This is not a poem that appears in a book, but it’s about a character in the Elemental Worlds duo.


Pettic was a farmer’s son who loved to plough the land

Until one day his life did change in a dramatic way.

He was chosen from many lads to obey Prince’s command

And go to live in the palace, far, far away.

He was to be companion, confidant and friend

To Prince Torren, the Crown Prince, the king’s son and heir.

And with the Prince, his lessons he also would attend.

But then the Prince disappeared, nobody knew where.

So Pettic chose to go in search of his dear friend.

He visited strange worlds like nothing he had seen

And faced great dangers, helped the folk, their lives he did defend.

And found what he was looking for when he did intervene.

For in four lands he had to find four gems that were the key.

Will young Pettic find all that is required 

To find Prince Torren and set him free? 

If you wish to know the answer to the last question, you can find out by reading The Stones of Earth and Air, which is free as an ebook on Amazon, and The Stones of Fire and Water. Follow these links to buy at your favourite store.

St Patrick’s Day

Image by Jill Wellington from Pixabay

Today is St Patrick’s Day. Here’s a poem in tribute to him. I’m a bit late posting, I know, but I had to write it first! Of course, he didn’t really banish the snakes from Ireland, but it’s a good story.

St Patrick 

A boy was captured and taken for a slave

Across the sea, but he remained brave.

A shepherd in Ireland for six long years

He escaped and ran home to family cheers.

A Christian he was, and hearing God’s call

Was ordained as a priest to the joy of all.

God called once again that he should go

Back to Ireland to preach, and so

He sailed once more across the sea.

And converted many to Christianity 

And with his staff he gave a command

And all the snakes left that land.

On March seventeenth, in the year four sixty

He passed into Heaven on that isle so misty.

He’s remembered still by the Irish folk

On the isle  of Ireland where he spoke

And all round the world where Irish dwell

They still remember, and his story they tell.

Painting The Sky #writephoto

Why didn’t Michelangelo paint the Last Supper? And what problems did he encounter when he painted the Sistine Chapel?

Find out in this hilarious story by Geoff Le Pard.

Painting By Heavens

‘Mr Angelo?”

‘Please, call me Mike. And you are?’

‘Ann Officious-Bastard.’

‘Of course. How can I help?’ Mike looked over his shoulder at the gods, some of whom were firing balls of fire at the curtains. ‘Take five, people. I need to deal with Ann. Yes, Zeus?’

‘Can I have a discomfort break?’

‘You had one an hour ago.’

‘That was a gratuitous volcano. I’ve a tsunami building pressure in my Azores and if I don’t let it go soon….’

‘Yes, alright. Just don’t lose the toga.’

Zeus exploded up and out of the ceiling in a shower of sparks and sprinkles.

Mike turned back to Ann. ‘Gods, eh? Can’t live with them, can’t… well, anyway. What can I do you for?’

If you would like to receive an exclusive, free short story by me, called The Haunted Table, simply click the link. This will take you to the page where you can download it.

Maria and Tom have bought an antique table for the old cottage they have just moved in to. When they hear strange noises in the night that sound like crying, they worry their house is haunted, but the sounds seem to come from the table.

They set about trying to find what is causing the disturbances. The answer is stranger than either of them had thought.

(Clicking the link will add your email address to my email list, but don’t worry, you can unsubscribe immediately if you wish. Nor will you get any spam. I only send out an email each quarter, or if I have any exciting news–like a new release.)

The Battle of Hastings.

Image by Gioele Fazzeri from Pixabay

I am now King of England. King William I. Doesn’t that sound great? However it wasn’t such an easy position to gain. Let me go back to the beginning.

Edward, my second cousin, was in exile in Normandy after Cnut had taken the English throne. I decided to go and see him as he was family, after all, and had no heirs.

While I was there, I played on the family connection, and reminded him that, although he might eventually get an heir with his wife, Emma of Normandy, if he should die suddenly, there would be no obvious claimant to the English throne.

Well, he hummed and hawed and didn’t make a decision then. I’m not surprised, really, because his mother had married Cnut and had a son by him. She supported her son, Harthacnut, and eventually he became king of England.

Edward was lucky. Harthacnut died, and Edward sailed unopposed into England to take the throne. Not long after, he sent his son-in-law, Harald Godwinson to tell me that he had decided to make me his heir. King William sounded good, I thought, but I didn’t trust Harald, so I had him imprisoned. Eventually, in order to regain his freedom, he swore an oath of fealty to me, the rat!

In the year of our Lord, 1066, King Edward, who had become to be know as The Confessor, due to his religious conviction, died. Harald, the rat, took the throne and was crowned the day after Edward’s death. He said that Edward had made him his heir on his deathbed. A likely story!

It was then I decided that I needed to go to England and sort this man out. He had broken a holy oath, and I was the rightful king. But it seemed I wasn’t the only one to want the crown of England. Harald’s own brother, Tostig, joined forces with the Norwegian king, Harald Hardrada, and launced an invasion.

They met initially at a place called Fulford, in the north of England, not far from the city of York. This was 0n September 20th 1066. It seems the invaders won, but Harald was not to be defeated so easily. He fought another battle five days later at a place called Stamford Bridge where both Tostig and Harald Hardrada were killed.

Well, this was too good an opportunity to miss. I had set sail, knowing that Harald would be occupied, and we landed at a place called Pevensey. There had been a Roman castle there, and we made use of that. I ordered a wooden fort to be built inside the Roman walls. It was a good defesive position.

The whole area was marshland, and the sea came up to the fort walls. I ordered the troops to begin marching over the marshes, heading towards the town of Hastings. Once we got there, I ordered a fort to be built, and we raided the land for supplies.

We waited for Harald to arrive from his battle at Stamford Bridge. We knew they would be tired after a forced march. I set a watch the night before the battle. I would not have put it past Harald to make a surprise attack, but he didn’t, and so on 14th October, at dawn, the battle began.

I won’t go into details here. Suffice it to say that it was hard fought and lasted all day. In the end, though, we won, and Harald was dead. I was now King of England.

I have begun the research for the next book in the series, A Family Through the Ages. This one will start in 1066 with the Battle of Hastings.

If you would like to catch up on the series, the first book, Vengeance of a Slave, is free as an ebook. Alternatively, you can get it from your favourite store, here.

Jealousy of a Viking, the second book, can be got from your favourite store, here.

Or click on the images in the side bar.

Both books are also available as audio books.

My publisher has released merchandise with the book covers on. These include: t-shirts, mugs, drinking glasses, jigsaw puzzles, tote bags and many more.

Why not go and take a look at what’s on offer? Click here to go to the Next Chapter store.

Please let me know what you think about the story and the books and merchandise in the comments.

Feel free to share this, and any other posts. Just link back to this blog. I will be ever so grateful!

A Message About Human Effects on the Earth.

Image by Pete Linforth from Pixabay

I have just watched this video (click on the link to view) and decided to share it with you all.

I have been thinking things along these lines for a long time now. We have treated our planet very badly since the Industrial Revolution, exploiting its riches for financial gain.

For thousands of years, people worked with the natural world. They might not have had loads of concrete goods, but they respected nature. Animals were not considered to be something inferior to be exploited, or destroyed if they came into conflict with us. Nor considered expendable if we needed their land.

The message given in the Old Testament from the story of the Creation has helped to create this situation. There, we are told that humanity was given dominion over the other animals. This has led us to believe that we are something other than those animals; separate and special.

We are NOT.

The way we are going on, and exploiting everything on the planet, will bring about not only the demise of other living things, but also our own. Yes, Climate Change is something we need to sort out. It is dangerous to life on the planet, but it’s not the only thing. The entire way we live is the danger, and I don’t see how we can sort that.

The only way is to change our whole idea of economics. Can you see that happening? I can’t.

Please type your thoughts in the comments box. It will give me great pleasure to hear what you have to say.

WAR. A Poem.

It is a year since Russia invaded Ukraine. Can’t understand it. Here’s a poem. !


Why must humans go to war?

What do they hope to gain?

I think that most of us deplore

That it started again.

Why do the leaders think it’s right

For many folk to die?

And make people resort to flight

And bid their homes goodby?

Two world wars in years long past

Brought much pain and grief.

The numbers dead were so vast

It is beyond belief

That it could all begin again

With Russia entering Ukraine

There are dragons and magic in the world if only you look for them… V.M. Sang

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