The Old Year

Poetic Beats

Welcome to the first Poetic Beats of 2018 with Howard Bond and Davy D, recorded on the 8th of January 2018 on Red Kite Radio.

Happy New Year to you all. In this edition we read the poem, The Old Year, by John Clare. At the time of the year when most people are looking forward and making New Year’s resolutions, today’s poem leaves a message that sometimes we should make some space to reflect and acknowledge the Old Year and the steps we have taken.

Due to some technical difficulties experienced in the studio the first line of the poem is missing from the recording.  You can read a text version of the poem provided after the sound bar.

To hear this week’s Poetic Beats please press the arrow to the left of the sound bar below.



The Old Year

The Old Year’s gone away

     To nothingness and night:

We cannot find him all the day

     Nor hear him in the night:

He left no footstep, mark or place

     In either shade or sun:

The last year he’d a neighbour’s face,

     In this he’s known by none.


All nothing everywhere:

     Mists we on mornings see

Have more of substance when they’re here

     And more of form than he.

He was a friend by every fire,

     In every cot and hall–

A guest to every heart’s desire,

     And now he’s nought at all.


Old papers thrown away,

     Old garments cast aside,

The talk of yesterday,

     Are things identified;

But time once torn away

     No voices can recall:

The eve of New Year’s Day

     Left the Old Year lost to all.


John Clare.


A sensitively done paean to John Clare, Davy. I like your apt description of him as ‘a poet of our time’ and your reading and commentary certainly do him justice in describing his love and concern for the natural world.

Liked by 1 person

    Thank you for your kind words and feedback Roland. Finding out about John Clare’s upbringing and life does put a different perspective to his poetry and makes it even stronger. I will definately be reading more of his poetry.


just heard this lovely recording of your radio show and my first thought was, I haven’t really enjoyed a good radio show in a long time so thank you for starting the new year with a short yet focused look at John Clare’s poem. I really enjoyed the part of you saying that he wrote from the situation he was in, made me think of Margaret Atwood’s – Alias Grace, a period when mental illness was just being explored and many were institutionalised even if they just thought out of the box for a bit! I think Clare like so many other poets then and now write because they look and don’t just see but feel the life they are living. Good advice for us Davy to look back on the old year and what it has taught us and not discard it like old newspaper wisdom. I look forward to Strawberry Fields next week!

Liked by 2 people

    Thank you Gina and your kind words and comment are gratefully appreciated. One of the joys of Poetic Beats is I get to look more into the poet and the poetry. With John Clare, he was a poet who battled against the odds and produced some breathtaking poetry. Today he is given the right consideration among Wordsworth, Shelley, Keats and the other poets of the time. The poetry establishment shunned him during his lifetime due to his mental health. See you in the Strawberry Fields 🙂


A great beginning to the new year Davy. In our rush to abandon the past, we often forget the mistakes made and are therefore doomed to repeat them.

Liked by 1 person

Great reading of an evocative poem!

Liked by 1 person

A perfect poet, poem, and reading for the beginnings of our journey into this new year! 🙂 You have reminded us of such important things…like reflecting on the old year and use what we learned there in this new start/year! 🙂 Look ahead! Enjoy what is to come! Live and learn and share! 🙂

I enjoyed learning about John Clare!
Thank you, Davy!
HUGS!!! 🙂
OOH! I look forward to next week’s Poetic Beats!

Liked by 1 person

    Thank you Carolyn and I am glad you enjoyed listening to it. He is an interesting poet as he had a different background and education to many of the poets at the time. When you read about his life it brings you closer to his words. Thank you for taking time out to listen and comment 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

This is a real treat and a great start to the new year, Davy. I enjoyed learning about John Clare.

Liked by 1 person

Thank you for this Gina it is most appreciated.


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[…] post is partly inspired by Davy and his Poetic Beats; do listen to his reading and discourse on John Clear’s – “the Old Year’s Gone […]

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[…] post is partly inspired by Davy, a respected Barista here at Go Dog Go Treetop Cafe and his “Poetic Beats”; do listen to his reading and discourse on John Clear’s – “the Old Year’s Gone Away and by […]

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