Old Man of the Sea

Ernest Hemingway

Ernest Hemingway was born at Oak Park, Illinois a suburb of Chicago in the United States of America in 1899. His father was a doctor and mother was an accomplished musician and singer. When he finished his schooling he found aa reporter’s job at the News Paper “The Kansas City Star”. When the first World War broke out in Europe he joined the Ambulance Corp and went to Italian Front.

In the war he was injured and sent home. As he was reporter he observed closely from the soldiers’ point of view. While recuperating he wrote the novel “Farewell to Arms”. That made him very famous. The novel is still very famous all over the world. As this novel was based on the his raw experience later on he wrote many novels that were based on his experiences. His image as the writer of reality and adventurer became iconic for the American and other later writers.

Many of his novels were made into films and he became popular as the great writer of the Hollywood. Most of these films became very popular. To get the part in “For Whom the Bell Tolls” Ingrid Bergman was told by the director and producer to go and see Hemingway for a week or so. Most of his novels have become classic literature and studied in the American Universities.

Most of his life he travelled many parts of the world and wrote novels and nonfiction works. He had a permanent residence in Key West, Florida. In his old age he lived in Cuba and his novel “The Old Man and the Sea”. That won him the Noble Prize for literature. When he travelled all over the world often the death followed him. Inside he was a very lonely man and suffered from the bouts of depressions. His four marriages tell us that he was not happy with himself though he created an image of Balzac type macho man. His last residence was in Ketchum, Idaho where he killed himself with his rifle on July 2, 1961. Some say that it was an accident happened while he was cleaning the gun. Some say his short long story “The Old Man and the Sea” is his autobiography.


Sasha Dee’s poem is written on both the Old Man of the Sea and Erenst Hemingway.

The Old Man of the Sea

By Sasha Dee

Santiago, the old man of the sea

Lies in his squeaking bed on his back

And dreams a dream of

A big fish he has to catch

But the dreams on dreams

Are empty pots that make loud noises

As his rickety bed that moans

When he changes to his side

Or he sits up fidgety and has a bout of coughs

Every morning with his line and hook

Fish knife, box of baits and sharp harpoon

He sails in his dinghy with a fresh dream

Returns at sun set, blank with his nightmare

Days pass and he rambles on the sandy shore

Santiago the aged Cuban craves for a mirage

On the fishing Island of a small village

Forlorn, outcaste becomes a laughing stock

In the evening Manolin, the young boy

His tyro brings him hot coffee and a chat

Tells the wonderful stories of baseball,

DiMaggio the champion to uplift his spirit

Eighty four days and Santiago has not

Scored a single goal with his big delusion

His body slightly bent his sinews and muscles

Hung around his arms he looks older and a goner

On the eighty-fifth day he threw down his hook

Baited, deep down in many fathoms, no sooner

Than a few seconds he feels the tug and knows

With one more pull and his vision has come home

Then there happened a great tug of war

Between the fish called marlin as huge

As his small ship, with a very long snout

Taking his skiff for a ride with high speed

The old man with all his knacks of fisherman

Started looping his line slowly around the mast

The fish not giving up his muscle and might

Splashed the blows from side to side to the boat

The fish dangerously roamed round the dinghy

Like the lightening in a moment seen here and there

Under the rudder, at the end or in the front brow

The old man rushed around, losing his balance

With his harpoon madly missing his moving goal

He made a new harpoon with his fish knife, aimed

And got the devil in his eye the fish dead bleeding

The old warrior tied the monster on the side of the skiff

Started homeward bound with the laughing sun in his eyes

But the bleeding fish left the trail of the scent of blood

And soon the sharks started chasing the boat from all sides

With nothing but his knife harpoon and a piece of wood

Santiago gave a battle for his life and for his prized catch

But the sharks got plenty of bites of marlin

Leaving it just a skeleton dangling when

The old man reached the shore and got a hero’s welcome

But all he wanted was to go to sleep, a long sleep, soft silken  sleep.


Finding Nemo

Jules Verne

He was born in 1828 and died in 1905 in a French bourgeois family. His father was a successful lawyer and wanted his son to follow the legal profession. He was a bourgeoisie and lived in the walled city and became an obstacle in the progress of his children.

But right from childhood Jules mind was occupied with sea, sky and vast earth with different landscape. He went on doing researches into these areas and acquired vast knowledge. The publisher Pierre Hetzel who encouraged him to write fictions based on his researched work.

The result was Verne produced novels after novels like Journey to the Centre of the Earth, Twenty Thousands Leagues under the Sea, Around the world in Eighty Days etc, These novels became hugely popular. But critiques of the French literature put them in the category of “Children’s Fiction.

In France at that time Victor Hugo, Dumas and many writers and poets were very famous. And historically the writers should make people think and Children’s literature only entertain the children. But some people changed their mind and his novels became much talked about the subject and he was elevated to a great writer. He won most of the awards other great writes were given.
It is recent thinking that the so called Sci-Fi literature contains more than just an imagination of another planet or place where strange animals or people live. Many say through these fictions there are criticism of time presen
His one novel “Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea” became more famous than his other novels. It is about one Mr Nemo who is a captain of the submarine ship and knows science very well. His ship travels around the world staying under water. By doing he creates a myth that his boat is invincible and is a kind of sea creature that kills human beings and their cities
In fact he suffers from many mental health issues and that cause him become suicidal. The novel was written in 1869 and in his light we see many historical characters in twentieth and twenty first century.

Sasha Dee’s poem is written to explore in poetry our fear of this phenomenon.

Finding Nemo

by Sasha Dee


“Is it a giant squid?

Is it an oversize Octopus?

Is it a gigantic Shark that

Is destroying our naval ships?”


Said the most powerful man on the earth

The American President,

“Find it and destroy it, roots, branches and tentacles

We found our vessel

A Frigate called “Abraham Lincoln”

Raised high up, tossed in the air and sunken

From the back of an enormous

Shark-shaped, turtle-shelled “thing”

Soon we knew that it was

A kind of steel-shelled craft-

A submarine, an underwater yacht

Our ship was lying in pieces

Floating on the side of the Ship-shark,

A trap door on the side of it unlocked

And we were precipitated in, in front

Of a Man called Captain Nemo

He called his strange but powerful

And invincible contraption as “Nautilus”

Actually it was like the Polyphemus Odysseus

Nemo me impune lacessit- one of the many mottos

No man” attacks me with Impunity”

Nemo indeed was “no-man”, nowhere man

“With peace on earth”, an incongruous plan

By hiding underwater in a cunning craft

At the touch of it the most iniquitous armada

Would go into spasm and ablaze all around

His ship had a glass observation deck

From which we could watch

The entire ocean around us as a fish bowl

For quaint aquanaut nutty Nemo an aquarium

With wide eyes and hearts in our mouths

We watch jaw dropping, saliva dripping

Oceanic creatures of frightening shapes

Colossal dimensions or a size of Wales

Bivalves, octopus, starfish, sharks, whales

Cutter fish, dogfish, clown fish, blow fish

Sea urchin, conch fish, hermit crabs, clams

Devil’s porpoise, luminous whelks, eels, seals

Corals and vegetations in mountainous heights

From this transparent deck

We watched helplessly

Nemo destroying navies of nations

Who, were warring with each other

Nemo had aquaculture gardens underwater

That grew aromatic food and juicy fruits

And his ship was powered

By eccentric oddball of electric energy

This power acted as a weapon in addition

When attacked by the giant sea monsters

Their electricity would clash Nautilus

Lightening and sparks would fly as if fireworks

We went on finding ancient cities

Cities we never would find like Atlantis.

We travelled 20 Thousands Leagues Under the sea

But eventually got tired, bored and homesick

But that cunning Captain refused to let us go

When in one strategic moment

We were thrown off the ship in excitement

We surfaced on the earth under the blue sky-dome,

There is nothing like a home, sweet home

I wrote down all the exciting account

Awe-inspiring spine-chilling minutes count

Adventures with brave but devilishly mean

Nemo the nowhere man with a plan

For the world peace and prosperity –

One of the many mad dictators in the history

And gave it to the famous writer Jules Verne

Who, reworked it and published it as if it was his own,

Famous writers have their excusable frailties

I’m the one who, underwent escapades

In the undersea aquarium

I’m Monsieur Aronnax,

Professouri, Musè De Paris


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Literature Poems around the May Pole

John Millington Synge

During this month we are presenting the poems of Sasha Dee creatively written on the themes of the International Literatures.

The first is written on the One Act Play Riders to the Sea written by playwright Synge. He was born in 1871 and died in 1909

Synge’s writings are mainly concerned with the world of the Roman Catholic peasants of rural Ireland and with what he saw as the essential paganism of their world view. Synge belonged to the irish literary renaissance and was a founding member of the “Irish National Theatre” along with W.B.Yeats and Lady Gregory.

His writing influenced later Irish writers like Samuel Burckett. His plays were always basic tools of teaching Drama and Theatre in the Drama schools.

In the “Riders to the Sea” Synge subtle way showed natural disasters like the Sea are far too superior to the Catholicism and Irish Folk cultures. This gave the Irish Nationalists at the beginning of the twentieth century a cause for the heavy criticism on his literatures and plays.

The play “Riders to the Sea” presents the cruelty of the sea against the human beings and a mother’s helpless lamenting.

Sasha Dee’s poem cleverly presents lamentation of a mother, might of the sea and also the Irish superstation. This poem is tribute to a great Irish Writer Synge



Riders to the Sea

By Sasha Dee

Maurya’s Lamentation:

The sea has no heart but just a huge dark hole!

A mother’s spirit will not be able to R.I.P.

On Cyningdõm day, angels will abandon my soul

One Daughter:
Mum they say, “they see an eerie banshee!

Always wandering around on the sea

Struggling to reach the shore but drowning!”


Whenever the wretched devil is roaring,
Bartley, be wary, hear, do not go to the seas

A mother’s heart is already torn to pieces

Her five sons, the ogre sea has eaten alive

All my sons! Months of care and love I gave
Your father and his father too were wasted:

The sea has no heart but just a huge dark hole

A mother’s spirit will not be able to R.I.P.

Cyningdõm day, angels will abandon my soul

Daughters’ agaony:

Mum they found a cadaver on the seashore actual

Bartley went to sell the horse ’cause we’d no victuals





This is the Ms of the Globe poems written and read at the Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre on 8th December 2016

PS. Readers should send their comments in the comments column at the end of this column. If comments sent elsewhere they will be put in the rubbish bins.

A Tale for the Winter

Participants Poets are from the CoolTan Arts.

They are:

Sasha Dee

Gary Stevens

Charlie Browne


Brian Ring

All the poetry is done in the workshops of the CoolTan Arts for three months in advance.

The title “A Tale for the “Winter” is pun on the Shakespearean play “A Winter’s Tale”

Winter wind, winter wind

Thou art one of a kind

You come once a year

And put all of us in fear

Your whirl, your twirl and curl

Your ice cold sharp flow

Freezes us and away throw us

Walking in the garden blow us


This Green and Pleasant Land

Is no longer green

We are gripped in the white nightmare of winter

It’s time of the year where your fingers are frozen and noses are red

Jack Frost is hiding in the shadow,

December, oh what have you done to us?


Feeling cold, miserable too?

Hands are shaking,

Should be joyous time?

But now going blue!

Knew I shouldn’t have tried

To make a snowman!

In the state I’m in,

With my Doctor’s recommendations

Winter could be festive,

Winter should be fun

Not keeling over waiting for the ambulance to come?

I was freezing as a winter boy!

I didn’t even have a favourite toy,

I didn’t even know what winter was.

There was not heat for lack,

Or because, this thing came

Once in a year

And all it promised us was fear

After the stinging heat wave

In the tail end of the summer

Here come the icy cold fingers

When the streets are full of

Holiday shoppers

Hurriedly walking away

Trying to escape from

The cold winter wind!

Clearly the weather is cold!

Will I think to make so bold?

The frost time is so bitter!

The snow lies down like litter

The day-lights are numbered and short!

And the weather cold, with us does sport!!

But then a lone birdie chirps

Flutters across through the darkness

A dog barks,

A child yells;

And as a ray of light punctures

The balloon of thick doomed darkness

Suddenly there are so many jolly human utterances!

Sun rays beam

Past dark clouds

A smiling face in the distance

“Touch is important in the cold!”

Two faces cheek to cheek!

Your breath leaves your body

And you can see it!

But what I hear

Is a winter song

In the crisp white bright sky;

Appearing in the depths of fluffy white clouds

“Rub my eyes!”

Can’t believe what I see

Father winter

With a bottle of winter happiness!

Coming just for me!

Oh what a tonic!!

With some gin of course!

For winter wouldn’t be winter!

Without wind, song and snow!

And happy thoughts!

Winter is at the door now

Hollies and Ivies ever green

Welcome us with ever grin
SASHA: Winter cards!

CHARLIE: Winter games!

SASHA: Winter drinks!

CHARLIE: Winter foods!

SASHA: Winter parties!

CHARLIE: Winter Walks!

Winter in London is a beautiful time of year!

Tall buildings bright shining lights!

The Shard- a space age Christmas Tree without baubles!

The GPO Tower a stalagmite on the frozen ground!

A Time of excitement for children!

People wrapped in fur and wearing mittens!

Skating on the Thames

Whiles the ice thickens

Not the South Pole but Southwark!

You think winter has its drawback?

But there are times when it does not lack

It’s when people can have a happy time!

When the words of the poet can rhyme!

SASHA: Roast Turky!

CHARLIE: Roast potatoes!

GARY: Roast chestnuts!

BRIAN: Boiled sprouts!

SASHA: Boiled Carrots!

CHARLIE: And sizzling crackles!
BRIAN: Seasons spirit everywhere!

SASHA: All are in singings mood!

CHARLIE: Of noisy nights!

GARY: And silent nights!

BRIAN: Of bubbling joys!

SASHA: And Bubbling wine!
GARY: For Winter is coming

 A Merry Winter to you!

And a Happy new year!


CoolTan Poets Perform at the Globe

The CoolTan Poets perform

at the

Shakespeare’s Globe

On 8th December 2016


The Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre annually has an event called Winter Concert. Last few years this event has become very popular.

The participants in this Event are by Invitation only. A number of schools in London Town and a few selected private music promotional groups participate in this event.

Each organisation presents a short musical programme. The total concert is about one hour in the first week of December.

.Two years ago the CoolTan Arts was invited to present a poetry Reading on the Theme of London. And the CoolTan presented a poetry Collage on War time London called “Southwark Calling”. It was short and smart and was very well presented by the “CoolTan Poetry Group called “Poetree”.

In the year 2016 the theme was “winter”. So far the poets had done their writing work and got used to the production. An expert from the Globe Theatre visited the group and helped the poets to plot down the words and how to say them at the Globe Theatre.

An expert art handicraft tutor called Amber helped them to produce artwork to take with them when they visited the Shakespeare’s Globe.

Their regular Tutor Kai oversaw that the work was well rehearsed.

The date of the “Winter Concert” was on November 8th at 02.00 P.M. at the Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, on the South Bank.


Some images of the performance of the “Poetree” Group called “A Tale for the Winter”


From Left to Right

Charlie Browne, Sasha Dee Gary Stevens and Brian Ring

Sasha Dee and Gary Stevens at a verbal bout


Gary Stevens tells the audience how the new Arty architects look like

Brian Rings remembers the childhood in the post war II winter

Poetree Group on the Globe Stage seen from the rear


The “Poetree Group with the tutors Amber (left) and Kari (right) outside the globe

Charlie Browne shows the “MS of “A Tale of Winter made in the style of the Shakespearean Manuscripts.


Photography by Cesare Di Giglio.

Coming next month the Poems from “A Tale for the Winter”