Be here now: reflections from Provincetown


‘The season’s over now’, said the flight attendant as we were about to board the Silver Line to Seaport Boulevard on our arrival in Boston in late September last year. ‘But if you want to party you should definitely try the Tea Dance at the Boatslip Beach Club’. We were heading to Provincetown, on Cape […]
What’s left? Nowness and the next phase


More than forty years ago our car pulled into the drive at home after a holiday in north Wales. We couldn't have been away for more than a couple of weeks but it seemed an age since we’d been there. Time lasted longer in childhood. It was an ending of sorts, of the holidays, of […]
Shortening days, lengthening reflections — and Settling Up


Just a week to go until the shortest day and winter’s beginning. Somehow, though the year stumbles on for another ten days, for me, it’s the winter solstice that marks its finale. I’m no pagan. In a fragile world, I cling onto my Christian faith, against the odds. For all the fairy lights that bedeck […]
Notre Dame – ‘the heartbeat of our story’


‘The heartbeat of our story’, said Archbishop Vincent Nichols on the radio this morning. He’s right. And it’s why, for a moment last night, my heart stopped and then felt broken. The unmistakable image of Notre Dame on my Twitter feed, caught in a casual glance at the screen when I should have been looking […]
‘It’s A Sin’ was so much more than a TV show — a year on, I carry it in my heart


In the dead of night over Christmas 1988, I became aware that hardly any of my fingernails had a lunula. I was 27. Until that very moment, their absence had completely passed me by. A lunula is the half-moon shape at the base of your nail, just above the cuticle. The realisation came as I […]
My mother and me: on making sense of lifetimes lived and the one I never had


‘I think, like me, you have had quite a few lifetimes,’ remarked an old friend after we met up recently for the first time in more than 20 years. I have reflected on that message in the run up to today, the first anniversary of the day I learned my mother had died. My friend […]
On the death of a remarkable woman – in memory of Marie Buckley


Scarcely anyone reading this will have heard of Marie Buckley who has died aged 86. Yet she was, by any measure, a remarkable woman. And although I had not seen her for many years, she was also one of the most significant people in my life. Marie was my late partner, Lawrence’s mum. If you […]
Equal marriage: the time for debate is over — in 2024 we must kick-start progress to shore up hard won rights


When (if ever) is it reasonable to argue that the debate is over? As 2022 ended, this was a question with which I had long grappled. And for me, as a gay man, it is a question which has always been personal and political. As the rallying cry sounded out back in the day, the […]
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