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About Paul

Paul is a person who has always been driven by ideas and a hunger to understand both the natural and human worlds. A precocious reader, he came to love both literature and history as a child and started reading major political biographies - such as those of Stalin, De Gaulle and Mao - when only eleven years old. But he was enchanted by J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings from the age of ten and it fired his imagination in terms of poetry, languages, time and the idea of the wholeness of a world. These things have motivated both his studies and his writings now for half a century.

Among the films he most loves is David Lean's Doctor Zhivago, first seen in 1975. In it, we are told that Yury Zhivago made his reputation as a poet while studying medicine and said that poetry was no more of a vocation than good health: what he needed was a job. Paul long felt the same way and worked as an intelligence analyst and consultant for many years. But under the influence of his muse and partner (and having fought off a long challenge from cancer) he has come in recent years to see writing, including the writing of poetry, as his true vocation. The projects he is now engaged with are the most imaginative and creative of his life so far and updates about them will appear on this website at intervals over the next few years.

If you'd like to know more about his grappling with the cancer challenge, see the essay he wrote in early 2019 in the Essays section: Cancer, Science and Society. It was read by the whole board of the Peter McCallum Comprehensive Cancer Centre on its publication and tells a remarkable story.