Normal Service may be restored shortly.

What an enormous and farcical and devastating cock-up this country has visited upon itself! It is literally unbelievable, and it makes one believe that Churchill was right:

The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.

I’ve been having a lot of those five-minute conversations over the last three months, heading out through Teesdale with a trusty band of Labour Party activists, both under our own banner and with the “Stronger IN” campaign. And I can say we met some astonishing reasons to be tearful along the way. We are gutted. We did all we could and it wasn’t enough.

So I am sorry – I have not yet read all the entries to the Fledgling Award. I need to get to it this week and send my top ten to Martin Figura for judging. I thank you for your understanding. Some lovely work has come in so far, my Poets of a Certain Age.

Meanwhile, if this referendum hasn’t given you a prompt to write to, I’d be gobsmacked. So send me a few gems to express your thoughts on that hopeful world we are looking for, and we will get them on the Nest. I expect many of you are looking for rhymes for Boris.

Meanwhile I can’t take my eyes off Twitter. I keep meaning to turn my writing blog at into a political blogging site. But does the world really need another political blogger? Besides, I am not as cute as Owen Jones.

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