Douglas Clark's Home Page

Introduction

This is my home page. My name is Douglas Clark. I live in the English city of Bath. I am an Anglo-Scot. I am retired from work in computing and statistics, having been made redundant in 1993 at the age of 50. I worked at Bath University for twenty years, ten years being on fabulous Multics, and remain a Fellow of The Royal Statistical Society. My health, both mental and physical, has never been good and my life has been troubled. This is my confessional poem. Here is a photo sequence of me over forty years.

For my 65th birthday I designed a pamphlet of Love Poems which I developed into a book being the final publication of my Benjamin Press on 1 May 2008. The book anthologises work from all my publications.

I have a Facebook entry at http://www.facebook.com/dgdclynx

I have a MySpace page at http://www.myspace.com/dgdclynx

I created a Wikipedia page for myself at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Douglas_Clark

Health

The drugs that have kept me alive for over twentyfive years have been flupenthixol to prevent schizophrenia, hydroxycarbamide to control polycythaemia, and warfarin to prevent blood clots. Luckily I have not noticed any serious side effects avoiding Parkinsonism from depixol. Although my creativity has vanished but that may be due to age.

I also take atenolol and losartan for my blood pressure and omeprazole for my hiatus hernia and resultant Barratt's oesophagus.

Poetry

I am a published poet in the little magazines and self-publish my own books with my Benjamin Press. My first set of books `The Horseman Trilogy' comprises four books with an additional pamphlet. The second set of books commenced with the `Selected Poems' published in 1995. The `Cat Poems' pamphlet was published in 1997. The University of Salzburg published `Wounds' in 1997 for completion. A `Kitten Poems' pamphlet was published in 2002. For my sixtieth birthday I designed a final pamphlet `Alive' which was published together with the current selection of my poems as the book Finality in 2005. Anny Ballardini, curator of Poets' Corner at Fieralingue, made an alternative selection of my poetry. A compilation of my Durham Poems was published by Arrowhead Press in 2005. The Love Poems anthology taken from my published books came as the final publication of my Benjamin Press in 2008. My current active poetry file can be read.

The cover graphics of my publications may be viewed. A current selection of my poetry is available.

In 1995 I was anthologised for the first and probably only time. Although in 2000 my poem `Coffin' from `Wounds' was included in a Nepalese English selection.

My life and my poetry have been a schizophrenic aberration. I wanted to write a great poem. I tried my best. Now it is over. But, in retrospect, there is no doubt I have been very lucky in life.

Occupations

For ten years I did voluntary admin work in a Citizens Advice Bureau at Midsomer Norton in North East Somerset and also for three years scanned the museum of the Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution for its website, a job that seems to be completed, to keep my brain ticking over. Drudgery can be very good for you. But now I am idle. I have written a little piece on my life in Bath. I have done research on my mother's family history, the Pettigrews on the Web and on my father's family history, the Clarks.

I am very keen on folk music, about the only music I dont collect is jazz, and, with others, I have produced a Dick Gaughan Discography, the famous Scottish folk singer. I have collated The Dubliners Discography and I have an earlier version of A Corries Discography on which I worked, the latest version is linked for convenience.

I ran a magazine of critical articles on poetry on the Web for three years Lynx: Poetry from Bath, including British and Irish Poetry Sites. There were fifteen issues. All contributions are available in the archive which is easily accessible.

I also carry the Long Poem Group Newsletter.

I have installed the well-known English poets:

selection of their poems. Most of these poets are from Bath.

Fred Beake's remarkable long poem Towards The West is also available.

I have installed the young German poet Beate Balzer's poems.

My own poetry is all contained in Douglas Clark's poems.

I have edited a selection of Robert Burns' poems and songs, including a piece of bawdy.

The workings of The Benjamin Press are described. This is my own little publishing house.

List of URLs worth connecting to.

Statistics

Here are the statistics for the years this Webspace was at Bath University, where I had an external account for exactly ten years it being abruptly terminated at four weeks notice moving me to PlusNet and losing my Web readership:

Analysing the data for the seven full years showed that my poems had an estimated readership of 941 readings per month, whereas Robert Burns had 2741 readings per month. This meant that every 47 minutes someone somewhere in the world started reading poems of mine, whereas Robert Burns had a fresh reading every 16 minutes. Robert Burns' readership was on the increase, whereas mine was static apart from the `Cat Poems'. The number of serious readers involved was probably about 4,000-6,000 per year for Robert Burns and half of that for me.

In the year up to the end of June 1996 there were 13,449 hits for the Webspace, with over 1,500 readings of my own poems.

In the year up to the end of June 1997 there were 61,831 hits for the Webspace, with over 11,000 readings of my own poems.

In the year up to the end of June 1998 there were 117,989 hits for the Webspace, with over 18,000 readings of my own poems.

In the year up to the end of June 1999 there were 137,052 hits for the Webspace, with over 26,000 readings of Robert Burns' poems.

In the year up to the end of June 2000 there were 216,680 hits for the Webspace, with nearly 43,000 readings of Robert Burns' poems.

In the year up to the end of June 2001 there were 267,666 hits for the Webspace, with over 53,000 readings of Robert Burns' poems.

In the year up to the end of June 2002 there were 259,774 hits for the Webspace, with over 60,000 readings of Robert Burns' poems.

In the nine months up to the end of March 2003 there were 208,832 hits for the Webspace, with over 44,000 readings of Robert Burns' poems.

My `Cat Poems' reached 19,126 readings and the `Lynx' magazine 37,155 readings (For every one of these people coming in the front door there were 10 hits on texts). The Dubliners Discography reached 59,941 readings. These readings were over all the years they were available.

The record for poem most read in a month was Robert Burns' `Auld Lang Syne' with 9,397 readings in December, 1999.

In the life of the Webspace at Bath University there were 1,283,273 hits with 248,290 readings of Robert Burns' poems.


In the intial transition year at PlusNet until the end of March 2004 there were 140,559 hits. [Around 22,000 of these hits were by the robots of the Search Engines. There were around 20 hits/day from bots with an average of 3 hits each.] A reduction of half in readership after losing the cachet of a University site and having to re-establish on the Search Engines. Most incoming links were not reset despite requests. Robert Burns and The Dubliners lost their favoured positions on Google losing considerable readership.

In the year up to the end of March 2005 there were 233,464 hits for the Webspace. The number of hits seemed to be settling down at a figure about 10% below that at Bath University, excluding the effect of Robert Burns. [Around 59,000 of these hits were by robots of the Search Engines. There were around 37 hits/day from bots with an average of 4.4 hits each.] The actual readership was down by a third compared with Bath University.

In the year up to the end of March 2006 there were 195,402 hits for the Webspace. [Around 84,000 of these hits were by robots of the Search Engines. There were around 46 hits/day from bots with an average of 5 hits each.] Google's Bourbon update at the end of May 2005 caused massive loss of positions in the listings which have never been recovered. Hits, excluding those by robots, were down by around a third. The result is that the Webspace is getting under half the hits it got when it was at Bath University, excluding those by robots and including the Robert Burns effect. As a rule of thumb the number of readership hits has gone from 720 hits/day at Bath University to 480 hits/day at PlusNet pre-Bourbon to a current 320 hits/day.

In the year up to the end of March 2007 there were 271,656 hits for the Webspace. [ Around 143,000 of these hits were by robots of the Search Engines. There were around 87 hits/day from bots with an average of 4.5 hits each.] There are more hits by Search Engines now than there are by actual readers. The readership has risen by 25% to 350 hits/day from the situation after Google's Bourbon update. Considering the almost invisibility of the Webspace in the Google listings this is quite remarkable and must reflect the significant growth of the Internet. But the number of readers' hits/day is still less than half what was received when the Webspace was at Bath University.

In the year up to the end of March 2008 there were 243,754 hits for the Webspace. [ Around 130,000 of these hits were by robots of the Search Engines. There were around 77 hits/day from bots with an average of 4.6 hits each.] The actual readership was 311 hits/day which was a drop from the previous year probably caused by slackening interest in the content and its poor positioning on the Google listings.

In the year up to the end of March 2009 there were 219,597 hits for the Webspace. [ Around 125,000 of these hits were by robots of the Search Engines. There were around 68 hits/day from bots with an average of 5.0 hits each.] The actual readership was 260 hits/day which continued the sad decline since 2007.

In the year up to the end of March 2010 there were 202,827 hits for the Webspace [ Around 128,000 of these hits were by robots of the Search Engines. There were around 58 hits/day from bots with an average of 6.0 hits each.] The actual readership was 204 hits/day which continued the sad decline.

The Robert Burns effect was the upsurge in hits which took place in December and January due to Hogmanay and Burns Night when the Webspace was at Bath University.

My `Cat Poems' have now reached 32,518 readings and the `Lynx' magazine 59,902 readings. The Dubliners Discography reached 77,171 readings.

Caveats about underestimation due to cacheing apply to all statistics.

Contact

If you have any comments on this Webspace please let me, Douglas Clark, know.

Douglas Clark /Douglas Clark's Home Page/ Benjamin Press, 69 Hillcrest Drive, Bath BA2 1HD, UK/ d.g.d.clark@dgdclynx.plus.com