“An aged man is but a paltry thing,
A tattered coat upon a stick, unless
Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing
For every tatter in its mortal dress,

WB Yeats

Donal Thompson was born into an Irish family in England in 1961. He survived an Irish Christian Brothers education for 10 years before going to Liverpool University to read politics and jumping ship sharpish to study drama at Manchester University.

He has worked as a petrol station cashier, a ticket collector for wrestling bouts, a postman, a waiter, an actor, a director, a musician, a special events organiser, a crafts centre manager, a tour guide, a scriptwriter, a videographer, an executive editor and even the minder of a Coronation Street star.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is hilda-673x1024.jpg

In the 90s he won the BBC Alfred Bradley bursary for some poems and scarpered to the Basque Country where he taught English and sang in an Irish band.

He now lives in a secret house called Angelswood in the mountains of Madrid where he runs his own online English business, plays music and writes.