Saturday, 30 November 2013

Hardly Any Teeth

When Little Lucinda Belinda By ‘Eck Bananas* was borned, her stewid Dad creaked, “Doorknobs, Betty, our bairn’s not hardly got any teeth in her face at all. Now, what am you made of that, eh?”
   She blamed him family full square and no mistake. “Your Ma’s a toothless old second-hand sofa, Steve. It’s all your flat our daughter has faulty jeans!” And so slaying, Betty wept the titter beers of a gret.
   “Shut up, you!” said a person. “One day she am have a bairn of her own, and what then, eh?” They all stood in silent conflagration at this thoughts.
   “Not now she won’t,” said Granpa, as he threw the baby out of the window. “We don’t want your sort round here.” And they all cheered loudly, but not before.

* Her family am a posh one, so she would lots of words in she name.

Never Kick a Man When He's Down...

...only kick a man when he’s standing,
And, if you really are going to kick him, do the decent thing and
    make sure that he has a soft landing.
Whilst on the subject of kicking men, I would advise that you kick a
    man who is not only standing up (obviously), but who is also articulate, 
    artistic, and sensitive,
As opposed to a 15-stone truck driver who is standing up (ditto), but
    drunk, violent, and extremely argumentative.
With the former, you have every chance of walking away victorious,
With the latter, you are likely to sustain a multitude of blows most
Of course, there are exceptions to every rule, and there is one
    exception when you must kick a man when he’s down,
Yes, go for all the kicking you like with gay abandon and gusto
    if you ever come across the reclined figure of a man who happens
    to be a clown.
Such a person is probably mentally sick,
And in need of a good kick. 

Saturday, 23 November 2013


Reflecting on words I never spoke –
Real or imagined, solemn or joke –
   My mind is stirred once more,
By the madness that absence always brings:
It dances foul and shrilly sings,
   Like symphonies at war.

Discordantly drowning in minor keys,
The size of the sky and the Seven Seas,
   And all that’s in between,
While answers we seek remain unsaid,
To chance every day until it’s dead,
   In ignorance obscene.

Fill every beat from one to ten,
Breathe from the heart with loaded pen:
   The loss of love life calls.
Stand with your back behind the breeze,
Silent as gaps between the trees;
   Unnoticed, sadness falls.

Friday, 22 November 2013

Rallying Cry

Call for the generals, the guards and the gaolers,
   Call for the scrupulous crooks,
Call for the Febergé asthma inhalers,
   Call for the unwritten books.
      Sing to the crowd,
      “I’ll not be cowed!”
Make your pronouncements unreasonably loud.

Call for the cavalry riding on goats,
   Call for the times we forgot,
Call for the Admiralty’s half-sunken boats,
   Call for the things that are not.
      Wave at them now,
      Give them a bow,
Turn on your heels before saying, “Ciao!”

Call for the mysteries none can unravel,
   Riddles both unwise and vain:
Ageing quite badly, unsuited to travel,
   By time, or by space, or by train.
      Look at them go,
      As uphill they flow,
Thinking they’re “Yes!” when really they’re “…no”.

Call for the terrible silence eternal,
   Call for the soil on your head,
Call for the loss of protection paternal,
   Call for yourself when you’re dead.
      See what is done,
      When you wipe out the sun:
Memories weaken then fade one-by-one.

Sunday, 10 November 2013


“All a poet can do today is warn” (Wilfred Owen)

A shame we never listened to that poet
who drank the poisoned well of human feeling;
who fell into the field of wounds and bled.

The soldier: now, the victim, not the hero;
who's led to die in men-filled abattoirs
the size of towns; worth less than condemned meat.

Sing out! Sing out! Sing out! You Hymns of Hate!
You half-rhymed words of warning! Tell the men
who fight: you are the enemy you kill.

The final insult to The Dead. We fight;
we maim; we kill: as if you never died.
As young men’s years are all undone. Again.

Saturday, 9 November 2013

NCT Barbecue

“And what do you do?” my wife had asked the Mousey-Looking Husband of a friend who happened to be standing next to her in our small group of mainly strangers at the NCT barbecue.
   “If I told you, I’d have to kill you,” replied Mousey-Looking.
   “Looks like we’ll have to guess, then,” I said to my wife, whose face didn’t so much fall as run to the nearest cliff-top and leap. “It’s okay,” I explained to the assembled group, “my grandfather worked for the intelligence services and he told me that as long as people guessed his work and he didn’t actually tell them, then he didn’t have to kill them.” However, before I had a chance to play my little guessing game, my wife had turned to the Inexplicably Smug-yet-Unattractive-Looking husband of another NCT friend.
   “And what is it you do?” she asked.
   “If I told you, I’d have to kill you,” replied Inexplicably Smug-yet-Unattractive-Looking, smiling conspiratorially, and smugly, at Mousey-Looking.
  By way of diversion, and possibly in an attempt to lighten the mood, Someone’s Wife asked me, “And what do you do, Fergus?” Tempted though I was to say “If I told you, I’d have to kill you” I didn’t, but I was loath to tell her that I was an undercover Islamist working on a new vest design for Al-Qa’eda. Instead, I turned to Mousey and Smug. 
   “If I told you, you’d have to kill me.”