Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Buy Some Milk

The piece of paper found inside
his heart was folded seven times.

We wondered at its mystery;
considered it a miracle.

Entrusted with this modern relic,
we contemplated wisdom’s reach.

But what we would have thought at reading
Buy some milk, I cannot say.

Sunday, 25 May 2014


If you removed the clock to take
its batteries out (or simply took
a hammer to its inner workings)
it would, the cliché states, be able
to tell the time correctly twice
a day; but where’s the fun in that?

Remove, remove, remove the clock!

Let’s say that you’ve removed the clock.
Graffiti circles on the wall
and fill each one with question marks.
No matter that you cannot tell
the time, not even once a day,
a question mark is always right.

Saturday, 24 May 2014


Apple have announced the latest must-have gadget: a shark.

“People are fed up with stupid little bits of plastic with a million things you could never possibly need. It’s time to get real,” explained new CEO, Man with Beard, “and they don’t come any more real than a shark. Just ask someone who’s been attacked by one.”

He went on to explain that the average life-span of an iphone these days was “only marginally longer than that of an ant.” At current rates, he said, Apple will eventually release a new iphone every seven minutes. To counteract this, they have come up with the new Apple Shark. “Sharks have been around for millions of years showing a far greater capacity for longevity than the iphone.”

Not everyone is impressed, though. Former Cornish international cricket star, Shane Brisbane, was very disappointed with the new shark. “It can’t even pour a pretend pint for me to pretend to drink. How shit is that?”


[The first person I knew with an iphone showed me how I could ‘pour’ a ‘virtual pint’ and then pretend to drink it. The second person I knew to own an iphone showed me exactly the same thing.]

Thursday, 22 May 2014

The Benefits of Boredom

“The sky was English sky that day:
A patchwork stitched from drizzled grey.”

With nothing else to do, we spent
all day riding different sound waves.
We started on a single note,
a C, to see if C-waves were
the same, in any way, as sea-waves.
They weren’t. We braved a leitmotif
and used it like a rollercoaster.
We surfed on awkward intervals:
augmented fifth; diminished fourth;
precipitously-balanced seventh.
Then, quite exhausted by the speed,
a silent wave of avant-gard
allowed us all to catch our thoughts.

Sunday, 18 May 2014


The “Variations on a Theme of Sound
Effects to Signify a Pratfall in
Tom and Jerry” is playing on a loop.
Or maybe it’s a skylark. Looking up
to scan the sky for signs of televisions
tuned in to Cartoon Network, all I notice
are clouds. I stare at one awhile to see if
it changes shape into a television.
This fails to happen, so I search the heavens
instead for evidence of skylark. None.
I stand and scour the sky and wonder how
this bird cannot be seen when there it is,
as obvious as laughter in a classroom;
as obvious as skylarks in the sky.

Saturday, 17 May 2014


I kick the grass to make a clearer path
for me to walk along, and as I kick,
I see a butterfly, held prisoner by
a flop of grass. I use my foot to move
the grass to help the butterfly escape,
but when its path is clear to fly to freedom,
it stops flapping and bares defiant wings
in mute disregard of my mercy mission.
A butterfly that’s brave enough to try
and scare a man away deserves respect.


The reader might be bored or unimpressed,
or reading this at somebody’s behest,
a stranger to the wiles of Mistress Verse;
whose first response to poetry is terse;
who fears the shame of not quite understanding;
who fears that poetry is too demanding,
yet somehow dull and lifeless too. He might
(or ‘she’ if girl you are) be more than right
to say that poetry’s just silly stuff;
to say that ten lines constitutes ‘enough’.

Saturday, 10 May 2014

“that joke isn’t funny anymore”

talking of clichés
you spin
in circles
all your life
round and round and round
getting track 1, side two, meat is murder
and still making
obscure references
to johnny marr

you missed
your first milestone:
too busy
to notice
that you had turned
turned turned

and of course
that joke isn’t funny anymore
spinning more
for less
and not looking forward
to the next milestone
we used to use 78s
as frisbees