Saturday, 30 April 2011

Second Hand Love

“Give her my love,” you said.
But why should I?
Why don’t you do it yourself?
And what if I don’t?

Perhaps I will do it less sincerely than you would have,
Is it the visceral love that cannot bear separation,
The careless love of complacency,
Or a tender love that endures all?

Is this a love that you would entrust to another
Or a precious love
An unique love
That only you can know?

Maybe you should make time
To let her know that you
Unquestionably, unconditionally and unreservedly
Love her? And you always will.

Maybe we all should.
“Ok then, I will”

You Don't Normally See

Trees growing in full bloom in Westminster Abbey
Policemen with white gloves
Trumpets with flags under them
(Well trumpets at all, actually)
Or streets with no traffic

Crowds waiting patiently for a fleeting glimpse
People singing hymns
Waving flags cheering a kiss
Victoria Beckham travelling by bus
Pavements packed at dawn

Possibly the entire Royal Air Force in the sky
More hats than you had ever believed
Had been created
Prime Ministers overlooked
And ceremonial uniforms

But that depends upon what you are looking for
Doesn’t it?

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

To Whom it May Concern

(Upon the occasion of Godrej and Boyce of Mumbai announcing the closure of the world’s last remaining typewriter factory- 27/4/11)

And so the typewriter is no more
No longer will paper yield to the imprint of keys
It's carriage has passed the point of no return

A Tippex bottle will forever remain unopened
New lines will no longer be celebrated by a ring
Nor pressing correspondence be accompanied by machine gun rattle

The pool lies empty
A lineage of Olivetti, Imperial at an end
But 134 years have left an indelible impression

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Miss Perfect

Her wardrobe was perfectly arranged
Clothes precisely by colour and type
Material shape size and season
Crisp fresh and so lovingly laundered
At the bottom shoes ascended in
A triumph of organisation.

From lowly sensible flats
Up to dizzying high heels
Fine delicate straps neatly
Clasped, sandals mules courts and T’s
In dazzling symmetry

I threw my clothes down to the floor.

Monday, 25 April 2011

Chance Meeting

Her freshly coiffured hair
Stopped me in mid pace
Perfect make –up, flawless face

Her skirt sat crisply upon her hips,
Her blouse floated gently down
Her shapely legs swished, smooth, sharp and sheer

And I thought that I saw a strap, thin and taut
Perhaps a bow, I am not sure
And a glimpse of lace, momentarily, then gone.

It was a back zip you know, with button fastening
And a kick split
It finished just above the knee

But the crowd engulfed her
In a sea of grey
Until the next day

Fresh Toast

White or brown
Granary or wholemeal
Crust or slice

Toasted or grilled
Light or browned
Maybe rotary

Jam or marmalade
Butter or marge
Sometimes honey

Whose heady aroma
And sweet taste

Sunday, 24 April 2011

The Waiting

They sit on my bedroom table
Upon my bookshelves
In the loft
Boxed in my garage

A few part read
Some cursorily considered
Others not even opened
Quite silent

In supine acquiescence
They wait
For curiosity or chance
To end their slumber

Purchases that once seemed wise
Well intended gifts
Chance acquisitions
Flat in supplication.

Words unspoken, ideas untested
Stories untold, all unaired
Victims of my caprice
Or subsequent indifference

Classics, Biographies
Bog books, pulp fiction
Histories all lie victim to my
Ephemeral whim

And yet sometimes
Isn’t the wait, the expectation
The choice
Quite delicious?

The Easter Egg

Small medium or large
Their allure is the same
Oval, hollow, wrapped

Succulent satisfying chocolate
Best slightly cold
Not sticky

The halves can be stuck firm
Denying burgeoning desires
And the first bite

On the inside perhaps
A further treat
Mysterious delight

Sweet Easter gift
Gratefully received
Best before breakfast


From you I have
Learned of births and
Deaths and dying

Your tone never
Faltered your eyes
Never blinked once

Your breath steady
Hands clasped quite still
When blood runs cold

Reflections on a Tidy -Up Prior

Reflections on a Tidy -Up Prior to a
Wife’s Return from a Few Days Away

The Hoover leaves tram marks
Like a freshly mown lawn.
That nozzle attachment is really useful
On stair treads,
Grazing with the persistence
Of an elephant's trunk.

Toilet bowls are surprisingly dirty
When you look close up,
Are there really that many different types of hair?

A grill that has caught fire
When cooking bacon is left unattended
Is astonishingly sooty
Stainless steel kitchen sinks aren’t
Worktops can change colour when wiped
But you just know that there is something you have missed.

Thursday, 21 April 2011

A Question of Belonging

People’s use of apostrophes
Can be random, can’t it?
Whilst others are quite possessive.

Can the Accounts Department
Use the Customer’s Car park
At the farmers market?

Is Kate the new people’s Princess?
Is that the peoples’ wish?

Will she pass the Archbishop’s Palace?
But if he has distinguished visitors will
It be the Archbishops’ Palace?
And how will she know?

Does she believe in pluralism?
Or an abbreviated form?
Or nothing at all?
It’s a question of belonging.

Remote Control

Once when you pressed my buttons
I would change channels at your bidding
Upon your whim

Altering perspective too
From wide to narrow screen
As you wished

Colours changed, pin sharp contrast
Brightness and darkness
With one push

My volume raised, or lowered
Or sometimes muted
At your will

Then one day you pressed
Nothing happened
Control lost

Wednesday, 20 April 2011


We were close
Or so I thought
Before she was famous
We’d say hello
As we’d come and go
It was personal

Facebook with no friends
Is no fun
A lonely place
And I passed the test
I sent a friend request
And Cat Deeley accepted

Cat was doing this
And Cat was doing that
And I was a part of it
Or so it seemed
As Cat’s face beamed
From her avatar

Then one day
I noticed
My friend count was down
The list I checked
But my life was wrecked
By her absence

So I viewed her friends
Brad and George
Kylie and Becks
I saw every face
That had taken my place
And usurped me

It was hard to bear
The rejection
The void
It didn’t seem right
I was celebrity light
But Jordan said yes

Sainsbury's Security Guard

He stood pumpkin like
A goatee beard
Absurdly perched
On his tiny head
His arms flapped
His stomach bulged
His face perspired
And as I picked up
A bottle of wine
I thought
-“He’d never catch me”.

Charity Shop CD

You played me incessantly
Your constant companion
Night and day I was with you
Moving from joyful discovery
Through knowing appreciation
To familiar old friend.
My treble thrilled
My bass shook
My words stroked your soul

And then you discarded me
No longer were the lyrics checked
(You knew them by heart)
The cover art instead of a cerebral puzzle
Became a coffee mat
My place usurped by a younger, newer
Fresher interloper, whose mysteries lay
As yet undiscovered.

That it should come to this
From essential soul mate
To a remote shelf in a Charity Shop
Arbitrarily priced, soon to be discounted
Jammed next to unwanted pulp fiction
Retching from the stale scent of last year’s fashions
Unknown to the well meaning volunteers
Overlooked by the bargain hunters.

Thursday, 14 April 2011


Liz MacDonald
Farewell then Bev
Mother to Steve and Andy (where did he go?)
Wife of jailbird Jim
Proud matriarch
One time Queen of the street
Your abdication has shaken us
To your foundation.

No skirt was too short
No blouse too low.
Your earrings always dangled
Your smile always sparkled
Your advice was always better than your example
We wish (ed) you the happiness
You never quite found.

(Slightly) less brassy than Bet Lynch
(Alot) more glamorous than Annie Walker
The Rovers and the Street will miss
The rap of your heels on cobbled stones ( now gone)
And your humour-
Your reason for Jims tardiness?
“There must have been a hold up.”


Thousands of holes
Cling desperately

Vertical line
Outwardly solid
Yet fragile

They silently cry
Tear here

From you I have
Learned of births and
Deaths and dying

Your tone never
Faltered your eyes
Never blinked once

Your breath steady
Hands clasped quite still
When blood runs cold.

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Words Fail Me

A medium Big Mac Meal
With coke
To eat in please
And that concludes my order

Was that medium or large?
What drink would like with that?
To eat in or take out?
Would you like anything else?

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Haiku's for "Hope" Concert

Swelling waves shatter
Spring’s promise cruelly broken
But buried bulbs wait

Magnitude Nine
Cracked earth cries out loud
Cold coda to winters stare
Silently waiting

Tiny droplets hang
Still crying over spilt milk
A nuclear spring

Sunday, 10 April 2011

RAF Finningley

My bicycle leaned
Against the fence
It had a bell
Just in time
They came

As Mulciber roared
Once so did they
Steel birds of death

They soared by the rage
Of Olympus
With god-like grace
On high

First gear took the strain
Of youthful push
Chain tightening
Wheel turning
Good bye


This was inspired by a true story I heard from the lips of the (foul-mouthed) miscreant

I can’t fucking believe it
The teacher told me to move
For no reason
“I’m not fucking moving” I said
But I was sent to the head
For fuck all
Then they rang my mom
And now I’m grounded too
What am I to do?

Saturday, 9 April 2011


Her middle finger traced a perfect line
Sinking into a moist abyss
Her senses swam her eyes blurred
The always perfect kiss

Moving, rippling tingling cupped
A sensuous solo clinch
The grinding slow gyrating climb
Sweet agony of the pinch

Friday, 8 April 2011


The tracker stoops
Eyes in a narrowed studied stare
Seeking what had passed,
And gone by there
A bruised blade of grass,
Perhaps a cracked twig
The faint imprint of heavy feet
Yet the final gasp
Leaves no trace

Worcester to Birmingham

Driving at night
Distorts place and time
The familiar is lost
In a black blanket
Bright lights seduce
And deceive
Ahead an uncertain
Terrestrial constellation
Trusty landmarks
There is just you
Your journey
And your destination.

Pit Head

Dirty shaft, suffocating dark
Oh god whose awful power has hid
The warmth of summer suns in coal
And man must delve and toil amid
Such dangers and let death take toll

Each cage descending forever
Ears strain for cracking in the tree
The sweat of men marks every stint
Ponies trudging from memory
Blind to the axe’s steely glint.

Two AM

In the small hours
The phone doesn’t ring
Nor does anyone
Speak to you
Nothing happens
Silence reigns
It smells
Of nothingness
The darkness
All consuming
All colour
Like death

The Rope


The Corona Man

He came once a week
Each visit a treat
Lemonade, Irn-Bru
Tizer and Ginger Ale
All for sale

Yellow pop
Was my favourite
Sweet and bubbly
The long sleek neck
Mottled for grip

Tasted odd
But supermarkets spelt misery
For the fate of home delivery
And the Corona Man

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

The Window

The last thing I said to you
Was don’ t leave me alone
Naked in the corner
Hunched, bare
Boards scrape my feet
Cold light freezes my skin
Musky air fills my lungs
Eyes fixed in a glazed gaze.
Until you return.


Cold steel envelops
A cruel lattice
Faint light smears

Opaque glass, broken panes
And tilted mirrors distort
Seen through bulging eyes

A bare grate
Kept cage
The door slightly unhinged

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Acid Lake

Crazed love child of the tip
From whose rotten corpse
Sulphuric acid flows
Spewing rusty liquid.

From punctured wounds
A scabrous puss seeps,
Wreaking silent retribution.

Laying waste as it too was wasted,
Redemption lies only
In the passing seasons,
Balm to violated waters.