Beetles

October 24, 2016 at 11:02 pm (Poems, politics, sociology, Stories) ()

One small boy climbed into an envelope
thinking he would not be noticed
thinking he would be safe.
He took a torch in with him
to ward off beetles
And a magnet
so he could attach himself
if the need should arise.
He was not a devious boy
And knew that trespassing could have consequences
But life outside the envelope
had worn little holes in the small boy’s soul
And as he posted himself
he felt only a sense of relief.

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Rip Tide

August 3, 2016 at 9:25 am (Poems, sociology, Stories) (, , , , )

The tide tipped and turned
Sweep-blow-draining all away.
One cafe remains.

 

One broken cup man
orders customary chips
and consults his stars.

 

His hopeful soul
hangs loose in the empty bay
waiting for a wave.

 

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Gutted

June 24, 2016 at 9:07 am (England, history, Poems, sociology) ()

Unembracing
Ununited
Inward facing
Blighty blighted

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Taking Care

June 15, 2016 at 7:58 pm (Poems, poetry, sociology) (, , , , )

Through the depth of each night, till the dimming of days,

it’s a difficult path to the parting of ways.

For the sake of us all, for our dads and our mums,

The carers will carry the vulnerable ones.

 

When others step sideways, the carers come through,

to meet expectations that daunt but a few.

Intuition and patience, resilience and smiles,

They will take up the slack for the final few miles.

 

 

 

 

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Bird

November 16, 2014 at 1:11 am (philosophy, sociology, Stories) (, , , )

In the rubble of a bombsite cries a man who is afraid;
his young wife and child went missing when the bird fell from the sky;
and his neighbours come a-running from the homes that can’t be saved.

This man is digging with his fingers for the little girl he made,
desperation in his shouting that the bird took her away.
In the rubble of a bombsite cries a man who is afraid.

There are tears across his country, but the grit is in his eye.
He is calling for his baby, but his throat is raw and dry;
and his neighbours come a-running from the lives that can’t be saved.

So many lonely people left by loved ones swept away,
by the restless wings of predators who fall upon their prey.
In the rubble of a bombsite cries a man who is afraid,

but who falls upon the ground to dig his future from its grave;
and a miracle is lifted and is held up to the sky,
and his neighbours come a-running to a life that can be saved.

And a cursing and a wailing fill the hole that has been made
by intangible corruption in the shape of many graves.
In the rubble of a bombsite cries a man who is afraid;
and his neighbours wipe the rubble from the tiny life they saved.

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In our midst

September 27, 2014 at 10:09 am (philosophy, sociology) (, , , , )

These elfin must, you say, be kept in check,
be weakened by the wiles you litter round,
for in full strength they’d melt your measly words
and cease your constant wars and mongering.

In market halls, in places you forgot,
they work their wisdom calm and quietly,
and people who are tired by what you do
arrive for salve and kind solicitude.

These elfin, simply people who don’t bow
to fear and hate and spin, will tarry long,
and when you send your twisted stooges in,
be unapparent, veiled, but ever strong.

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Stranger

September 16, 2014 at 9:37 pm (philosophy, sociology) (, , )

So, unknown friend, I take you at your word
and will not hear dissuasion, the refrain
of neighbours wielding helpful threat of sword.
My should-know-better, life-encrusted brain
says just accept, and may be wrong again.

Oh unknown friend with cheated eyes that speak
of pain and fear in sad and dungeoned face;
failed expectations drag the path you keep,
and I alone will stoop to match your pace.
Don’t net me in disaster in your place.

No, unknown friend, there will not be a way,
redemption is for younger fools than me,
to come back from betrayal, so, I pray,
be sure upon your feet and let me see
by truth and care, how friendly you may be.

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Profit?

September 10, 2014 at 10:43 am (philosophy, sociology) ()

Take your hard hand from
my soft shoulder. You
waste our days and
steal our humanity. You
are deceitful and
grow fat on gullibility.

In all your machinations
our welfare is furthest
from your mind. And
we struggle to emulate
your unfortunate terms in
our narrow margins.

Change your thinking. You
will never recompense our
labour or make the rich
content. Reach down your arms and
deploy wit instead, to
plant hope and strength of mind.

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Bathed

July 21, 2014 at 8:20 am (history, Poems, sociology, Stories) (, , , )

Alone in the old bathroom, I crouched,
steaming, in a towel, the warmth
of a recent bath rising from my skin;
long childhood locks lifted in a plastic cap.

While grown-ups thought I bathed, I took a brush
and scrubbed the bath to new. I drew with crayons
made of soap. And wondering what it was to shave,
cut my leg on Dad’s sharp razor blade.

Bath time brought adventure: a metal rack
packed with loofah, sponge, a blue dish
to fill and empty, clean and crinkled fingers
rubbed together with rudish shlucking sounds.

At school, where girls combined to wash,
communal ablutions diluted any sense of fun;
privacy and prudery washed away in timetabled
titivation. All residue of childhood Vimmed.

When chemo winter stole my hair and I was cold,
my constant comfort was a simple bath of tin,
filled from the kitchen sink. Lapped by life
I could be consoled by water, spirited again.

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Carnival

June 28, 2014 at 9:10 pm (Shropshire, sociology, Stories) (, , )

There was a –
dragon and dancing and carving and cup cakes
and raffles and bunting wound right round the
houses we waved at and talking and meeting with feathers
and flowered balloon men who bent them and gave them
to children who used them to sword fight and held up
a pound to amuse them by guessing or laughing
and dipping their fingers to show us a gift from
their shining excitement inviting us joining
with knots and steel bands and with hands
held together we picked up and packed up
our carnival treasures tucked into our costumes
we danced on our way.

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