Happy Christmas (if you want it)

December 26, 2017
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We got there.
It’s Christmas Day!
The turkey hasn’t flown away
And children in this family
Will wake with squeals and run to see
The parcels by the Christmas tree.
But many, far less fortunate
Have no food on their Christmas plate
And many will not live to see
Another day of misery
So spare a thought for other lives
As we pick up our forks and knives.
Decide right now with every week
Of coming years that you will speak
For all who yearn to breathe as free
As us with presents by the tree.

Happy Christmas
(If you want it)


Enemies Must Die

October 2, 2017
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You fight
You know you must
You’re young and fit and strong
And there is a cause you feel is right and just
You don’t imagine that the damage you cause
Stinks for years like a broken sewer
Negating the reasons
You fight

It’s war. Hola! Whoopee! What adventures there will be!
Marching shoulder to fearless soldier brother, a company
Willing to face the battle, take the weapons to the enemy
Chase them into hiding, root them out from their homes
Frighten them and their families, their women, children,
Babies. Shoot them knife them smash their brains
See the blood splash, ooze, pump, squirt, spatter
Watch their death throes as they jerk in agony
Screaming for mercy as you kill the enemy
And their innocent relatives who suddenly
Seem to be just like your mother your
Sister, brother, even just like you
What adventures would be
If only they had been
Not the enemy
Like you


Cream Jar Miracle

October 1, 2017
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Have you seen those young women
young women in advertisements
with perfect skin
always had perfect skin
skin that never saw ravage
or the passage of years

like someone such as Yo-Yo Ma
or Eric Clapton or Larry Adler
saying buy this book
and you can learn to play like me

And there they are, young women
with perfect skin
adding some cream
pretending it’s the cream
cream on their perfect skin
that creates their perfect skin

like someone who inherits a fortune
and presents a television programme
that thinks they can be a great President
because that’s what it says
on the tin star – on the cream jar.

Capture Freedom

September 29, 2017

this word haunts the world
with promise
in a glass coffin

hope on a fishing line
dangling like a tautology
ready to taunt

hunt it down
trap it in threads of gold mesh
those limits of existence

that you’ve woven for its capture
and hold it there for life
keeping an eye on it

it stops you looking up
at the sword of Damocles
if it should escape

liberty is compromised
and freedom gets away
skips away sniggering

up its sleeve – But look!
a smidgen always remains
the piece that has your name

the piece that owns you
keeps you
in its box


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The Tench

September 28, 2017
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The only remarkable thing I can say that’s concerning the tench
It doesn’t waste time writing poems of me while it sits on a bench

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Prostate Cancer: Pulling the Finger Out

June 18, 2017
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I felt very well. Went to the young locum
Slight waterworks problem, nothing much more
It trickled much longer, urged more often
The locum child thought it was something more
More than the march of time and failing body parts
Made me lie down with pants at my knees
Inserted a finger where nobody ever did.
Well, nearly no-one… and… hardly ever.
The youngster wiggled his finger around up there
Pondered a moment and offered his thoughts
I must make an appointment to come for a blood test.

The nurse took my blood for that PSA test.
I returned for the answer, my regular doctor
Who made me lie down with my pants at my knees
And inserted a finger where not many ever did
Pondered a moment and offered his thoughts.
I must be referred to a hospital doctor.

The hospital doctor was fairly sanguine
He made me lie down with pants at my knees
And inserted a finger where only a handful did
Pondered a moment and offered his thoughts
I must come for a biopsy and for a bone scan.

The biopsy doctor made me lie down
Said that I, mostlike, would not feel a thing
And inserted a probe where no probe had yet been
And it snatched off some tissue a dozen times painful
From lower intestine and right side of prostate,
Repeated the agony pains on the left side.
I wiped, from the bedrail, my teeth marks and fingerprints
And after a fortnight my bowels recovered.

Bone scan more comfortable. “You’ll just feel a little prick.”
In the hospital gown I said yes I do, certainly.
Then a minuscule, radioactive injection.
I lay on the noise machine, plugs in my ears.
Over in minutes, radioactive a day or two.
Back to the specialist. Here is the bad news…

Next, to the surgeon, who made me lie down
And inserted a finger where everyone does
The cancer’s contained, he said
He would extract it, remove it completely
Along with the prostate and some of the nerves
That have helped with erections and night-time emissions.

The pre-op was quite as I came to expect it
The surgeon arrived and made me lie down
And inserted a finger where those who’d bought tickets
Could view his great skill, though there was no applause
And soon I was wheeled to the land where time vanishes
Woke in a ward and was tended to carefully.
The op was successful, I have no more cancer
And people can insert their fingers no more.

Dismantling The Leylandii

June 16, 2017

The conifer gave nothing to the ground
Strong, stable, sucking goodness from the soil
Roots deep spread and undermining
Satisfied only itself, no shelter for a bird,
Its negative needles provided no nutrients
Dropping cones solely to broadcast seed.
In the interest of a better future, I voted to remove it
Wanting something less selfish, with more beauty

I set about the task with meagre tools,
A little chopper and a saw and not to much effect
The chopper was criticised – not up to the job
It’s handle short in grip and seemed scant strength.
The naked tree laughed as those blows glanced off
But with momentum, bark was stripped, wood bared
A chain saw many teeth in huge support
To cut where axe had bitten to the sap

And soon enough the tree fell, trimmed to stump
The little chopper’s marks clear on the fallen boughs
A million needles now were swept aside
Without ceremony, to the brown garden bin,
But still that stump persists, a dense and sturdy block
With nothing to uphold, open to the season,
Thick roots held in place by uneven slab,
A fractured infrastructure of a saddened path.

Tool handles now renewed in strength
I seek to dig away the useless stump
Lifting the slab to make room for a spade
Exposing horrors of a thousand ants
That made their nests in shelter of a tree
Beneath a slab. And dearly do I trust
Those terrors shall now take themselves away
Under fresh truth, dispelling my dismay.

Something deciduous is here required
Something assiduous with outstretched arms
Where birds will sing with unbounded joy
And flowers bloom in Hope’s unfolding cheer
And leaves that, when they fall give richness back
In leaf mold compost added to good earth
Which then supplies abundance to the many
Creatures sharing in Nature’s love and mirth.


June 15, 2017
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Between nestled buildings in brotherly bunches
Or carefully inserted twixt high walls or hedges,
A narrow path stretches its worn way, and hunches
Some opposite walkers who sidle like wedges
And pass one another while greeting “Good day!”,
On a trodden route Sussex folk rarely see written
But sometimes pronounce as this word they will say,
A word seeming squeezed to this corner of Britain,


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Unnecessary Mistakes

June 9, 2017
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Unnecessary Mistakes
(A review of Tory policy decisions)

Holding a naff referendum
Stripping out safety for pensions
Foodbanks like flow’rs on a dung heap
The bad stink of benefit sanctions

Losing the triple-A rating
Borrowing more into debt
Cutting security policing
(Causing more terrorist threat)

Giving big business big billions
Making disabled folk suffer
Making up smears about Corbyn
Failing to pay for safe software

Flogging off NHS services
Snipping off winter fuel payments
Keeping high charges for students
Lying about the opponents

Pushing the abortion-rape clause
Halving our rubbish collection
Closing our library doors
Forcing a stupid election


Cons Just Take The Brexit

June 9, 2017
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We were told many tales of migrants
We were told many tales of great waste
We were told there’d be billions for our NHS
All the tales were just lies or bad taste

A third of us voted for Brexit
A third of us voted Remain
A third were just too disenchanted
Or confused, or not arsed, or insane

Less qualified voters went Brexit
Younger dudes went for Remain
Asians in England were for status quo
Giving Asians in London disdain

Two-thirds of Cameron’s Tories went ‘out’
Corbyn’s Labour mates only one-third
UKIPper Farage I cannot disparage
Enough. But then, why dis a turd?

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