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The islands of Stockholm

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Water, water, bridges everywhere.

In the old town, close

to the pantomime sentries and cannons,

at the scaffolding-clad royal palace,

a museum of high ideals, the Nobel prize.

Einstein, Mandela, Solzhenitsyn, Mother Teresa.

Nearby a hall of fame dedicated

to a band that made the world smile.

Benny and Frida, Bjorn and Agnetha,

wearing their lurid outfits

with unembar...

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Tags: Abba,Stockholm,Sweden

To My Unknown Soldier

I hope these help to keep you safe.

Are you lonely at the front?

You have your pals, along the trenches.

And we have ours, inside the factory.

The laughs we have, us girls.

I didn’t mean, that kind of lonely.


That’s why I’m slipping my note

inside this box of ammo,

which, I hope, protects you.

It’s funny. Though we’ve never met

and maybe never will, I ...

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Tags: First world war


You mourn old photographs:

‘I was pretty then, and I never knew it.’


I’ve just filled an album

with our last pieces of paper

before digital took over:

It includes my mother’s 80th birthday

(she just missed out on 90).

A fabulous, tearful, joyous Sikh wedding,

dancing to the bhangra boy’s beat,

the marriage lasting little more

than a year. That holiday ...

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Tags: Photographs

Plain Man's Valentine

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By Frank Jaye


You’ll get no Valentine from me; I’m not the type,

Pallid daffodils prematurely delivered – all that transatlantic hype.

I am not easy with love, be it concept, verb or noun,

My sentiments are more mundane and wear a plainer crown,

Embellished with affection, encouragement, respect not least,

You moderate my temper, rising still like yeast.



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Tags: Valentine poem

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