BRIAN RIX REMEMBERED

So many years now fill the glass

Of life remembering British farce.

A time when top notch timing was all

And enabled many a perfect fall

Through doors and windows open and shut -

And helpless guffawing from the gut.

The skill and fun in all those tricks

Now has me saying "God bless, Lord Rix".

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THOUGHT FOR ANY DAY

It's a waste of words to quarrel

With a mission or a moral.

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THE ENGLISH WORKING POOR

Community is a fashionable word and gets media attention,

But the English Working Poor is one that never gets a mention.

 

Others and their brothers tend to riot in the street,

But the English Working Poor get on in the hope that they'll meet

 

Triumph and Disaster (those two imposters!) just the same,

Well aware that life's dull care is rarely without blame.

 

You'll fi...

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YESTERDAY ONCE MORE - a re-post for AUGUST!

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Pausing high above the beach,

I watch the children out of reach,

Racing down the golden sand,

Leaping...laughing...hand in hand.

 

Children dancing in the sea

Remind me how I used to be,

Free from care and full of fun,

A happy boy beneath the sun.

 

Time goes by, yet time stands still,

And moment follows moment till

What is now once went before

And what is pa...

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POET

Tell someone you're a poet

And before you know it

They won't recognise it as a living

Preferring taking instead of giving.

Retained within the realm of time

And kindergarten's childish rhyme,

So sure they accurately construe it

As simple!  Anyone can do it.

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FIVE YEARS ON

They tell us Black Lives Matter

As if we didn't know.

Mobs maraud, burn and shatter

And what's there good to show?

Most of us get by without the need for guns and knives

That host of us who seek some valued meaning to our lives.

To these "activists": beware, your cause will lie in tatters

Unless you see we also know that Black Crime Matters.

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ACCOUNT CLOSED - 18th AUGUST 1916

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The following lines are a memorial to my maternal uncle Ernest Valentine Venner ("Uncle Nick"), killed in action aged 24 years, one hundred years ago this month in "The war to end all wars".

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Ernest Venner's account was closed today at Delville Wood;

O...

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THE GLOBAL MEDIA

Can someone proscribe the global media?

A day and night, doom and gloom Wikipedia

That insists we should share

All the grief and the care

Of the seedier, needier and greedier.

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HEY, REF!

Big match FIFA footie refs seem challenged in things ocular

What they're not too hot to spot is verging on spect'ocular.

Even when mere feet away from what they're trained to see

Do we think it's like (not a lot!) what's seen by you and me?

If this is what their bosses want - and taught in reffing classes,

Perhaps the rose-tinted rest of us should get 'effing glasses!

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A PERFORMANCE

"A performance" murmured the SAS man, with a resigned sigh,

As he watched and listened to a practiced Blair reply.

He had reason to witness what the millionaire speaker said,

His son had been dispatched to war and became one of the dead.

The former PM had no regret for the decision he had made,

Instead he sought the mea culpa of the price high office paid.

And no doubt George Bus...

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EN PASSANT

The insensitivity of those ready to give offence

Seems exceeded only

By the sensitivity of those ready to take offence.

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OUT!

Out with hyperbole...the doom and the gloom,

Just wait and see - and give hope some room.

Are we pale shades of all those who bore us

Who lived through the centuries that existed before us?

With a fierce love of home and indomitable pride

And a history of hard times that can't be denied.

They sacrificed much for the sake of democracy

To ensure it prevailed when threatened by a...

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QUO VADIS?

In recent days I have received emails from WOL that have caused confusion and some concern.

The first referred to me to a post which had elicited a response from me.  However, clicking

on the link resulted in the discovery of a total deletion of the original post and comment(s).

Now I've had an email about 7 comments, five of which originated from someone called

Mohamed - but not one o...

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DAVID LAMMY

Behold David Lammy

London's Totten-hammy

Seeking hands to raise his meddling mitt;

Rejecting the vote in that test of us

Refusing the right of the rest of us

To show to the world the best of us

By making a proper fist of it.

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CONSIDER THIS

Having read a number of blogs setting out the case to remain in the EU, here is my contribution.

Thursday June 23rd is a date that will take its place in history.  It will demonstrate whether this nation

steeped in history can regain a semblance of the force of conviction that saw its offspring feature in

so many notable events of the past, to make sacrifice and to endure, so that despite...

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ALWAYS CONSIDER THE ALTERNATIVE

The lyricist Ira Gershwin, one half of the great songwriting duo, offers an illuminating view of

how he approached his art, ready to consider change yet not always willing to go with it.

In his "standard" "They Can't Take That Away From Me", he uses the following as an example:

"We may never, never meet again

On the bumpy road to love,

Still, I'll always, always keep

The mem'ry o...

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SHOULD I STAY OR SHOULD I GO?

In future years, beyond our own brief span,

Historians will write of what occurred

When an island nation stood up and ran

With a momentous decision one "June twenty third"

 

A date when the thought passed to and fro

When wrestling with the facts and fiction:

Should I stay - or should I go?

Who has true claim to jurisdiction?

 

History is there to tell its tale

To s...

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CLIPPER

Rough and ready lines (author u/k) to bring a salty tang from sailing ship days into mundane lives.

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You can keep yer steam boat racing,

But gimme the run in a gale

Of a well-geared able clipper

What is driven by snow-white sail;

For I've known the thrill of a pilin' sea

And the sky in a snow-flecked gown,

And fourte...

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D'YE MIND, OLD PAL?

A recent emailed exchange about poems and sailing ships brought to mind the following.

The author is unknown but how convincingly they evoke a square rigger in its element.

D'ye mind the day

When we squared away

And ran her east by south,

And she trampled down big Horn Seas

With a roaring bone in her mouth?

While the best hands fought the bucking wheel

And dared not look be...

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POEM ON THE EUROPEAN PROJECT-author unknown

My sister - resident in France - emailed me the following unattributed verse to make me smile. 

If anyone knows the author, I would be happy to include a nod of acknowledgement.

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Won't you join our Common Market, said the spider to the fly,

It really is a winner and the cost is not too high.

...

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SUMMER OF THE SOMME 1916

In a rain-filled blood billed hole

Lies a body but no soul.

What was once a laughing life

Now cold as meat beneath the knife.

Unrecognisable as human form

This thing that once was loving...warm,

Face down...obscured from prying eye

Of pals still living passing by.

Survivors - comrades of the dead

Unmindful of what lies ahead,

Stagger on to other pits

And other cont...

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THE ENGLISH SEE

The English see what the English are

And - whilst rarely known to brag -

Know they're more by far than a jaundiced star

Stitched up on a made-up rag.

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FRACKING HELL

As we lurch along the lanes of deceit, alarm and exaggeration towards June 23rd, I find myself

sidetracked to power play of a different sort, and although I am ill-informed on the full details,

I am curious how democracy can be reduced from legions to a room - and wonder about the

ethos of those involved in the business of supplying the product.  Hence the following:

 

What care we ...

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Tags: fracking

THE TRUE COST

Recently Boris took some flak

About Hitler and the EU pack.

But was he really that far short

Of the reasons why things are so fraught?

Der Fuhrer wanted to run the show

Over all objections as we know

The dream was ultimate control dictatorial

Never mind the risk of "purgatorial".

The aim was to lead the darkening way

To a world where a select few held sway,

Ignoring o...

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LIMERICK 2016

The Conservative Chancellor Osborne

Gave no sign that he was torn

Between helping the rich up

And the poor who cried "Stitch up"

While the outraged reaction was scorn.

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WHO ARE THE LUCKY PEOPLE?

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The absence of a celebratory poem for the Queen's 90th birthday had me thinking back to lines

for the much-loved Queen Mum on her 101st...after she endured the need for a blood transfusion.

It was sent and graciously acknowledged by Her Majesty's lady-in-waiting.  I'm sure HM read it.

 

Who are the lucky people

Who kissed Sweet Royalty's hand?

By lying in a lonely room,

Their ...

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LOCKED-IN SYNDROME

Was the EU ever about democracy

Or making sure we bent the knee?

Spreading deceit, delay and dissembling

So there's never a way now of resembling

What hopeful nation states once knew

Before seized in the maw of the greedy EU.

Mark these words: a vote to remain

Will give up any chance again

Of saying no to all that is planned

But hidden within its grasping hand.

When h...

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ASSUMING THE POSITION

POLITICIAN:  a person who stands for election and lies when elected.

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Tags: politician

HUMAN FRIGHTS

The Special Immigration Appeals Committee

Was created by Parliament in this great city

of London - famed for democracy's fights

And now the refuge of human frights.

 

Six Algerians - said to be connected

With terrorist links that were detected,

Appealed against their deportation

To Algeria - a paradoxical situation.

 

Their legal eagles argued that they

Might be tr...

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GOODBYE TO ALL THAT?

As the EU Empire marches on, we'd best remember what has gone,

All we've been deceived about for decades when truth suffered drought.

Habeas Corpus dearly bought held prisoner far beyond our court,

While Parliament as a provincial assembly should have democracy feeling trembly!

And the fears expressed (described as barmy) now return in plans for an EU Army,

And behind this scheme? -...

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ALLEGIANCE

I swore allegiance to our Sovereign The Queen, her heirs and succcessors too.

Our Members of Parliament do the same, on behalf of me and you.

So I'll blame and shame those who are busy doing what they do -

Promoting and espousing the deeds and decisions of the ANTI-sovereign EU.

You can't plight your troth in favour of both; you can't be true to the TWO!

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Tags: Allegiance

1975

How many reading these lines were alive

In the Year of Our Lord nineteen seventy five

When the country was far from happy unity

About membership of the European Community.

 

On May the fifth, West Ham won the Cup

And Manchester United climbed back up,

To be a Premier club once more

(Their accountants were surely keeping score!).

 

The Vietnam War ground to a close

...

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REFERENDUM CALYPSO

I has to ask...take gov'ment to task

Have we lost our sense of dash?

Dem politicians spout finance

And lead us a dance

Of worry about our cash.

 

I has to say...have we lost our way?

Our history's dere to find

Foremost in trade

We had it made

And now the blind lead the blind.

 

I has to quoth - what about dat oath

Of allegiance to our Queen?

It should be a...

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FOOTBALL CRAZY

Once again (as I write) it's one-nil Leicester

As an unfashionable side seeks to invest a

small midland city with the laurels of glory

In the final chapter of an extraordinary story.

 

Oh dear oh dear - it's a red card for Vardy,

The referee's decision was hardly tardy,

So off goes the goal scorer to miss the next game

For playing a part that earned him the blame.

 

W...

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MY LONDON - Spring

In all the world there's nowhere quite

Like London on a soft spring night

When saffron sunset sends its grace

To linger on a much loved face.

 

 And all around the very air

Thrills with time as if aware

That this great city is the stage

For this and every other age.

 

So much history...so much done:

So much to tell the setting sun.

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Tags: London

KNOCK LOUD AND LONG

I never cease to be in awe

Of those the world describes as poor,

Yet do not stay at home and moan,

But set out to improve alone

 

Or - fortunate to find a kindred soul

Or two - they also find a role

In the life they seek for future joy

By graft and talent they employ.

 

Always looking up, not down,

They wear upon their heads a crown

Not gold or jewelled as we mi...

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MONEY MAKES MONEY

Money makes money

That's always been the case

And gives accountants their pot of honey

In their search to find a place

 

That gets more for each pound

Of the sum that's in the pot

Wherever that may be found

They'll be there like a shot.

 

Personal finances are kept mum

Since Mankind got to earn

Its share of any income

Not mentioning money to burn.

 

The...

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SEPARATION

I would not seek to separate Muslims from their Koran;

Religious belief should not be a cause for blame

But I stand shoulder to shoulder with any free-thinking man

Against those who maim and murder in its name.

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CREATURE COMFORTS

Eyes bright with fierce intelligence gleam,

Reflected in the headlight's beam,

Their owner stops dead in its tracks

Wary of the passing beast's attacks.

 

The danger past the search resumes

For food its waiting brood consumes

Seeking everywhere it can

Edible detritus left by man.

 

Pausing, perhaps it remembers still

The feel of the country breeze's chill

But ti...

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UNTITLED

The man who worships death

May find death before his time.

The man who worships life

Will find life lives in this rhyme.

 

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EASTER RISING

It's not surprising

I'm surmising -

To celebrate the Easter Rising.

Reincarnating the simple hope

That self-rule could emerge and cope.

Beneath high heaven's eternity

Mankind will hunger to be free.

It's not surprising

I'm surmising -

To celebrate the Easter Rising.

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ENLIGHTENMENT SENSE

What can it contribute to enlightenment sense

If discussion's bedevilled with "giving offence"?

Dismissive of any alternative views

When mindsets take umbrage and simply refuse

To consider there may be a different way

To approach any question and allow folks a say

On the pros and the cons of how things might be...

And why they seem at odds with what others see.

There are ti...

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UNTITLED

What could be more comforting than a warm bed

In a bleak and rain-swept dawn,

When wild winds buffet the window frame

As if in envious scorn.

 

What could be more welcoming than a warm voice

Whispering in the ear,

When hot hands hold and gently draw

A willing body near.

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AN UNKNOWN SOLDIER GOES HOME

Peacetime made him a stranger

To a life that had been denied;

Returning to unknowing city...

Quiet town and countryside.

 

Peacetime made him nervous,

Despite being a warrior before;

Now changed beyond all understanding

By what he had met in war.

 

Peacetime brought its own fears

And new battles to be won,

With fervent prayers that what he'd known

Would not b...

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DOG DANCING

For Fran and Charlie

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Have you ever seen a dog dancing...

Cavorting to an unheard canine beat?

Jaws apart, joyous grin enhancing

Upward flight from all four nimble feet.

 

Have you ever seen a dog dancing...

Eyes alight fixed on the outstretched hand

Of its human partner in innocent romancing?

Never still for long enough to stand.

...

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FUEL FOR THOUGHT

We breath air because we must

And not because we might.

Induct...compress...combust

Powers life to ignite.

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AUSTERITY

Austerity -

a policy whereby a political administration inflicts financial hardship on the electorate for

putting its trust in a political administration.

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Tags: austerity

THE POETRY JUDGE

How do you get considered...

elected or selected...

To decide on the worth of another's work,

And how it should be respected?

 

Is it just an ego trip...

The way to poetry fame "to be",

A judge of poems whose taste will lurk

In the pages of posterity?

 

Are there certain forms expected...

And names of familiarity?

Is it likely to be rejected

If you're unknown...

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SAME THING

I felt for that fellow the other day

Hand hard against face as if to say

Why am I forced to suffer this way?

 

I smiled in sympathy as we two met

While he winced a response I won' t forget

As my "Earache, old chum?" acknowledged his fret.

 

"Nah", he replied, with a hurry-by tread,

"Mobile phone..." - from a quickly shaken head.

"Same thing!" I thought - and just as q...

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POUNDS (NO SHILLINGS) AND PENCE

I was chatting to the fellow who operates the till

In the local corner shop just down the street,

And asking for a chocolate bar I recalled a child's thrill

When leaving school and buying one as a treat.

 

Paying a total of sixpence from the cash of yesterday -

You got two hundred and forty <twenty shillings!> to a pound -

And how that bought a chocolate bar to send me on my w...

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