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The Lodger

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The Lodger

 

We let him in

And he stayed

 

He had been pleading

Out there

Wanting somewhere to stay

 

At first we thought he was just like all the others

Some fly-by-night who would be here then gone

 

But no

He wanted to hang around

 

He was everywhere

Into everything

He made us change our daily routine

He was probably in the kitchen (and we w...

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The Sunshine Is Ginger & White

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The Sunshine Is Ginger And White

 

Here comes the sunshine

Not our sunshine

But the ginger and white sunshine

From across the street

The little prince

With heart markings

 

He sits at the window

Silently imploring entry

And when the door opens

He trots his way to the kitchen

And looks up at us

In milky expectation

 

He’s still a kitten

With greyin...

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My Mother's Kitchen

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My Mother’s Kitchen

 

I’m in my mother’s kitchen

It’s a Monday afternoon

The oven’s heated up the air

The buns will be out soon

Everywhere there’s an aroma

Of cinnamon and spice

An apple pie sits on the table

I’m waiting for a slice

 

A black-leaded coal fire

Does it’s best to dominate

The heat and the smells

That the baking permeates

An old fridge hums...

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Harsh Review

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Harsh Review

 

The last time we reviewed The Underpants

They had just released

A smooth and satisfying piece

Called ‘Tumble-dried’

Expertly produced in the studio

With top class electronic tumble-drier

They had taken advantage

Of twenty-first century technology

To create

A fragrant well-balanced affair

That dried quickly

And were ready to wear

Within minut...

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In Another Place

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In Another Place

 

a soft breeze

drifting through an open window

hung with net curtains

 

the faint perfume

escaping

from an open book

 

the creak of a floorboard

cracking

above you

 

the shadows

caught dancing through the doorway

in a dim lit room

 

the taste of honey

clinging

on a teaspoon

 

the feel of a scarf

on your face

...

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Thirteen Minutes From Home

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Thirteen Minutes From Home

 

I was thirteen minutes from home

On a warm April day

Bumping my way through a crowd

The future a lifetime away

There were cars revving their engines

As they crawled along the street

kids were playing in gardens

And getting under everyone’s feet

 

Just for a second I paused

As I turned into Pandemic Close

As the noise fell away lik...

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USA

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USA

 

Empty crucible

Once full of righteous fire

Now just grey ashes

 

The snake rears its head

Striking blindly at targets

That are imagined

 

Adopts power stance

Arms crossed - closed for argument

Pin head and big mouth

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There Are No Bad Ships Or Winds, There Are Bad Captains

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There Are No Bad Ships Or Winds, There Are Bad Captains

 

I would promise you the heavens

If it would get you off my back

Thinks the over-inflated spokesman

As he’s questioned by a hack

You can have your masks on Monday

And your gowns this time next week

Although the plane’s still on the runway

Says a whistle-blowing leak

 

We’ll have PPE and tests aplenty

And i...

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I’M FEELING KNACKED (based on a very bad translation of EINE FRÜHLINGSNACHT By JOHANN WOLFGANG VON GOETHE)

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I’M FEELING KNACKED (based on a very bad translation of EINE FRÜHLINGSNACHT By JOHANN WOLFGANG VON GOETHE)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Im Zimmer drinnen ist’s so schwül;                           My Zimmer driving is so cool

Der Kranke liegt auf dem heißen Pfühl.                  The Krankies like it to a heaven’s fool

 

Im Fieber hat er die Nacht verbracht;                      My F...

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A Bracelet Of Daisies

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A Bracelet Of Daisies

 

She made me a daisy bracelet

And twisted the stems round my wrist

We swore we would never forget

the sun slowly set as we kissed

And for a short while that was true

love blossomed like that daisy chain

but those white petals never grew

the green shoots were twisted in pain

 

It hurts when you’re given a heart

that unnourished withers and ...

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Soaring

Swing chains squeak
like unoiled screen door hinges

with each push, I get closer
to touching clouds.

Once I’ve achieved maximum
momentum, I prepare to launch

into the stratosphere
everything slows down;

I feel the heaviness of each heartbeat;
the impending weightlessness of my body

I catch a glimpse of the proud smile
decorating your face;

your mouth wording inaudible sound...

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The Small Things

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The Small Things

 

A pinecone from a Bavarian forest

A small rock from a glacier in Alberta

A round pebble from a Jamaican beach

A strip of bark from a tree in Wakefield

 

These are the places touched

The places that have touched

 

A love letter from a pretty girl

A toy bat-mobile from a friend now lost

A medal given to you by your father

A charm bracelet wor...

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The Dancing Light Of Candles

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The Dancing Light Of Candles

 

Flickering shadows cast upon the night

Phantoms leaping on oak panelled walls

Where the final breath of evening gently falls

The white and orange glow of candlelight

Will soothe the nervous child and ease his fright

Or so your aged memory recalls

Flickering

 

There is no more a sweet magical sight

Than darkness where a defeated demon ...

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C90

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C90

 

Imagine

Carrying around two vinyl records

In a plastic case just four inch long

And half an inch wide

How good would that be?

 

Sitting

at a hi-tech record player

that lets you copy the sounds you hear

and with the subtle use of ‘PAUSE’

transfer onto a compilation tape.

 

Saturdays

Moving from format to format

The highlights of a dozen albums

...

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The Side Kick

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The Side Kick

 

A purring cat

Sat before a raging fire

The smell of cinnamon buns

Outside the snow falls

Rubbing away ice on a window

Looking out into the whiteness

A smile caught

In the reflected dusk

 

New buds bursting

From green shoots

The blue sky

Flecked with white clouds

Raindrops dripping from trees

The fresh cool air

Mirrors in the pond

...

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Glam Rock Man

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Glam Rock Man

 

A stack heeled stomp in platform boots

Trowelled make-up and glitter suits

Feather cut hair and tinted roots

It’s Glam Rock, man,
it’s Glam Rock

 

Teenage Rampage, Ballroom Blitz,

Radio One plays all The Hits

Driving your dad out of his wits

It’s Glam Rock, man,
it’s Glam Rock

 

Jackie, Smash, Disco Forty Five

What a great time to be alive

...

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Death May Be The King Of Terrors

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Death May Be The King Of Terrors

 

Each brush stroke of a word painter

Smeared bloody crimson red

Seen through eyes that recognise

The things that can’t be touched

Behind accumulated layers of gore

Where shadows are the surface

What is felt is hidden behind

What is seen 

 

So your mind fills in the gaps

gives corporeality to the phantom

even as the scalpel ni...

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Orchard Lane

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Orchard Lane

 

“Don’t get caught, he’ll fuckin’ kill yer!”

Emerald green and ruby red

Jewels just out of your reach

Treasures in the strawberry bed

 

“He’s got a dog with vicious fangs!”

Black as coal we watch him prowl

He snarls and gnashes foaming jaws

And scares us with his hellhound growl.

 

“Bide yer time and take yer chances!”

Remaining hidden behind th...

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Plague Mantra

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Plague Mantra

 

We know that going out is wrong

and socialising would be worse,

so stay at home where we belong.

We know that going out is wrong,

avoid, like plague, the milling throng

to help the doctor and the nurse.

We know that going out is wrong

and socialising would be worse.

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The Mandrake Curse

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The Mandrake Curse

 

I spied the purple mandrake flowers

Sitting in their nest of green

And foolishly looked to rip them

From the earth they serenely sat upon

And everywhere a shriek echoed

Across the woods and leafy vales

and to my weary eyes I saw

The bulbous body resurrected

 

A face demonic in its glare

For being torn from fitful slumber

Wizened arms of k...

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False Prophet

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False Prophet

 

Magnificently

Resurrected antichrist

Not the messiah

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Teardrop

Teardrop

 

A

teardrop

for each life lost

a broken heart for friends,

a sadness that never goes away

but gnaws at nerves and silent moments

 the desolate times of memory cast hurt shadows

dancing on the twilight walls at the edge of your vision

a friend’s laughter that bonded like mortar holds together bricks

 those happy tears can also flow in torrents in a recolle...

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The Next War Is Here

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The Next War Is Here

 

Out there, we walked quite friendly up to death,

Sat down and ate beside him, cool and bland,

Asked of his health and shook him by the hand.

Recoiled in horror at his fetid breath.

Before the world went crazy, he was there,

We treated him as though he was a fly

Who we could swat away - and never die.

We were invincible, without a care.

 

Now ...

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Strictly Bin Dancing

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Strictly Bin Dancing

 

[People are dressing up in ball gowns and tiaras to take their bins out

An Australian woman has started a new trend online during the coronavirus lockdown, which sees people dressing up in extravagant outfits to put their rubbish out – source: Mirror 4/4/20]

 

She waltzes across the patio

In her Christian Dior-like dress

She’s picked up the rubbish in el...

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Painting By Numbers

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Painting By Numbers

 

Poetry is cascading water

Flowing upwards to the sky

It looks like silver fishes swimming

Feels hot or cold or lukewarm

I hear it flowing

Smell its sweetness on the thunderstorm

As threatening as Oswald in a Texas bookstore

Sometimes as sour as storm

I am not painting by numbers

I am just blathering

I feel the words soil my creativeness

...

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The Loop At The Edge Of Reason

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The Loop At The Edge Of Reason

 

Christmas eve seventy-seven

Snowflakes prickle on exposed skin

I pull the duffle coat tight around my neck

As I weave my weary way up Westgate

Glancing in the Black Horse windows

As the amber light spills out

Onto the crystal streets of Wakefield

Paving them in wuffle-dust

 

My mind wanders and gears click

As I think of all the H...

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Indebted

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Indebted

 

I took to watching slow dying sunsets

Marking the passing of the dawdling day

The trees casting their stoic silhouettes

 

Counting the golden currency each ray

bestows upon my mood and mental health

keeping the braying doubts and fears at bay

 

Accumulating natures gift of wealth

hoarding value like a miser stores gold

a solar bank that aids the commo...

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Overnight Stay

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Overnight Stay

 

“Time for bed” they said,

In a front room warmed by coal fire licks

Where the red and orange and white flames

Danced patterns on the walls of falling dusk

They push, cajole, entice you to the stairs

And do not notice terror tears welling in your eyes

 

Fourteen steps up the narrow stairwell

Tracing fingers on a pale wallpaper wall

Festooned with or...

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