Poetry Blog by C Richard Miles
Let there be peace but not at any price
so games of chance, rolls of the dice
do not disdainfully dictate like all the rest
that some should rule, some be repressed.
Let lives be counted for their proper worth;
let no human being brought to birth
be sacrificed in vain for wounded pride.
Let not a single man, who died
in conflict, be dismissed as second-rate.
Even the en...
Saturday 25th June 2016 9:29 pm
On Hockney Road, has Bradford's famous son
now been downgraded in-between the blocks
of some industrial park, to slink among
gaunt grubby retail units? It's a shock
to find him here, though fittingly perhaps
there is a modern style to his surrounds -
No dour Victorian mills where, in flat caps,
redundant mill-folk scurry past the grounds
of dirt-cheap fashion warehouses to ...
Wednesday 16th March 2016 11:05 pm
Wednesday 16th March 2016 10:53 pm
An’ tho’ mi mam sed ah’d catch it i’t’ neck
If ah ivver went in ower dee-ap an’ got wet,
Ah’d allus end up i’t’ watter, tha mun bet.
Us kid wor a naingel an’ did as ’e wor towd;
’E warn’t as daft so as ter fetch up dowsed and cawd,
Bu’ ’e allus egged mi on as ah fettled up a dam
’Cos ’e reckoned ’e knew wot a wassock ah am.
Wednesday 2nd April 2014 11:48 pm
Aloof, unnoticed, silent, still as death
You hover, as fleets of traffic pass;
Below, unshielded, voles and mice hold breath
And fear, awaiting deadly daggered grasp.
Alert, unarmoured avian bazooka,
You survey, feathered sinewed steel
Bedecked, unbending softness, yet crueller
And choose, radarless, to go in for the kill.
Aloft, unrotored, when wing engines cut;
Tuesday 4th March 2014 10:50 pm
I want a new computer
But I'm getting all upset:
There are too many options
So I don't know what to get.
A laptop or a tablet,
An i-Pad or a Mac:
The choice, it seems, is endless
But there's something they all lack.
They're all so darned new-fangled
But clearly cannot cope
With my docs in older formats;
It really is no joke!
I just want a new comp...
Tuesday 25th February 2014 11:53 pm
I dream of Hallowe’en when we were children:
No transatlantic pumpkin at our sides
But turnip dug by dad from frost-streaked garden
And carved with care with chore-dulled kitchen knife
Till gaping, gap-toothed grin emerged. Then, skewered
By knitting needle, safe-secured by string,
With stub of candle craftily inserted
In hot-wax solder, to secure its grip.
Thursday 24th October 2013 7:03 pm
Health and safety directives may sit on the shelf
But prick our conscience, like the holly everywhere
To make us think that Christmas is bad for the health
As many dangers lurk half-hidden in its tinselled glare.
Might twining ivy poison tiny toddlers who will pass?
And could pine needles stab them, drawing blood?
And, since bright baubles shatter into shards of gl...
Monday 17th December 2012 2:36 pm
Clatter of shuttle and rattle of looms
Shattered the peace of the weaving rooms
In Yorkshire and Lancashire’s high rolling hills,
Where masses of mill lasses chattered in mills
Tripping and clopping in crude wooden clogs
Under the fast-running drive-belts and cogs
Which powered machinery, oily and rough,
Manufacturing worsted and cotton and cloth.
Yet the b...
Thursday 15th November 2012 10:52 pm
Only connect – a line, a lead, a link
Lassoing together disparate entities
As seamless as a maths-made Moebius strip
Constructible, yet with a vital twist:
Where, instantly, inside and outside, meld
Surprisingly, into a single surface
And so it is with us, the so-called self,
The side the world sees: epidermis.
And the inner, secret self, the soul, wh...
Friday 22nd June 2012 9:55 pm
Wensleydale, Swaledale and Nidderdale,dwell
Up in the North under mountain and fell
While Wharfedale and Airedale settle, more southern
Than the bleak bare uplands of remoter cousins.
Here, cottongrass, deergrass, heath-rush and sedge
Bow fuzzy heads by the chill water's edge
As tadpole, natterjack, newt, toad and frog
Swim, squirm and slither in the soft sphag...
Friday 25th May 2012 9:03 am
Although shut pits no longer spit their
Packed-grit, black, thick-slack phlegm from
Hacked pick-carved sun-starved bronchioles
Deep in the high-spine Pennines' pulsing chest,
Green-seeded heaps of spoil-hill snot still blot
The gang-scraped Yorkshire landscape
And make me hark back second-hand
To an almost-unremembered past when dad,
A flat-capped gap...
Tuesday 8th May 2012 10:15 pm
Mourn for the May whose ribboned fripperies once, fluttering,
Fostered cheerful colour on each vernal village green.
Though brazen buddleias dash some dour dolour from the guttering,
They still raise sad rejoinders to our ugly, urban scene.
Then shone the season of gay garland and rich revelry;
Then was the maypole’s hour to overlook glad scenes.
Tuesday 1st May 2012 10:20 am
Stark white wind-farms now whirl, wuthering
Wild atop High Haworth moor
On fresh snowfall softly covering
Like lambswool, the grassy floor
But as bland blades turn there, hovering
Thoughts spin fast around my brain:
If it is now worthwhile bothering
Writing verse which rings so vain.
Are those metal monsters withering
So all inspiration dies?
Friday 13th April 2012 12:04 pm
Though quite a Europhile, I'll willingly admit
One thing the single currency just cannot do
Though, sadly, truth to tell, the self-same problems sit
Within the British monetary system, too.
I was a coin-collector, as a geeky kid;
I scoured for specie in my pockets from loose change
Which in those times so many of us children did
Though numismatic hobbies nowada...
Friday 27th January 2012 10:01 pm
A glamorous ghostlike goddess, clad in glimmering garish green,
You swirl soft skirts of silk across the sullen Northern sky.
Your festive flashes frolic to festoon the starlit scene.
Aurora Borealis, you blaze brightly from on high.
So silent as you circle, scintillate and swiftly swirl,
Hoist high on the horizon, nature's necklace of the night.
Gyrating gem-like ...
Tuesday 24th January 2012 9:44 pm
That Hogmanay, that blissful distant winter
Along by Brighton Pier, we went to wander.
Resolutions made, we roamed on, rambling
Past the hulks of trundling traffic rumbling.
With no breath of heavy weather brewing,
Sea was millpond still, with no wind blowing;
Mild midwinter sun, echoing summer,
Sparkled on the swell, all silken shimmer.
Squawking seagulls ...
Friday 30th December 2011 2:52 pm
As my rattling Transdev bus chugs on
In its grumpy rush-hour peregrination
Through the already darkening day's end
Of Bradford's murky northern outskirts,
Condensation-glazed lad-scratched glass
Metamorphoses the winterworld outside
Into a semi-opaque panchromatic fairyland.
As dozy daylight dissolves to torpid twilight,
Mundane suburbia subtly transforms i...
Sunday 11th December 2011 5:20 pm
I rustle through crisp clusters of lost, crunching leaves
Which gather, bunched and rusting russet, in the thickets
And sniff the wafting, musty, fusty, rustic scents
Of fungal undergrowth amongst sparse, once-lush bushes.
Last, rash, brash leaflets stick to sycamore and ash
But soon shall slip their tenuous grips and hustle, fluttering
To forest’s floor to settle,...
Monday 24th October 2011 2:59 pm
It's one of those significant birthdays on Sunday (I chalk up the half-century, if you're wondering!) but here's something I wrote a couple of years back:
Another birthday looms,
Though, at our age, we fail to mark it
In any form of childish celebration,
Unless it is a special one
That ends in zero.
We’re now too old, we say,
Monday 12th September 2011 10:34 pm
These stones have stood two hundred years and forty more
And scan Hardcastle Crags across from Heptonstall,
Hoist high above the Hebble's ferny forest's floor
But they may fall.
Though Wesley preached to hundreds in this hallowed place,
This wayside chapel, gaunt-boned, gritstone octagon
Whose generations worshipped, prayed and gained God’s grace,
May soon be g...
Tuesday 16th August 2011 10:24 am
Shame the WOL event at Hebden Bridge has been cancelled. I'm "up North" visiting family and was thinking of coming along! Here's a sestina I wrote on one of my visits. It was around Eastertime but I can't remember which year.
Bus Ride to Hebden Bridge
Today I took the bus to Hebden Bridge
Past unremembered farmsteads on the moor,
No longer proud but broken, bowed by ...
Monday 1st August 2011 9:24 pm
Chewing the cud unperturbed by the world in the heat’s haze,
Up in the meadow tread red-polled, old, dun cows and brown cows,
Jerseys and Guernseys combining with Holsteins, all fine beasts.
All summer long in the strong, blinding sunshine, the kine graze,
Nibbling the timothy, fescue and rye grass, that high grass
Hiding the hollows, where tussocks of sedge deck the m...
Wednesday 20th July 2011 9:20 pm
As the trailing traffic trundles
Slug-like slow through humdrum London,
Serpentine, so slowly snaking,
As the working world is waking,
Does it drag its feet, despondent
That its journey's such a long one?
Is it glum, lethargic, lagging
Stultified by last night's stabbing
By the youths who prowled the pavements?
Is it stopped in shocked amazement
Saturday 16th July 2011 2:57 pm
We used to trail to see the tewits’ nests each spring,
Sometimes alone, or Uncle Tom would take us there
All dressed in tweeds, a hand-cut ash pole in his hand
In place of that black shovel that he heaved each day
To stoke the boiler for the engine at the mill.
As he was the one that knew best their favoured fields,
He’d lead the way, up Skipton Road, up to the Hea...
Tuesday 5th July 2011 4:34 pm
She totters as she trots across the street
On spindly, thin-shin shanks that
Could not dance a dodgy, rocky foxtrot.
This would-be vamp is hobbled
In her shaky, rakish steps
That wobble cock-eyed, knock-kneed,
In her lust for shoe-supremacy.
This dainty demoiselle is held
To be no stately, graceful gazelle
But gawky like a new-born, gauche giraffe
Tuesday 28th June 2011 6:50 pm
I've come home from my school's summer Fayre this evening - managed to sell a dozen or so of my homemade chapbooks - folk will buy all sorts of rubbish to raise money!
I was reminded of this poem I wrote after a previous Fayre & thought I might share it with you all!
After the Fayre
Tattered bunting flutters in the breeze;
Balloons bobble limply on their strings
Saturday 25th June 2011 11:06 pm
A leaden London cloudscape's gown of grey
Greets me this morning on my way to work;
Even the swooping swallows cannot break
A creeping lethargy this dismal day.
A tube strike looms, a shadow in the sky
That soon will wreck the hectic working week
And add more torture to the tiresome trek
As cramped commuters wend their weary way.
But cheer up, chaps - there's Wim...
Tuesday 21st June 2011 2:45 pm
Wimbledon's coming and the threat of rain
Seems set upon returning as I write
And, though an optimist, yet doubts remain:
The R.M.T. are spoiling for a fight,
Combined with public sector strikes. I fear
This summer's not a one we'll long remember
And, as for 2012, another year
Has still to go till I can be a member
Of that mass who'll say, “I told you so!”
Saturday 18th June 2011 1:44 pm
I’ve paddled through the packaging
And looked at all the labels.
With military strategy,
I’ve plugged in all the cables;
And now it’s smiling smugly,
As it sits on the TV:
The shiny, silv’ry set-top box
Is grinning back at me!
It has amazing functions
(Or so the advert said)
Though I really know I shouldn’t
Fall for everything I’ve read.
Tuesday 14th June 2011 1:18 pm
I have never been to Newbiggin
Although I’ve seen it on the map and know its name.
Yet I have never been to Newbiggin
Although I’ve seen the sign that points there down the lane.
But I have never been to Newbiggin
Although I’ve seen it stretched out there, across the dale,
Its houses strung like pearls, squat stone
All yellow-grey along the single street.
And I h...
Thursday 9th June 2011 12:00 am
Cook hooks, breaks his duck,
Adds four to England's score:
Great bat, a class act.
In tests, Strauss's nous
Makes him permanent leader,
Not acting captain.
Trott's hot: got the lot.
Not flashy like Pietersen
But better batter.
Now that Brylcreem's in his hair:
Knocks the girls for six.
Bell had a lean spe...
Monday 6th June 2011 11:29 pm