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My Mother Says

He stomped into the small lounge


and dropped his school kit on the floor

beside the tutoring table.

He eyed the lace doily

snack glass of apple juice

silver muffin wrapper glinting

with multicoloured SKITTLES.


Without a word he sat

took a sip of juice and licked his lips

toyed with choosing the best candy for first

burst of pre-lesson flavour.


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Touch and Go

There was a young lady so thorough

She thought about Death without sorrow

                As she dashed to and fro.

                “It is pure  ‘Touch and Go’

That I will be Silenced tomorrow.”


She never put skulls on her table,

Or her buttons, yet she was able

                (As she dashed to and fro)

                To accept: Touch and Go’

Is the Fate of all L...

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Touch and Go Comp



I feather into sleep

wooing my mind’s machinery

to cease its incessant whir.

I winnow down

to that senseless plunge

over the abyss

into oblivion.


With my dying breath

I consider

the sea of sleep

submarine depth

of other consciousness

the endless brain

free to navigate hidden channels

lacunas of slippery Truth.



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the kettle sings loudly 

and clicks off

water ready to make a brew

delivered thoughtfully and sincerely

into the lounge

to the table in front of the TV

with a smile


and then

back to the kitchen

explosive tears

jetting into clenched hands

face jammed against the cold sink

gut screaming –

What songs there were to sing!

Plays to act!

Students to tea...

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No longer do we slice, strangle

bludgeon or burn victims

upon our godly altars

live offerings for appeasement or power.

Death for personal gain.


Yet behind intimate walls

with calculated cruelty


we sacrifice child, partner, parent

upon slabs of self-interest.

Not much different -

‘Death for personal gain.’


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Lunch with A Banker

At the table in the corner of her office the dregs of Bordeaux cast

ruby glints through crystal glasses. Crisp strawberries glow wetly in

sugar snow; body-odoured brie melts on its marble slab. Nervously she

fiddles with her knife.  Glancing up to his  mocking eyes the offer of


dessert shrivels on her tongue. She moves to the sunny window and

peers down at the bus...

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Message to Isobel

Hi, Isobel,

I don't how how much response you finally got from the 52 Hertz 'competition'. I wasn't able to find the time needed to read so many entries and to be even reasonably fair to each poem. But it is the second point that is really my problem: I hate 'judging' other people's work. I thought your topic idea was brilliant, and I enjoyed all the different interpretations very much. For...

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The Bath

She is so tired - almost lethargic

Drugged by wet heat and sweet oil.

If she succumbs, sinks down deep

Into scented foam, will her nerves react

As water slips up her nose?

Does she have a safety system to shock her awake?

Smoke sifts insidiously into the lungs.

Would water?


She is afraid – she – who spears cold surf

Slicing into elemental thrust laughin...

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52 hertz

The Candy Train


on the please-come-in door

a bright brass knocker

and stained glass birds

rainbows on the walls

when the sun casts through


a dark scrolled shelf

hangs high in the hall

gleaming with candlesticks

cats dogs monkeys

and a clear glass train

its engine

full of coloured candy beads

glowing like jewels


up the stairs to bedtime

footsteps slow


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childhood death

Upon Originality

Is it possible to think

let alone write



Or is my every thought

mere mimicry


from other minds?

When I hear

or read

an idea

with the exactly right word

that I had garnered

for myself

from my own head

I wince


and displeasured


It’s a conundrum

and I have to laugh

because t...

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CBT in Sale on Tuesday

I'm privileged to be a guest with WOL at Waterside in SALE on Tuesday,  April 16.  Many WOLers  have asked for a 'heads up' on my own turf since I don't get to other venues very often. It would be great to meet  even more 'internet friends'. Sale is really terrific under the baton of Rod Tame.

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The Gay Dinosaur


It’s too easy

being gay.

Where’s the glamour


thumb-your-nose fight

bloody-nose fright

the campy swagger

scarves flying hips jiving?

Where the sweet sweat of secrecy

that adrenalin rush

high edgy intoxicating


the homosexual brotherhood




Where is my youth?

Being gay


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Grey Morning

She  awoke,

And thought to find in the dawn’s smoky gloom

Her  friend;

But when she touched his damp cheek

He asked, ‘Are we still in our roles?’

His shuddering breath betrayed

The cold question.

‘Yes,’ she answered kindly, ‘we are.’

But ... Oh … Oh!

The light was cruel.





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