Poetry Blog by David Cooke

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entry picture

Isaac Lowthian Bell (1816 – 1904)


In that stern, expensive portrait

he may have hung centre stage

just above his mantelpiece,

he is staring back at the world

like a founding father.


Self-contained and righteous,

he is the one who pays

the piper. Like it or not,

for your own good, you’ll dance

to the tune he’s called.


His name is Isaac Lowthian Bell –


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Iraqi Schoolgirls, 1932

entry picture

Beyond these walls there’s a place

where they are sisters and daughters

and soon, inshallah, virtuous

wives- and mothers-to-be.


Out there where modesty's praised,

their future's determined.

Their allurements buried

like a hoard, each bride-price


is settled. Being who they are

and where they come from,

each is a link in the chain

that holds the world toget...

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The 2 CV

entry picture

for Bernadette


The first car we owned was a 2 CV

with no certifiable history.

The year we got together

we drove it to the end of its days.

With its tinny dinted roof

it had an air of slumped defeat

we rose above quite easily.


When summer broke all records

the windows that didn’t quite close

were an unexpected bonus.

Its mind-boggling gear stick

seemed ...

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