Poetry Blog by Marnanel Thurman (2014)

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Harry O'Neill on Breakdown of "I walked in darkness" (Sat, 5 Nov 2016 04:55 pm)

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Time blew away like dandelion seed

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A few years ago, I collected 110 of my poems into a book; I'm bringing it back into print for a few months in order to pay bills since my partner and I are both too sick to work. You can buy it from Lulu in the UK, US, and many other countries-- usually it's US$20, about £12, but at present it's discounted to US$17, about £11.

There will also be a numbered and signed proper hardback edition of fi...

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The handle to raise and lower Kent

(early draft, may change)

Oh, I was down in Maidstone,
I called at County Hall,
And in the council chamber there's
A handle on the wall.
They said, "Don't touch that lever!"
I asked them what they meant.
They told me, that's the handle
To raise and lower Kent.

Up, up if we pull!
Down, down if we press!
Our goals are Kent's
Controlled ascents
From here to near Sheerness.

We made...

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The six blind elephants and the man

(After John Godfrey Saxe.)

It was six jolly ELEPHANTS
(And all of them were blind),
That all agreed to search the town
To study humankind,
That each by observation
Might satisfy his mind.

The first one felt the human's head;
In puzzled tones he spake:
"This wonder of a Human Man
Is flat as griddle-cake!"
The others solemnly agreed,
"'Tis true, and no mistake."

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Belloc rewrites Sredni Vashtar

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ELAINE DE ROPP
Who loved to thwart children
and was sacrificed to a polecat-god

A woman named ELAINE DE ROPP
Believed in knowing when to stop;
In being careful to be quite
Respectable and Good and Right,
And Decent, Upright, Free from Sin,
Unlike her cousin Conradin.
He rarely did as he was told.
For Conradin was ten years old,
And as is good for girls and boys
Was fond of Laughter, ...

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The threshold folk

When you stand at the sand at the end of the land
before you tread the brine
where the driftwood spells with the seaweed's shells,
your barefoot prayers at the shrine
of the unseen queen of the space between
as you pass from old to new
call the gods whose friends are the odds and ends
of the threshold folk like you.

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Gentle Readers

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This is just a note to say that I've started a regular series of posts called Gentle Readers, each of which will contain a poem of mine. If you're interested in receiving them twice a week, let me know. Here's the first one, on Scargill House, leaving Surrey, the Good Dalek, telling the truth, and a disturbed reverie.

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And the sky-blue shall overcome

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A lion, with triumphant stare,
holds high the pedigree that lay
hid in the books that line his lair.
Beneath, a pride in proud array
with golden grins agape to say
that colour (as a rule of thumb)
must meet with metal for display,
and: the sky-blue shall overcome.

Now, week by week, we've gone to Clare
for nine-score terms, until today,
to gather for a meeting, where
we sweep away naï...

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Staines just wanna have floods

I come home in the morning boat
With mud in my wellies and a waterproof coat
Oh mother dear, your house is covered in mud
And Staines just wanna have floods

And in the streets wherever I’ve been
Detergent won’t help if you wanna get clean
This muddy water isn’t mixing with suds
And Staines just wanna have floods.

Conservatives wading, and pointing Lib Dems
Don’t help if your High Stre...

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barber

When I get shaved it's guaranteed
the barber's hand will shake
and cut me till my chin must bleed
and upper lip mustache

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Vitai Lampoonda

There’s a breathless fear in the mind of Gove,
Laws to make, and the polls to win;
For the ruling class in his party strove
To instil an obedient zeal therein.
And it’s not for the sake of a ribboned coat,
Or the selfish hope of a season’s fame,
But a series of words that you learn by rote:
If you don’t understand… it’s all the same.

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Dogged Scribblings

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I have a chapbook on Kindle called Dogged Scribblings, based on one of my sets from Pop Up Poetry in Guildford last year. It contains love advice from a fishmonger, what puppies dream about, the invention of flatulence, an unusually honest job application, why King Arthur enjoys a good cuppa, and ten more short poems. It's free on special offer today (Thursday 9th), and I love hearing readers'...

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chapbook

Epiphany

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I walked in darkness. Many a lonely mile,
my eyes and footsteps stumbling and blind,
I sought a kindly light I could not find
in land or ocean, asking all the while
if lightless lives are taken in exchange
for light eternal; memories of sight
would whisper, even I shall see the light!

I never thought the light would look so strange.
Not in a temple, echoing and awed,
nor in a palace, glis...

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Nine and sixty ways

Mr Kipling and his verse were a blessing and a curse Since the Neolithic formalists began: For you know there was a day when they found a further way But abandoned it, for seventy won't scan.

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