Tags from last 12 months

climate change (1)


When I see a painting, what do I see?

A man, a woman, a garden, a tree?

Perhaps there’s a mountain in the distance,

But soon I reflect on the existence

Of a facet of the work much greater:

The vision and mind of its creator.

A picture is a window on ideas

Which bubble up and percolate for years.

They finally express themselves in paint,

Which slaps on and hardens with no...

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Up-market sheds are all the rage.

People write memoirs inside them,

Or compose their latest music,

Or contemplate, or drink sherry

And frolic with gold-plated friends.

But real sheds are more sinister:

Lives, mostly gone, are embedded

Within the jumbled disarray

Of mud-caked tools and slapdash piles

Of festering ambitions.

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Uncle Fred was a star on a tightrope.

He came home every day and skipped across -

Thirty feet up, without a safety net,

Above the back yards between the houses -

The swaying chasm spread before our roof.

Risking all, in any kind of weather,

He shone with elegance like Fred Astaire.

At first the neighbours applauded and cheered

(Wives lay awake in their delicious dreams),


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Once we have climbed the greasy pole,

We seek enjoyable pursuits.

We think power equals pleasure;

We pretend that we devour,

At length, and from a place of strength,

All of our past annoyances

And irritations. But do we?

Pleasure as a settling of scores

Is just revenge in poor disguise.

We know revenge in any form

Is like a cocktail with no spark.

So is this p...

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A man lay on the railway track

And waited calmly for his train.

Approaching fast, it ran him down;

He quivered and got up again.


This feat of mind over matter

Was the subject of much chatter.

He did the tour of the bars,

Showing everyone his scars.


‘My destiny was to survive;

I knew I would come out alive.

It’s true I teetered on the brink,

But all turned...

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Strange Times

I met a poet in the park;

He asked me if I liked his rhymes.

I answered, ‘well, in these strange times..’

The passers-by turned heads to stare,

But none amongst them seemed to care.

As daytime drifted into dark,

I left him seated, looking low.

What happened next, I do not know.

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She danced


She danced away the afternoon

With men who, in another life,

Might land a spacecraft on the moon.


The world was simple then. A slew

Of tranquillised delights calmed nerves.

Our cares were solvable, and few.


Celebrities would saunter past;

Some boy performed his turn. The troops,

Reluctant, waited for the blast,


Eyes closed and fingers in their ears.


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