Poetry Blog by steve pottinger
Production’s stopped at JLR
the workforce isn’t making cars
the order book is looking thin
for Landrovers and Jaguars
but we’ve got stale bread and circuses
hip hip replacement hip hoorah
you can buy a rusted Ford Cortina now and point it at the exit
we’re gonna get a special 50p for Brexit!
Calm down dear, don’t make a fuss
that simply wouldn’t do
those whopping great lies on a bus
Wednesday 31st October 2018 9:29 pm
When X is minus 13%
Z the square root of sod all
calculate the value of Y
where Y equals taking back control.
Friday 9th February 2018 10:52 am
when the sun
hating the cold dark mornings
hits snooze on the alarm three times
crawls out of bed grumbling
about stiffness in the joints
damp, a bunged-up nose,
is a bear with a sore head
till the coffee kicks in
last of the milk and the motivation
queues at the bus-stop in the rain
with the other heavenly bodies
doesn’t get a seat – again –
Mercury chattering on her mobile
Monday 12th December 2016 10:16 am
A Poem In Which The Author Considers The Public Pronouncements Of Theresa May’s Conservative Govt On The Vexed Issue Of Europe From Her Accession In July 2016 Through To October Of The Same Year.
Brexit means Brexit
facile means glib
stupid means dumb
and a lie is a fib
Tuesday 11th October 2016 1:13 pm
(with apologies to Lewis Carroll)
‘Twas Brexit, and the slithy Gove
did frottercrutch in dwarfish glee;
he snicker-snacked the Camerove,
Beware the stabberjock, my son!
The empty eyes, the robo-glint!
who fellobrates the Murdocrone
the Ruperturtle übergimp!
He pallerised the BoJo cloon
they chummed upon their sunderbus
emblazoned it with fibberoons
Monday 4th July 2016 9:45 am
In the world of tax (and tax avoidance)
watch what we say, not what we do.
It's not levied on the likes of us:
it's only meant for you.
Monday 4th April 2016 5:40 pm
I was standing in line
at the bakers
queuing for the morning bus
in the hope of a job
I was buying flowers for my love
smoking a cigarette
wondering where the next meal
would come from
I was going to tell the boss to stick it
smiling at the memory of you
feeling the sun on my face
wishing blessings on the day
Tuesday 22nd March 2016 2:11 pm
Iain Duncan Wots-his-face
has now resigned and left a space
in Cabinet. The explanation?
Tory party machinations.
But then again, perhaps the bloke
just had enough of pigs, and coke.
Saturday 19th March 2016 10:12 am
Invent a war.
Something bloody and fratricidal.
Lose an uncle to barrel bombs
a brother to secret police.
Three years in, flee.
Pack only what you can carry:
clothes, smartphone, children, cash.
Slip away at night, in silence.
Take your leave of the flat, bakery, office,
rubble-filled streets where the kids once ran
shell of the cafe where old men
drank qahwa, played she...
Monday 21st December 2015 4:59 pm
it’ll be the comfort of the saturday afternoons of your childhood
sat in front of the TV with bread and dripping
watching John Wayne set the world to rights with a gun
it’ll be Kenneth More on tin legs reaching for the sky
with a re-mix of stirring music Vaughan Williams would kill for
it’ll be a tearjerker in the final reel
where you know the hero’s going to die
but his girl will remember ...
Tuesday 1st December 2015 4:14 pm
comrade osborne and the little red book
The chancellor’s autumn statement
and McDonnell’s quoting Mao!
It’s a joke. A jest. A jolly jape
to illustrate just how
George is selling off our assets
to global profiteers
and the Chinese state is buying up
the things which we hold dear
while the media says... nothing
a conspiracy of silence
on illiterate economics
and structural state viol...
Thursday 26th November 2015 10:02 pm
Rattling through the low hills
in the darkness and the endless endless rain
the train is overcrowded
because the train is overcrowded
because the train is always overcrowded
and the conductor’s now a manager
a voice we never see
mumbling something through the tannoy
about weather and delays.
We used to have seats
now we stand
and this is progress.
the airwaves are full bey...
Monday 16th November 2015 5:37 pm
because you deserve to feel
the sun on your skin
hot sand between your toes
to slough off the workday drudge
and free your smile
because it will be fun
because ice-cream melts fast
and tastes good
because it’s your laugh that matters
because no-one ever died thinking
the best thing they did
was spend three years on a diet
Tuesday 5th May 2015 4:06 pm
the stink of diesel and of fear which
everyone’s pretending is not here
because if they do not name it, it will not be real
but in the hot bodies of the strangers pressed
around her she can feel
the tension of a panic only held at bay
like sea-sickness, with iron will, good fortune,
they rise and fall, jaws clench and clench again
Monday 20th April 2015 7:10 pm
Fox News got an expert in
to tell them about terror
he said he had some beans to spill
and then he made this error
if you ever needed evidence
his analysis is cracked
he told them Birmingham’s gone Muslim
it’s a #foxnewsfact
he’s seen the Mecca Bingo halls
and put two and two together
then come up with 5, or 39,
he’s really not that clever
he thinks Aston’s...
Tuesday 13th January 2015 10:06 am
Drinking in my local
last dullday afternoon
soft drizzle outside
nothing much happening
usual 21st c. sense of ennui
when the door burst open
and a woman danced in
spinning wheeling pirouetting
across the floor
up on to a table
scattering drinkers before her
eyes flashing devilment and untamed fire
the shimmer of her dress was scarlet,
Wednesday 10th December 2014 8:31 am
The sun is always there
you used to say
there behind the clouds
waiting to break through.
I hung on those words.
And now I wish you were here
so that I could show you
how outside the rain’s been falling
for longer than I remember
day after day after day
and the skies are grey and heavy
the streets run with water
the fine clothes we were so proud of
Monday 1st December 2014 8:45 pm
Let us pretend
that we haven’t been this way before
too recently and too often
that this is the way forward
that it is the road to the peace
which eluded you when you sent
planes and tanks and men
into Lebanon, Ramallah, Jenin,
Gaza, Gaza, Gaza.
Let us pretend
that this time will be different
that this time will be worth it
that you can tot up the lives...
Tuesday 15th July 2014 9:56 pm
über the moon
you won’t be sober
any time soon.
Sunday 13th July 2014 10:57 pm
Should have been your boy
back from the game
bag of fish and chips
grin as wide as the Mersey
drunk on youth and sunshine
still living every pass shot tackle
as he settles down in front of the box
him and the old man each with a can
to watch it all over on Match Of The Day.
Instead, it was coppers
neighbours, friends, the sad-eyed priest
it was sorry for your...
Tuesday 22nd April 2014 5:34 pm
we gave you bread and circuses
now it’s bingo cards and beer
to distract you, so you’re unaware
your future’s disappeared.
© Steve Pottinger
Thursday 20th March 2014 6:16 pm
chips off the old block,
marching out into the world.
Watching their dad getting by
to making ends meet
like we all are.
Watching the news on the TV
reading about an inquiry
into the police
spying on an inquiry
into the police
letting young men get
away with murder
because of the...
Monday 10th March 2014 11:25 am
the girl next door knows
that something good is going to happen
I can hear her singing
through the bathroom wall
I just know that something good
is going to happen
she isn’t tired
she isn’t angry
today bringing up a kid alone
is something she can do
she feels it sure and certain and pure and true
because today something good
Wednesday 19th February 2014 5:51 pm
(with apologies to John Cooper Clarke)
Beheadings are acceptable, boobs are bad
the female form’s fantastic but only when it’s clad
we’re blasé about bullying, laissez-faire on lust
but our patriarch goes postal if the news feed shows a bust
sign on, log in, no matter where you look
you’ll never see a nipple on facebook.
We’ve made a Faustian ...
Tuesday 22nd October 2013 7:33 pm
This is where they come from:
villages eaten up by sand
river beds run dry
lands of red earth stained with blood
where there are mobs, bombs, bullets,
crops that fail.
This is who they are:
the young, the desperate, the brave,
fathers with daughters, motherless sons,
whose sin was to be born poor
worship the wrong body
bow before the wrong...
Monday 7th October 2013 8:56 am
Here is a poem
for the others
who are born on mud floors
marshland and high plain
in homes of plastic and flattened tin
in spat-out estates in lands
whose time has gone
in the mewling sprawling cities
of the south and east and rising world
who tumble down out of shanty towns
looking for work and hope and food
who doss down in shop doorways
Thursday 25th July 2013 2:22 pm
Edward Snowden’s in the spare room
spies are hiding in the bin
a pack of Fleet Street’s finest
are struggling to get in
there’s paparazzi in the flowerbeds
and killers in the yard
And Ed thinks he’s in Cuba
it’s going to be hard
to explain this is a terrace
in a sleepy cul-de-sac
which may be nothing like Havana
but he’ll have to watch his back...
Wednesday 26th June 2013 7:49 am
When you’re playfully tiffing a Saatchi
remember: the tears that he sheds
aren’t signs that he’s hurt or unhappy
but of loving contentment instead.
The nose tweak which makes his eyes water
isn’t cowardly, vicious or sore
but a shorthand to show your affection
which he craves. So go on. Do it more.
And the necklace of bruises you leave round his...
Tuesday 18th June 2013 1:16 pm
never known for his subtlety
three pints in at The Anchor
half an eye still on the game
orders another lager
stands tall at the bar
and tells us all
this changes nothing
he wouldn’t kick her out of bed
he’s no oil painting himself
never has been never will
shouts of he should be so lucky
in another l...
Sunday 19th May 2013 7:22 pm
Some folk like to play promoter
claim they live to put on bands*
in truth they've got their work cut out
finding their own arse with both hands.
They draw up maps and spreadsheets
they make strategies and plans
but its location is a mystery
"Where's my arse? Shit! Where's my hands?"
They fight down waves of panic
they ask relatives an...
Sunday 19th May 2013 7:10 pm
Roses are red
Maggie was blue
now she is dead
they're having a do.
They're airbrushing history
re-writing the past
Big Ben's falling silent
the flag's at half mast.
In a time of austerity
they've money to burn
for the pomp of her funeral
but the lesson we've learned
is they secretly know
she's not loved by the nation
Thursday 18th April 2013 10:50 am
... Wilko Johnson president
the sun shone.
Which was a start.
He walked into Parliament with a heart
full of honest intentions
and a Telecaster in his arms
and we were one nation under a groove
under a riff. A distinctive, choppy, furious,
The day we elected Wilko Johnson president
Monday 4th February 2013 5:41 pm
Saturday 8th December 2012 5:00 pm
If you enjoyed my poem about corporate tax avoidance, and can't live without seeing it in another format, then you'll find the video here: http://youtu.be/U_KG6BqiyPs
I'd like to say we made it on a day I was looking particularly haggard, but I suspect they're pretty much the norm... ;-)
Note: I've re-posted this in the hope the 'comments' function works this time!
Saturday 8th December 2012 4:03 pm
what with the weather being lousy
and the nights drawing in
and the rent being due
and the electricity bill hitting the floor
and going through the roof at the same time
and feeling in need of a mid-morning pick me up
to shore up my morale,
I’m going to put on my rain gear
head into town
walk into Starbucks
and smile at the ba...
Thursday 8th November 2012 6:57 pm
spills out of the cafe
bouncing off formica tables
wreathed in steam from pint-sized mugs of tea
rolls out across the concourse
to dance in autumn sunshine
prancing round the buses that will leave
from this place no-one’s heard of
to another one no-one knows
and the drivers smoking cigarettes
and the mothers who are barely more than girls
Monday 17th September 2012 11:24 am
Even in the bad light I saw them come
round the corner at the top of the street
and knew this was it: trouble.
Nothing to do but keep walking
and hope they hadn’t twigged.
But the set of their shoulders
the purpose to their stride
made one thing good and clear:
fat bloody chance of that.
Ten years ago I’d have fancied my chances,
manual work m...
Saturday 11th August 2012 2:38 pm
Outside, the hawthorn is in bloom
while here the TV spits into my room
faster than bullets, the same old news
that some far-flung corner of a foreign field
is now sown with blood, with shrapnel, and with loss
that it’s worth the sacrifice
worth the cost
and outside, the hawthorn is in bloom.
Outside, the hawthorn is in bloom
the willow glows with ...
Monday 16th April 2012 9:29 am
And I remember
him opening the door
saying Come in, make yourself at home.
Wanting to show it off, like you do
with a new place.
And walking into a big, bare lounge,
not a stick of furniture in it,
just a mustard-coloured carpet
and a view out over Leeds.
Thinking Shit, that’s depressing
thank god I don’t live here.
But knowing what it mea...
Monday 9th April 2012 11:57 am