Donations are essential to keep Write Out Loud going    
profile image

Joe Nodus

Updated: Mon, 30 Nov 2015 12:20 pm

Contact via WOL logo


I'm untutored & everyone but me, can see the glaring faults in my work. I believe in the principle of, "simple living, high thinking"; I try to simplify my life, as best I can. For example, by travelling on foot as much as possible; which could mean walking as much as 30 miles in a day, to attend poetry readings around the country. I find the events at the, gig guide. At the end of May 2013, I walked to Manchester from Leeds within 48 hours. Having attended readings at Cleckheaton Commercial & Ring o' Bells, Middleton, Lancashire along the way. Sadly the Manchester readings were cancelled, & rain & sore feet prevented me from going to read in Wigan next day. Another time I cycled to Birkenhead for the 'Poetry Spoke' at Gallagher's on Chester Street. It took me 46 hours to cover the Leeds & Liverpool Canal. Arriving at the Liver building at 7am, on Thursday 20th June 2013, with approximately 2 hours of sleep during the journey, having cycled approximately 130 miles. At Lunchtime I dined on Samphire from mud flats at Birkenhead. The gig was great, I cycled back via Manchester with renewed vigour; attending 'Manky Poets' at Chorlton Library, before catching the train to Bradford, & cycling the rest of the way home, as the rain began; completing an estimated 190 miles of cycling, in 5 days. I also walked to Macclesfield, for the 'Speakeasy', fortnightly Tuesday, reading at the Snow Goose, Sunderland Street. I continued down the Macclesfield Canal, a beautiful walking route, but due to heat & sore feet, after 140 miles walking, I failed to get to Birmingham, for a Saturday reading there; turning back at Stafford on 12th July. 3 & a half weeks later I walked from Leeds to Stalybridge, much of the way on the Huddersfield Canal; took the train the last 6 miles to central Manchester,& attended a spoken word performance at the Castle, Oldham Street. On the last train, I used the return half of the ticket I'd bought in Stafford the previous month, then walked from Stafford, mostly on the canal bank, to Cradley Heath near Birmingham, for a wrongly advertised gig that didn't take place. I must have done a good 500 miles, under my own steam, chasing poetry events Summer 2013. I'm eager to set off again, as soon as the weather is mild enough for me.


1: Growing Up. Life; only, sugar & toys, school-teachers; killjoys; friends; bullies, or snobs; siblings; torturers; toy cars, plasticine, secondary smoking, Sunday, to Church; parents; hungover. Wine sometimes, lured Mum in, tottering after communion; back, to smirking kids; stopping chortles, with a fist. Trust, something, yet to learn, but knew affect, of drink; learned to act, Mum & Dad, were, threatening. Depreciation, of relations, brought, resentment. Prescriptions; kept 'em quiet; for a while. Fights broke out; as, booze ran out; but can't part, bully, from cow. Inured to each other; they learned to love; 60 years after; lust, drew them together. 2: Ragged Lounge Lizard. To paint my life; any way appealing; would misrepresent. I'd feelings; mostly selfish; didn't care, for others' pain; bald-headed, scheming; all about me. Lustful interludes; interspersed intoxication; ragged, lounge-lizard, wanted everything; price; sincerity; too much to pay; I acted, mawkish; she made, a leap of faith. No honesty, but mutual; exploitation; more we got to, know, each other; more, we seemed, different; painfully, obvious; at her parents'. House in the country; swimming in the stream; a break, from bedsit-land, but we felt; shallowness. Empty as, promises; back to, cattle-market. Downward branching, heart lines; show disappointment. Sign of Moon, mount of Mars; madness. 3: He Stands Alone. Has-been in the, pick up joint, desperately going, nowhere; stands alone; nowhere else to go. Will he find, a counterpart, or get, more lonely? Probably, go home alone. Is it all his fault; such a bad sort? Really, worst in the world; 'cause he's, over, thirty; & can't keep, eyes off, girls? Still young; going bald; being bold; couldn't catch cold. Has-been in the pick up joint; becoming hated, can't be tolerated; does all the don'ts. What's the meaning, where's the point? Wants to be a parasitic, male; selfish scheming; centres on his groin. Don't waste a minute; he's indiscriminate; anyone's, but no-one's his. Exacerbated, need; douse flames, with gasoline; don't go near; he smells like cheese. Sexual consumer; self-abuser; helpless victim, of hormones. Hedonistic culture, makes men, vultures, instead of, husbands, you'd love to own. Has-been in the pick up joint, lascivious failure; on the bone; no-one wants to know. 4: Objectification Frustration. It's not for you, she's made up; dressed to the nines; low cut blouse, high hem-line; not for you, she click-clacks; in sling-backs. Don't dare look at her, you old sod; go buy a newspaper. For 60p, you can feast your eyes, till they bulge; but never, ever, ever; touch. 5: Gut-Rot. How many drunken people, will you be let down by; till you recognise, a lie? Seem to like you; full of beer; then sober, won't come near. How many drunks, will you be allured by; till you realise, they're fly. Seem to want you; full of drink; but sober; think, you stink. So if, someone, goggles you; consider intake, don't try to, talk, when they sober up; you'll be embarrassed, when you get rebuffed. Alcohol, tempor'ily relieves inhibitions, that help, avoid, bad situations; hangover, affects us opposite way; splits personalities, 'tween night & day; till daytime drinks, seem needed, to face; the problems, we're making ourselves. But, we're not, facing them, in that case; not at all; running away; like piss down a drain; to hide in seclusion, of a dull, damaged brain. Alcohol thrills, then kills; really doesn't help; every sip; a step to hell. Every sip taken; makes you fake, until you're someone; you really hate. It turns you into, someone; you don't want, to be; even if, it seems to, make you, feel; happy, & free. Alcohol based social life, must be damaging, if the only time you make friends, is when they've been drinking. Is alcohol, all we've got? Even in Church, they dish out; gut-rot. 6: Saturday Before Christmas. Seven o'clock, Saturday, drunks croak karaoke; piteous sound; poor fools’ paradise; frozen town. No-one speaks, in the street; cold as concrete; gloomy as guilt. Middle class, so aloof, drunk lads; uncouth; intoxicate; ad nauseam. Nervous smiles; slurred words, staggering; girls'; thighs wobble; as they step; toward regret. Drunken, beggars, flower sellers, girls with phones, attached to ears; screaming sirens; flashing lights, slobbery kisses; fist fights. Accordion players, line the road; I lean on a wall, rhyming scrawl; to warbles of accordion. Gypsy, hopes you'll throw a coin, if you're tipsy; hopes you, won't throw, a punch; if you're drunk. Christmas, lights, illuminate beggars; intoxicated, mithering girls; angry lads; & a, hopeless; poetic, tramp. 7: Kirkgate Sunday Morning. Empty cans, lie; black & white, like magpies; joys gone, forever. Real birds, strut 'round, grave-stones, knocked down; making way for change; no-one cares for old, graves; why should they? No-one knows, the bones; whose headstones, are pavement. Bells ring, this morning; deacons, stand as doormen; stopping; homeless; making pews, beds; old men & women; stagger in. But smiling, unlike minxes; passing by with cases; lines etched; on sad, young faces. Cars flash by; aeroplanes fly; another day of luxury, for a few; or poverty & freedom; for undeluded, lucky losers. 8: Lucky Loser. If you think, you've got, to sin, to win; you're better off losing; If you feel, the need, to cheat; to succeed; you can't afford, to feel that way. Piety's more valuable, than money; as you'll find, on your last day; not false piety; self-righteous, but truly, honest. Lucky loser; gladness chooser, defeated, but free; satisfied, with simplicity. If you give in, to a ruthless, social system; to get paid; you can't afford, to be, that way; time's more valuable, than money; as you'll find, on your last day. What price freedom, from wage slavery? You might have to relinquish; mundane respectability. 9: Evergreen. Rhododendron & Holly leaves; shroud, leaf-mould, ever-green; bare trees, reach, high above; moss capped, rock. Rosehip, & pink berries; spot, ivy-clad escarpment, rushing water flows; beside, the path. Clouds come from ocean; river from clouds; cycle unbroken; ever new. River, relentless; as time; estuary like entry; to real life. Fish, to sea; we progress; to the limitless. Beyond changing nature; vapour, condensation; sadness, gladness, Summer; Winter. Mortal feelings come & go; deciduously. Love Supreme; evergreen. 10: Bulrushes. There are bulrushes, growing on the warehouse roof; carpet of moss on the wall; sign says 'To Let'; but I bet; it's about to fall. Brightly packed, putrefying, food, in superstores; infertilised with insecticide; die if you eat more. Poison fumes, from vehicles, transporting, one; too wealthy to be healthy; impoverished mentally. Under tarpaulin, breathing fresh air; enough to feed on, fruit & greens, no-one else goes there. Discrepancies between; righteousness, & what's respected; mean principles, get rejected. 11: Nobody. Unless you've got a degree, you're nobody; scholars agree on this; unless you're framed, on the mantelpiece, with hat, gown, & rolled up paper; called a diploma; you're persona non-grata. An ignoramus, lacking graces, required for recognition; as human. No social standing, without understanding, higher things in life; etiquette, elocution; psychological submission; you're a naked ape! Lower stage, of evolution; but wait... Darwin's been disproved; & higher schooling, is a self-serving system, of privileged distinction; tailored to tastes, of those who can afford it. A place to find a mate, for the academic classes, & learn to turn your nose up, at the masses. 12: The Frosty Resistance. Society seems, to be, gripped; in a, pseudo-intellectual, guilt trip; foisted in the position; formerly occupied, by religion. Professing toleration; icy frost, shows condemnation. Icons of the age; radical revolutionaries, but Gandhi was, not; politically correct; nor Marx, nor Greer; we constantly, change ideas; in word juggling acts; evading the fact: This contradictory doctrine; discriminates, against things, it claims to protect: Cultural diversity; puts them in a quandary; free speech, at university; a thing of the past; swear in class; get, kicked out, on your ass. Working class idiosyncrasy; banned at university; widens social divide; poisoning students' minds, against proletarians, in name of political correctness. Society seems, to be in the gripped, in an all consuming, guilt trip, foisted in the position; formerly occupied, by intellectual freedom. 13: Lav' Loaf. A loaf of bread, in the bus station lavs; 29th June 2012: Bright, white, bread; glowing under halogen; stood on end, toilet side. Eighty-nine pee, price tag. Crust gone, like the man, who ate there; on the watery chair. Lining his guts, to shoot up. Left his loaf; for the next junky; in the station lavatory. I wondered, could someone; be tempted; to take it home; to save, from starvation? 14: Bloodstained Barathea; Wakefield Market 1986. Tuesday, half drunk, as market closed; among Nazi regalia, she found coats: Ancient, woollen, hand-me-downs; she tried one on. She noticed; Yiddish names, on pocket labels; a smell; dried blood; & holes. Some say, it didn’t happen; this was Jewish tailoring; bullet holes, & stench; of death sweat. You think, it couldn’t happen; Wakefield market, sold rags; of death camps. Bayonet & bullet holes, in girls' coats; ten pence, she bought them. Never such tailoring, or sadness, she found; as rags, of Hitler's victims. 15: Match of the Day. On the doormat, leaflets; for poison food; cheap; with election pamphlets; poison, of deceit. Litterbug postmen, litter the letterbox, straight in the litterbin. Unwanted like, minority, elected; politicians: Closing schools, & hospitals; open nuclear power stations; scapegoat the weak. Jobseekers, log on; to fill forms, never read; murder by attrition, Machiavelli's not dead. Docs write scripts; 2 grand a week; on strings, of drug companies; like police & politics; they're puppets. Kids at school, on opiates; Winter in dystopia; freezing cold; ice-creme van's go round; ringing out; metallic tones; night & day; ringing out, 'Match of the Day'. Police, don't want, culprits; instead search, for weaklings; scapegoating, keeps peace; with politicians. Poor ex-cons; might prefer; jail, to signing on; now so fraught, with oppression. Night; Winter, & ice creme vans, still go round; ear splitting loud; in freezing cold; 'Greensleeves'; metallic tone. Ice creme vans, keep us awake; 'Match of the Day'. 16: Dangerous Thing. People, who are, slow as treacle, take time; to live the life; cyber-dating sites; are money grabbing lies. Freedom doesn't start; at 5:30, but when we realise, spiritual unity; unique but identical, in quality; to all there's ever been. As equals; we're amiable; even if we're evil, we can be recycled; feeding, good instincts; smiles & kindness; instead of suspicion; irrational fear; animal reactions, based on appearance. Grow your own, tolerance, happiness will consequence; naught to fear, in death. Dangerous thing, is thinking oneself, above someone else. Most dangerous is, considering oneself; the best. 17: This Wise. Wisest of wise; all knowing God; highest science; spiritual knowledge; this is simple logic; wisdom of wisest, scripture recorded. Following scripture's injunctions; wise establish missions; for propagation of wisdom; wise follow footsteps of wise. But, arrives corruption; with egoists, within such missions, distorting the instructions. Lies don't corrupt the wise; wisdom never dies; wise follow wise; not liars. 18: Different Now. [ & ] How depressing was life? I'd run out of luck; now life’s changed, reading Prabhupad's books. Like, Bhagavad-gita, As It Is sung, by Krishna; translated by, A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami; Prabhupad. Now, be careful, please; imposters pose as leaders; International Society, for Krishna Consciousness; ISKCON is, usurped by demons. Feeding, Prabhupada, poison; changing his books; ISKCON's, all corrupt. Prabhupad lives; in his books, usurper guru's; murderous crooks; posed as renunciates, indulge their senses. In changing books; their potency is lost. The originals, are re-printed, avoid imitations, sold by demons. Don't give money; to bogus gurus, or their cronies. 19: Rise Above. If we could see eternity, we'd notice temporality; material existence; like a prison sentence. When, soul can, rise above, material attraction; abstinence is, freedom; detachment satisfaction. But how does, one achieve; this transcendent position? By concentration, on the Absolute Person. Chant His name; in mantra meditation: Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. 20: Creation. God made sharks, God made wolves; & men & women; unless we obey, His rules, we act like, wild-men, hiding disrepute; behind expensive suits. God made tigers, God made pigs; & me & you; without, His words; don't know what to do; fake respectability, conceals immorality. 'Neath veneer of quality, reside; predator families; sinking teeth in flesh & blood, washed down, with caffeine cups & toxic, hating, liquor; "Like a top up vicar?" Wait! "Be not among; wine bibbers"; "riotous eaters of flesh!" Hear what God said: "Behold I have given, every herb, on the face, of the earth; & every tree, in which, is fruit of a tree, yielding seed; to you; it shall be to eat." (Genesis 2:29) God made crocodiles & vultures; He made our children; unless we, teach; God's law; they'll be, criminals; dealing death; eating flesh. 21: Voices. Don't listen to voices that say "kill"; listen to the voice that says "forgive". Don't listen to the voice in your head; listen to the voice in your heart. Forgiveness plays, an essential part; in spiritual development. Jesus said that, & we have to believe it. 22: The North. Solid rows; humble abodes; soot-stained sandstone; on roads; composed; of rectangular stone. Fragrant gardens, overgrowing; crumbling walls; kiss; smooth paving-stones. Spires, black with coal tar, of engine smoke or hearth; peer above trees, in churchyards; gravestones, likewise, black. Preserved; by their patina. Unlike, denuded, disasters; ruined by, sand-blasters; trying to blend colour; with new, shopping centres. Such was Halifax, Town Hall; once black with coal tar; blasted back, to former glory; then algae; turned the spire green; giving it, sub-aqua, image, through the endless, drizzle. Blasting again, wore it away; vanity, wrecked; this gem; tearing off, the smooth finish; crumbling the beauty. The caption, carved in stone, that read; "act wisely"; now; ironically; invisible.

All poems are copyright of the originating author. Permission must be obtained before using or performing others' poems.

Do you want to be featured here? Submit your profile.


Luara Locateli

Wed 2nd Dec 2015 22:06

Nice! Keep going! All the best for you

Profile image

Julian (Admin)

Wed 23rd Apr 2014 15:00

you are pretty amazing Joe. Hats off to you.

Profile image

Ann Foxglove

Fri 21st Jun 2013 17:40

Hi Joe - welcome to WOL. I hope you will enjoy taking part in the site! :)

View all comments

If you wish to post a comment you must login.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

Find out more Hide this message