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John Woodhouse

Updated: Fri, 12 Jan 2018 09:59 am

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hi all, i'm a newby here, looking for someone to spend 5 mins to read some of my stuff and tell me honestly what they think. I have about a hundred or so poems but I am only putting up 3, please feel free to give me some feedback as my friends signed me up for an open mic night and I want to know whether im wasting my time or not! thank you jj.


Garden swing To everyone else it merely hangs there! Not a movement occurs though there’s wind in the air. Down at the bottom of the mossy green hill, The small wooden plank on chains that hang still. No-one else hears the giggles and screams For no-one else sees the child in his dreams. That he sees and hears so clear in head. His beautiful child as she hides in the shed While he counts to ten and then with a call, Of “ready or not” as he crosses the lawn, Pretending he really hasn’t a clue, Of where she is hidden, though her feet are on view. And while deep in his mind the swing swings on high. A small salty tear runs down from his eye. The chains are not rusty, the plank not deformed. And in his mind’s eye, sunny days…never storms! No rain, no bad weather, no thunderous din, As long as he buries the truth deep within. “Push me faster and higher, daddy” she cries. Then she laughs and she sings while the swing swings on high. He sees a garden which is neat and well kept Not the overgrown jungle with falling down shed. Then his eyes, which are glazed, flash over ‘the’ place. He pretends he can’t see but there’s pain on his face. As long as he’s strong! “Don’t let the truth in!” Then he can ‘forget’ where the pond had once been! “Don’t think of that day!”… “It never occurred!” “Don’t remember that screaming and splashing you heard!” Quickly he forces those thoughts far away Back to her, smiling, on a warm summers day. She giggles and laughs, swings her feet in the air On the swing to all others that merely hangs there! John Woodhouse ©JonJonJohanson Independant Productions ltd 2008 The Ostrich Principle There’s just some things you hear some people say, That even on a lovely warm summer’s day Can jar, Disturb your thoughts, Make you feel quite out of sorts, While you’re just casually Shopping in the Spar, Like when The little lady of a certain age exclaims “You have to be brave, John” “To face old age Head on” “ John” She’s counting her short change, Her coppers! And her days! She’s buying a bottle Of whiskey to help drain away her pains From the cancer that’s rotting away her wattle But Her fears remain! And I still, Hear myself ask “errmm...twenty fags?” You see I’m still Pro-crast- ten-ating My self assigned task To stop! Give up! Quit! The green-brown weed, That’s turning my lungs, and my teeth, The same shit -stained colour Promised to give myself a life Fuller. So I Smile, And I wink at the old lass And I dutifully pass My money across the glass Counter, with a clink And I pick up my yellow and white death sticks All the time waiting, I’m looking to leave. To get out. Remove myself from her gutteral grasp, As she struggles to breathe. Then I’m out, Back, In the sun Unwrapping the pack Telling myself “This is the last one....! John!” “You don’t even want to have these” But I will “I’m not ill” Just for the thrill....Plllleeease! Besides, It’s just such a shame to waste “Better to waste away” I inhale! The sweet smokey taste On the warmest of summer days. I wave goodbye, as I’m crossing the street And BANG! That’s when Me and the bus meet And we merge For the most, fleeting of moments Then I’m flying Head first Towards the verge My feet caught still Beneath the wheels, not quite the drag I had in mind And there’s somewhere deep inside A thought, Burrowing away, like an animal with an itch “You ruined my last fag” “You inconsiderate Bitch!” By John Woodhouse ©JonJonJohanson Independant Productions ltd 2008 The Ticket Master’s Express The nasal resonant voice awoke me from a dream, Announcing where I’ve been And where I’m likely to expect That I’ll be stopping next. With one eye open One eye closed, I tune back in, Into the reality I know And leave behind my strange yet wonderful world Of make believe, As the man in the dark cloak asks “tickets please?” (but where am I going?). The carriages lurch and I search, un-astute, To find the papers which designate my route, The route I’ve deviated many times, Travelled many different lines By train and tram and car and bus But I realise, Whichever way I choose I cannot escape, nor lose the terminus. And I look again to the man with my life in his hands. Watch as he rips in two my journey plans And he smiles with hollow eyes, Puts an emaciated finger to his non existing lips And whispers “This is the end, of your trip, my friend.” And he says “Quiet please!” That’s when panic, strikes me down And I jump from my all too comfy seat with a jolt Trying desperately to find the emergency brake, To halt, For heaven’s sake, To slow! I push past the guard, now looking at me cold And I run down the aisle against the momentum. My heart beating louder than the d-d-d-Dum d-d-d-Dum. And my mind is racing, trying to find a way of cheating Trying to find a way back, Klackety clack, Klackety clack, Or another track But I know as the whistle blows It’s in vain And the man calls again From out of a cloud of steam “Come now...” “Quiet please!” By John Woodhouse ©JonJonJohanson Independant Productions ltd 2009 I remember well the pain And I remember crying When Laurie Lee lost his baked potato I sympathised for him and his stolen spud My eyes were wet again When my young heart Still pure and good Nearly broke in two As I heard Quasimodo Express his ugliness aloud To Esmerelda and the crowd Gathered round to hear the chiming bells of Notre dame I remember when my dog left And how I wept For nearly a week, I didn’t sleep, And when I did no solace came No peace Just dreams of distant whimpers And an un-wagged tail I remember well the pain My first love gave to me as a Christmas gift, All wrapped up with a mistletoe kiss Her lips on that other boy’s lips With his hand on her frame He, whose name I once could not forget now I can’t even recollect I do remember a flashing beep A curser on a monitor Come to lay still Like the owner of the tiny heart which didn’t beat I remember well the pain And as the tears fell I felt the cold set in I remember looking at the face Which brought to me my life but as I stood beside the coffin with my wife and gazed in pain no tears came No moisture left? Who deserves a mourning more than she? The woman who bore and cared for me And soothed the pain Which I remember well. John Woodhouse

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

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melanie coady

Sun 30th Jan 2011 17:40

def go to open mic night hun..jesus th 1st poem sent shivers dwn me,really well done hun

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Fri 28th Jan 2011 12:58

I think you should definitely go to the WOL open mic venue your friends have signed you up for John.
Being part of WOL is a journey. The poetry you are writing now is probably very different to the poetry you will be writing in 6 months or a year from now, if you stay the course. Reading other people's work (which is what WOL should also be about) affects your way of looking at things and writing. I think it makes us develop as poets.
All the best. Isobel.

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Winston (Admin)

Fri 28th Jan 2011 11:15

Hi John , Welcome to WOL. Hope you get some feedback and enjoy the site. Winston

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