"I think you should take poetry seriously but never yourself."I was the founder member of the Open University Poets last century, ran the Westy Poets in 2008/09 in Aldershot, did front of house work there (2007-2015), lead Woking Stanza, look after granddaughters, and spend a lot of time reading/writing/performing/watching all types of poetry as well as writing a draft of a novel called THE POET ASSASSIN. A pamphlet was shortlisted in the Poetry School/Pighog competition and I was a poet of the week on PSH. Recently I've been running (with Greg Freeman) WOL Woking which meets monthly and a short run of poetry at the West End Centre Aldershot in 2017. In 2017 a pamphlet, Dante Called You Beatrice, was published with The Red Ceilings Press and there were good reviews from The Journal, Magma and London Grip. Poems have been published in magazines incl: Envoi (6), Magma (where I was the selected poet of the Deaf issue), the Reater, South, The Interpreter's House, Stride, Seam, Other Poetry, Prole, Tears in The Fence, well you get the general idea; anthologies incl Star Trek, Return To Sender, Split Screen, Double Bill, the Robin Hood Book and The Poet's Quest For God. I even had one poem broadcast on Poetry Please.
MUDDY WATERS in Reading 4 April 1968 During the daytime the room was used as an underground café but in the evening it was transformed once the Formica tables and plastic chairs had been pushed against the lemon painted walls leaving a space next to a poster of someone's head covered in bandages. All this for Muddy Waters and his band from Chicago to play the blues - Mannish Boy, Can't Be Satisfied, I'm Ready and Got My Mojo Working. To me it was a history lesson, a dream, like the Second Coming, watching Muddy Waters and his band from Chicago playing the blues. There was one table and one chair left untouched on the opposite side of the room under a frosted window and out of date price list. I sat there watching men and women jump and shout at sounds from electric guitars, harmonica, drums, and a voice moaning through the amps. It was Muddy Waters and his band from Chicago playing the blues - Mannish Boy, Can't Be Satisfied, I'm Ready and Got My Mojo Working. To me it was a history lesson, a dream, like the Second Coming, watching Muddy Waters and his band from Chicago playing the blues. I silently tapped my shoes on the lino, my fingertips plucked invisible strings. I was five yards away from the action watching men and women jump and shout and I puffed a menthol cigarette to appear cool, at ease and invisible as smoke. I was the only white kid in the room the day Martin Luther King had been shot and I was watching Muddy Waters and his band from Chicago playing the blues - Mannish Boy, Can't Be Satisfied, I'm Ready and Got My Mojo Working. To me it was a history lesson, a dream, like the Second Coming, watching Muddy Waters and his band from Chicago playing the blues and I was the only white kid in the room the day Martin Luther King had been shot. THE GHOST OF A THOUSAND Ruby Revenge counts the days before her fav band appear in Aldershot. She's just 15 and can't fucking wait. When the hour finally comes and after Rolo Tomassi and Casino Brawl have displayed their hairless armpits, The Ghost of a Thousand take over the scaffold and Tom screams into the mic, Mem has a drumkit for a throne, Gaz is a lumberjack chainsawing his bass through Left For Dead and Blackday Number and Andy and Jag thrash their guitars bringing them to life through the flickering silver, gold and black of Matchless amps. During As They Breed They Swarm headbanging fans become a shoal of fish around Ruby Revenge who keeps a curtain of hair over her face showing her refusal to conform, her sense of isolation, her feeling she's only cool wearing the merch and that now she's just 15 and can't fucking wait. WHAT THE HOROSCOPE SAYS it says carrier bags make me nervous it says I dream of birdseed hanging above gnomes and a lake of roses it says the breakdown won't help it says I'm waiting for something better to come along, like another day it says love is a valley of dead things it says I can withstand high winds and am not afraid of grotesque stones it says I strain myself in a bad way it says soles are worn and slip easily but my feet want to dance out the door it says I will be involved in replacement it says the new moon makes me flexible and it says someone will weep for me “BILLET-DOUX” She pushed a note saying “I love you” through my letterbox . It was printed on A4 using Good Times font and a bold typeface. I sent my reply by email, recipe, Facebook, text, newsletter, blackberry, motor bike courier, by paper airplane, Instant Message, choral work, my grandmother’s spirit, by diplomatic bag, telephone, Morse, Parcelforce, blog, videotape, Twitter, by a frame in the credits of her favourite film, “Who Framed Roger Rabbit”, by whistling, semaphore, walkie-talkie, short story, billboard outside her house, by voice mail, photo, satellite, cable, fossil, card with two hearts on the cover, by ouija board, automatic writing, florescent sign, cave painting, spam, seance, by voucher, snail mail, PDF file, mobile app, flag, notice in Tesco's, prayer, by classified ad, wrist band, finger spelling, fax, sonnet, loud-hailer, telepathy, by talking dog, radio, aliens (illegal and space), Wikipedia, cloud, teleportation, by ringtone, bottle, sky writing, guardian angel, the Mayor of Stockton-on-tees, by substitution cipher, etched on a diamond, game, knotted string, carrier pigeon, by a song from Erica (the extended mix version), smoke signal, balloon, picture, by radio announcement, mirror writing, business card, mathematical notation, by a TV show that displays texts on screen, drums, perfume, Braille, metaphor, by dance, canzone, YouTube, pony express, bunch of flowers, Royal invitation as well as by pushing through her letterbox my reply which was scrawled beneath her note and consisted of the single word ditto.
All poems are copyright of the originating author. Permission must be obtained before using or performing others' poems.
CARCER CITY (05/05/2018)
IT’S MORE THAN JUST STUFF (18/06/2017)
NOW WHEREFORE STOPP'ST THOU ME? (14/12/2016)
THE WHO WHO DILLY (18/05/2016)
BECOMING INVISIBLE (23/04/2016)
MARRIAGE BED (30/08/2013)
THE BIRD (20/03/2013)
VISIT TO THE AUDIOLOGY CLINIC, 1973 (02/03/2013)
MARY STYLES'S PERFORMANCE POEM (07/06/2011)
WORKSHOP POEM (06/06/2011)
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