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.

◄ Tightrope

Art ►


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Stephen Gospage

Mon 17th Jan 2022 17:10

Thanks for all the interesting comments. Keith - maybe it's just a question of terminology. I was thinking of the type of construction in which David Cameron was writing his autobiography (Did he finish it? Does anyone care?). I also have the impression that the composer Harrison Birtwistle used to write music in a shed, although perhaps Mahler's 'summer house' would now be considered an up-market shed.

Greg - you definitely have something here. I seem to remember that years ago there was a (not very funny) sitcom with William Gaunt in which the men congregated in the shed (with sherry on tap - you see, I'm not very original) and even hid when one of their wives approached. One could imagine some of the US anti-government crowd barricading themselves in a shed in preparation for their last stand. Against whom, I'm not sure.

Pete - I envy you. No disarray by the sound of it. It sounds like an idyllic existence. You could rent out your house.

John - The class war idea, yes. I suppose that if your shed is really up- market, you don't need to keep tools in it, as your gardener brings everything in the van. All you need is a false bookcase with a photo of the spines of some fashionable tomes for your zoom conversations.

All the comments are really appreciated. Thank you.

And thanks to Nigel, Stephen A. Aisha, Rudyard and Holden for liking this one.

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John Botterill

Sun 16th Jan 2022 22:20

Note to self: must buy a shed!
Another fab poem, Stephen. I love the idea of a shed ownership class war! 😀

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Pete (edbreathe)

Sun 16th Jan 2022 18:06

I love sheds, I have 3. One for a workshop , tools all nicely arranged in order of size and use etc. 1 for my lawnmower, leaf blower , bits of timber garden chairs etc, and one which is my office ( plus a greenhouse ) with care I can spend all day between them 😂

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Greg Freeman

Sun 16th Jan 2022 18:01

This is an interesting idea, Stephen, that could be developed further. Sheds as somewhere for 'embattled men' to retreat to ... or upmarket spaces where the middle-classes can pursue their cultural whims. Another battleground in the 'culture war'?

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keith jeffries

Sun 16th Jan 2022 17:55

I had no idea that there are such constructions as 'Up-market sheds' as my memories of garden sheds is confined to a small hut some distance from the house where the lawn mower and garden tools were kept. I am amazed that such places have become retreats given to culture and imbibing. I thought a summer house would be more preferable for such activities.
Thank you for an interesting and educational poem.


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