Rolo’s robin

My cat Rolo brought us a gift this morning…


fluttering quivering

Pounce! Pat! Purr!

claws teeth feathers fur

trembles chirps stares

still silent




Mrs May’s bangle

If it didn’t make me so angry, the Tory Party Conference would have me peeing myself laughing… I offer this poem as my contribution to open link night at dVerse Poets. Thank you Kim!

Mrs May’s bangle

Don’t bother counting swallows,
I can tell you it’s not summer yet.
Winter after winter follows and
my wager is as safe as wagers get
that speeches will be shallow
at the Tory Party Conference,
where wearing bangled images of Frida Kahlo
does not inspire public confidence.
Maybe counting birds isn’t such a bad suggestion;
but which season follows next, that is the question.

little pigglyful nonsense

I was in the mood for nonsense tonight when Paul Scribbles of dVerse Poets gave me the perfect excuse to vent some silliness! I really enjoyed writing my nonsense rhyme. Hope you enjoy reading it!

little pigglyful nonsense

pufflemehuffs I’ll down you blow
and gobbleye’all unfastly slow
then onto the nextly one I’ll go
so prayerly warningly tell your bro
I’m a coming for yo!
I’m a coming for yo!

buildfully big and strongfully tough
make your house resistering puff
straw-weakfully wasteful unwisely enough
blowfully downfully wispally stuff
I’m a coming a feelingly grumblingly gruff!
I’m a coming a feelingly grumblingly gruff!

blockadingly brickfully builtupfully flue
cheatersamockfully trickfully you!
scaldfully sizzlingly potfully brew
searingly making the airfully blue
bottomly burntfully beaten by you
wilfully woefully wolffully stew

chasing sleep

Frank Hubeny of dVerse Poets has set the challenge this week to write a poem about some aspect of sleep, or sleeplessness. Here we go:

in a bustling playground of boisterous boys
it’s easy to spot the black sheep
the one left out of all the games
always asking
for permission to play
the only time they let him in
is when he’s het
a different kind of loneliness
sets in
they never tire of teasing
squeezing his self respect dry
like a lemon
years later as a father
he watches his own child play
remembers well
those bitter games
for now he is
imaginary sheep
in nights as white
as memory
reaching but
not quite catching
those elusive drops
of sleep

Postcard from Fiesole

Lillian of dVerse Poets has given out the challenge of writing a poem that includes a birthstone in it. Ruby is the birthstone for July, so here is my birthstone poem:


from far away
I see you best
fresh as a blood orange
when I close my eyes
your breath on my neck
warm as chestnuts
in autumn hands
sun trickles through olive trees
as I sit in the shade
and sip the ruby elixir
of you

Smyllum Park

A bit dark, this one. BBC Radio 4 recently broadcast an interview with a former resident (inmate??) of the Lanark orphanage run by a Catholic order. Her story is chilling. This poem is in memory of the victims of Smyllum Park and other places like it.

Smyllum Park

(dedicated to all child victims of abuse)

lap dog
hot dog
caught dog
I am accused
They make me lick my vomit off the floor
I sleep in piss and this
this too
is my fault
I was caught
red handed
a child

Train of thought

I like to write when I’m on the move, especially when I’m on a train.

On a train bound for anywhere,
racing sunset red down stubborn tracks,
forehead resting on the glass.
The sun, a furious typist,
hammers on vellum lids:

CLOSED                  CLOSED
TO                            TO
VISITORS                VISITORS

Heat and light sear through to consciousness.
Memories of summer
bubble and simmer,
and thoughts rise like damp
on crumbling plaster.
I rise too
and leave this train.
I take its rhythms
with me
into winter.


Jog on, Mendelssohn

Came across a picture today that inspired the following poem. It showed a couple, the man with his arm around ‘his’ woman, at their backs a large house with a ‘For Sale’ sign in front of it. A ‘Sold’ sticker had been pasted on top of the sign. My eyes drew a triangle from the man’s arm to the woman’s face to the ‘Sold’ sign.

Shared on dVersepoets site, for Björn’s challenge on metaphors.

How long have I been
up for sale?
Since birth?
Since they stripped me
of all hope?
Who sold me
this falsehood?
I am a Lego brick, jammed down hard,
plastic on plastic,
on bloody plastic.
Slotted in. Stuck.
My life has crouched,
crept on its belly
for too long,
for what?
Are you my unsticking or
my undoing?
I will not hear the bells
that chime for jellied love.
The party’s over.
I’m not ready
to set
quite yet.

The truth of it

It’s not a new concept, that of never truly knowing the truth behind the news, or ever knowing the real news. Paul Valéry famously said, “That which has been believed by everyone, always and everywhere, has every chance of being false.”

But as I scanned the news items as presented by the media this week, it struck me again how totally and utterly manipulated we are by the elite and powerful. What often passes for news is not only ‘un-news’ but also shields our vision of the real disasters occurring around our world that should be in the news.

I wrote this simple poem as an expression of my frustration.


Changing minds

They stuff us full of what to know,
steer beliefs like dying bulls,
blinker us to make us go on thinking
like their puppet fools. Something
has to change.

Tragic news of unscored goals,
an internet sensation,
politicians switching roles,
proud tales of one great nation.
Something has to

The truth screams silently between the lines
as Twit-face chooses where to look
empty parcels, bright designs
mute futures hang on tenterhooks.