Friday, September 30, 2005


I’m walking into Hastings
Down a long and sunny slope
Past the Toad Hall Dental Clinic
To the Post Office of Hope
“My Tony’s dream is failing,”
Sally tells us in the queue -
And Bob’s been with the same firm
Since nineteen sixty two
While Bob and Sal are chatting
Jasmin wanders to and fro
She hugs Bob’s youngest, Sammy
How soon the youngsters grow
Then the lady at the counter
Says Sally’s credit’s bad
But while the sun is shining
She refuses to be sad
I buy a stamp and post my card
Climb up the sunny slope
And I wonder how the car is
In the Kwik Fit Hall of Hope

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

The Autumn Catalogue

Imagine if our clothes
Were living things
And in the autumn they withered and dropped
Green pullovers turning yellow, dying
Blue jeans turning purple, dead tops
Turn-ups, curl-ups
Denim peeling away
Everywhere you look
People losing their clothes
Streets littered with remnants
Small brown snagged squares of tights
Scraps of socks
And everyone nude for the winter

Fat men with fields of once hidden flesh
Wobble along the wet pavements
Old thin women
Wrinkled and wafery
Huddle in Lowry groups
Like sticks blown into a corner

And naked through howling
Icy winds and squalls
Of snow, everyone struggles gamely on
Until the spring
When fresh clothes buds start growing again

From Searching For Blue Sea Glass (the book)
available from
Rabbit Press

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Another Day

The week clicks past
A ratchet and cog
The shudder of morning traffic
Judy coughing on the carpet
Licking her swollen paws
You are reading
Propped awkwardly on three pillows
You didn’t sleep well
Your arm hurt and your back
Freefalling in your dreams
I look around
The second hand
On the cartoon clock
Moves another notch
My Gaudi mug steams with coffee
Behind my eyes
A vague ache
I can’t pin down
Blurred shapes shrug in the angular light
Judy is panting on the crooked rug
She wants her breakfast
I must get up
Get started
On my book of the maze
I stand barefoot on the rug
that will be whipped away
before the day is done
A turn of the cog
A tick of the clock
The pant of the dog
You drop your book
Sigh in your sleep
It’s just another day

Monday, September 12, 2005

A Walk in Bedoin

A pale sphere of softest mauve
And the sharp thistle thorn

A black butterfly
Wings wrapped, eyes closed
A leaf snagged in the sunburnt grasses?

A butterfly, a black and yellow dart
With eyes and face on its tail
To confuse its enemies

The kamikaze cricket
Who leaps into the wind
And tumbles along the cracked asphalt road

The wire fence vibrates
Around the abandoned quarry
The jazz of the donkey’s trumpet

Brambles and blackberries
Gunshots leap across the valley
As the hunting season starts

Scattered rock, blinding white, purest pink
The red stone outcrop
The scratched names of travellers

Mont Ventoux
Moving implacably through the dark cloud
A ship that will never reach its destination

An artist’s light
The unmistakable sounds
Of Provence