Sunday, 1 December 2019

crocodile gas


I

black Friday


only cognoscenti know what square
windows did for the Comet but as
people on the street look up watch out
few are surprised

who has studied The War of the Worlds
hardly Bible class whereas the film
starring what’s-his-name was not a flop
but it’s blasé

folk just go about their daily lives
no one gives a monkey's any more
seen it all a million times before
bingeing in bed

here's a deal to take the edges off
tablets will be round to match your eyes
gravity keep your feet on the ground
sounds will surround

this for just a tenner on the nose
no subscriptions extra charges one
payment buys a lifetime's guaranteed
re-al-i-ty




II

jurassic talk


razor wire circumcises piles
fifteen storeys high & built to rock
on through earthquakes while their neighbours take
pot bloody luck

dinosaurs were just as proud their lines
stretched a hundred million years before
jabbering with homeys down the banks
stars hit the floor

most of them were buried where they fell
few indeed that scurried off or flew
those that did bore with them all that time
like a capsule

precious dna containing what
conversations eh a Socrates
here a Gloria Stein there who knows
how many wise

pterodactyls took their poetry
seriously or how much the good
old inhabitants of Earth we've plain
misunderstood




III


quick nit fix

stand aside Doctors a surgeon called
Stanley of the Hozzy takes the floor
powdered glass has been ingested fetch
hot water towels

give the bugger room to struggle fools
can't you see when a suicide's been
staged & what’s the pong in here I know
fee fi fo fum

something's been smelling an English man
clear the operating theatre
brought your scalpel Watson hold my cape
opera gloves top

hat & tails haven’t seen the like since
Series Two & quick about it or
else the boys from Scottie Rd will come
skulking indoors

actually the patient's healed himself
put the kettle on I say Nurse Peel
marry me tomorrow would you eh
open & shut




IV

crocodile gas


sleepless nights I've lain & wondered how
Kerouac my hero aged sixteen
in his cups would bang the door & scream
QSTB

QUIT is dubious I don’t recall
words so much as sentiments but stop
isn't friendly advice or mean leave off
QSTB

SCREWING nails the coffin down for sex
done by men to women read this text
photographs are screwed against a wall
QSTB

THE means nothing as in nameless bod
Marilyn for example whose real
name was Norma losing her I-D
QSTB

BLONDE is beautiful but dumb & how
jealous man who lives with Mum admits
tit head bum those legs would break his neck
QSTB




V

coward's way


that Kashoggi moment when you think
go indoors or stay out on the street
stick yr bonce right in the lion's mouth
see what it’s like

get the heck off & run for yr life
find some hole to crawl in batten down
seven kinds of hatches be no good
they is abroad

keep yr mouth tight shut is what I say
if it kills me makes no sense to write
up the truth the truth ain't worth a dime
better to lie

hell no worse than penning jingle bells
wheels come off the batmobile all right
quiet as a mouse the giant's hall
echoes that much

tip toe down the beanstalk hand in hand
Cinderella's ashes to return
sorry folks I'm leaving on the train
red light turns blue



VI

saved

crusties had us fight for their beliefs
saints in baggy keks & grizzly beards
now we’re dead they'll claim we've gone to hell
heaven as well

can't you tell it isn't very clear
where we are our voices echoing
ear to ear in silent stabs of fear
Mother we call

memory plays tricks on her with us
but by phone telemetry remains
true to sound & vision even when
life is erased

still our numbers circulate because
normal service is resumed in time
lives recycled innit what a peach
science be praised

signing off for now press hash to save
everyone remembers everything
nothing's lost the cloud retains it all
see us again



VII

out of this world

on the hole I see things differently
through the blackest space a prick of stars
silhouettes my hands & feet the suit
keeps nothing out

while I'm working whistle Rocket Man
Major Tom or Fly Me To The Moon
when the sun turns up again I sing
Here Comes The Sun

mooch my merry way around the globe
booties dangling over mother Earth
fairground ride to beat all ragtime band
gathering eggs

fire dragons lay in mushroom clouds
not just an everyday planet must
have some overlap of blue & white
struggling with life

fill my basket then move on the net
widens in & out the ozone weaves
patterns no one understands bar me
perched on the hole

Not laughs & tears.

Friday, 1 November 2019

before cheese/after cheese


Click here to view on YouTube

before cheese



here we go again again

accidents are best designed in labs
till they are we must put up with dash
cams retirement plans & truth be told
lottery scams

earthquakes are of course another thing
chasing whirlwinds crops its share of lives
ol' Vesuvius will certainly
crumble again

when the human factor's factored in
Murphy’s Law of probability
overstates the obvious a gun
has to go off

missiles tanks & hand grenades exist
not to sit forever playing cards
slap & tickling pin-ups on the arse
nothing resists

speaking plainly like the Mafia boss
things get broken clumsy me you should
always be insured my friend play safe
double or quits



God & the right

rhubarb that lot couldn’t lace their boots
call them patriots don’t overlook
Margaret Thatcher's wartime record she
partied so much

earned a poor-show 3rd at Oxford while
aunty Frances made munitions Mum
joined the ATS & Rita wore
farm overalls

Dad was lame but volunteered twice
stranded back in France he had to walk
coast to coast to find a ship once home
switched to the Raf

workers love their country right enough
never mind your national anthems flags
marching up & down or saying prayers
voted for health

education jobs for all & not
Churchill's 2-faced iron-curtain act
earned themselves more than a coconut
God could they fight



electric swainsong

beware of geeks bearing gifs
the Trojan horse cocks its ear
click on it
wait a bit
then watch your files disappear

a ship o’fools gathers there
to whifs of great powder riffs
hamburgers
Ferris wheels
& roars of bikes over cliffs

it's just a day out for Des
who'd sooner be home on screen
surfeiting
anything
reality’s not their scene

they can’t escape password's been
erased a go-go ago
rumbles of
scrambles off
Endymion shoulda know



after cheese



undercover piece


what another god struck teen in black
head to foot who bids me move aside
almost quip she's got some cheek to ask

dressed like that I’m cool though fuming deep
down cos balanced on my toes while she's
sitting pretty mind the heaving bus

worked from dawn to dusk it’s 10 pm
ought to offer me her seat & stand
only I’d decline still got some pride

age before beauty they used to say
youthful rebels 40 years ago
didn't hide their faces wore no bras

marched against the boys & toys of war
we were at their sides of course hands off
this lot chuck themselves at gunmen's feet



ain’t no hide without a seek don’t care
what belief those robes conceal in plain
sight the game is on to take them down

civil servants fought the law against
trouser wear when skirts were de rigeur
women facing exile loss of perks

even sacking only 20 years
back one might have been her ma for that
matter half their types are from good homes

someone’s put her up to sneaking out
draped in darkest matter as if just
there to say she should be seen not heard

why go anywhere in public stay
home and be invisible she should
be ashamed of carting round those looks



say all men were rapists in her mind’s
eye just as this strange taboo implies
then I’d credit her immunity

but I don't believe we are it’s true
self control is part of growing up
older men are usually less

trouble yet for her to just declare
it like so affronts the youngsters who
don’t deserve aspersions being cast

can't she be herself without this black
mark she strikes against all men in France
home of liberty they cannot dress

up & down like so but show their clocks
maybe she's a terrorist in drag
automatic weapons under wraps



OK here's my bottom line on this
if she hadn't challenged me to move
my poor arse I'd left the girl to stew

overdressed & isolated as
suits a self obsessed regressive soul
who the hell am I to criticise

wearing skinny jeans at sixty-three
bald & pony-tailed I sport a pot
belly full of peanuts crisps & wine

piece of work of me to point a pen
I surrender shouldn't cry object
shun all judgement never carry-on

I apologise for being there
should have driven left the bus to those
bold enough to live without a care

Never again again!


Monday, 30 September 2019

more cack in the attic




the Netflix treatment

Agent Ooks is way beyond the best
mass disruptor Gee has ever met
shook his hand with just a brush of skin
dry as a gin

cocktail speaks in British English like
Dr Watson’s chappie whatsis name
did for half the crooks on London Fields
geek with the cap

Ooks meanwhile puts crime where it belongs
knows a thing or two about the mind
criminals or terrorists from mad
women to men

name your favourite type of villain he'll
goad them on to greater evil deeds
dips inside the masonry of hood to raise
one to the top

when he has a deviant in place
plays the devil till it screws them up
then he’ll pounce you see his role's a cat
rustler at heart

*

Agent Ooks has walked out on the job
fifty times too many slings his hook
just when things are hotting up he slinks
off on a drunk

cold as an owl curried pizza box
Ooks will dig in deep a second fault
totally forgets his cover third
spoiler of plots

why they never fire him on the spot
heaven knows the holy ghost gives up
half its days off signing chits to get
him out of holes

still without this Ooks we'd never have
won the war on rock'n'roll or gout
writes a mean old postcard too a gent's
toilet of doubt

shags in fourteen different languages
did the Kama Sutra till divorce
bagged him seven hip hop dancing girls
drills on the twerk

*

well remunerated though he works
on & off the bank cannot keep track
lives from rags to riches by the hour
sleeps in a sack

barrow down the Old Kent Rd his shirts
Saville Row with underpants from Jock
Strap prefers to crawl than take a bus
barked at by dogs

never clocks himself in mirrors chucks
rotten eggs at Lord Mayor’s carriages
ladybirds undo their marriages
Ooks gets around

Gee is jealous if the truth were told
sold him down the river countless times
still he never ducks which makes things worse
Ooks is his curse

episodes for sale or rent enquire
face-to-face or here on-line my rates
astronomical no wasters please
Ooks is the best


Dirty Hole

past the scenic route this beauty spot
nestles under Todger's Vale & sores
needles' eyes all along down along
Crawley-on-Fawes

lads & lasses bent on trekking there
do beware its reputation shun
heaven's bells don't come a cropper turn
over in fun

hope abandoned mars the entrance but
plugging in & pressing on no doubt
drives the folks who choose to sod the map
till they pull out

all the stops commit themselves veer
headlong through on satan's parachute
I Tiresias who pioneered
gender dispute

stumbled on it many years ago
tie yr helmet down before you try
buckle up & bend that trusty bow
needless to die


flight 2019

crawling cross this map of Europe by
plane who knows what folks have made of it
Roman roads still visible & towns
ancient or new

forests lakes & mountains dominate
our ascent though clouds obscure some parts
making patterns of their own till fields
broaden the ground

one enormous river snaking south
joined by tributaries from the east
waters thousand-acre grain box plots
broken by strip

agriculture far as I can tell
then a bank of nimbus blocks my view
cotton budding far below the wings
glimpses of hills

false horizons white & grey on blue
wisps of vapour pass the portholes fast
while above us roars the sparkling great
darkness of space

*

having woken up the clouds are gone
now the river flowing north with towns
nestling on its banks at bends decants
seawards I guess

greens & browns replace the cornfield sands
woods obscured by narrow strands of cloud
tiny windmills stitch the chequered ground
railways abound

still the coast is some way off as yet
see-through gases hang above the ends
pocket airports bricks & mortar towns
parcel the plain

cross The Channel in another doze
London snags the Thames on stilts a vast
reservoir of dirty puddles bask
flat in the glare

rushing downwards left & right we pass
neat estates or scarfaced quarries new
industries & farmsteads roads canals
England at last

*

no it’s not a holiday I try
claiming things to sort out folks to see
course I'd rather drive & take my stuff
back on the roof

navigating half a dozen states
paying tolls explaining here & there
how I have compunctions not to leave
heirlooms behind

but there’s precious chance of such a step
plan it though I do from time to time
stead of which I fry the planet fly
budget airlines

count the cost a benefit of sorts
time to ponder where I stand between
continents & faiths as well as lands
baggage on hold

weighting in the wings suspended thoughts
take the wider view of time & place
better not to burn my boats but sail
head in the past


more cack in the attic

Shakespeare’s watch & phablet auctioned well
fifty universities outbid
one another till the offers climbed
over 10 bill

then some oligarchs stepped in & priced
Willy's privates into outer space
after which his priceless works of art
quit planet Earth

having left it up to Them to save
humankind from losing precious face
books prevailed a compromise was made
Portia & Lear

liked Elton Husk's idea of sending his
hidden files to server clouds on Mars
where in future scholars could repair
studying there

on a scholarship endowment scheme
meanwhile back in Stratford plans were laid
Shakespeare’s bones would one day be returned
from their new grave


the upside of down

eider ducked the question if it was
better in a former life to be
human & come back as something else
than disappear

altogether daft of me to ask
birds have never sat about & had
existential thoughts considered not
plucking their breasts

reincarnation's a question no
one can answer least of all a quack
quack perhaps a frog from spending years
under a stone

having time to think might put you wise
if the secrets of the universe
come to those who sit & hold their whist
or getting pissed

sleeping off the deepest darkest hang
over with an eiderdown to dream
under when it's cold outside a bird
brain ain’t so thick


Not for sale!