The big L

This shape has always intrigued me
a big foot or an L plate or a piece of a house

a seat in an old village pub, a Cromwellian seat
a harsh religious seat (puritan) in a harsh cruel church

where corpses sit in their body bags beaten by iron maidens with willow canes
as police dogs bark incessantly in parked car outside

a shape that’s used in old tube trains as seats
or new corporate buildings in terracotta and cream as niches

or of shapes mistakenly sat in unbalanced ways
struck dumb or flocking on the pavements like architectural pigeons
of unplanned monuments

or standing in roundabouts where a woman balances precariously on top
a she throws her baby to the crowd below

or lined up on the parade ground
or across the street where protester march towards them singing

How blogging has changed me, commentary

How blogging has changed me! Well not me exactly, but how I write and so on. Before I took up blogging seriously I used to write poems every day and never show them to anyone, because in normal life, where I live, who I live amongst, poetry is practically despised or laughed at, or/and not seen as a real form of communication. How can you put your feelings/thoughts into poems and yet get passed by, by those close. A shorthand typist is taken more seriously than a poet/poem.

Am I a poet, I believe so, I have been writing since I was about 18 or 19 years old. It’s not about the “high falutin’ “ English degree type who seems to write to prove something but a need to communicate a little bit more, a dissatisfaction with everyday communication, a lacking in it – that poetry fills out more, despite any sort of education you may have.


Blogging has been changing how I write poetry. Illustration seems to becoming important. Poem/picture is being explored. Now I might draw a picture and write something to it because it just works well I suppose. But Covid pandemic has been like putting the cart before the horse. I feel like I am dragging a cart full of poetry along, that no one is bothered about and dangerously, because it’s about me, in-the-world/on-the-earth, it is ultimately myself that no one is bothered about.


So that brings me to comments its odd that I put so much into poetry and yet get so few comments about any of it yet paradoxically I do seem to have some success with a steady increase in followers.


So here is how blogging is changing me. I am struggling to understand how my poetry is read with a kind of detachment by the reader. And the content is little commented on. So, here is a problem…
(maybe not just with my way of doing things but poetry in general. It’s a teenager thing or is it a minor entertainment thing. But, it is, I say, a communication, it is for everyone to join in and use, it’s real, from the person in love to the person thinking of death, from the person writing about the environment to the person writing about God, how much more real can you get).
Looking at other people’s poetry I am probably doing the same thing as I complain about. We’ve lost something I think in our communication with each other, the ability to humble ourselves and take what they say seriously, we would rather put on a face and gloss their words of pain, happiness, etc over when we find it; we just don’t ask each other why?

Big Value Pack

Yes as i walk through the valley of the desert of death
I will now go hungry with me big value pack.

You think upon studying this photo that I have taken the samoas and bhajis out of the box and put them in the draw, I can assure you this is not so.

Anyway the best before date is 17 august 2022, but they should be gone before then. Please book a seat if you wish to pop by and help me eat them all.

Bonanza

He worked in a small Parisian Zoo

He worked in a small Parisian zoo
Caring for the animals

He was a young man
That went home to an empty apartment

One day in the zoo
He saw a beautiful Italian woman

The zoo seemed empty but for her
The animals were slightly peeved

He lost interest in life
He forgot to feed them

He watched her walk out of the zoo gates
And climb into the back of a sleek fast car

Next day as he was feeding the chimps
She was there watching him

She joked about his long hairy arms
She brushed her hair over her ears and laughed

The next time she came to the zoo it was raining
He gave her an umbrella and escorted her to the snack bar

Sitting with him at the table her humour returned
She made fun of his work in the zoo

He got tired of being the butt of her jokes
He made his excuses and left her alone

The animals were concerned
All day he wasn’t himself

He argued with the macaws
He shoo shooed the lions who sneered at him

He broke down in the reptile age
His floods of lonely tears moved them

Next day he came to work in a tuxedo
And continued like that for weeks and months

Feeding the animals and caring for them
And his tuxedo was clawed and dirty

He was looking like a tramp
When she came once again

The leaves in the trees were turning gold
The flowers in the hedges had lost their petals

The windswept pathways were getting colder
The darker nights were arriving

A tall man with a square jaw
Battled through the wind as the night fell

He searched angrily up and down the zoo
The keeper told him he should leave

The young zookeeper was locking up for the night
When he saw something move in the hedge

He reached in and grabbed a shaking hand
And told her the man had gone

She squeezed his hand in gratitude
So he walked her home in the sunset

The animals became very rowdy
For that time of the season

A fool’s guide to a calorie controlled diet

Hunger: you have to wait for the next meal
Appetite: You have to control your appetite
The desire of the eyes: you have to be on guard

Your sorrows: emotional pain, grief, depression
A food balanced intake: regular meals to avoid an eating disorder

?Freeing the muscular system from carrying extra weight to do more energetic things
?Freeing the pressure on lungs as you breathe
?Freeing the worries of your mind about your weight

Bad days and sleeplessness:
Exercise = a good night’s sleep
Exercise: Ten minutes a day take the blues away

Endurance: identifying how you feel
Socializing?

Sometimes you feel you don’t want to eat, that you need support;
make sure that one isn’t influenced by the other
you don’t want to eat full stop or
you don’t want to eat because you enjoy feeling hungry in a martyred way

stick to your instincts about food
stick to the plan even when under attack by unreasonable thoughts and feelings
get back onto your diet feet and carry on

in reply to people who say
I’m overindulging today
-why don’t you join me
say
I’m not hungry, thankyou
And tell them a joke

Guilt: you buy a chocolate bar for your self
It will nudge out a proper meal for that day
Let it
Let nothing stop you
Losing calories,
using up fat tissue and keeping to the mission

Exercise
Is exercise the beall & endall
Or is it a back up and support

When you start dieting you may not want to exercise
But then later on out of the blue you might feel that you want to
The more you begin to lose weight the more you feel like a little exercise

Because you were overweight
and you were in a system where you ate
because the weight made you feel tired
and you needed energy to support the weight

if you decide to use the gym
remember it’s not a tea party
you go into a strange environment
a factory setting, a gym factory
and you go to do battle

food: eat what you enjoy
eat what you need
try to keep it balanced
in a tipsy turvy kind of way

eat what you enjoy if you socialize
but not more than what you need
eat what you need if you feel down
and get an early night
and get some exercise
even if all you can do is a few push-ups
keep the momentum

giving up is like going belly up
going belly up is giving in to the beast that stalks you
a hungry lion

maybe we lose weight exponentially
maybe it starts of very, very slowly
and then gets slowly better
whatever the fact of the matter
don’t lose control on the downhill ride

calories, begin as if you were
1/ eating for a normal weight so that
when you reach a normal weight you’re ok with it
If you have a bad sleep pattern
Notice it, take control
Don’t let it own you, you own it

There are weaker parts of our sleep
Where we might wake up
Early morning is great for your strange dreams

Losing weight is complex
It is emotionally grueling to deal with

But if you want to improve your self confidence
And enjoy life it is worth it

Put your agreed amount of calories in your wallet
You have maybe 2,500 calories a day to spend
When your wallet is empty that is it

Fat – there is fat under your skin
And worse there is fat around your organs

If you’re of sound mind – use the bathroom scales
If not – don’t worry about it

If you eat an unscheduled chocolate bar
Then you maybe shouldn’t eat the roast beef for dinner
only the spuds

If you are or are not on a diet schedule – it doesn’t matter
You must learn how to control your appetite

You might have brought too much food in the shop
and feel you have to eat it all and not waste it
Wrong
You must learn to shop wisely and fill your plate wisely

How does the body start to use up fat?
Try to picture it,
try to find out about the process and how it works

Box of straw

It is a noise you cannot help making
Gulping
You put the cup of hot tea to your mouth
And with blind pleasure
You start gulping

I scroll through the TV programs menu
1-801, BBC 1- CCXTV
It’s a Saturday morning
There’s no comedy series
There’s news, news, news, news, news

The cat puts on a performance each and every morning
She is pushy, she makes me feed her
– It starts with mewling
Running across the top of the furniture into the kitchen
Then back out again
She sits and stares at me until I remember
She’ll follow me into the kitchen

I look at my box of straw
Nothing has happened
My box of straw is so real
It’s the realest thing
Why do I keep it?
What am I keeping it for?
It’s a second reality
The way I look at it and wish for something
Or I want something

Inside my flat everything is mine
Everything is my choice
Every colour every shape is my choice
It’s a home of shapes and colours

Outside is growth and replacement
Different ticking hearts
In different breathing animals
People in different weathers
Different nights and different mornings

There is also the black hand gang
They are territorial
They are destructive
They love how destruction levels everything down

We went to the Italian restaurant
It was the same as before
We sat down
The same as before
My friend who is more narcistic than I am
Ordered
The same as before
The same fit and order of behaviour

I saw a shiny five pence piece on the ground
The waitress came out to clear up the table
I said to her
“Would you like to be rich?”
She looked at me surprised
I said that there’s a five pence piece on the ground and pointed at it
My friend said that I was cruel as the waitress turned and looked
It’s just a joke I replied
The waitress picked it up and left
Saying that it was her lucky penny

Childless in the Museum of Childhood

Childless in the museum of childhood. The museum attacks us like a sparrow hawk. So close to love – but the zebra gets up and walks down the street. The explanation for your choice was lost like a web in a burning barn. I came close to you but the hinges became like earthworms in tubas. Once again the wings of dragonflies fill my pockets, you hug your dolly to your bosom like a grenadier guard walking in space. My pretending friend of childhood is here, she is living in the doll’s house in the darkened corner. There are so many shadows living here in the Museum of Childhood, they cannot all belong to Peter Pan,

Childless in the museum of Childhood. Love do you go in without your pocket money? How do you feel not knowing how to place the blame? Do you feel warm wrapped up in the heat of your tireless anger? What do these childless eyes say to you? Are there pterodactyls in the skies of your dreams? My friendship is a ship of the line going into battle; my body is to be divided as the spoils of war. My face is the face of the moon over a blazing dolls house. My body has been given to the silversmith for a salver, you place your empty cups on one, and oh, you’ve placed your empty cups on me in the Museum of Childhood.

Take away my head-covering see how tall my antlers are. Why should you go childless in the Museum of Childhood? Why should you hunt me down with the weapon of your mouth? The summer has compressed us into the Museum of Childhood like two sardines between its heatwaves. My heart is darker than an African woodcarving, sweeter than a black morass of wild blackberries. Is your heart white like clouds of milk, are your arteries blue like oceans, is your soul divided amongst the exhibits, it is painted upon the faces of dolls and is written on the sides of the toy buses, it is printed like alphabets in bright colours. In a glass case within a glass case my flesh is scared by broken glass.

It is so calm in this great hall. Let us sit here like two best friends. Let us remember the games we played and find new ways to play them. Let us make a den for ourselves in the girders and stay there all night. Like two good children let us go there to do our homework. Let us fall out over the last cream cake, then kiss, and make up. I know I am old now but I know this one thing here in the Museum of Childhood, it is wrong to be so sad.

1999

I Remember the Stringy Roots

I remember the stringy roots, they spread beneath the soil, I dig them up. I remember your grey hair, almost bald, how yellow you look. I unearthed a deep orange chrysalis and buried it again. While roots so white; a living sexual white, whiter than the white of the moon and the earth; so dark, so damp from yesterday’s rain.
And the honeysuckle of your faces as you complained about the talent contest. And the numerous bulbs of the bluebell that popped up like buoys, the earth dust that wanted to touch the moon, how depressed I felt digging through the detritus of life, the broken down green cells, the eyeballs of prehistoric man, the meteorites, the demolished houses that stood here before the war.
Always you must offer me food, I want more than food; I want to be human I am still only a thing unearthed by your garden fork, at midnight, under a full moon. Your wrinkles here begin to grow; they are a creeping plant growing abundantly against the side of the garden wall. I cut them back, but they continue to spread. A green caterpillar squirming, in the clumps of earth, no bigger than a nail clipping.
The mysterious cats are back, you say, the fox has gone, equally mysteriously. When you go into the garden you are mobbed by a single raven. I find a wooden cross underneath the rosebush. I pull the green scalps of grass out of the earth and fork it over. The sweat is pouring off me into the earth. Next door a woman in a bikini reclining upon a sun bed makes fun of her boyfriend. There is a dream like quality in the earth as I dig it, I fall into a trance, a spell. Now I ask how many such earth’s are there, and how many such gardens does humanity have to dig.

1999

What is justice?

Justice – like paper flowers in a flowerbed
Some of it is useless.
There is a lot of little people who can’t do the math’s
And they are falling down the drain.
The Greek gods were criminals on the mountaintops.
When Trade was bag snatching from the profits of the poor
When did excess become profit instead of joy?
Justice lost her memory and now it thrives on jurisprudence.
Justice made a home in the material world
And began to wear nice clothes.
As the laurel hedge of justice grows big
The wildflowers die from lack of sunlight.
What do you expect of justice?
Mainly I expect Love.
What do you want from justice?
That her blindfold is removed.
Bloodstains never completely fade
Their spiritual weight still exists.
Yahweh is the giant bull
And when he moves you get out of his way
and his words should be tattooed all over your skin.
Justice holds a police shield in a demonstration
Do the people seen thru the transparent shields look blurred?
Everybody makes mistakes
Mistakes are not to be confused with crimes
Or, you’ll get a cultural revolution.
Can justice become idolatry?
Does justice become a god?
When did justice get so much cholesterol in its veins?
When did the dense smoke of sacrifices
Blind the eyes of justice?
None of this may be true
However, some of it may ring a bell.
Can we sleep peacefully at night?
Yahweh’s words melt like butter in a pan
Add the flour and you get the man