Friday, 22 June 2018


Caterpillar
When I was nine,
by accident
I stepped on a caterpillar.
Stepped on
one end of a caterpillar.
And it’s caterpillar shape,
bright emerald green,
shot out the other end.
Since then,
I have taken great care
never to step
on a caterpillar
again.

Wednesday, 20 June 2018


Why
I will not die.
I will not die.
I will not die
until
I have unloaded
a hundred poems
to tell me why.
I will not die.
I will not die
until
I have unloaded
a thousand songs
on why
I will not die.

Sunday, 17 June 2018


Once Upon A Time
Once upon a time
they used to line the streets
with the heads of the enemy on pikes.
The heads rotted away in time
leaving only the pikes
standing empty.
Now
there is too little left,
too little remains to separate
the head from the body of the defeated
remnants in the rubble of the city.
Too little left.
So they take the helmets
and set them on pikes.
This time
the pikes will
rot away
first.
But there
is no one
left to see.

Friday, 15 June 2018


Nuts
Last night I dreamt
a squirrel's dream.
It must have been a squirrel’s.
Possibly red, possibly grey,
but definitely a squirrel’s.
There were so many nuts.
They were falling from the sky
like heavy rain.
I had to put up my blue umbrella
to protect me from the showers.
And on the ground,
ankle deep acorns
and hazels
were overtopping my blue boots.
But I saw no squirrels,
only their dreams
of nutty profusion.

Wednesday, 13 June 2018


Water Under The Bridge
The Canadian canoe submerged as we got in
too clumsily.
The cushions, brought thoughtfully for comfort
were soaked
along with everything else.
Then we discovered that we were unable to co-ordinate
our paddling
so moving along the narrow canal in a straight line
was impossible.
Thus we made slow progress.
And then we came to the long tunnel.
The sign at the entrance was disconcerting,
forbidding entry
except with a torch.
Of course, we had no torch,
just spluttering roll ups
made in darkness
from damp tobacco,
and five loud voices.
Yes, we were five.
Four adults who should have known better
and a thirteen year old
in despair as usual
of his out of control parents.
All water under the bridge
when we emerged
into the light to tell
a survivor’s tale,
now a memory.

Monday, 11 June 2018


The Graveyard of Dreams
The rubble and wire
are the graveyard of dreams.
The long march to the wire
is the graveyard of dreams.
The long march to nowhere
is the graveyard of dreams.
The merciless ocean
is the graveyard of dreams.
The desert camps
are the graveyard of dreams.
The swollen, empty bellies
are the graveyard of dreams.
When even the dreams
of the graveyards are shattered
will the broken dreamers waken?