Monthly Archives: August 2012



It’s difficult to write poetry when you feel your stomach is full of wallpaper paste, otherwise known as oat bran porridge. Yes, I am trying a new diet regime to lose the  few pounds that I gained in the ‘summer’ [And a  glummer summer I have never know]  My interpretation of the regime involves a significant consumption of virtuous low-fat foods. I may not be that hungry, but my mood reflects my breakfast….dark brown and heavy.

And so I give you…


How full do you really want to be

of porridge and yoghurt and greens?

Wouldn’t you really rather be

guzzling down ice creams?


How full  do you really want to be

of  the soups  that make you fart?

Wouldn’t you really rather be

gobbling  down  jam tart?


Wouldn’t you really rather be

in a heaven of  chocolate and cheese

than a hell spread out like an endless field

of lettuce and beans and peas?


Answers please!






I have seen Tom Daley dive. Yesssssssss! But not recently at the Olympics, but a couple of years ago at Plymouth Life Centre. Every Friday when I was there, so was Tom, and usually his dad was there too. I used to wonder how he learned all the techniques, the tucks, the spins, the pike, the somersaults, the tiny splash in to the pool.


High above on the diving board

Tom is thinking ahead,

He fears the risk of those twists and turns –

Success just hangs by a thread.

A small mistake with a clumsy move,

An entry not quite straight,

Or a  mighty splash and a tower of foam

Will mean that his dive’s second-rate.


But off he leaps like a splendid bird,

Propels himself through the air,

His mind unleashed from the terror of life –

The knocks, the sorrows, the wear.


High above on your diving board,

When fears assault like a knife,

Grasp the risks, the twists and turns,

And somersault through your life !

LONDON ’12 AND ’11


Just a slightly different view today……

LONDON ’12 AND ’11

We’ve all gone mad for team GB,

We think we’ve turned a page,

But don’t forget the brutal past,

When London, full of rage,

Destroyed its heart, destroyed its soul,

Consumed itself in fire,

Oh remember on this bright new day

The tears, the shame, the mire!



I am a subscriber to Writing Magazine, which contains lots of tips for poets as well as a number of poetry writing competitions. September’s competition is to WRITE A SONNET. I shan’t be entering this one as I’m not sure I could follow the strict verse form as well as punch in some meaning – but you out there might like to. The closing date is 15th October and  the first prize is £100, the second £50. Details are on Page 22 of the magazine.

So, I might not have risen to the challenge of a sonnet, but I did follow some other advice given by Alison Chisholm in the mag.  Briefly, find a poem that you like, think about what appeals about the subject matter, style  and vocabulary  then write one of your own.

I used this one by William Carlos Williams.


I have eaten

the plums

that were in

the icebox


and which

you were probably


for breakfast


Forgive me

they were delicious

so sweet

and so cold.

Inspired by the simplicity, I wrote this:


I have cooked

the red currants.

Drowned them in port

masked out

their bitterness.

Forgive me

if the after taste


It’s true. Short poems in an apparently simple style are difficult to write! Why not try one?



I’ve had a very pleasant surprise. While I was out yesterday a friend came round and trimmed back the Pyracantha that was growing in to a huge scrawny mess by my front gate. It’s a shrub that I like for simple reasons, it’s evergreen and it has lovely red berries in Autumn.  The downside is that the branches are covered in sharp thorns that can easily  rip your fingers. This poem is to say thank you and to invite a reply in verse from him.



Home from the city and

the garden gate sticks

as usual.

Thirteen crazy paved steps

up and then –


Looking back

the view has changed.

Been rearranged.

Less shade more of

the winding road.

And weak sunlight

now spatters

where the pyracantha





life is hard

without shelter

even when

the thorns

are fewer.



I’ve been in Birmingham today, the place where I was born…quite a long time ago!

Where Primark now stands in vulgar glory  there used to be a posh department store called Marshall and Snelgrove. I was handy with the sewing machine and I remember buying some corduroy material which was richly patterened with crimson paisley swirls. I set about making a zip up jacket which I still have to this day. It brought me some good luck,  I met one of my better behaved boyfriends whilst wearing it. My luck ran rather thin after that -but that’s another story!

I loved that paisley jacket

With its crimson  twirls and swirls,

I’d made it to my own design –

Stood out from other girls!


I wore  it to a party

-It was many years ago-

And I met a handsome fellow

Who set my heart aglow.


We danced away the evening,

And  we  frolicked through the years,

Until the crimson twirls and swirls

Just vanished  in to tears.

Oh dear!