I know you love me but if you follow me I'll love you too!

Saturday 20 April 2024





Beautiful as a Somerset sunset

see-sawing as far as the eye can see

we walked for days and days through rolling hills

why wouldn't you live here if you could do

apple scrumping before the orchard sheep

sampling those too sweet for the lambs to eat


Friday 19 April 2024





Finally traded up my faithful Honda fifty

for a Fazzio 125 it's got a variable speed Yamaha engine

okay it's a 'twist and go' but it acts like a pocket rocket

Scooters and scooter boys are making a big comeback over here

there's no real enforcement of safety equipment in the provinces

but in Manila everyone is wearing a helmet these days

I'm still waiting to see my first Lambretta (or Vespa for that matter)

I did see what looked like an abandoned VW Beetle in a field but the

nearest thing I saw to a Transporter Van was a Mercedes Vito

it's interesting that in Manila they call the Beetle a Turtle


Thursday 18 April 2024





The odds are even if she comes or goes

although who can tell no one really knows

She talks it up but she don't know that we

don't want to know cause we don't really care

there's owt for nowt and nothing don't come free

less a little bit more for her to wear

Those people say they're famous for fames sake

but when they smile I run a mile or three

in another direction to the fake

because you know there's nothing much to see

Then to escape your news I wouldn't choose

to engage with your lurking royal face

on the other hand babe you wouldn't loose

if you chose to choose to come to my place

Although who can tell no one really knows

the odds are even if she comes or goes


Wednesday 17 April 2024





Think what you might have been if you were sober

the other no-marks are pushing up daisies now

I wouldn't wish that you were me

toing and a froing going nowhere fast

but it can't last the privilege of the

upper classes up against the unwashed masses

She's seen it all before from her front yard

the fireworks dancing sweet across her street

competing with the Beamer's drum and bass

what a drag but things look proper like they should

Yesterday was much the same apart from G

he should have known that things were getting worse

but she don't tell him the things he ought to know

of course the curtains have been drawn a long time too

All the nobodies are pushing up daisies now

think what they might have been had they been clean


Tuesday 16 April 2024





I used to live on the sixteenth floor of a twenty two storey tower and every night when the helicopter buzzed the windows people would say 'the balloon's gone up' it was far from unusual for there to be a lot of trouble in the bars and on the streets in that vicinity in those days not only that but different gangs were fighting each other for control of the lucrative illegal drug trade and all of the gangs were at war with the police mystery fires would break out in twelve storey tower blocks and because the gangs prevented the fire brigade getting close enough to extinguish the fires it would inevitably result in the eventual demolition of the blocks they don't call helicopters choppers or balloons in this part of the world but they still truck past flying sick patients to hospital motorbike accidents fell walkers galore and worse 'what service do you require fire police or ambulance asks the call handler on the emergency phone ninety calls - every sixty seconds - someone falls heart attacks strokes no joke for the paramedics if there was only something anyone could do to make things a tidge better for someone else for the nurses the doctors the inpatients and staff not to mention the helicopter crew


Monday 15 April 2024





TV who needs it bleeds it to buglery

ain't got time to sit there and watch that

horrific as war is and the propaganda

that goes with it bare faced lies brainwashing

Who needs it they're looting the seven eleven

but there's nothing left to eat they're too late

read between the lines recharge the satellite phone

send an SOS message to the waiting world

They'll send the conscripts in first - bullet fodder

but the crack troops will be close behind

if you're still watching the live feed turn it off

they can track you by the incoming calls you take

Lose that jail break phone that you've got stashed

lose it or lose your life please don't use it

we've got one or two too many hero's here

filling up those body bags all too quick


Sunday 14 April 2024





Crying herself to sleep day after day and night

never knowing that things could be made right

her muddled mind still confused about Confucius

she was hiding things in cupboards willy nilly

stuffing newspaper clippings into plastic bags

in a vain attempt to recycle something anything

perhaps to do her bit to save the planet

but things aren't like that in the real world

sleeping in the kitchen wardrobe was never a good idea

claustrophobic as a left luggage locker

clutter that won't come out of the closet any time soon

the booze cabinet was full of half empty bottles

something fishy was sitting on the pantry shelf

but there was no way of finding it amongst all the other trash

a little bit of organisation wouldn't come amiss

if only she knew the value of decluttering the mess

what a transformation she could make in such a short time


Saturday 13 April 2024





Anything mid-century she shouted

slamming the door behind her as she left the house

I outbid some guy for a Chesterfield settee -

she didn't like that - leather stinks she screamed

so the Ox-blood sofa and the Queen Anne armchair

went back out as fast as they came into the house -

the next day she started to throw out all of her best shoes

first the knee length boots then her ankle boots and stilettos

all the leather and plastic and man made fabrics

went the same way into the recycling skip in the yard -

I couldn't find my football boots but I knew where to look

the same place that she slung everything else she didn't like -

her fifties kitchen remained intact along with the recipe books

it was my job of course to scrub the Yorkshire stone flags

delicate as they were she wouldn't hear of them being replaced


Friday 12 April 2024





Went to the basketball arena here

it's the national sport and man can they play

they can hit the basket from the centre circle

running up and down like a troglodytes uncle

sweating for Quirino like there's no mañana

It was the Mayor's cup and each Barangay

played each other in Saguday at four o'clock

or so they told me but the first game kicked off at six pm

after the beauty contest and the fashion show followed by

all the introductions then prayers from the Pastor

a couple of speeches from the Mayor then more of the same

until the first two teams started warming up

These guys were spot on

Harlem Globetrotters eat your heart out

these guys never missed a shot

from anywhere on the court

when they started all hell broke loose

More noise than a jumbo jet

more kidz than a kindergarten

more goals than City on a good day

More baskets than a weavers cottage

more fans than Real Madrid

more miles than Timbuktu

More motorcycles than the Manx TT

more scooters than Easter weekend

more tricycles than a school playground

More hot dogs than the Charcoal pit

more hamburgers than MacDunky's

more Filipino's than a boodle fight

More rice than a paddy field

more gas stations than the state of Texas

more parasols than umbrellas

People to see knowledge to acquire

other fish to fry

Cock fighting

used to be the thing

but this is the biggest spectator sport now


Thursday 11 April 2024





Baby it's not the way

things ought to be

eating for England

lost in the orchard

Dreaming of warmer days

to share with her friends

she wears bin liner aprons

to carry her fruit home

It was freezing

in the greenhouse today

juggling cash cards

to pay off the gas bill

Walking to work

to help save the planet

pushing up daises

before long for sure


Wednesday 10 April 2024





The wise words the little boy said

Let me explain something to you

Day after day I've been looking for you

longing for you to come home

you gave me everything except your love

but I love you you can't take that away

Day after day time and again

if you chose to we could have made music

you played your guitar so sweet

and I wrote the words for you to sing

Day after day where have you been

I'm looking upstairs and downstairs for you

money ain't the be all and end all

there's always dreams for us to explore

Let me explain something to you

the wise words the little boy said


Tuesday 9 April 2024





Speechless health wealth and happiness personified

breathless seven thousand islands and counting

Some people are masters of stating the obvious

politicians and religions are like that sometimes

Living in a country where they have everything

anything you want for a fraction of the UK price

There's two types of hamburger they tell me

the ones you eat and the ones you don't

the ones you don't eat are the ones that

prevent you from gaining weight

The weather is guaranteed hot all year round

nothing is too much trouble for the Philippino's

by and large the majority of them speak English

what more could you want it's a wonderful place

Breathless seven thousand islands and counting

speechless health wealth and happiness personified


Monday 8 April 2024





Just when you think it's finished they start again

the Spanish have this knack of making a small town

look like a big city you could be absolutely anywhere

in those two or three back streets in some small place

somewhere but everything looks like Manila or Cebu

sometimes if you wait a minute or two the traffic dies

down and you can head out of town ahead of the tricycles

Don't you just love the way those Jeepney's stroll

the kids going home from school on the roof and old blokes

hanging off the back rolling cigarettes with one hand

everybody's shopping is more important than anyone else's

and if there ain't room in the back you need to squeeze up

'Hey Joe, sit in the front with me' the driver tells me thinking

I'm a senior citizen and can't squash up on the bench in the back

Cities are never finished they keep on rebuilding them over and

over again they'll demolish a perfectly good building if they can

get a skyscraper on the same footprint never mind the heritage

money and politics talk louder than public opinion and good sense

that's not to mention the intrusion into the countryside and the way

that villages and smaller towns are assimilated into the city plans they

supply the water the electric and the metro and they've got them hooked


Sunday 7 April 2024

Napo 24/7




Everyone that knows her says

butter wouldn't melt in her mouth

Falsetto for beginners

Stiletto heels as high as stilts

eyeliner cheesecloth shirt

I bet she stinks quite funky

like dippy making monkey

What a flirt she can be with that

baseball bat at the drop of a hat

I never thought that she would be

the kinda girl that you would see

grooving down the street with me

Everyone that knows her says

butter wouldn't melt in her mouth

She's got no bread and honey but

she's got bandy legs and dusky knees

and shorts so short you wouldn't believe

Butter wouldn't melt in her mouth

says everyone that knows her


Saturday 6 April 2024

Napo 24/6




Naïve as a Sunday artist he stands atop the building

screwing up his eyes he looks down at the gardens below

mums and dads out for a weekend stroll with their kids

dogs and cats seemingly running wild in the little park

kid's buggies perambulators go-carts and bicycles

wheelchairs scooters and motorcycles trundle on by

at a stretch from his vantage point he can sketch them all

from that distance the figures look like matchstick men


Friday 5 April 2024

Napo 24/5

Napowrimo 2024 Day 5


After five hundred years they abandoned the island

it really could have been anywhere they had no clue

as to where they lived in relation to the mainland

or to any of the other islands in their archipelago

Clueless as to why they left and unable to understand

their strange language the governor of the mainland

chose to set them to work digging canals to transport

coal and peat to the city for fuel

The Islanders as they came to be known built little houses

for themselves beside the canal tow paths

meanwhile similar houses that they had previously lived in

on the now abandoned island had new occupants

Penguins as numerous as the grains of sand on the sea shore

had taken up residence there any thoughts of going back

to the wind swept isle would have to be shelved

as the whole island had now returned to nature


Thursday 4 April 2024

Napo 24/4




Sitting on an island surrounded by sand

bystanders - hangers on - fishing for something

cat fish - they tell me - shut up or shove off

Upstairs in the bedge things aren't looking good

peeling wallpaper stuck back with paint

damp around the edges - a feint smell of wet rot

Keep the idiots outside where they belong

selling little bags for money - cross my palm with silver

they sliver slaver all over you rubbing their grubby hands

Who do you trust on Tuesday or any other day for that matter

not that it matters - fit to bust - I must trust - in something

someone anyone - maybe I trust them - but do they trust me



Wednesday 3 April 2024

Napo 24/3



Flying ain't for the feint hearted

anything can happen when

runways come up to meet you

at five hundred miles an hour

These things happen more often than you think

they go unreported in case of confusion

Disillusioned? you will be if you keep on flying

How many times have you you been hit

by onboard turbulence flatulence it's not

the clouds and the mountains are out to get you

Apprehension on take off panic on landing

not many atheists on board the last flight I took

everybody was crying out to their god

after a bumpy touchdown at Ninoy Aquino

If the wings touch the deck we're done for

I heard one punter scream crying out to god for help

bless the pilot bless the plane forgive me god

I won't do that naughty thing again he said

almost convincing those in earshot

but most probably not his god



Tuesday 2 April 2024

Napo 24/2



They post things (online) every day

but not to me - nothing much arrives

in my inbox except for spam

or through my letterbox these days

apart from advertising leaflets and utility bills

lots of them demanding money

informing me of the latest price hike

nice of them to let me know that it's

the governments fault and not theirs

Of course everything is taxed to the hilt these days

stealth taxes and hidden taxes that we can all see

take VAT surely we shouldn't pay that post Brexit

as we're not in the EEC and what about the BBC

and the controversial licence fee - but who put tax

on biscuits and cakes things that we all need

chips and chocolate and fizzy drinks 'carb free'

carte blanche dream on you still have to pay

Nothings free these days even fresh air sun and sea

walk the sands of time and see

02042024/1/150/Day 2


Monday 1 April 2024

Napo 24 /1




Pews discarded like an ancient church hall

more Pastors than an Italian menu

they sing the hymns and bang the tins

like Oscar Wilde in Reading Gaol

Sadly there's no room left for Easter

It's religious to celebrate they say

sacrilegious as church on Sunday

scoffing they disregard Christmas too

Never mind the weather the beer is cool

Where do you come from? England I tell them

They pour Red Horse litre after litre

until it comes out of my ears


Thursday 21 March 2024

NaPoWriMo 2024 Introduction


Hi Everybody, anybody, somebody perhaps?

This will be my sixteenth year of taking this challenge of thirty poems in thirty days during the month of April. You should be able to read all of my previous entries by scrolling down the right hand column of this blog.

Again, I will be away for most of April in the wonderful Philippines, so we'll have to see what I can come up with this time.

Also as it is World Poetry Day today, I thought I might kill two birds with one stone, and give you a little taster of what may or mayn't be to come.



Did you hear the news?

If not you'll hear it soon

a Filipino space ship

has landed on the moon

The tricycles and Jeepney's

will follow very soon

from a villa in Manila

to a capsule on the moon

They're going to colonise it

cause more are coming soon

they'll plant a flag and claim it

and call it Metro Moon


Monday 12 February 2024




The brain of the tree

is in the grain of the bark

Spring green leaves fall brown


Sunday 24 December 2023

Christmas poem 2 and 3...



Wise men from the East Astrologers at least come to feast their eyes upon the King bringing gold frankincense and myrrh to the City of David at the centre of the earth where a virgin blessed by God has given birth to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords the Saviour for all sinners who believe for He proclaimed that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life for God did not send his Son into this world to condemn the world but to save the world through him Wise men from the east Astrologers at least come to feast their eyes upon the King bringing gold frankincense and myrrh to the City of David at the centre of the Earth where a virgin blessed by God has given birth to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords the Saviour for all sinners who believe



Can you believe

it's Christmas Eve today

Mush mush and

Such and such

Slush slush

Slush slush and

Such and such

Mush mush

I don't know much about

Reindeers and snow

but I suppose that they're

out there somewhere

It's Christmas Eve today

can you believe?


Tuesday 19 December 2023

Christmas poem one 2023



Compliments of the season to one and all

Maid Marion, Robin Hood (and his merry men)

They tell me that Christmas is for Kings

donkeys wise men shepherds and sheep

others say that Christmas is for puddings

turkeys with or without all the trimmings

One man said it's for feeding the homeless

another said you're either ruthless or roofless

these days, and no one really cares that much

how cynical is that on the cyclical scale

We won't be giving many presents this year

there'll be one or two and they'll cost a packet

you'll know it's yours if the carrier bag rattles

if it doesn't it'll be leftovers for the microwave

Maid Marion, Robin Hood (and his merry men)

compliments of the season to one and all


Tuesday 5 December 2023

250 or Bust...


The ancient bus stutters to a halt, I get out and start to run up the hill. It’s raining hard and someone’s chasing me. I hate running and I hate rain, but most of all I hate hills. I can hear a man behind me, he’s shouting and he’s catching me fast. I reach the top of the hill and jump over an old stone wall, big mistake I realise, as I reach out and grab the overhead electric railway cable to break my fall. Just then I sense a train coming towards me, without thinking I let go of the cable and land on top of the speeding locomotive. I lie flat, clinging on for dear life, I’m soaking wet now and it’s still pouring with rain. After a few minutes the train pulls into a country station and I manage to clamber down onto the platform. I make my way outside, and board a waiting bus. The driver looks familiar, but I sit down near the back and hope the heater will help me get dry. The bus starts to move, but I have no idea where we are going. It creaks and groans as it begins to wind its way up a long wooded road. We overtake a cross country runner; I know I've seen him someplace before, but when and where? The bus is making a horrible gurgling noise now, and it all comes flooding back to me as the ancient bus stutters to a halt.

Friday 13 October 2023

From 2018...


Something I wrote in 2018...


He beats and bangs her drums until she comes

And flaps his wings and flies around the room

His winkle-pickers tapping to the tune

He introduces her to rock 'n' roll

He strips and bares his soul and starts to sing

Some people do seem to have such strange ways

When she begins to weep his guitar plays

Some people say this world is just a maze

He tells her that there's nothing much to do

And we're all living in a purple haze

Friday like any other Friday but

It's Friday the thirteenth and that means that

Strange things happen even stranger things are

Forecast ask Hitchcock and Castro et al

Don't listen to the things that people say

And all the Different Ones born on that day

He beats and bangs her drums until she comes

Backflips and flaps his wings and flies away


Thursday 7 September 2023

Recent trips to Paris and Dublin...

Dublin collection


Dublin at first glance the same as last time

and the time before that that I was there

kicking myself now that we didn't go

to see the Molly Malone sculpture this trip

but made up for it by discovering

a new Oscar Wilde figure plonked on a bench

outside Kennedys pub at Trinity College

We walked along both banks of the Liffey

crossing bridges several times in the heat

oh yes it was September but it was warm

I perhaps almost nearly forgot

to mention that the weather was extra hot

In sight of the Phoenix Park Obelisk

the Wellington Monument we turned back

Christ Church Cathedral Dublin Castle and

Saint Patrick's where Jonathan Swift is buried

The GPO on O'Connell Street and James Joyce

looking tired standing in the shadow of the Spire

Full Irish Breakfast at The Boxty House

Guinness straight from the river Liffey

Oyster Stout at the Temple Bar Porterhouse

More churches than the Vatican

more distilleries than Cognac in France

More singers dancers thinkers and drinkers

more writers than a library full of books

More trinkets than Las Vegas Bonanza

more poets musicians and song writers

More pubs than Greene King


Paris collection


The Eiffel Tower mellows magnificently

lit up in red and golden yellows

Above the rooftops in every arrondissement

her searchlight sweeps the Parisian night

Clockwise and counter clockwise all day long
relentless the traffic flows on the Peripherique

likewise on Rive Gauche and Rive Droite

the cars go hell for leather hammer and tongs

The Sacre Coeur Basilica whiter than white

appears ivory when lit up at night

The Bateaux Mouches cruise up and down insane

from Pont de L'Alma on the river Seine

And Paris sleeps but doesn't sleep at all

Croissants Brioche Baguettes and Pain de 'Epi

all need to be made to feed the morning crowd

Yawning we head for the Metro - Airport bound

30082023/Paris collection

Saturday 6 May 2023

Secret Poetry

Here's something I first wrote in 2009, but this is a slightly different version...

I go to my secret place in the poetry garden
not many people know about that
but you know all my secrets anyway so it’s okay
It's my poetry patch really where I grow poetic things
my favourite poems are the weeds
I cultivate them ad hoc in my mind
But they (other poets) grow theirs naturally
as nature does sometimes
I will cut an edge perhaps prune a word or three
mostly I just watch things grow
climb up the poet tree
and sit atop the branches
where the fairies swing is tied
to watch them mirror dancing
(they only tire at sunset)
When I come back down to earth
this is the poem that wrote itself
it told me to write it down like this:
Making monkey mayhem
funky madness
sitting up the poet tree
writing down every word that she whispers to me
the secret of the ages of the rings
the way the wordy wordy wordy sings
everything she brings from where she comes
where she goes nobody really knows
she recites her wordy words to my world
my world doesn’t hear a thing she says
(the wind blows her words whispering to me)
She sister she secret society she says silently – hoping I can hear

Monday 1 May 2023



Napowrimo 2023/my15th year/Conclusion

Amazingly we've reached yet another end to the napowrimo challenge of thirty poems in thirty days. As usual may I take this opportunity to congratulate each and everyone of you who completed it this time.

We had a little distraction mid way through the project as I had to go to Poland for a few days. Fortunately I was still able to write something each day and post it from there which reinforces not only the power of the internet, but the global appeal of napowrimo these days too.

The next setback for me was that after returning from Poland my wife came down with Covid and I followed her two days later. I'm still suffering with the dreaded lurgy as I write this, but somehow, all these possible disasters, only ever seem to give me more material to work from.

Finally, here's a little something to conclude this years challenge and to set myself up for what lies ahead.


Streams of consciousness

Violent storms and sunny days

Bursting off the page


Thank you for reading this, and congratulations again for taking the challenge this year.

Sunday 30 April 2023



Napowrimo 2023/my15th year/day 30 The last day.


The way that I feel about you

is still the same as yesterday true

Stay hands up down town

I'm coming up I'm coming up

I'm coming up down town

I want you to stay

with your hands in the air

and your mind on mine

cause you're the loving kind

There ain't no confusion

or two bit illusion 

the way that I feel about you

is still the same as yesterday true

Stay hands up down town

I'm coming up I'm coming up

I'm coming up down town

There ain't no confusion

or two bit illusion


Saturday 29 April 2023



Napowrimo 2023/my15th year/day 29


They said that it must have been the morphine talking

when I told different people what had happened that night

in the hospital after my operation

but you couldn't make these things up I know what I saw

and I'm sticking to it that seems like a long time ago now

but I remember it as being a very long night

forcing myself to keep awake convinced that they would kill me next

if I even fell asleep for a few minutes

In the distance I could hear a woman screaming in the corridor

and what sounded like steel trays being bashed about her bonce

it was impossible for me to move I had to lie flat on my back

with a drip in my arm

I also had two young nurses sitting at my bedside

studying a computer screen

that may or may not have been monitoring my brain

Of course the problem didn't start until the young nurses

were asked if they wanted to stay to watch the filming

or if they would like to take a break they chose to take a break

and I never saw them again the filming was absolutely mad

the rest of the staff on the ward having dressed up in outrageous costumes

in various states of dress or undress were now filming each other doing mad things

I'm sure they were taking credit card customers requests over the internet

Anyway that night was nothing compared to last night

which truly was the longest night I can remember

I had come down with the dreaded lurgy a few days previously

and had been shivering and coughing and overheating then shivering again

but last night I came down with the whole thing and I was delirious

and sweating like a pig I started to imagine that I was going completely mad

I kept on seeing a video of a disaster playing in my head

And try as I might I couldn't let it go I woke up sweating

went back to sleep wringing wet woke up again

and couldn't get the disaster movie out of my head

I was absolutely totally confused about my situation

I felt like I should call a doctor for help but that's impossible

these days as the phone rings out three or four times and then rings off

anyway I had the advantage of knowing that I had the virus

And that despite me being completely flummoxed by it

there would actually have been nothing much that a doctor could have done

so I had gone to bed at nine pm which is really really early for me

as I often don't retire until way past midnight

of course after I went to bed the bad dreams turned into chaotic nightmares

and I began sweating and shivering and tossing and turning

until I became a gibbering wreck I can't say too much more about this experience

apart from the fact that it was the longest night of my life


Friday 28 April 2023



Napowrimo 2023/my15th year/day 28


Had the lurgy last year

but nothing as bad as this

sweating like a troglodytes uncle

overheating then shivering like a bin dog

lots of fluids no alcoholic drinks

until further notice

sneezing like an alley cat

nose blocked up to buglery

eyes watering continually

throat like a bag of nails

coughing up united all over the shop

feeling rotten

I'd forgotten what it was like

but this time it's much much worse

the dreaded virus chapter and verse