Standing Ovation on Standing Ovation

Predictable predictors get so used to predicting what will happen,
it’s almost like nothing does.
Snatching depression from the jaws of happiness
they wear puppets on their gloves.

Isn’t it just the way
that bottles of wine spin at the end of the day
when things were just getting better?
When it seemed there were enough hours left to out-welcome any stay?

So, The Optimists’ Club turns over a new leaf
and sticks post-it notes with The End is Nigh written on their foreheads
and go to sleep wearing their sandwich board pyjamas
lying on top of each other, stacked up like bunk beds.

90s ghosts in The Beer Engine in Newton St Cyres
get butterflies in their stomachs about haunting the station
throwing up collectors with their nets
to get caught and pinned down in their own dusty collection.

Do you ever make up conversations
with real people in your head?
That then keep you awake at night as you mull over every word
and later quote them verbatim to others: words they actually never said?

Chancers scratch scratch cards
looking for a better future
but start to lose sight of why they started
and scratch out their eyes.

Meanwhile, somebody who shall remain nameless chants:
I need no-one’s help
to snuff out my own desperate cries
and do tricks to a standing ovation to fool myself
until the clapping dies.


Published by aprettykettleofpoetry

I was born in Oxford but grew up in Devon. Then I moved to Italy at 28 where, to cut a long story short, I've been teaching English. I've lived in Cagliari, Sardinia since 1995. For writing, I've been influenced by poets such as Phillip Larkin and WB Yeats and lately by Simon Armatage. However my first love is music and I’ve always paid particular attention to lyrics. I got a book of illustrated Beatles lyrics at 18 and that got me thinking about illustrating every poem I would write. I liked that extra ingredient of something visual and have, by and large, illustrated any poem I’ve ever written since. I don't consider myself an artist so doing collages with paper, scissors and glue was a great way to cheat a bit! Sometimes I illustrate poems with photos, or drawings and watercolours, and recently a few oil paintings which is very dfficult! I've had exhibitions of my collages which has been an added bonus. These have been put together with poetry readings. I have read my poems and there are examples here, either just audio, or video with my cat, Moony, named after Keith Moon, in tow. Cat's full name is Moony Gainsbourg Taylor, Telemachus Peter George after other influences! A great influence has been Johnny Morris and his renditions of my poetry. There are examples of his readings here. I have written songs with Chicco Fresu which appear on this blog. He comes up with the music and then I fit the words and melody to it. I’m not a singer but we’ve recorded the songs because otherwise we would have forgotten how they went! I have also written songs by myself, and there are a few examples here too. First and foremost, I like writing. Everything comes from that. The main idea is that poetry always goes together with visuals, music and performance.

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