On a Carousel

Morning mourners come to terms with their birth.
Toddlers clamber up shoes piled up in the corner of the room;
Start school, risk getting into trouble or not, do their homework,
and love most things that go crack, bang and boom.

Later and well before, flower bulbs are lobbed into the sea.
Seeds rain down on seaworthy upside-down roofs.
Everyone needs money, or something to get something, a currency
As wine bottles twirl round daring them to tell truths.

Over time, flesh drops off bones as skin gets torn.
Brains bubble and boil in jars hidden away in treetop laboratory hideaways.
They retire or die before, expect the unknown, finish their days.
The only thing for sure is running away to the fair will be frowned upon
and, even contemplating it, will be treated with scorn.

Foreign Language Birds

A pigeon at the foreign languages faculty
goes to seagull classes out to sea.
As Flamingoes chip away for their exam in ‘Woodpecker up a Tree’
An exchange English crow gets French sparrow tutorials on the streets of gay Paris.

Greenfinches studying ‘Parrot’ do their best
as kingfishers get hooked on ‘Gold-crest’.
As model eagle students soar above the rest.
Mallard ducks take the plunge and take the ‘lesser swallow-tailed swift’ test.

Pelicans learn how to be robins with a Christmas term trip to a quaint little village
As wrens learn how to crane their necks for ‘Ostrich’.
Budgerigars try to gobble like turkeys fattened for the fridge.
Erasmus vultures steal like magpies on a steel bridge.

As birds of a feather flock together for a degree to migrate,
the owl-scholarly hierarchy hawks sit at the top of their perch; and deliberate.

St. Lucifer St.

She met him and he met her
on a street called saint lucifer.
But what they did wasn’t wicked;
just a pot of tea and the odd dunked biscuit.

Both would flirt with riskless danger
with childish dreams away in a manger.
She was hitched and so was he.
Both would talk of being free.

Neither of their partners knew
that every so often they shared a brew.
After all, it wasn’t betrayal.
Hardly a crime befitting of jail.

But what went down on Saint Lucifer Street
when one said it was better not to meet
left one of them feeling much the worse
with trust misplaced and a devilish curse.

Character Assassin

You can’t even see eye to eye
With yourself in your own mirror.
You don’t say goodbye
Till there’s nobody left to hear.

Every record you have jumps.
Can’t stutter without an impediment.
As a child missed out on mumps.
Paid a mortgage in rent.

Can’t remember names on christenings.
Every bill you get is wrong.
Can’t concentrate without listening.
Can’t sit down to dinner without a gong.

Can’t have a party without guests.
Can’t make a racket if it’s not a din.
You come off worse when doing your best.
Couldn’t get hit without an assassin.

ever the optimist

There used to be balloons.
Rotating girls in revolving skirts to spiralling tunes.
There were stain glass windows in kaleidoscopes.
Climbing acrobats and daisy chain ropes.

There used to be rivers of streets running to the city’s gaping mouth
and compass boats blown like ticker tape south.
There were jugglers and minstrels and jukebox sky-scraping towers.
There used to be heart-beds made of flowers.

Arthur I. Tuss

Struggles off the bus
With his pass and a fuss.
Fought in France and Italy I’ll have you know!

Full of pride and swollen ego,
He widowers down the street.
Every foot a mile with his feet.

Deadly I was, used to knock’em in!
Visited of an afternoon by his next of kin.
Snapshots of better times on the mantelpiece.

Literally seconds having settee-slumped down for a little peace
Does he pull himself back up back to the kitchen for the tea-spoon;
Thank bugger, me ‘ome ‘elp ‘ll be ‘ome soon!

Song ‘Arthur I. Tuss’ (Chicco Fresu on guitar/me on vocals and drums)


Everyone there has a cat.
Some are slim and lean, some are big and some are fat.
Some are white, some are grey and some are black
but everyone there has a cat.

Everyone there goes about their day daily and their night nightly
where things fall heavily or float up lightly
where they let them go or hold on to them tightly
but everyone there goes about their day daily and their night nightly.

Everyone there avoids everyone there.
Everyone looks at everyone behind mirror-glasses they wear.
Everyone folds away a tree and uproots a chair
but everyone avoids everyone there.

Song ‘Moonsville’ (Chicco Fresu on guitar/me on vocals and drums)