Ground Zero

The soil cracks into a city grid,
green skyscrapers twist and rise
and morph into spinnakers.
Minarets pop through the eyeline.
A heavy-bellied bee hovers low
like a news crew,
five-eyed in the summer sky,
while a beetle bulldozes a small neighbourhood
to find his prize.

In city hall they speak in hushed tones
of cats, rabbits, foxes,
and all the dangers they pose.
A mile away, or possibly a foot,
the mower drones.


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I thought I had better write a tribute to the only flowering plant that consistently survives my “gardening” – bruises, amputations and all.

A geranium in my garden


We understand each other,
me and this ballsy bloomer,
roots as deep as a cheap sandwich,
leaves all thick fists down the alley.

It thrives on my perennial neglect,
dies every day in a new ugly,
screaming ‘Cut off my head, you big nelly!
Pass me a pickled egg and slap me.’

Sneering down at reedy violas –
Bosh! It steals sunlight from the needy,
coming again and again like a prop forward
throwing up to make space for a bevvie.

Red-faced, white-faced, pink-faced,
fat cheeks every colour of pushy,
broken nose flourishing with hubris,
it mocks every nibbling beastie.

Oh, but it is beautiful,
bruising through each new lobotomy,
a rolling maul of carousal.
A lover. A fighter. A softie.


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Ah, nettles. August walks wouldn’t be the same without these special friends would they? Grrr.

Stinging nettle


after the apocalypse,
you, with your pain suit and your stealth roots
will survive –
a zig-zag scrap of hope
(at least for the butterflies).
But, though I know you to be
a sleeping saviour,
unwavering in the face of eco-calamity,
I still loathe you.

There you stand, waist-high,
all shouty trousers,
the glad-swaggering big I,
your two-bit tendrils lunging brashly –
just an overgrown irritant
acting rashly.

And beside you,
the dreary dock leaves
paddle-faced and dead-eyed
clutch their scout badges tight and simper:
We’re really VERY sorry.
Come, crush our worthless bodies
to ease your blisters.


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Image by analogicus from Pixabay


Maybe it’s the dim midwinter light, but January seems to be dedicated to  taking a rather harsh view of ourselves. In reality, most of us are already doing our best with a lot, and need to be taking on not more, but less.

Well, at least until cloning machines are up and running.


I am scaling a mossy wall
whilst plate-spinning
and playing the bagpipes.

[On distant asphalt, a
side-plate smashes.]

Before I know it, it’s January 1st.
“I will now also paint
the wall as I climb!” I proclaim.

[My bagpipes flail
like a spent lung.]

The wall giggles.
“You should have just vowed
to grow more hands,” it says.

[I kick the wall.
Descent is rapid.
Cancel the paintbrushes.]




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Photo by chuttersnap on Unsplash



Christmas Morning Chaos

If you’re contemplating leaving something out for Santa and his reindeer on Christmas Eve, I’m posting this up as a warning… “Dont give booze to Rudolph!”

Christmas Morning Chaos

The night had gone well, it was true,
And Santa sat down, with a “phew!”
Then he shouted “my deers!
Let’s crack open some beers,
He really did NOT think that through.

Cos Santa had not heard the news,
That reindeer CANNOT take their booze,
And soon, plucky Cupid,
Was no longer lucid,
And went for a cry in the loos.

Next, Donner and Blitzen went rogue,
Hot-twerking to Kylie Minogue,
And Dasher drank rum,
Which burnt his poor tum,
Then threw up on Santa’s new brogues.

Then Dancer and Prancer were bitchin’,
And Comet passed out in the kitchen,
Naughty Rudolph, uh-oh,
Was sent out in the snow,
For making lewd gestures to Vixen.

As the party crashed on until six,
And they conga’d like crazed lunatics,
Santa rued his mistake,
Should have just brought a cake!
Because reindeer and booze do not mix!

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