You make one simple mistake…



I didn’t mean to kill the moon,
Your Honour. Just bad luck, I guess –
one hiccup, and the sky was strewn
with moon-rocks. Whoops! Who doesn’t mess

with isotopes from time to time?
I didn’t mean to kill the moon.
Ballistics? Well, if that’s a crime,
they’ll ban my vortex factory soon,

then what? Some health and safety goon
declares my new black hole a sin?
I didn’t mean to kill the moon.
Uh-oh – the shrapnel’s coming in,

prepare to die! No, seriously,
can we get under something hewn
from rock?  What’s up? Don’t look at me –
I didn’t mean to kill the moon!

First published in Snakeskin Poetry

Geek note: This poetic form is known as a quatern. It has four stanzas, each of four lines, with a refrain which appears in line 1 in the first stanza, line 2 in the second, line 3 in the third and line 4 in the fourth. It’s a really fun form to write in, as you fit the poem round the refrains like a jigsaw, and also very satisfying to read, I think!

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Forbidden Fruit

The techno-launch has become a real cliché. The smart-casual man on stage with a radio mike. The hushed auditorium. The massive graphics yelling “believe” or “because you are” or “we are the we” or some other un-capitalised nonsense.

Honestly folks. It ain’t the second coming, it’s a box of electrical components that’s very slightly better than your last box of electrical components. Get over yourselves.

Forbidden Fruit

We’re here to hear the ineffable plan,
a giant stage, a single man,
the tension builds, the music rocks –
he’s waving a tiny, shiny box.
“Its charging port has been restyled!”
he cries – the faithful crowd goes wild.

Stand on stage with your radio mike,
and show us temptation in pixels and bytes,
Yesterday’s models are obsolete! Dead!
We’ll throw them away and buy this instead!

“The flashlight is brighter!” he says, in tears,
“The camera can give you elephant ears,
and the processing speed has a two percent gain!”
It was worth the sacrifice! Worth the pain
of every twenty-five hour day…”
He drops to the floor. They scoot him away.

Blind our minds with your techno-might,
our needs encased in angel-white…
Yesterday’s dreams are sacrilege! Dead!
We’ll throw them away and buy this instead!”


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Monkey Fingers

A request! This one’s from my lovely sister Ana Bush (yes, there is a family resemblance, but no, that’s not her in the picture).

Ana was trying to send me a request for another poem (coming soon!) but unfortunately, queen of the touchscreen that she is, ended up requesting…… “a period”. Brings a whole new meaning to “lovin’ your flow” doesn’t it?!

So, Ana, you ham-fisted lovely, I present….. your period.

Monkey Fingers

Ooh! Ooh! Monkey-Fingers!
Stabby, jabby, chunky fingers,
Pawing at my touchscreen like a primate in a zoo,
Hit, miss, proddy, pokey,
Stupid smartphones just provoke me,
How can I hit ONE key with a finger made for two?

Smug little kiddywinkies,
Typing with their dinky pinkies,
Flying round their phones, like fairies frisking through the flowers,
Tippy, tappy, flutter, flitter,
WhatsApp, Snapchat, Tinder, Twitter –
Meanwhile, Monkey sends a text. This may take Monkey hours.

Ooh! Ooh! Scary Monkey,
Stroppy, sulky, sweary Monkey,
Scowling at my smartphone like it threw a monkey poo!
Still, while all the techno-kiddies,
Scroll and scroll until they’re giddy,
Monkey here is busy… with the FUN things monkeys do!


©️Nina Parmenter 2018

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My Shiny Rectangular Friend

Phones. They’re great aren’t they? I mean, they are ACTUALLY awesome. The amount of computing power that (nearly) every one of us holds in our hands every day is… staggering.

But at the same time… aren’t they just annoying, attention-seeking little bastards?


My shiny rectangular friend

Oh what did I do,
Before I had you,
My shiny rectangular friend?
My little world locked
In a bright beepy box,

The things you can do never end.

My clock, my reminder,
My little fact-finder,
My camera, my telly, my pen,
My music selector,
My friendship collector,

I’ll never be lonely again.

You store all my galleries,
Count up my calories,
Lead me to cafés and cabs,
You pinpoint my spouse,
While you heat up my house,

You order me chips and kebabs.

And, at one single stroke,
You connect me with folk –
Including the ones I detest,
I “like” their new cars,
And “wow” at their scars,

Not sure who I’m trying to impress.

Every day, “BEEP BEEP BEEP!”
You wake me from sleep,
With a noise that goes right through my head,
Then you stress me with headlines,
And meetings and deadlines,

Before I have got out of bed.

You bip and you buzz,
And you make a huge fuss,
The second you want my attention,
And still, when you’re sleeping,
I hear your voice speaking,

“Quick, check me, you might have a mention!”

Even zipped in my bag,
You silently nag –
“Get me out! Touch me! I’m shiny!”
You’re rude and invasive ,
And very persuasive,

For something so lifeless and tiny.

So each minute or six,
My addicted thumb flicks –
Who’s posted? Who likes me? What’s new?
This madness must end,
My rectangular friend –

I think I should break up with you.


©️ Nina Parmenter 2018

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A Search Engine Optimisation Poem

One of the things we poetry bloggers (pologgers??) have to consider is, how the heck do people find me in the vast cultural wasteland of the internet?

Now Google says, “just write content that’s engaging!” Well, that’s true to some extent, and it’s also true that my lovely Facebook page followers  do “like” and “share” my rhymes, which helps enormously. But there’s a but.

Say this was a blog about badgers. I would naturally mention the word “badgers” a fair bit, thereby enhancing my site’s Google-badgeriness.

But here, how many of my poems contain the word “poem”? Kebabs get two mentions. Even knobs get one. But “poetry”? Not so much.

Therefore I challenged myself to write a poem that contains each of the words “poetry”, “poem”, “rhyme”, “funny” and “humorous” at least three times – while still being fun for humans. 🙂

Search Engine Optimisation Poem

I wrote this rhyme for SEO,
To help improve my spot,
Humans shouldn’t read it though –

It’s just for Googlebots.

I’ve written humorous poetry,
That people “like” and “share”,
But words like “poem” and “poetry”,

Don’t feature much in there.

See, I don’t write poems on poems,
And I don’t write rhymes on rhymes,
And I know no funny poetry,

That mentions “fun” three times.

Do YOU like poems, Googlebots?
Appreciate their form?
Does your coding know they’re funny?

Find them humorous and warm?

Do you cackle at my couplets,
Rate my rhyming to the max?
Do you file them under “funny”

In your Google Filofax?

Well if not, I’ll give you keywords
Such as “humorous” and “fun”,
Look Google! Here’s some poetry,

Now put me on page one.


©️ Nina Parmenter 2018

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