Jolt – a poem about staying ahead of the game

What is it that we search for, hope for, live breathe and base our life from birth for?

We read it in magazines and watch inspirational misfits on youtube tell us what not to ignore.

Well for me and maybe others, I need this feeling more and more as my clock hands spins at a speed red hot,

As my value subsides and the world is tied in knots.  

So what makes it bearable, the knock backs, disappointment, the bad luck all a by-product of my making,

Decisions that externals so often factor in, but should be mine for the taking.

Well it’s simple in my eyes to see, that this is the feel good factor that all too slowly rises,

Which allows me to ride the bad waves of life, as I adopt my happy disguises.  

The feeling on hearing a new Attenborough series is about to air on a Sunday.

Immediately takes the sting from the tail that is work on a Monday.

The Saturday morning, eyes open a crack, phone checked I laugh and boast,

That the only stress this morning is making fresh coffee, with poachies and thick buttered toast.  

Another fine moment is one where, longest day behind me, a tea is made,

Dive into the biscuit barrel and find a chocolate one, hiding in the shade.

So these tiny moments of happiness, makes the heart indeed at times…sing,

But there is far more out there to enjoy, let’s unpick it, let’s begin. 

It’s the comforting smell of fresh cut grass,

it’s the sun’s divine display dancing through stained lead glass,  

The gentle way your children hold your hand, when happy or afraid,

The warm feeling inside, your lover’s glance and smile was just then made.

Melted chocolate dripping off a hot marshmallow,

Or the warm sea kissing your feet in the Caribbean shallows.  

It’s reaching the top of your hill after climbing with your friends,

Savour the destination, clean air, the moment, ignore the pending end.

Walking down the street, sun-shining, emptying the head,

Passing a bakery and filling the lungs with freshly baked bread.  

My kids feelings when their kittens cuddles up for hours,

And being a hero-den-building dad when the troops all stays at ours

Pancake Sundays morning, with a table full of folk,

Knowing that our home is a love built of solid oak.  

Hearing the first 2 bars of your favourite happy tune,

Going to your nan’s for lunch on a Sunday afternoon.

Taking a stranger at first sight, with trust and such belief,

Then not letting each other down, smiles and never grief.  

Hearing from a stranger and she’s heard that you can help her,

Then achieving her belief as you feature in her adventure.

Reading the Sunday papers, on Sassoon and Mr Owen,

Then as you put the kettle on, your brain jolts as you form your next big poem.  

Glad you paid attention when at school, history, you didn’t falter,

As you help your kids with a school project, and build an Anderson shelter!

So a few examples of what makes you tick and sometimes tock,

ignoring all the hands on your own body clock.  

So the glass is always there and if at times it feels half empty,

Grab an example from this list, you know there’s lots…there’s plenty!

And get that glass topped back up, so your pill goes down with ease,

Because you need to smile and hold onto warmth, you know anti-freeze.  

Own space is always good, but we need each other when not so glad,

To make you laugh out loud with joy, providing shoulders when you’re sad.  


Double-take – a wee poem about connection and love

It’s a talent, it’s a gift,

You ignite me,
Lantern over my flame,
My energy, you lift.  

Saying nothing, my feelings you make,
You touch me,
Your milk smothers my acid,
My past, you break.  

It’s a talent, it’s a gift,
You kiss me,
Your blanket smothers my fire,
My energy, you lift.  

Saying everything, safe in your lake,
You hold me,
Your chest cradles my head,
My fall, you break.  


Clocks – a poem about the body clock and the age at which ‘society’ renders one of limited use

You know your clock is ticking!

What, my clock..i don’t even own a watch!?

Oh my life is not fitting into your well laid plan… where I fit my life into money attached to your clocks hands!

Just because our great city all live beneath a clock, which dictates their daily scene,

I’m 400 miles north of there and have my own routine.

So what’s ticking for us this year the kids not had, the mid-life crisis or the menopause still missing?

Which clock do I turn to, and who sets the rules and pace,

Because my life feels good and balanced right now, I’ve got some good headspace.

But this pressure, that society and you is inaccurately predicting,

Is driven by a machine that is profit fuelled infliction.  

The clock is set against benchmarks and specific profiles designed by ‘top’ marketeers,

To squeeze out every drop of cash based on, the age, race, persuasion and gender, it’s been happening for years,

So I know how it works you see, marketing gurus and your expert orientation.

Once product is set you then target me based on my various segmentations.

You think that guys like me as we age, will move quietly into the night

But we are an army where the move from light to dark causes us a fright,

A scare so real but so many of us you will see are fighting it

Which is why you see us middle aged dudes in skinny’s that can barely fit

As the reality of where we’re heading is too fast approaching

So it’s the realm of the twenty somethings that we’re keen on encroaching.  

Because you know all of the fun and games is wasted on those under 30,

But these you young angels are yet to get their wings, their faces are still dirty.

It is us in the 40’s that need to have the time off and gap years,

As we’re the ones who are financially sound with more choices than vices, whose brains have moved up 2 feet to somewhere between our ears.

You see you’re never too old to re-invent yourself, take that new direction,

I won’t be profiled or caged or compartmentalised, I make my own selection.  

But I see you still lurking there in the corner of my eye, notepad in hand,

As you analyse the figures of the demographic based on where I stand.

And hit me with ‘the chances are 1 in 2 of your age will get cancer so that could be you!’

But is there a slight possibility that this is one of those maths classes that eluded you?

You don’t my routine, my diet, my location, my physical and mental health,

You’re at it again with the want to sell me drugs, vitamins, health insurance to protect these

I will leave behind…you know all of the things attached to the increase in your wealth.  

Ok, I will indulge you, as I’ve lived through someone close to me getting cancer,

And at every stage there was a poor man’s Hawkins near us with stats like 10%, now 30%, down to 5%…have you any idea of the fear!

But who worked on her mental health which could stop the ticking, so to enhance her well-being?

Now you are right to a point as you are looking after my welfare and future…

And If I had followed the lead of societies norms, If only I’d endured,

The safe job, massive pension, nice car no doubt, mortgage paid off…for sure.

I haven’t done this because I’m not convinced still 47,

That I’m not long for the scrap yard soon and then where….hell or maybe heaven?  

But the maths is simple when I choose the options ahead, if I just count back and see,

That there’s 29 years behind me and 20 more in front to lead.

But here’s the crazy notion, that I’ve lived by, in the protection of my fiefdom,

Is the music that I live life by, is the beat of my own drum.

Not to see how high I jump, to give you a better view,

And not by the ticking of a lifestyle clock, which is only set by you.

So a shout out to the young team from us 40’s pluses with passion in our blood,

We’ve spent longer than you’ve been on this planet honing our skills for the greater good,

And of the 20 something years on earth, our first 15 are a wash-out,

As we’ve gone from mastering the toilet to learning when not to scream and shout.  

My advice for you, for what it’s worth as you embark on life with full vigour, Is fear nothing, try everything when you want, it will make your brain and heart much bigger.

Embrace integrity and empathy, compassion and mostly love,

Don’t be pigeon holed by some suit, who’s placed himself above

To squeeze every penny out of you…just smile and banish hatred

So live, laugh and get out there and be awesome and creative


Chic-Ken – a poem about body dysmorphia, mental health issues and the pressure placed upon girls at too young an age, to look and act in a specific manner. Mattel who made Barbies had to change their brand and started to make the shapes of dolls look like ‘normal’ everyday folk.

They created a monster in a twin set and pearls,
That blonde 50’s bombshell straight hair, no curls.
A machine of influence, and the world did applaud her,
But this small plastic toy led to eating disorders.  

I mean could we have ever suspected all along,
That Germanic inspired doll could go so wrong,

It was 9 years since that nation had cleared the obsession,

One man had of that perfect creation.  

So, this American icon taught girls to have no fears,
To reach for stars, I mean she’s had 50 careers.

But the cancer of pressure grew year on year,

A slave to her mind, mirrors and body dysmorphia.  

To soften her look from teen lust to aspiration,

They made her a boyfriend, another form of adoration.
Perfect physique, tall, tanned designed by pen,
Ken was tres bon…or in Francais ‘Chic-Ken’.

Chic-Ken could’ve held the torch for all women,
Who didn’t fit into the Barbie medium.
He should’ve used his time wisely and told her to eat,
And she shouldn’t be concerned about being so neat.  

Ken, looked at himself and thought hero, quite groovy,

But his life was far from a teen beach movie.

Action Men stood by helplessly and found it alarming,

That he forgot she was back in the toy box, self-harming.  

But the longer he stayed, the longer she thought,
If she put on weight he would be so distraught.
But Chic-Ken never saw this as tragic,
And failed to notice her slicing off plastic.  

Forced sickness then started, just after each meal,
All done in private, It was no big deal.
So the little weight she had dropped off her small frame,
As Chic-Ken ignored his love was in pain.  

The scars on places that he couldn’t see,
Was a cry from her to say “Please notice me?”
Done with a scalpel to ease the release,
Of pressure that built up from passive abuse.  

Chic-Ken should’ve turned his eyes from his abs,
Towards her and Cindy, who thought they were drab.
And said to them “don’t live your life just for me,
You’re gorgeous and strong and simply lovely…  

Your heart is pure and your eyes they are true,
No man worth his salt would judge size against you
You are amazing size 8, 12 to 20
Just love yourself more and your heart will be plenty.”  

What Barbie should have done is ditch model Ken,

And gone out with Hawkeye, best of all Action-Men.

Imperfect with scars, tattoos, a fine military man,

He would’ve never let her go, with his special grip hands!  

Alas, 57 years had passed for Chic-Ken to see,
His now ex get help with body inclusivity.
So Karma – as they took him off to dissect,
As boys with disorders was less than perfect.  

Mattel’s profits could cope fine with girls having issues,

But our boys must be gods with no tears and no tissues!
So are we ok to ignore the years of abuse,
Towards kids who were damaged by a plastic excuse?

So as a Dad I have a declaration to make!

Your kids don’t need, Snapchat, plastic toys or cake.

Just read to them, draw with them, walk, talk and listen,

As their hearts will grow stronger and their eyes always glisten.    


Carabids – a poem exploring language and issues that have no value but still divides us – the antithesis to that of the existence of carabids in the eco-system

Confession, act 1 of your concession,

Procrastination, nemesis to emancipation,

Alienation, our lonely abdication.

Perdition, submission to religion.  

Repetition, widow to reputation,

Anticipation, pilgrim to hesitation,
Austerity, shame of democracy,
Delusion, oblivious in our confusion.  

Bacteria, we the inferior,

Precipitation, warden to extinction,

Infection, tragic development-connection,

Vanity, society’s main insanity.  

Depression, life’s hard compression,

Equality, misinterpreted as frivolity,

Seclusion, dirty friend to collusion,

Progression, spiralled torn obsession.  

Mobilise the English language,
With poetry, prose and rhyme,
Into battle, we turn the masses,

One inspired reader at a time.


I’m so tired – a poem about the current culture of constant criticism

Fatigue is subjective,
And linked to my want,
Or will to be bothered to think on that day.

And tiredness is a collective,
Of thoughts and actions.
And lack of patience when dealing with people.

You see I’m vexed,
Allegedly, with the small stuff that I do sweat.
Or rather the real drama on my periphery.

And my apparent mental lethargy,
Impacts little on the passion in my heart,
And I have to let you in, this all-consuming justice?

Society’s dumbing drains me,
Can I cryo for a century with my energy,
Or am I to be eaten in this era?

Ignorance is now king, it’s cool, selling air time with ease,
It pollutes the air with barely a protest,
And yes, we are we truly all sleep walking into true heart-cracking oppression.

It’s exhausting keeping up with offensiveness, be first get it out there, facts don’t matter.
The political correctness of a subjective society is the benchmark,
Or perhaps maybe this is just a small cut from a beautiful being?

So we perform the public caesarean,
The neat little scar, barely noticeable, to see a new life,
And yet this renaissance should be a reconnaissance .

To see how far we can push the boat,
Straight into the flames.
Or do we all think that division will make us whole?

Rip it apart and expose the innards to search for perfection.
We cannot handle what we will uncover.
Can we not just accept the beauty of differences and colour?

We search for empathy and love and acceptance,
Yet accusations of cultural appropriation, which when not contextualised,

Is an abomination, an attack on my love for my fellow species,
Renders me guilty of embracing beauty.

Have we all had a societal disembowelment,
A dismembering of feelings,
A decapitation of our unity.

Or is hanging, drawing and quartering, what has taken millennia to refine, the only 3 courses on offer?


I’m exhausted – a poem about cultural appropriation and the beauty of cultures

(Performed at Camerons Poetry night)

I am constantly ripped apart with Racism,
Where colour blind hypocrites claim to dine,
in the full spectrum, but so often unwind,
the rainbow when they are all embalmed in wine.

The atrocities we have witnessed to protect one colour, The centuries of slaves and pointy white uniformed holy-folk,
Who pedalled death, burning signs with fire and rope.
From bigotry to phobias well…they’re simply exhausting.  

So you see the horrors of what was once very real has led me to take up the new deck and cut…5 verses…dealing to the left then? I’m now fatigued with the new kid in town,
The millennial way to take offence, hate, divide or put someone down.

When someone embraces a culture not theirs,

or dares to ride on another man’s horse due to beauty…and not hide!
Judgmentally told to look and not touch, and never to steal.
The word to celebrate has now been replaced with the offence to well…ap-prop-riate.

For a culture to now demand that permission is sought,
So I now need to ask, for my dreadlocks and tattoos or you’ll take me to task?

But what if I asked 1 member of your fine ancient nation,

If I caused offence with my cultural appropriation.
And If he said no, he’s honoured to share,
His history, his stories, his nation’s past.
Well doesn’t that stop the issue dead in its tracks?

As appropriation is to steal or simply to snatch.
To take without someone else’s permission,
But I asked your friend with no prohibition!   And If he had taken offence and said simply no,
Well I would have come back and simply said,
That I wanted to share his land and show,
The world, the beauty of his cultural glow.

So you see us people with souls are being purely objective,
And the offence you take is painfully subjective.
But it offends me that YOU have labelled ME,
As someone whose out to empty your seas. I don’t want an end to all that makes you,
But I do want to rejoice and enjoy what creates you.
It’s fresh and new and steeped in history,
Much like mine is, which is no mystery.

And I don’t want to dilute what you need to reserve,
I am a part of a group that just wants to preserve.
And I have no friends from your far distant land,
To prove to the world that I’m not biased or bland.

In my taste and choice of all that I love,
To empathise with you not push and not shove.
So I want to protect all that makes up your life,
With no agenda, colonialism, profit or lies.

You see I just like his skin art and I love your hair,
And just wish I could pull off the same with such flair.
But I’m exhausted of proving my authentic intentions,

So please don’t accuse me of cultural appropriation.


Boudicca – a poem dedicated to a sister (my sister!)

My Boudicca since birth.

Handing all you had to me, at first sight.

Your tender age allowed but one possession.

Regardless, selfless, you gave you, to me.

Iceni and all of your worth.  

With every fall, your prompted catch.

Your eyes recharge my energy.

Only you fathomed my expressions, my afflictions.

Effortless, priceless, your touch, your elixir for me.

Locked in, you picked the latch.  

Maid of Orleans, your radiance blinding,

Armour, soft, warm, perfumed and safe.

Personified symbiosis.

Fearless, doubtless, your belief forever protected by me.

Your power, untamed yet unwinding.  

With every mistake I make, you appear,

Never to judge, the infinite reminder.

A reminder that errors, form character.

Nonetheless, fatherless, you carry me to your plate.

Effervescent memories with no fear.  

The Earheart to my Bader, skies now touched.

Faultless dreams are mapped.

Love is consistent, persistent and light.

Regardless, possession-less, you carry me and leave all you value behind.

Reflection I now love, even if smutched.  

Your two score and ten of compassion,

Stored, awaiting your brother.

When perfection is felt, the flower it blossoms.

Frictionless, symptomless, your tears never lost in the rain.

Petals fall, but your energy is stored, your endless belief, your passion.  


Gift -a poem about love

It’s a talent, it’s a gift,

You ignite me,
Lantern over my flame,
My energy, you lift.  

Saying nothing, my feelings you make,
You touch me,
Your milk smothers my acid,
My past, you break.  

It’s a talent, it’s a gift,
You kiss me,
Your blanket smothers my fire,
My energy, you lift.  

Saying everything, safe in your lake,
You hold me,
Your chest cradles my head,
My fall, you break.  


Flowing – A poem about infidelity

When you picked me, you had the choice of so many.

All you had to do is use me as I wanted to be used, and not commit the worst sin, casting aside. You now cut me as if I were an over-ripe nectarine, burst skin, exposed soft inners.
You press on me with your rusty bacterial blade and finally I give way

as you clumsily slice through my flesh to the core of my creation and stop with jerk,

sliding off to the right to meet yet more flesh.  

I am damaged forever never to be savoured or re-planted.

I will bear no more fruit for anyone and now lie open, unwanted, exposed and bruised

my life flowing away from the tainted, crumb covered, rancid stained sideboard, dripping onto a dusty red quarry tiled cracked floor.

My sweet liquid – now forming a seance around your discoloured, discarded, dirty, degenerated, and dogged cigarette butt,

as my nectar mixes with your vile dna and nicotine on the filter – unable to heal.

You callous consciously caved, calculated and cocooned carnivore with no love for the beauty and health that I offered.

The flesh that you destroy will consume you in time.