York

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When I am dead I shall come back
to this place
and watch
Tom’s black cat leap from the roof line in King’s Square
and curl in the baker’s doorway, purring.

I shall come back
to this place
and listen
to the trees in Dean’s Close
applauding themselves;
to the flat pavement slap of feet at noon,
to the tumbling drunks at midnight
to the Minster bell.

I shall stand
with the long dead
listening to wild geese pass
in the darkness.

We shall wait in the shadows
for the first gleam of sunrise
to tip the Minster tower.

When I am dead
I shall come back
to this place
foregoing heaven.

Hey Mister Tangerine Man

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Hey, Mister Tangerine Man
build a wall for me,
I’m so weary of Hispanics
walkin’ over me.

Take me on a flight
to where all the guys are white
where the sunshine never ends
and the chicks are perfect tens
and they’re lustin’ all over me.

I’m ready to go anywhere,
believe the things you say;
keep Islamics well away
kiss Vlad Putin twice a day-
cast your golden spell my way.
I promise I’ll go under it.

The Donald Trump Drinking Game

The sheepdog- U A Fanthorpe

British Summer Time

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That last pretence of summer –
slanting sunlight, and the air
settling into velvet – has gone.

Street lamps stutter
pour their pools of steely light
and photoflash each passing face
before it fades in shadow.

We turn back the clocks
enjoying, for a moment, the conceit
that we can turn back time,
control that slippery, elusive hour
which we have lost
or maybe not yet lived.

Wtng 4Gdt

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Here WR
R we ?
tree,over there like he said.
YR we txting?
Evry 1 txts
Y?
its what they do.
but im standing next 2U
so UR
is he late?
R we early?

were we here yesterday?
dont!
or the day B4?
isnt 2day enuff 4U ?

Wait!
i am waiting.
Got an email – from him !
Me2!

“God is experiencing high volumes of traffic at the moment. Your message is really important to him. Please try later.”

“Angry German dents car with giant sausage” – The Times

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Whose car is it ? Is it his ? Or does it belong to someone else ?
A brother who has cheated him out of an inheritance ?
A mistress who left him for a shorter person ?
Does it have a sausage on the roof rack ?
Or painted on the door ?
Does he see the sausage as a crude slur on the German people ?

Or is it his sausage ?
It is a giant sausage. How big could it be ?
It must be very hard to dent a car.
Is there a possible ambiguity in the word “ sausage” ?
An innuendo ?
Was the man particularly muscular ? Or the devotee
of some dangerous martial art ?

Or is he angry, not with the car
but with the sausage ?
Did he really intend to buy 250 grams of cheese, but had a momentary blackout, and found himself clutching the giant sausage as he stepped out into the street ?

Or perhaps, deep down, he hates the taste of sausage
but dare not reveal his aversion
as he is German.

That would be the wurst of all possible worlds.

Bus Pass

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A passport to purgatory
with no request stops
and one final destination.

Blank eyed, killer cold,
I look just like some shifty cove
of interest to the police-
a drug baron or someone who
does dreadful things to cats.

I place my effigy face down,
wait for the electronic ping
which says I am still me,
then find a seat.

The bus, packed full
as a milkman’s crate
with silver tops,
is loud with chat.

“These car wash people are all Russian”
“They’ll soon get finished then.”
“Isn’t it funny – you often find
something you haven’t lost.”

Museum Street. The conversation’s stilled.
We shuffle off, take up our own affairs –
optician, dentist, hospital for tests-
all necessary measures for survival.
That way we can eke out a few more years
but still

the journey matters more than the arrival.

Man hollowed out wooden leg to smuggle iguanas

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I would have got away with it
but for the noise –
claws scratching at the wood,
those genteel coughing sounds
iguanas make.

“One moment, sir”
I knew then I was done for.
“ If you could come this way..”

In my skivvies, standing on one leg,
I watched him spring the secret trapdoor –
out they tumbled – all my little darlings
skittering across the polished floor.
Tiny dinosaurs in Terminal Two.

It’s said that they escaped into the drains
and flourished there…

One day they will return, Godzilla like,
crunching Jumbo jets to junk
between their claws, reeking of jet juice
and rotting airline meals.

Depressed penguins make recovery

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We’re fine now. Thanks for asking.
White chests and black tail coats,
we look like waiters in some posh hotel.
Three times a day we go through our routine –
the comedy walk-on in perfect sync –
then dive in one by one and swim
to the ice floe
made out of cement
which never melts or grows.

They throw us chunks of frozen herring –
always the same but quite nutritious –
and laugh to see our antics.
Sometimes they clap their flippers in delight.
It is nice to be appreciated.

They’re very needful of our welfare.
Even the herring
has a special tang to it these days.

Yet still, some nights
huddled with others on a concrete floor
I hear  great bergs crash together
see distant sky
shimmer
feel the ice
sharp under my claws.

No, honestly. We’re fine.

Snail gel and Pro-trousers

 

IMG_0358Something really odd is happening in the world – not just Donald Trump – but other little signs and portents signalling that The End Is Nigh. Look at the chap with his warning of impending Doom at the top of the page. “ Most people will die next year” What does he mean “ most people” ? It’s so annoying. He grabs your attention with the promise of a final curtain, then goes all woolly when it comes to statistics. How many is most ? 52% ? I’ve got an almost 1 in 2 chance there. Or does he mean 98.7 % In which case I won’t borrow any long novels from the library.

And then there are the strange products for sale. This morning, in the herbal food shop, I saw an advert for snail gel. Yes. You got it – snail gel. I thought it might be stuff you smear on your patio to keep snails away. Not so. I looked gain and it said “ snail gel will get rid of those stubborn wrinkles.” You put it on your face ? And then I thought of the snails….snatched from walls and damp bits of the garden, flung into a giant macerator until they were reduced to a kind of gritty paste. I asked the woman behind the counter and she said no, they didn’t grind up the snails, they just used the gel they exuded. Oh, that’s ok I thought. And then I thought – no it isn’t. How are you going to harvest this “gel “( or should I say “mucus” or maybe “slime”) Are the snails somehow milked ? It all seemed very disgusting. I was going to ask the woman, but she was dealing with someone who wanted to know if they had any concentrated thorn milk.

And outside, just across the road, I looked in the window of the outdoor shop. A red and white banner said “ 20% off Pro Walking Trousers.” What other kind of trousers are there ? I wondered ,and then I thought of Sitting Down Trousers with extra cushioning for the buttocks and a built-in tv remote or maybe PickPocketing Trousers – baggy and voluminous, and with pockets huge enough to hide a Steinway Grand. And what, exactly, are “ Pro” trousers ? Are there Pro Walking Competitions ? Do they have a built-in exoskeleton hidden under the tight denim, which will allow you to walk ten times as far as your competitors ?

And these are only two examples. Be warned. The earth is moving beneath our feet. I think I’ll put my Sitting Down Trousers on and get rid of those stubborn wrinkles with a pot of Snail gel.

Man and Dog

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Man

The dog plays football every day
with me, along the passageway.
We pass the ball from dog to man
and then from man to dog again.
I’m bored as hell. It pleases him
for dogs are slow and somewhat dim.

Dog

The man plays football every day
with me, along the passageway.
He tries so hard, it’s rather sweet
for one who’s blessed with two left feet.
It keeps him happy; I don’t mind.
I’ve grown quite fond of human kind.

Man and Dog

We both hate football.

How much happier we would be
watching cricket on tv.