Category Archives: Poems

The Poet's Torment

Hello and welcome to this week’s Friday Poem.

Can you believe that this is the 80th poem to appear on my blog? That seems crazy to me, and both scary and exciting – exciting because thus means that I’m not too far away from starting to prepare volume two of “The Friday Poems”, which will be my second self-published book.

As always, I am forever grateful for the support and encouragement of those of read my blog, or visit me on Facebook, Twitter, and now Instagram. If you have not yet visited my Instagram page, please take a look – amongst other things, you will be able to watch a video of me reading this week’s friday poem, and if you missed it last weeks too. In fact from now I will be recording my Friday poems on video as well as posting them on here.

And so to this week’s Friday Poem; This poem came to life in one of the regular fits of panic I have about trying to think of a poem to write. So far I have had about 80……..This  poem looks at the torture I put myself through, even though I have (so far) always come up with “the goods”.

Here is the poem; I hope you like it.

 

The Poet’s Torment

Blank pages;

Empty Mind.

Searching for words:

None to find.

 

Time marches onwards,

The pressure’s increased.

I’ve got to write something –

Is creativity deceased?

 

A few hurried lines,

But nothing I like.

Doubt fills my heart;

I’m wasting my time.

 

I can write about anything:

That’s what I say.

I can write about night;

I can write about day.

 

I can write about love,

Life, choas and death.

Words are my oxygen

Yet I’m struggling for breath.

 

I’ve got to write something:

That’s the mantra I chant.

But when push comes to shove,

I actually can’t.

 

I’ve built a reputation

That I’ll always deliver,

But if I fail my fans now,

I’ll not be forgiven.

 

Because it’s you that I write for,

To try to appease.

So that you’ll say that you love me,

Oh won’t you please say it, please?

 

Can’t you see that I’m desperate?

Oh god, this is it:

All I’ve done is now crumbling;

It’s all gone to shit.

 

I can’t breathe – I can’t breathe!

Oh my god, am I dying?

Wait a minute……..ten stanzas;

I wrote this one without trying!

 

If you like this poem, You might also be interested to know that my book, ‘The Friday Poems – Volume One’ is now available to buy. This book contains all the Friday poems posted on my blog in 2017. You can get it from Amazon.com, wherever you are – in the UK from Amazon.co.uk in paperback by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/2tOvhA6 , or for Kindle by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/hbDIMdU

I welcome your thoughts and feedback on my poems and indeed my blog, so do please get in touch!

 

 

 

Advertisements

Hedge

Hello, and welcome to this week’s very special Friday Poem!

This poem is based on real events that happened to me last weekend. Despite the events about to be depicted, I had a good weekend – got quite a lot done, caught up with some family members, and watched England progress to the Semi-Final of the World Cup – for the first time since 1990.

But in amongst all that – the following happened.

Here is the poem, I hope you like it.

The Halted Hedge Trimming Headache

Gardening: it’s not  my favourite.

It doesn’t fill me with pride.

If truth be told I would rather get needles,

And vigorously poke out both eyes.

So naturally, our back garden’s a monster;

Full of plants – which means the weeding I dread.

The front garden is smaller, I’m happy to say

But it does have a whacking great hedge.

It’s as if the gods looked down upon me,

And collectively thought, for a laugh

It would be funny to give a bloke who hates gardening,

A hedge that’s as big as Hyde park.

So my attempts to avoid the garden have been thwarted,

At each turn it’s just thwart! thwart! thwart! thwart!

So eventually I decided that I should give it a go,

Being nothing if not a good sport.

And you know what, it actually wasn’t that bad –

Manual labour, and just a few cuts and nicks.

Though the brambles that invaded our greenhouse

Are a nasty bunch of blood sucking pricks.

Then one day, I could no longer postpone it;

The hedge – something needed to be done.

It was so wide it almost filled half the garden,

And so tall it often blocked out the sun.

We had purchased a brand new hedge trimmer,

Which in adverts trimmed hedges so neat.

It reminded me of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre

So I practiced wielding it wildly down the street.

Now, before you go searching the internet for

“Hedge Trimmer Psycho Leaves Dozens With Scars”

No-one got hurt when I tested it out –

Because the power cable doesn’t reach that far.

And then, I was ready for action:

With grim determination, I rolled up my sleeves.

Switched on, and the blade started whirring;

I was time to start trimming some leaves.

And as it turns out, I’m a bit of a natural:

Like a Samurai, the blade flashed through the air.

Thoughts of money-making schemes enterd my mind –

I’d be a hedge trimming billionaire!

I could cut people’s toe-nails from afar;

Give long distance hair-cuts to a few.

From four feet away I could trim underarms,

And tidy up pubic hair too.

While I thought, I trimmed like a hot knife through butter,

As the huge hedge started to be tamed.

I was a legend within my own postcode –

Surely this would lead to riches and fame?

I went on – wielding the trimmer like a Jedi;

I was knee-deep in hedge leaves and twigs.

I thought about offer my services to Donald Trump,

To sort out that god awful wig.

Half the hedge done, it was a beauty:

Looking wonderfully neatened and shorn.

I stepped back to admire my handiwork,

And just a little, gave myself the horn.

But this was no time for topiary arousal;

A trimmed hedge was the ultimate prize.

Besides if I didn’t watch what I was doing,

I could well end up self circumcised!

I dusted the foliage off my clothing,

And tried to picture in my head Theresa May.

Once my ardour had withered I continued –

There was more hedge to keep at bay.

Three quarters done – and I was motoring.

This hedge was ripe for the chop.

Supremely confident, I saw that the end was in sight –

And then suddenly everything stopped.

The hedge trimmer was dead; it was lifeless,

It just lay there limp in my hand.

And like any bloke in this situation,

This certainly wasn’t what I had planned.

I checked the plug, and the plug sockets

On the extension lead, and the one in our home.

Then my eyes followed the cable down to the ground

And I let out a low, anguished groan.

The hedge trimmer’s cable lay there severed;

In my exuberance, I had trimmed it in half.

The great hedge loomed over me unfinished,

And high above I’m sure I heard someone laugh.

And that is how things stand at the moment;

I’m not sure if the trimmer can be repaired.

The great hedge still waits for me in the garden,

Looking now like it’s got Kim Jong Un’s hair!

NEW WAY TO ENJOY MY POEMS!

If you like my poems, then you will be pleased to know that you can enjoy them in a new way. Starting this week, and every week now on you will not only be able to read the Friday poem here on my blog, but you will also be able to watch a video of me reading this poem on Instagram!

To do so, simply search for “W is for Duck” on Instagram. Once found you will see a post with a teaser stanza of this poem and a link to watch it on IGTV – Instagram’s version of YouTube. There is no cost to you – if you have Instagram you can access IGTV free of charge. So why not read this week’s poem, then head over to Instagram to see me reading it, it will be a enjoyable, but different experience. And of course, feel free to comment!

You might also be interested to know that my book, ‘The Friday Poems – Volume One’ is now available to buy. This book contains all the Friday poems posted on my blog in 2017. You can get it from Amazon.com, wherever you are – in the UK from Amazon.co.uk in paperback by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/2tOvhA6 , or for Kindle by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/hbDIMdU

I welcome your thoughts and feedback on my poems and indeed my blog, so do please get in touch!

NHS

Hello, and welcome to this week’s Friday Poem.

This week sees the National Health Service (NHS) reach its 70th Year. On 5th July 1948, the NHS was formed, and for the past 70 years has transformed healthcare in the United Kingdom. Here in the UK there has been, and will continue to be a huge amount of media coverage about the NHS. In fact, the NHS rarely seems to be out of the news these days. And I’m sure that those of my followers who live outside of the United Kingdom, would have some knowledge of the NHS – even if. it is just recognising those three letters.

If anyone is unaware of what the NHS is about, you can find out a bit by clicking HERE.

I actually work for the NHS – albeit in a non-medical role (they wouldn’t let me do brain surgery). I actually distribute those lovely hospital gowns that you get to wear when you go into the hospital, the ones that always show your backside off. The reason for this design fault is all down to a misunderstanding at the sole company that makes these gowns. Apparently, at a board meeting during the  finance director’s sales forecast report, he commented that “the bottom’s gone out of surgical gowns”, and the director of design and manufacturing took him at his word.

That’s a joke of course. I do work for the NHS but in an administrative / support role. My Poetry writing is well-known throughout the organisation I work for, and I often compose a little verse or two and put it up in the kitchen at work for colleagues to read. So I was pleasantly surprised when I was asked to write a poem for my organisation: a poem about the NHS being 70 years old, and this is the Poem that I have made my Friday Poem this week.

The Poem you are about to read is the FULL version. I was asked to remove or amend some parts of this poem for my organisation, as it was felt that some bits were too “dark” or may be “too close to home” for some people. I don’t have a problem with that, but on my own blog page I want to share the full poem as it was originally written by me. It is not my intention to offend or to upset anyone.

There were many ways in which I could have written a poem about the NHS and what it has achieved  in the past 70 years. But there was only one “theme” that felt right to me. It has become very apparent to me, that (in my individual opinion) there is far too much politics going on in the NHS at both National and local level which gets in the way of things, and that while the NHS is not perfect, what cannot be forgotten, and must not be forgotten is that for 70 years the NHS has opened its doors to everyone – without judgement, or prejudice, and has simply tried to help a never-ending stream of humanity, irrespective of who they are or how they came to be there.

And that is what my poem is about.

I hope you like it.

The NHS at 70

 

Seventy years ago, a simple ideal

Was brought to life, and was made real.

One place for care: care that was free

For every member of society.

And in the years since has not our nation

Enjoyed a healthcare transformation?

It’s not been easy – of that you are assured;

The doors were opened, and in we poured.

 

We come, relentless – like a flood

With broken limbs, or poisoned blood.

With injuries to body and mind –

Some cannot speak, some have gone blind.

The obvious injuries with blood and pain,

And the mental wounds that affect the brain.

We are people impaled upon a garden fence,

Or another failed suicide attempt.

 

 

We are self-harmers, or drug addicted;

We bear the wounds drink-drivers inflicted.

We bring you death, and bring new life.

We bring a husband, or a wife.

A son, a niece – a nephew too.

A brother, mother, me – or you.

Sisters, aunties, grandparents – all.

Those who jumped, and those who fall.

 

 

Those – who by chance – have injuries,

And those with wounds caused by stupidity.

We come to you with broken hips,

With septic piercings in our lips.

From birth, childcare and maternity

To when death takes an eternity.

You take it all without a word:

From the obscure to the absurd.

 

 

When we choke upon a piece of bread,

Or wedge a saucepan on our head.

When our botched attempts at DIY

Result in lost fingers, hands, or eyes.

With no responsibility for what we do,

We assume that we’ll be fixed by you.

The results of societies failures are we –

Plus, the best of our humanity.

 

When this life takes a downward trend,

We look to you, to help us mend.

Diseases we caught unawares,

Despite the fact we did not care

To listen to your good advice,

And had this same infection – twice.

When fire rages through our flats,

Or we get burnt by boiling fat.

 

 

Blood transfusions, or crush wounds:

Injuries caused by wooden spoons.

Panes of glass that we fall through,

Kidney transplants – Liver too.

Cancer treatment and chemotherapy;

Dementia that ruins lives so cruelly,

Organ failure, broken bones 

Injuries caused by the telephone.

 

 

Allergies to wheat or nuts ,

Self-inflicted multiple cuts. 

No matter what life puts us through,

We always have one constant – you. 

You are – and always have been – there 

Not one to judge; just help and care 

With patience, kindness and sincerity 

For all our glorious disparity. 

 

 

For reward or plaudits you do not ask, 

Just quietly get on with your task 

And though ingratitude and threats 

You continue to always do your best. 

As a nation we do take you for granted 

Yet hope you will not be supplanted. 

Through the joy, and pain, and hurt and tears 

You’ve been with us for Seventy Years.

 

 

And in those years have there not been 

Such advancements in care and medicine? 

But what is the same as way back then, 

Is the fact that it is ordinary women and men 

Who are the NHS at its heart 

(although the buildings play a part).

It’s everyday folk, just like you and me 

Who have borne this burden wonderfully.

No capes are worn: no pants outside,

But these superheroes give our nation pride.

Through lack of funding and winter pressures 

The effort and love come in equal measure. 

And no amount of words can really express 

Just how grateful we are for our NHS.

 

Thank you to all the wonderful NHS staff who have done such an amazing job for the past 70 years, and continue to do so.

 

If you like this poem, you might be interested to know that my book, ‘The Friday Poems – Volume One’ is now available to buy. This book contains all the Friday poems posted on my blog in 2017. You can get it from Amazon.com, wherever you are – or if in the UK from Amazon.co.uk in paperback by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/2tOvhA6 , or for Kindle by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/hbDIMdU

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coffee

Hello, and welcome to this week’s Friday Poem!

This week’s poem is inspired by my favourite hot drink: coffee. It’s my first drink of the day, and quite often the only thing I drink all throughout the day. As my poem will tell you, I’m not precious about my coffee – maybe that’s a bad thing (I know that coffee ‘elitists’ are out there – and if you are one of these, please don’t judge me), but I do like my coffee, and that is that.

The idea to write this poem came about after a conversation with the proprietor of a very lovely cafe close to where I work. The delightful Viola (Hi Viola) is always friendly and welcoming, and although her premises are small, she does well with the space she has – offering not only good coffee but also delicious food too. You can find out more about this little gem by visiting their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/HotAndSweetDorchester

I would certainly recommend a visit.

But now, I’m not Trip Advisor – I’m a blogger and a poet, and you came here to read this week’s Friday poem. So without further ado, why not pour yourself a cup of coffee and take a look.

I hope you like it.

Coffee

Coffee, coffee, coffee, coffee:
Black or white, strong or frothy
In the morning when I get up,
Give me coffee in my cup.

I don’t have any “get up and go”
Until I’ve had my cup of ‘Joe’
A caffeine fix is what I need,
To get me fully up to speed.

Keep coffee simple, just like me
Not ruined with complexity.
I’m never sold on coffee Frappe
A concept that to me sounds crappe.

I’ve had latte, with an extra shot;
Espresso – strong, just not a lot
Sampled a cortado long ago,
And had a lungo – don’t you know.

Cappuccino – nine-tenths froth
Coffee with whisky (made me cough).
Americano – not my type:
I’m happier with the old flat white.

I really like my coffee – but
In truth I’m just a caffeine slut
Who gets it any way I’m able,
Like stealing it from the disabled.

Friends say that I drink way too much,
Each day on average fourteen cups.
I can’t believe the fuss they’re making,
(Why is it that I can’t stop shaking?)

I’ve taken coffee in some fancy places,
Where it is drunk with airs and graces.
Your coffee comes in a china cup
And at £11.70 they stitch you up.

I’ve also frequented those known franchises
That serve you coffee in three different sizes.
The ones where staff are called “Baristas”
And some have scalded hands with blisters.

Recently coffee’s become refined,
For those more selective – if so inclined.
You can even get to choose the blend
If that is what matters to you my friend.

From Guatemala? Or Ecuador?
Or a bean you’ve never tried before?
The latest coffee trend I hear
Is a bean that crushed by pygmy’s rears

In little huts so small and sparse
Pygmies crush coffee beans with their arse,
Before shaking them off into a sack
(Remembering any stragglers in their crack)

Before this however, the beans are roasted
(The pygmies buttocks must get toasted!)
But it’s this that helps make the flavour pure;
Hot beans squashed by arseholes on the floor.

Back home in London, the cafes are packed
With rich folk drinking ‘pygmy’s crack’
For that is the name of this fine blend
Inspired by a pygmy’s tempered end.

Each to their own, that’s what they say,
I think I’ll stick to Nescafé.
Other coffee brands are available
I’ll drink whatever I am able.

Granular, powdered, refined or not;
I’ll drink it just as long as it’s hot.
The smoky depths of good coffee
Is simply just my cup of tea!

If you like this poem, you might be interested to know that my book, ‘The Friday Poems – Volume One’ is now available to buy. This book contains all the Friday poems posted on my blog in 2017. You can get it from Amazon.com, wherever you are – or if in the UK from Amazon.co.uk in paperback by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/2tOvhA6 , or for Kindle by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/hbDIMdU

Hello, and welcome to this week’s Friday Poem.

This week’s offering is one that I have been sitting on for a little while. As with all my poems, I took inspiration for it from everyday life. On this occasion, I found inspiration at work – from inside a lift (elevator to our friends across the pond).

Our lifts at work are manufactured by the Elevator company OTIS and are monitored remotely. So on the control panel inside the lift there are the words “OTIS REM” with REM being an acronym for ‘Remote Elevator Monitoring’. Im not sure why, but Otis Rem sounds like a name, and that idea nestled into the fertile soil of my imagination and steadily started to germinate.

After many weeks, I managed to cultivate this idea and the following poem is what I have come up with. I have taken the liberty of contacting the OTIS Elevator Company (Hi Jodi – thanks for reply to my email), to tell them about my poem, and to thank them for providing me with my inspiration for it.

DISCLAIMER – This poem is not Elevator / lift related, and bears no resemblance to the fine people at the OTIS Elevator Company. I would not dream of insulting them, as to do so would be wrong on many different levels.

So, without further ado here is this week’s poem.

I hope you like it.

OTIS REM

Here is the story of Otis Rem;

Orphaned and homeless by the age of 10.

Under life’s hard boot he spent his time

Unavoidably drawn to a life of crime.

The sprig of youth came hard and bare

Like a bramble that will cut and tear.

In the shadows of life young Otis lived

Stealing what he could – because none would give.

His nimble fingers, pockets found

And lifted contents without sound.

A master pickpocket by age fourteen,

Always silent, never seen.

But growth will often stealth prevent,

So Otis turned to violence.

Brutality soon became his m.o.:

A broken jaw; a severed toe.

He cared not who he terrorised,

He focussed purely on the prize.

His reputation soon did spread,

And the streets were filled with fear and dread.

Folk quickly learned not to venture out,

When word said Otis was about.

To do so was to forfeit life

At the hands of Otis and his knife.

From legend into myth did Otis turn

Soon half the city had all learned

To fear a shadow that would loom

Out of thin air – and herald doom.

Some said Otis grew horns and hooves

And rampaged nightly ‘cross the roofs

Wreaking terror ‘ere he went

On death and destruction now hellbent.

Otis was starting to enjoy this game;

His gruesome antics had brought him fame.

So he decided to leave a calling card:

And on each victim his initials he carved.
The police were helpless – what could they do?

Being regular folk like me and you.

At last a garrison was sought;

Their task – kill Otis, or get him caught.

To soothe the citizens so troubled,

Patrols began – and soon were doubled.

But a message in blood told he’d struck again:

“You’ll not stop me”- signed, Otis Rem.
A reward was offered, and hundreds swarmed

A dozen vigilante groups were formed

All with the same purpose: search the town

Find Otis Rem – and take him down.

But evidence of his work was still found;

Each monogrammed corpse upon the ground

Bore a final insult as they were laid to rest:

The initials “O.R” carved into their chest.

Suspicion like a cancer grew,

Who was this monster – Me? You?

No-one was beyond being interrogated

The mob wanted justice – and would not be abated.

And then one night Otis Rem was caught;

Interrupted in mid-sport.

He fled; and was pursued for hours

Before being cornered in the wooden bell tower.

There would be no trial that fateful night;

The townsfolk simply set the tower alight.

No call for a magistrate – there was no need;

The timbers spread the flames at speed.

Justice would be done that night

Violent yes – but just, and right.

The whole town had now turned out to see

Otis Rem meet his destiny.
The people retreated but fixed their eyes

On Otis Rem’s fiery demise.

And as he burned, the bell he rung,

Laughing as to the rope he clung.

The bell tower now was a fiery scene:

Otis’s laugh was almost a scream,

He swung from the bell, with wild open eyes

As the flames licked at him from all sides.

The burning flames roared as loud as thunder

As finally the bell tower collapsed asunder.

And with a great and deafening crash

Was reduced to rubble, smoke and ash.

After the smoke had finally cleared,

The people of the town all re-appeared.

To search the ruins for the remains

And an end Otis’s evil campaign.

They searched for hours, they searched for days,

Picked through each fragment of the blaze,

Scoured minutely the black and charred ground –

But Otis Rem could not be found.

It was quickly announced he had not survived:

No-one in that fire could still be alive.

But slowly, rumours whispered doubts

Of Otis Rem’s true whereabouts.

It’s true he was never seen again,

But myth and legend still remain.

In the absence of any evidence factual

Belief starts in the supernatural.

So lock your doors and windows tight,

Keep all your loved ones close tonight.

Take all precautions as you see best,

Or find ‘O.R’ carved into your chest…..

If you like this poem, you might be interested to know that my book, ‘The Friday Poems – Volume One’ is now available to buy. This book contains all the Frida poems posted on my blog in 2017. You can get it from Amazon.com, wherever you are – or if in the UK from Amazon.co.uk in paperback by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/2tOvhA6 , or for Kindle by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/hbDIMdU

Hello, and welcome to this week’s Friday Poem!

This is the fifth, and final ‘Poem Challenge’ poem, of this current series. If you have not been following my blog (and please do feel free to), the Poem Challenge is where I invite anybody to suggest a topic for me to write a poem about. There have been no other rules, and I would invite you to read the previous four Poem Challenge poems:

As with every time I do a Poem Challenge series, I have enjoyed myself immensely in interpreting your suggestions this time around. I would like to express my sincerest gratitude to Charlotte, Adrienne, Saskie, and Ben for “taking the plunge” and indulging me with their ideas for the previous four poems.

And now to this weeks offering; this poem was suggested by another work colleague, who asked me to write about her cat, who is named Leonard McCoy (that’s him in the picture) and who, like all cats brings “gifts” for his owners – but not the usual gifts you might expect…

So if you are suitably intrigued, here is the poem.

I hope you like it.

Leonard McCoy

Leonard McCoy, Oh Leonard McCoy

You really are a nightmare, boy!

Although we do love you to bits,

We’re at the end of both our wits.

 

It’s not that you’re not housetrained – no:

You’re straight outside when it’s time to go.

And it isn’t for any lack of love;

You fit our hearts like a furry glove.

 

Alas, what causes all the strain

Are the workings of your feline brain;

Your instinct to hunt is fully intact –

But it’s what you bring back, you mental cat!

 

A slice of pizza,  from a bin

(Always stuffed crust – never thin)

That open bag of frozen chips:

Did you have tiny frost-bitten lips?

 

A scotch egg; naan bread; half a sausage roll

Some more examples of things you stole.

An entire crusty cobb roll – it’s wrapper untouched

Where do you go, to bring back so much?

 

And what’s wrong with birds for heavens sake!?

Or the usual things that cats will take?

Like mice or shrews – or even the odd bat?

(I’m sure I’ve read a poem about that).

 

Even a swan I’d let you keep,

If I saw you catch one by the beak.

But you don’t follow that rule of thumb –

You like your bird meat in breadcrumbs!

 

Oh yes, the chicken – KFC-esque,

Do you work alone, or take requests?

As a master thief you have excelled:

Extracting single, defrosted prawns (still shelled).

 

But you have also crossed the line;

Stealing other cats gifts at Christmas time.

Any goodwill thoughts were soon dismissed,

Guess who’s top of Santa’s naughty list?

 

And it’s not as if you are not fed;

You shovel food into your head.

I can only guess that while we sleep

You watch re-runs of “Supermarket Sweep”

 

What really shook us to our joints

Is finding you have loyalty points!

Just how you signed up – we find that hard;

And wonder where you keep your card….?

 

To think, oh fiendish, ruthless berk

You’re named after the friend of James T. Kirk

Who, at your antics would be in shock,

And it would raise the eyebrow of Mr. Spock.

 

So we’ve had to put flyers through our neighbours doors,

To warn them about your sticky paws.

But if there is no end to your tom-foolery,

Can you at least steal stuff like cash and jewellery?

 

My thanks to Kimberly for her fantastic suggestion – all based on real events! Who knows, there could be a whole series of poems based on Mr McCoys exploits!

I hope you have enjoyed this poem, and I hope you will visit my blog again. And of course, I invite you to tell all your friends about it.

You might be interested to know that as well as writing a poem each week on this blog, I also offer a bespoke Poem writing service. I have some examples of previous commissioned poem on the ‘Poetry Commissions’ page of this blog, which you can find in the menu. This Sunday is Father’s day in the UK, and if you would like a unique way to celebrate your dad, why not commission a poem about him from me? All enquiries are free and without obligation, and there is a contact form on the ‘About me and how to get in touch’ page of this blog.

Alternatively, if you know someone who would enjoy my style of poems,  then my book, ‘The Friday Poems – Volume One’ is now available to buy. You can get it from Amazon, wherever you are – or if in the UK from Amazon.co.uk in paperback by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/2tOvhA6 , or for Kindle by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/hbDIMdU

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GLENCOE

Hello, and welcome to this week’s Friday Poem – and the fourth of my Poem Challenge poems.

This Poem is on a subject very close to my heart, and in writing it, many memories came back to me. I must warn you however, that the poem you are about to read contains some references that will mean nothing to anyone other than the person who suggested the topic for this poem. It is even possible that the person who suggested this poem won’t get some of the references, because his memory is terrible. That being said, I am confident that there is enough in this poem to make it enjoyable.

So, what about this poem? Well the suggestion came from my best mate, a man who I have worked with, lived with, played football (soccer) with, and been on Holiday with several times. Over the years we have enjoyed many great times – especially when we have gone to Scotland together. We love the Highlands and always enjoy our trips there. My mate has recently moved to Scotland (the jammy git) so can enjoy its awesomeness even more regularly. For many years we – along with others members of his family (except Greg – Gregnog, Greggy Bread, Greg and Soldiers, Greggy Fart, Greg Head, Bacon and Greg, Greg’s Benedict, Greg and spoon race, Easter Greg, Rotten Greg, Gregshell, etc.) and friends spent time together having a great laugh.

In giving me the subject of the poem you are about to read, my mate has unleashed upon the world a poem about all the great memories we have shared of our holidays in Scotland.

Well, these are my memories – his could be altogether different.

So, no pressure then.

I hope you like it.

Hold Them Monkeys

 

Overnight journey in the car,

English bastards in a Scottish bar.

To Tillicoultry and Stornoway;

Blazing sunshine, and rainy days.

Highland Cows, and those fearless sheep –

How they kept their grip, with those stupid feet?

 

To Elgol, and Fort William via Glencoe;

All the places that we did go.

Taking friendship and laughter in our packs,

And even a lovely dog called Jack

Who sometimes had to be on a lead so tight,

For fear a sheep (or person) he’d bite.

 

Hardly bothered by the infamous midges,

Being truly committed to the ridge.

We visited out of season Ullapool,

And stayed at Ballachulish – which was so cool.

Popped over to Skye where I bought my ring,

(and subsequently lost the bloody thing).

 

Met James Bond running boat trips on Loch Ness,

Saw Jeff ‘s sunburnt legs – what a mess.

The Service station rest stops, way after dark:

Mr. T. Hermos – “I’ve lost my flask”

The early days of camping, when we first went away

Being lost in the darkness – “What’s that sign say?”

 

The Velux window where I banged my head,

My legs always sticking out the bed.

Wherever we stayed it was just the same

(The bed was always the one I blamed).

Overcrowded boat trip – about a 20-seater;

I sat a small child on my lap, and got a new name: “Peter”

 

Visited Rum – the perfect place to live:

Only 45 inhabitants living off-grid.

The small boat crossing with a choppy tide –

Poor Jim being sick over the side.

I’d never seen him so subdued,

Mind you – he was ejecting food.

 

Walked up Ben Nevis, and past the old man of Storr,

Been higher than I’d ever been before.

Got stung on the ear by a wasp (I think)

Your first reaction; “someone take his drink!”

I never conquered my fear of heights

But the scenery was always such a delight.

 

On the wire bridge, the first aid kit I decided to fling.

The forgetful waiter – “who ordered the…….something?”

Staying miles from anywhere, in a secluded cottage.

Wedding day breakfast – “I’ll have the full sausage”

For me, Haggis and Neaps was the way to go,

And watching Tim Vine –  “Flag Hippo”

 

(Which one’s Canada?)

 

To Harris and Lewis where we went to the Butt.

Not removing the lens cap in the Peat House – you nut.

Leaning into the wind with our coats over our heads,

Rich and Mart going canoeing – almost winding up dead.

The gorgeous five sisters with snow on their peaks,

Watching England beat Greece – in the home of Pete feet.

 

And throughout these adventures in the land of the Scots,

The occasional fruit machine – always worth a shot.

But for some unknown reason, which is still unexplained

You saw Cherries as Monkeys, and would always exclaim,

“Hold them monkeys Lal! Hold them!” – it sounded so daft

But there was method in your madness, wisdom in your craft.

For in the town of Fort Augustus, on Jim’s wedding day

We too hit the jackpot – Seventy-five quid came our way!

 

So in that little sentence, that you loved to shout out

Live more awesome memories that I can write about.

I haven’t mentioned saying “Mart!” at every oriental we saw,

Or you hiding my Kit-Kat, just to wind me up more.

My reflection above the toilet cubicle, that gave you such fun,

Or our romantic lobster dinner as we watched the setting sun.

 

Therefore every fruit machine that I find along the way,

Brings back such great memories – though I rarely now play.

Memories of wonderful times kept in my mind so strong

So don’t worry about them monkeys – I’ve kept them held for so long.

 

My thanks to Ben for his suggestion – this poem doesn’t do the memories justice by any stretch of the imagination, but I hope it brings a smile to his face.

I do offer a bespoke poem writing service, Examples of previous work can be seen on the ” Poetry Commissions” page of this blog. I welcome all enquiries and would encourage anyone to get in touch to find out more. All inquiries are free and without obligation.

 

If you like this poem, then you might be interested to know that my book, ‘The Friday Poems – Volume One’ is now available to buy! Get it from your Amazon,wherever you are – or if in the UK from Amazon.co.uk in paperback by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/2tOvhA6 , or for Kindle by clicking here: http://amzn.eu/hbDIMdU