Sunday, September 29, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Wedding Stories

The bow and the curtsey say more than a kiss
It’s her first dance after turning to Mrs from Miss
It’s clear that this is a promise and a wish

True story from a friend's wedding. Number 248.

365 Poems in 365 Days: I See In You The Very Heart Of Me

Sometimes what I say or do
Seems less like me and more like you
But other times I can see
Things about you that surprise me

Number 247 is just kind of odd.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Oracle

Every card in my tarot has gone black
The shop has disappeared so I can’t take them back
I guess telling the future’s not my knack

Number 246 is why I am not a prophet.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Podcast

Jack:    I’m Jack and welcome to our podcast
         We hope it goes better than the last.
         Anyway, Nigel is with me here.
Nigel:   Receiving you loud and clear.
Jack:    Also back with us is Stu.
Stuart:  If it goes like last time I don’t know what I’ll do.
Jack:    Last, but not least, but certainly last is Pete.
Pete:    Sorry guys, I wasn’t sure where to meet.
Jack:    We’re actually talking by internet magic -
         Doing this in the same room would end up being tragic
Pete:    I’m in a farmhouse in the south of France!
Nigel:   I’m at home, lounging around in my pants.
Stuart:  I didn’t want to know that so can we get to the content?
Jack:    Of course we can. Here’s an email that was sent...


We don't have a podcast but this is pretty much what would happen, except not rhyming as well. Number 245.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Night of the Frogs

For ages I haven’t seen a frog
Maybe they’ve all been chased off by dogs
They used to walk in through Jim’s door
And sit there nonchalantly on his floor
I should go and look in the water near here
Or is it completely the wrong time of year?

Number 244. The frog incident has been mentioned previously on this blog.

Friday, September 27, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Mystery Mentor

Michael Villefort, you make me so sad
When you trained me, it was to my detective skills we wanted to add
I didn’t realise my personality should also be bad
Should I brood over crimes until I run mad?
Or spend all night drinking and smoking with the lads?
Or have an affair with someone as old as my dad?
Surely these tortured investigators are a fad
Although I admit I treat feelings roughshod, like a cad.
But I’m happy because solving mysteries is rad!
Let’s not argue; I’ll visit you in a tad
After I finish my trip to Islamabad
(It’s the case of the missing tiger gonads)
Lacey Lee
PS I’ll bring back a carpet to replace that one you had.

Lacey Lee responds to her mentor. Is she being ironic using the word rad, or is she stuck in the 90s? Number 243.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Accountancy

The accountant is bad at responding to email
So I have to phone if I want action for real
But recently all my calls seem to fail
Guess I’ll call round, and show some zeal

Number 242 is pretty much a true story although I am terrible at calling people.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Not My Actual Methodology

Scribbling words up at night I stay
Half ideas and rhymes coming at the end of the day
Thoughts and lines of things to say
Come morning I’ll throw them away

Oh, if only this were true. But at number 241, close the two thirds mark, the horrible truth is that I have abandoned precisely one poem as irredeemable this month. And I've got it by my bed in case I have an idea to make it merely terrible in the middle of the night.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Directionless

People ask me for directions
All the time this weekend
But the questions are filled with confusion
Where is it I need to send?

Number 240 is true and begins a selection of poems I've tried to fix, but it hasn't worked and they're just awkward. What is that last line doing?

365 Poems in 365 Days: Hotel Hell

I’ve seen several episodes of Ramsey’s Hotel Hell
And in each Gordon has stripped off for a shower or bath
Is it in the contract? Do they think a naked chef will sell?
Since the bathing always goes wrong I have to laugh.

Number 239. Every time I say, well I'm not watching this rubbish again, and every time I flick through the channels and pick it out.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Moon

“Write a poem about the moon.
Hurry up it’s setting soon.”
What is this, a party like in old Japan
Where we compose only while we can
See the ephemeral thing it’s about?
Wait a minute. Why’s it so dark out?

Number 238 is about my old friend and/or rival the moon.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Another Visit to the Rascals Club

More about the Rascals club
I rewrote the story as a play
Wore the speech down to a nub
That’s all I really have to say

For completeness sake number 237 refers to the one act play version of the Rascals Club piece detailed here. It's very similar.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Contains Adult Language

This ongoing project used the f-word early on
Which I guess makes the whole thing for an adult audience
I could write ‘mature themes’ –horror, sex and so on
But then, like movies with a 15 or 18 compliance
Would I stick in some tits because someone got shot?
Or swearing all the time because there are drugs?
Still – 365 – a bit of pandering is not
Completely disgraceful. Better sweep this thought under a rug.

Number 236. For those curious the swear word can be found in this poem.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Monkey Shoes

Monkeys don’t wear shoes
This probably isn’t news
Except to the kid who’s two

Number 235 is about monkey shoes. Monkey shoes guys!

365 Poems in 365 Days: Beards

There’s this thing about when I shave off a beard
I find I have to do it twice
I think I’ve done it well, but it’s weird
Look in the mirror, it’s been nibbled at by mice

Number 234. As my cousin and I discussed a couple of years back, men all think they're good at shaving, but frankly there's a huge variation. Why do I have a goatee and moustache? They're the hardest bits for me to shave. Especially first thing in the morning.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Comedy Or Tragedy?

Seriousness fail
Death not a laughing matter?
I suck at all this

Number 233. Haiku time!

365 Poems in 365 Days: Socks

I have lots and lots and lots
Of plain black cotton socks
Which makes them easy to pair away
(Except the ones that have turned grey)

Number 232. True story.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Sorcery, Spitting and Knots

The sorcerer’s spells require him to spit
And mutter in a language mostly forgot
When he claims we are visited by the efrit
He captures it’s essence with an elaborate knot

This poem, number 231 has a slightly interesting origin. When the Prophet Muhammad started preaching, the leaders of the Quarysh told pilgrims not to listen to him as he was a sorcerer. However people knew he wasn't as there was no spitting and no knots. Presumably therefore, sorcery required spitting and knots. Hence this poem about a sorcerer and spitting and knots.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Writing Poetry

Writing poetry is not hard work as such
Even if it requires a dextrous mental touch
Still, my brain feels oddly tired after a little too much

Number 230. If by some chance you ever get about a hundred poems behind and spend a month trying to catch up, you too might feel this. The worst is coming up with a couplet or triplet and realising you wrote a very similar but slightly better version a week ago.

You think coming up with an improved version of an older poem would be worse? Let me into a little secret; this is the internet and I can edit old poems. It doesn't happen very often, but several of the poems are in significantly better state than when I first hit post.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Hooray!

It was a good performance
That left the audience in a trance
So at the end there was a pause
Before the thunder of applause

Number 229 is not about the response to itself (probably).

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Super Ghost

I can walk through walls
There’s no prison can hold me
Now that I am dead

A haiku about a supervillain who is a ghost? Why has no one thought of this before? Oh wait, it turns out there are dozens of them. Now I'm sad. Number 228.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Ghost Story Prequel

Watch out for the unquiet spirit
That walks through walls and doors
It haunts people without merit
And chases cads and boors

Number 227 is the introduction to a ghost story I wrote for creative writing. I already wrote a poem about this (which can be found here) and then another poem in response to the criticism I received about the first poem. One fellow student was fascinated by my imagery here. I'm still not sure what she meant.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Tour Guide

Tourist sites are machines
For extracting money from visitors
As painlessly and pleasantly as possible
You can try and rein it in
Keep things on a budget or
So on, and still find it enjoyable

Number 226 is inspired by my Australian cousins who found that tourist things are expensive. They thought Paris more of a rip-off than London, although that's partly because of the weird things like charging more for sitting outside rather than standing at the bar.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Apple Season

The apple tree overwhelms us
And the fruit go over so quickly
Every year we make a fuss
Coming up with new recipes
I’m going to try something new I think
Ought to be good or at least work
They put me off with a nod and a wink
But I’m making burgers of apple and pork

They don't use up as much apple as I hoped, nor were they the delicous things I was anticipating, but slightly bland. Still pork and apple burgers work and maybe want some more herbs or spice to improve them. Number 225.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Fire

Calves are freezing and shins are melting
Sitting out in front of the fire
Funny shapes amidst the burning
Disappear when we build it higher

'Calves are freezing and shins are melting' was said by Boris as we sat around the fire pit. Someone else thought they saw Morrowind in the fire, which I might comment on if I knew anything about the Elder Scrolls series. Number 224.

Monday, September 23, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Self Referential

Equinox poem
Forgot to post it on time
Not so smart I guess

A haiku about this poem. Number 223.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Equinoctal Poetry

Equinox
Indoor socks
Come out the box
The cool air mocks

Number 222 is for the autumn equinox. Which was yesterday. It's late. Is that an ongoing thing with this project? Why yes it is!

365 Poems in 365 Days: Unprofessional

I am not a professional poet
I do not stick to a schedule
None of my work is commissioned by others
I have not been paid a single penny
My standards are pretty low and continue to slip
I slope off at any opportunity
I lack complete commitment
Most importantly I call myself an amateur

Number 221 is pretty bad as a poem. Is that the point? Oh yes it is.

365 Poems in 365 Days: The Elf-Mail Always Gets Through

My only wish is to obey the Elf-Queen
The Fey do not have servants by which I mean
Children may cook for elders, apprentices work for masters
Those who share a house share tasks to work faster
But for the queen our customs have been demoted
Even before the war some of us were devoted
This mission I am on is the most important she has asked
And despite storm and sword I will complete my task
But the burnt ruins of my destination reveals that I shall fail
I turn for home and in my heart suppress a wail

More elf poetry for number 220. I seem to have incorporated some of my thoughts on making elf society crazy different in the words.

365 Poems in 365 Days: One Hundred

Recently my great-aunt turned a hundred years old
Sadly she wasn’t well enough for me to go and say
Congratulations. Last time we spoke I think she thought I was gay
Unable to change her mind I let the conversation fold

Number 219. This is too complex to explain.

Friday, September 20, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Dinner Time

Elliot’s eating, it won’t be over soon
The puree is everywhere, it’s kind of messy
He introduces the floor to one spoon
He flicks the other – straight in his eye


Elliot is six months old. Number 218.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Rascals



The Rascals' Club is fictional and in Piccadilly
It exists to hold posh eccentrics from my stories
It looks sensible but is really very silly
Designed as a place for conversational ease

The Rascals' Club has appeared in some of my early 20th century pieces, and in two more recently, one of which is here! Poem number 217.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Superior Spider Friend

I don’t know if this spider could
Learn to be my helpful friend
Eating up the flies is good
But all the webs drive me round the bend

As my time watching Spider-man films and cartoons have revealed, some spiders spin webs, but others are more hunter-killers. Clearly the second type is the one I want as a friend. More on this important topic can be found here. Number 216.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Can't Rhyme And Work

Cooking or working on something
I put two words together and
Suddenly I have four lines that sing
And writing forget the task at hand

Number 215 describes what happens when I'm in the middle of something and have some workable lines come to mind. Before this year I'd let some of them go, but I've got 365 poems to get on with so don't let a single one go.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Booking Tables


A table for seven at three
Or a table for three at seven?
I will have to check and see.
I’ll have to call back – before eleven.


This nonsense occurs everytime I try to arrange something with my Dad, and sometimes with my brother. Number 214

Thursday, September 19, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Inheritance

“To you nephew Felix, I’m leaving all your money.”
I don’t mind, I’m feeling pretty sunny.
The jokes on him, I don’t have any.

Number 213

365 Poems in 365 Days: Actually My Siblings Are Pretty Nice

Do I have an evil twin?
If I did you’d never know
One ends where the next begins
Each reaping what the other sows

Number 212. My evil twin is the one who writes poetry.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Fictional And Evil

He is both fictional and evil
So nothing he does is real
And our hearts are all he steals

Number 211 is every tumblr ever (no, not really).

365 Poems in 365 Days: Mystery Protegee

To my brilliant protégée, Miss Lacey Lee
I see your career progresses satisfactorily
However you investigate far too happily
Detectives today need to be grim and broody
Or else annoy everyone by acting quirkily
Not be a pleasant, well adjusted young lady
Do you not have a dark secret in your history?
I enclose a very intriguing obituary
Of a fellow who died most peculiarly
Which I hope will tickle your thinking fancy
Your sincerely Michael Villefort, PhD

Number 210 reveals Lacey Lee, Detective Extraordinaire, being taken to task by her mentor. Tut tut Lacey Lee. It's not enough to solve crimes, you need a tortured soul as well!

365 Poems in 365 Days: Hate

This is number 209. My initial plan was to write a sonnet about hate. Then it morphed through failure and limped to a stupid conclusion. The form is... imperfect. So all in all, it's a failure and I hate it. No, actually it's mediocre and I'm okay about it, so here it is.

If there’s one thing that I’m sure I know
It’s what I’m doing is something I hate.
It doesn’t matter if I stay or go
I know the result will be far too late
Because I’m stupid I had never thought
To check in advance how we’d work the plan
So the inevitable failure caught
Us in this position from which we can
Find no way to escape this crazy trap
Without giving up something too precious -
One of us must fall into fearful gap
So the rest can get out in a wild rush.
The moral of the story, if there’s one:
Never tangle with a supervillain.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Worse Words

If I had better words I’d use them
Sometimes I think that should be my catchphrase
Although now and again I find a gem
Something that makes my spirits rise

Number 208. Not the first time I've used that first line in a poem.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Zombie Superhero Mashup Review

“People could say a lot of negative things about the apocalypse
But there was no arguing the air quality in Los Angeles had really improved.”
From Peter Clines Ex-Heroes in which superheroes are eclipsed
By a zombie plague; his comedy is good, his tragedy leaves me unmoved.

The first two lines of number 207 are stolen with love from Peter Cline's novel Ex-Heroes. The rest is my mini-review. I'd totally watch that film; the TV series would probably get a bit too melodrama.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Fall Into Autumn

Branches bounce on the tree
Wind waves the arms so merrily
Autumn welcomes us you see
Both coolly and enthusiastically

Number 206. Autumn yes! If only the days weren't getting shorter.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Stolen Words

It was a good secret, well kept
All the fallout had been swept
Until it was found and we all wept

Number 205 exists entirely because of the line "It was a good secret, well kept" which I took from Georgette Heyer's Envious Casca.

365 Poems in 365 days: Elf War



We paint our faces in black and gold
And tie our hair into three braids
Just like the warriors of old
Would dress for going on a raid.
Our captain checks our bow and sword,
Armour and gear according to the law
Following the ancient word
Of how the elves must march to war.

Number 204 is a minor addition to my elf-poems.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Video Game Nonsense

For a game with such a troubled history I find it
Addictive; clever, deep, well-polished – it makes my old
Laptop struggle a bit, although I should turn down the graphics.
Like a cross between Civilization and an action focused RPG set in
Elemental, a world shattered by the Cataclysm but
Now being put back together Sovereigns, magicians who can use the

Elemental shards to harness the power. I’m still
New to it, but I must say I really find it pretty
Choice. Much of the game is taken up at the
Head of an army, clearing the wildlands of monsters
And undertaking random quests. I’ve never run out due to
Not having levelled my army to Epic status; my
Travel, bringing me into conflict with
Rival Sovereigns and their cities before
Everything on the map is clear. If you like
Strategy and High Fantasy with nice and
Simple stories surrounding it, then I recommend it.

Number 203 is an acrostic video game review. I like Fallen Enchantress; it gives just enough context and flavour text to let me put some character to the essentially empty decisions of Civilization. The troubled history is briefly discussed on the wikipedia article here.

265 Poems in 365 Days: My Fault

I’m writing about the people who are to blame
I hope you don’t mind if I don’t name names
After all, they certainly know who they are
And so does everyone else, near and far

They have failed us in a hundred different ways
There are no excuses that they could say
We’re still waiting on some kind of apology
And then what? I guess we wait and see




Number 202 is about The People Who Are To Blame, a phrase I really enjoy saying.

365 Poems in 365 Days: I Need An Editor

Some of these poems aren’t very good
I’m churning them out at a tremendous rate
If I weren’t on a deadline I really should
Go back and edit them before it’s too late

Number 201 is self-evidently true.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Goblins

Goblins eat and goblins fight
Goblins stay out of the light
Goblins dig and goblins bite
Goblins not afraid of height
Goblins always avoid your sight
Might be behind you? We just might

Number 200. I don't expect that this will have the momentum to become the ever increasing list that are my elf poems, but it's amusing enough.

365 Poems in 365 Days: More Mystery Family Letters

Dearest darling mother dear,
Lacey Lee taking a minute here
To assure you there is nothing to fear;
The body was only lightly seared
And the reporters too well bred to leer
(Except, perhaps, when on their beer)
Next time that I’m passing near
I’ll take a look at that plot to the rear
Where you say that ‘those folks are up to something queer’
Because of all the crazy gear
That makes strange noises that you hear.
Got to go, crime scene photos have appeared
Lacey Lee
PS Re: Jenny. Not going to shed a tear.

In number 199, Lacey Lee finally responds to her mother .

Friday, September 13, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Where Ideas Come From

As I cross off items on my poem idea list
The number of things rejected or missed
Increase until the column completely lack inspiration
(It’s taken two weeks to bring this one to completion)

So I keep a list of ideas for poems. Good ideas easy to write disappear off it the next time I sit down with a pen. Good ideas difficult to write get scribbled about until I finally drag something together. Actively bad ideas I cross out, usually the next day. Mediocre ideas hang about until I decide I will make the damn thing work, but this means that as time goes on more and more mediocre ideas sit on that list and I stare at it and say "Accountant? Pantun about failure? Pork and Apple burgers? What am I supposed to do with these?" Number 198.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Garden Parties

There’s a party in the garden
Some secrets may be hidden
Will there be sun or will there be rain?
Will someone cry out in pain?
Afterwards there’ll be things to say
It should be a most memorable day

For creative writing I wrote a radio play called The Garden Party. With typical over confidence I set out to write it in verse, but swiftly stopped. There's a few rhyming lines here and there, and also this previous poem on the topic. Number 197.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Living Space

Le Corbusier called a house a machine for living in
The experience of space flight is entirely indoors
Astro-dwellers would live lives sealed in a tin
While their homes through the void would soar

Space travel's in my blood/ And there ain't nothing I can do about it. However it's clear that living in space would be indoor living in the middle of a hostile environment. Happy thoughts for number 196.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Unease At Writing

Don’t be uneasy when I write
It’s not your words (please – take a sight)
I’m too self-centred to note what you said
I’m much more interested in the contents of my head

At least one person is deeply disturbed when I take notes. Please don't be, it's not about you, it's about me. Number 195.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Superhero Casting Choices

I dreamt I was assistant to Nathan Fillion
And he wanted me to contact director James Gunn
He needed to talk to him really quite soon
Before they cast someone else as Rocket Raccoon

In my dreams I am solely responsible for Bradley Cooper being cast in the most important superhero role announced this year. Number 194.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Computers

On Windows 8 I’m not impressed
It’s trying to look like a smart phone I guess
Where the settings I want are no one knows
Apart from that it’s okay I suppose

My Dad has a new laptop running on Windows 8. I only ever see it when it's not doing what's expected, so I have an especially bad view of it. Number 193.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Mystery Family Members

Lacey Lee, would it really be so hard
To send your mother a note or card?
We read in the paper you found a body charred
That turned out to be drowned in a vat of lard.
As a young lady, please, please be on guard
These reporters have a reputation that s worse than bards.
I hope this is a warning you won’t disregard
As you trip in and out the gates of New Scotland Yard
Your mother, Adora Lee
PS Sorry to so soon bombard
you with letters, but Jenny is engaged to M Renard

Lacey Lee's mother worries about her. Lacey Lee is bad at staying in contact when she's on a case and she's always on a case. I have added a Lacey Lee label to the blog. This is poem number 192.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Scary House

This, number 191, I discarded unfinished and instead wrote Jonathan Clean for my creative writng class back in the spring. It really needs another verse or maybe two and some tidying up. But here it is anyway as it's too hard, depressing and uninteresting to make more of this. I'm sorry.

This is not a place to be alone
So if you’re frightened then go on home

There’s a scary old house at the top of the hill
Sometimes you can see the windows light up at night
To join the club there’s a challenge to fulfil
Go up there and don’t take fright
You can get in the garden around the back
Then sneak through the shrubs to the cellar door
Jiggle the handle if you’ve got the nack
You can go through and see some more

Some kids knocked on the door on Hallowe’en
Tricking and treating or just on a dare
The door opened to show the best costumes they’d seen
But something about it told them to beware
The witches and ghouls had sharpened their teeth
And the bowls of treats were slugs and spiders
Although I know it defies belief
The biggest witch swallowed them inside her

365 Poems in 365 Days: The Ends of the Earth

I travelled to the ends of the earth
To find myself when I am on my own
With only strangers who don’t disturb you
When you need all that time alone

Number 190 is about the phrase and concept of the ends of the earth, an idea I keep coming back to.

365 Poems in 365 Days: What I Ate On Holiday

Monday we climbed twenty trees
And had burger and chips for tea
Tuesday we went out for a bop
And had peas and mash and lamb chops
Wednesday it seemed to rain forever
And to make things worse we ate liver (ugh)
Thursday we went for a swim in the lake
And I ate up all my pasta bake
Friday was the end of our stay
So we ate sandwiches on the motorway

Number 189 was hidden in a notebook and never posted because I thought it needed more work. Oh, how my standards have slipped in the last six month.

Sunday, September 08, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Time of Your Life

Is this the time of your life you’re having?
Is there anything else you’d rather be doing?
If not, I’d better be beginning.

Number 188 is kind of formless. I almost didn't put it up, instead leaving it to be reworked or recycled. But as this is day 251, making this quite a bit behind, it would probably just be lost in the rush so I'm posting it as is.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Writing Circle Shenanigans

I was misheard in a noisy pub so instead of “friends’” they thought I said “French Wedding”.
Bonjours, Aujourd’hui nous sont ici pour le mariage de Gareth et de Gemma
I spoke more loudly and clearly when it was my turn to give a reading
Which made me think my choice to refer to pubic hair could have been better

1. Number 187 of 365

2. This is a true story that occurred in a pub with members of my writing group. If I remember, when I get around to posting the piece I read out I'll link to it here, pubic hair and all. Mine was not the most embarrassing piece to read out loud in a public place.

3. The French is what I scribbled down, which is close to what I blurted out when asked about it being a French wedding. It's not good!

365 Poems in 365 Days: Breakingly Awful

Everything I write is shatteringly bad
I am amused rather than made sad
All of those great ideas I thought I had
Miss the mark by more than a tad

Number 186 exists because I like the phrase 'shatteringly bad'.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Email Timing

My theory is that by 11-30 on a Monday
Workers have dealt with the weekend’s email
But still have the energy to swiftly reply
So that’s when I’ll appear in you inbox, without fail

Number 185 probably doesn't work. Except for me, as by 11-30 on a Monday is about the time I feel up to replying to emails.

365 Poems in 365 Days: More Van Adventures

The handbrake warning sound bleeps when we stop
And in this hired van we can’t prevent it working
We continue doing some nice motorway driving
And forgetting, when we come to a junction, it makes us hop

This was the same as the trip celebrated in The Ballad of Neil and Stan (In a Van). It may have been Mercedes Parktronic system which automatically parks your van for you. We don't know as we didn't have a manual for it. Number 184.

Saturday, September 07, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Halfway Point Palindrome

Writing forwards, writing backwards
Don't I know where I go?
Go I where? No I don't.
Backwards writing, forwards writing.

This is number 183, the halfway point of the project*! As this poem hints at, the second half will be the first half but written backwards. I hope you've enjoyed the non-redundant part of it.

* Checks date. Damn it.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Fresh Starts. Again.

I had intended to post
The creative writing pieces from earlier
But to get out of it the most
I’d add in a poem that would be similar

The first was about a new start
Which I had already written a rhyme
But time has passed; I wrote from the heart
Then posted without prose a second time

1. This is number 182 of 365 poems.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Trebuchet

I find it pretty fun to say
That excellent word trebuchet
But much as that is quite a hoot
It’s nothing like having one to shoot

Number 181. This is not the first time trebuchets have appeared on this blog.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Waiting

You don’t have to wait
When I come home late
Sometimes you don’t and sometimes you do
I can never tell with you

Number 180.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Sister Before Misters

I have never had a sister
(Apologies to the women I have
Implicitly or explicitly siblinged;
You are not forgotten or missed here,
Simply set in a category that has
Been labelled “not by blood related”)

But I wonder, would she have been tall?
Or have the deepset eyes I share
With my brother and my father?
She’d probably be clever – too clever in all
Respects, and her jokes would dare -
Maybe less like me and more of my mother.

Number 179. As noted my parents did not provide me with any sisters, so I found a few of my own along the way. Still, a bit of speculation here. It's not good - I found it hard to shape the words to what I meant. I suspect this would work better as a prose piece.

Friday, September 06, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Still Obsessed With Pens

Two pens gone in as many hours
Clearly being stopped by some power
Maybe I’ll step out and look at the flowers

Number 178. This is true, and occurred while writing this poem. These weren't the cheapest pens and I'm pretty sure I haven't been using them all that much. They have been out the packet for about six weeks, but being used in roation with two other pens, both older, both still writing well. Grr. Enough on pens I guess.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Thixotropic

Thixotropic
Is our topic
Solid until hit
Then wobbles quite a bit

This is not a very good definition, so for more on thixotropy you can start with the Wikipedia article, which should give you the information you need for proper research. I believe I first came across the word in a crime thriller called Landslide!; as everyone knows any book with an exclamation in the title is bound to be quality[1]. Number 177.

[1] Checking the internet suggests that I may have recalled the title wrong as it is listed without the exclamation mark. Since I think the cover had a bloke shouting on it with title where a word balloon ought to be, I may have mentally inserted it as a warning. Need I note that the title is a spoiler?

365 Poems in 365 Days: Poems by Phone

My pen dies while scribbling a line
And I’m miles away from home
I could try to hold it in my mind
Or text it to your phone

Number 176 may explain why you got that weird text from me. Or perhaps I was drunk.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Barbeque Season

I stab the skewer
Juices leak out everywhere
These are good kebabs

Number 175 is a haiku about stabbing meat.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Half-Baked

I don’t know if magic is an ingredient of all cakes
But I’m sure my friend put some in the latest she baked
The icing is so bright in colour it makes my eyes ache
After eating a slice, I can feel my feet quake
One piece is not enough – another I have to take
Dream or nightmare, from this I won’t wake
So much for those who thought they would be fake
There’s just crumbs left, make another for goodness sake

Number 174 is an introduction to a piece I wrote for my creative writing class; a magic realism piece about cakes. More after the break!

Thursday, September 05, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Oh Lacey Lee

Does Lacey Lee
Take anything seriously
(Except for mysteries)?

Number 173 is a comment on the previous poem.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Mystery Solving Reply

Dear Jonathan, my favourite constable,
I hope the delay in my reply is understandable
I have been investigating a body on a raft (inflatable)
Do you think a relationship of this sort is desirable?
Perhaps a quiet liaison, to our colleagues deniable
Or a wild, tawdry affair to the whole world visible?
Forgive me. This topic tends to make me irascible.
We should speak when I’ve caught this criminal so contemptible.
Detective Lacey Lee
C/O The Ivies B&B
Dunstable

Number 172 is a reply to this. My first note was in rhyme so has been promoted to poem 173, leaving me to say: Poor Jonathan. But really, do people send notes like his? Perhaps it needed some tick boxes.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Real Music From Fictional Bands

On Youtube listening to real music from fictional bands
21st Century internet has the information to hand
Welcome to our weird electronic future land

The future is a weird place as I explain in number 171. There are more or less fictional bands about the place, but in this case Iwas thinking of The Hex Girls who have been appearing on Scooby Doo on and off since 1999.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Tips From Detective Novels

I was reading a detective novel by Georgette Heyer
In  which the police inspector complained about writers of thrillers
Who had informed criminals of the importance of fingerprints
So that premeditated murderers have wiped them off ever since



Number 170. This from Envious Casca in which she names and describes a tool for turning keys from the opposite side of a door.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Dragoons! Fire!

Dragons come up in conversation surprisingly often
And my Dad has taken to replacing or pronouncing the word
As dragoon rather than dragon; as I said then
It transforms fantasy into Napoleonic war adventures
Or regency romances. George R R Martin’s
A Dance with Dragoons could easily be either

Number 169. Also:
The 80s Dungeons and Dragoons cartoon - several kids get on a Sharpe-themed rollercoaster and end up rescuing prisoners in 1808 Spain.
How to Train your Dragoon - American Revolutionary coming of age story about a boy and his horse going through very tough training before saving George Washington at the battle of Yorktown
Red Dragoon - The search for a serial killer in the chaos of the Seven Years War
Enter the Dragoon - Bruce Lee and his female co-star crossdress to escape Oliver Cromwell in this cult porn flick.
The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragoon Emperor - Action adventure about discovering the secrets of an 18th century Chinese Emperor
The Girl With The Dragoon Tattoo - Obsessed with Gustavus Adolphus, Lisbeth Salander has a tattoo of him on horseback. Then she joins forces with a journalist to hunt nazis.

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: The Writing Life

Waiting for the computer to boot up
So the poems I’ve scribbled can be typed up
I walk off to fill my coffee cup
Distracted, when I return the internet’s not up

Number 168 is about my terribly trivial problems getting these things onto this blog. What the hell laptop?

365 Poems in 365 Days: Cats

Cats are useless, said Matt
Who presumably never had a mouse problem
To be fair he was working on the pet insurance
With a claims list of cats without prudence
The furry beggars, he doesn’t like them
And there’s not much to say for that

I'm pretty ambivalent on cats, but my former co-worker was not a fan. Number 167.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Wrath

Wrath is a destructive anger, a burning rage that hurts
Everyone it touches and grinds them into dirt
A savage tearing feeling to consequences blind
The ending is never pretty, but it pays the cost no mind

Number 166 completes this sequence on deadly sins* and this might be the best of the seven. Best poem that is. Probably not the best sin.

* Although due to my plans for poetry on this blog the topic will inevitably reappear one more time.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Computer Control

We watch on screen what the computer has chosen
The computer is our friend and really cares
Nothing to upset or excite or over annoy
Wait – that’s disgusting. But I have to stare.

Number 165 is this which has either crept out of a dystopian sci-fi future or possibly has been inspired by David Cameron's internet censorship ideas. As often when I get political, it's not good.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Get Started!

Number 164 rather hamhandedly points out my tendency to rely on a small number of techniques to finish scenes; techniques that don't always help finish a longer piece. It's pretty short.

Starting I find easy
A satisfactory finish hard
In writing I rely on three
Or so tricks; I have to guard
Against using every
Time I need to end a fragment or shard.

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: A Toddler Stole My Sausage Roll

A toddler stole my sausage roll
Right off my plate as I stood there
Her in her mother’s arms and all
The people about oohed and stared

Number 163 also happened at the wedding. Curse you tiny child!

365 Poems in 365 Days: About Another Poem

I wrote four lines on a heart shaped piece of paper
For some friends who had got married, all congratulations
Then I posted it in the box provided for the situation
I wish I had a copy or redrafted it or done better

So some friends got married, and the above happened. I have regrets, which are:
1. I don't think it was very good;
2. I didn't take a copy and can't remember it so;
   a. I can't be sure exactly how bad it is and;
   b. I can't include it in my 365 poems

Without this missing work this poem is number 162.

365 Poems in 365 Days: More Time Travel

Your time travel dream
Is my reality breaking nightmare
I fix things, or so it seems
But walk into your paradox snare

Number 161 is a time travel poem. I will keep writing them until someone erases this timeline.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Sea-Elf Poetry

I learned to sail a thousand years ago
On an ocean far removed from this river
It never really leaves you
An oar is an oar, a sail a sail
This boat is small and narrow draft
Compared to the deep sea hunting ships
I was taught my craft on
Still, current, wind, balance
Spot the place our prey waits
It doesn’t change
We tie up and begin to fish.

Number 160 sees the triumphant return of elf-poetry.

365 Poems in 365 Days: What Am I Doing Anyway?

Am I trying to improve style or content?
Writing that is lovely but empty or
Something important with words just bend
(In fact I just want a piece hard to ignore)

Number 159 is, perhaps, trying to get to the heart of this project. It's not very good. I may have crafted a metaphor for my own endeavour.

Monday, September 02, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Rhyming Letter From A Mystery Solving Universe



To my dearest friend Miss Lacey Lee,
This unresolved sexual tension is killing me
We should discuss this over a cup of tea
When you’re not so busy solving mysteries
Yours, so very sincerely
Constable Jonathan Peabody

Number 157. Because romance is so totally my thing I will write a reply some time soon, maybe?

365 Poems in 365 Days: Dozy

Number 157. Someone said dozy chain rather than daisy chain and I'm off.

The dozy chain is made from sleep, not flowers
Each moment of unconsciousness tied to another
Making wakefulness invisible; that’s it’s power
Takes dreams and nightmares as sister and brother

365 Poems in 365 Days: Wedding Blues

Number 156 says something about why I feel a touch of melancholy at weddings. Not noted is that I've often had a few drinks and have become maudlin.

The bride and groom are the happiest people present
And I am not a member of the happy couple or ever will be
I don’t begrudge them a single blessing they’ve been sent
But as the evening draws on I feel a touch of melancholy

365 Poems in 365 Days: Day of the Head Covering

Number 155 is finally a poem about a hat (amongst other things). I can assure you that this won't happen again on Night of the Hats.

Winter hat, keep your head warm
Winter boots stop you slipping on ice
Still winter days are always so calm
But for now it’s summer, so that’s nice

365 Poems in 365 Days: Metaphor or Cliche?

In terms of budget cuts we hear talk of protecting the front line.
But the police are on the streets, teachers in classrooms and playgrounds,
The district nurse in her car, food safety officers, the guys who empty bins;
A scattered guerrilla war with everywhere the battleground.
We need a new metaphor, the present one doesn’t properly define.

Number 154 might be flirting with a political point, but is more pointing out the nature of war int he 21st century* and how our words, and more importantly our thoughts, have yet to catch up.

* Or perhaps everywhere always except for the large battles of the early modern and modern periods.

Sunday, September 01, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: The Surgeon

Acrostic review of Tess Gerritsen's novel The Surgeon, a companion piece to this. Number 153.

To be honest I read this because it said “A Rizzoli and Isles mystery”.
However, that’s not true. Although it introduces Jane Rizzoli
Entirely absent from the novel is Doctor Maura Isles.

Similarly, there are no comedy elements and the family stuff is
Understated to a mere sliver. It’s basically a fairly
Regular serial killer police procedural thriller that Tess
Gerritson imbues with some gritiness, localisation and the
Entire untalked about world of women who have been attacked.
On the one hand it’s not like the TV show; on the other it is
No worse than most and better than many crime thrillers.

365 Poems in 365 Days: I Probably Think About Batman Too Much

Batman poem for number 152.



Batman is completely unable to pass on a challenge or mystery
Put a giant lock in Gotham Park, you know he’ll find the key
Even if the smartest thing might be to wait and see;
Evil cannot be allowed to win, no matter how trivially.