Sunday, October 27, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Every Year

The birthday robot
Is all clanky and lights
The presents it’s got are really quite nice
It’s easy to spot
With the balloons and the kite

Number 300. I may have had a birthday sometime in the last 12 months.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Elf King



I am the Dawnborn’s son, destined to rule
Lord of tunnels and hidden places.
The Elders are mistaken. I should be Elf-King.
I thought them too wise to be blinded
By the claims of bright Alixiana.

My supporters, my faction, are of the noblest
While hers are chaff scattered amongst the fey:
A roguish spy, a terrible black smith,
A silent tree farmer of the North,
Some who have spent centuries with mortals,
Others who follow her like smitten cats,
And that scarred lapdog who pretends
That every thought or action of his
Is not initiated by her
(Rumour says my mother... but no)
It is madness to choose one such as her
Tainted by the very world that threatens us.

I cannot believe it.
I do not believe it.
I should be king.
I will be king.


Number 299 is another Elf poem, a counterpart to this one. It references some of the others. Why not click on this link and read them all in an especially annoying order?

As an endnote, I haven't used any names in my Elf poems until now. I had the feeling that they would consider it rude. Which is why the fellow here has used Alixiana's.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Heist

We have a tricky heist to plot
And see the information - there's quite a lot
I have had a look at all the plans
And read the dossiers of every man
The boxes are carried from vault to truck
Absolutely nothing is left to luck
The vault is sealed with a thousand tumblers
And closes itself to be immune to bunglers
The bars on the window are so very real
And the basement encased in concrete and steel
Closed by unbreakable locks
The weakness, I think, is in the guards lunchbox

Number 298 is about plotting a heist.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Fulham Fans Get Younger Every Year

What's he going to do young Sebastian?
No one knows. No one can.
He could be an accountant or a fireman
He might believe that Greedo shot before Han
Whatever his story, the one that just began
The odds are good he'll be a Fulham fan

(Thomas is a brilliant middle name. I should know, mine is the same)

Number 297. Some friends had a baby.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Perspective

From this perspective
Nothing to see
Not being constructive
No hidden key
Perhaps defective
In saying something of me

Number 296 awkwardly riffs off a creative writing five minute task on perspetive. I wrote this:

One of my first questions when I'm stuck is 'from who (or what or where) am I writing?' This can put the work into focus and highlight the problems I'm having

Of course, it means that I put a layer between me and the work. All my writing is done wearing a disguise, hiding myself behind the words. Even this piece, although right now the mask is paper thin.

Monday, October 21, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: More Supervillainary

Beaten by a D-list Hero
Before I committed my crime
I will have a mighty revenge
No prison can hold me
(The judge has just ruled to that effect)

So I will change my name, mask, costume
Join the heroes in the fight against criminals
A member of their team, a loyal comrade
And when at last my identity is revealed
I will tearfully tell of my change of heart

All the time he will watch me
Pry at my secrets, wince at my jokes
Waiting for the betrayal I hint at
The paranoia gnawing away at him
Leaving him a mere shell, and I a heroine

Number 295 is another superhero/villain origin story.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Land On Your Face

It dropped out of space
To land on your face
Then vanish with no trace

Number 294 is not the plot for a Sci-Fi Horror Film.

Friday, October 18, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Pen Name

Got a free pen (it’s not working well)
From an informational meeting about careers
I’ll keep on using it, as far as I can tell
It’s relevant for at least another year

Number 293 is yet another poem about pens not working well. Still, free pens, can't complain etc.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Living Death

The dead outnumber the living
By so many many times
That the necromancer says
It is probably just as well
There is no such thing
As a vivimancer amongst the dead
To summon the living
To serve or answer questions
We would be worn down by the dead
And have no time for our own living

Number 292 is another in my occasional series about a necromancer. If I write another I'll create a label and link to them all.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Spanish Weather

The rain in Spain
I don’t have to explain
The weather here
Is not so clear

Number 291 is all about the weather.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Astronaut Boy

See the flying astronaut boy
Rockets and rayguns are his toys
Hurtling through space his great joy

Number 290 came from a creative writing class task where we were given a picture. I wrote the following:

Astronaut Boy was late for space school. His dog, Meteor had hidden his helmet.

I really hope that we had less than 5 minutes to do that.

Monday, October 14, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Nature's Wallflowers

I’m standing by the wall
Not talking at all
Resembling a sunflower
That’s been cowed by all the glowers

Number 289 exists because I had the word Wallflower scribbled down in my list of ideas for so many weeks I forget where it came from.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Looking At The Channel

I can see France
Despite the clouds
No rain enshrouds
Far away sunbeams dance

Number 288. Was on the front at Dover last Wednesday and there were low and really exciting clouds, but it was clear enought to see all the way to France. Pretty cool.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: The Boringest of Boring Accountancy

These are the least exciting accounts I have ever seen
Perhaps not enough invested, too much in the bank
Expenses and income much as they’ve always been
The long term plan is all to thank

Number 287. Boring accounts are good for almost every human-scale organisation I've been involved with.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Crazy Magic

To perform magic is to know madness
Reads the sign above the necromancer’s door
And inside, from what I saw,
He barely exaggerates I confess

Number 286 is about the link between magic and madness which is generally understated in modern fantasy. I blame Tolkien.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Operatic Investigation

Opera and investigation
A heady if peculiar mix
I follow up on the situation
But maybe that dilutes the tricks

1. This is poem 285 which I am posting on day 285 of the year. So this is on target for the first time since 10 January.

2. This poem introduces a piece on eavesdropping for my creative writing class. This is the homework which followed this classwork. As is probably clear I didn't continue what I started.

3. "Follow up on the situation" - I have 10 000 words of a science fiction horror story riffing off the following piece sitting on my hard drive which I intend to go back to. Now I'm up to date with the poetry I might even have the mental capacity to go for it tomorrow!

365 Poems in 365 Days: Happy Returns

Millie’s got one year
I’ve got thirty eight
Mille wins because she’s cuter
I’m the one we love to hate
Still I guess one thing’s clear
This is a most auspicious date

Number 284 is about my birthday, and also Millie's as we were born on the same day 37 years apart.

Friday, October 11, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Related to Elves

I am your mother’s sister’s lover’s brother’s daughter
Family relationships are important to the fey
I have urgent news to avoid another slaughter
We must flee and plan to fight another day

Family relationships are important to the fey
These clan bonds are what must keep us now
We must flee and plan to fight another day
Hoping this defeat does not our spirits cow

These clan bonds are what must keep us now
But I don’t know if they are strong enough to hold
Hoping this defeat does not our spirits cow
We are not strangers so we can be bold

But I don’t know if they are strong enough to hold
I have urgent news to avoid another slaughter
We are not strangers so we can be bold
I am your mother’s sister’s lover’s brother’s daughter

Number 283 is another Elf Poem, and another Pantun. Also finally a use for the family trees in the back of the elf novel I'm never going to write.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Do Dragons Dream Of Electric Voices?

The voice recognition software’s called Dragon
So in the computer is there a virtual lizard?
What kind of hardware does in need to run on?
And is that why they call it a set up wizard?

Number 282 is all about the fact I scribbled down Dragon Voice Recognition in some unrelated notes. Six months ago. And I couldn't let it go.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Another Mystery To Share

Lacey Lee you caught me fair and square
Although I think it was kind of a nightmare
That the stolen goods were really rare
And the paint had captured a forensic hair
(I don’t understand the clue of the extra bus fare)
Still, I hope you’re feeling up for a dare
As other crimes I have witness to bear
But wish to avoid the mastermind’s stare
So look at the evidence with plenty of care
J S Plank
PS first look under the stair
Which should lead you to the villain’s lair

Number 281 continues the saga of Lacey Lee. Will she rise to the challenge?

365 Poems in 365 Days: Love Letter To A Love Letter About London

My friend wrote a long and interesting story
Which described his love of the city through
The medium of a London bike journey
I am reminded of touristish things to do

(It appeared in the stream of his facebook
So you might not be able to take a look)

Number 280. It's here, if you can see it.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Unasked For Sequel

Foggy morning
Horses coming
Hoofbeats hearing
Not yet appearing

Number 279 introduces a piece of writing that is a sequel to this piece. I note that I wrote each piece for a different writing group, which currently have no overlap in members. In other words the infinitesimal chance that anyone would notice that they correspond to A Night At The Opera and A Day At The Races, which are Marx Brothers films and Queen albums was reduced to nothing.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: I Don't Think Inheritance Works Like That

The lawyer asked I attend the reading of a will
I had nothing better to do than
Turn up, so I was surprised still
When I was left the job of henchman

Number 278 is about unexpected legacies.

365 Poems in 365 Days: National Poetry Day (Was Last Week)

National Poetry Day this year was on the topic of water
But time flowed by so I missed the whole event
I ought to have at least tried; I can do better
Still no need to cry. That’s not what it meant.

Number 277 is about how I was all over National Poetry Day like wheels on a fish.

365 Poems in 365 Days: The 90s Were Rad

Into Plath, socialism and silver
Says the old personal ad
So poetry, politics and whatever
Back then we were crazy mad

The first line is stolen, with love, from an old personal ad. It's on the Facebook so you probably can't see it. Number 276.

365 Poems in 365 Days: I Blame Baz Luhrman

Hey sister, go sister
Thinking on the Moulin Rouge
I’ve never been there mister
I’m told it’s pretty huge

Number 275 is based on this piece I wrote in class based on a picture of the Moulin Rouge. I'm quoting Lady Marmalade because of the 2001 film.

It's a red windmill which is a strange place to put a strip club. I assume they took the machinary out. It became notorious during the belle epoque, time before the Great War, but this picture is later from the vehicles. Paris at midnight?

365 Poems in 365 Days: Self Referential

I’m slacking off, missing days
As though I’ve run out of poems today
From this dead horse, the skin has been flayed

Number 274. Look, this is a poem about how I don't write poems and that I've written most of my interesting topics into the ground. This kind of thing amuses me. Deal with it.

Tuesday, October 08, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: TV Is My Mistress

TV will always break your heart
Because if you love a show and it goes away
Before it has begun a decline
You’re left thinking it should restart
But if it goes on beyond it’s natural days
You will wonder why you didn’t see the signs

Number 273 is slightly incoherent about my point and not very good as poetry. Pretty par for the course then I suppose.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Courtesan Disaster

Writing group met again
The course needed, we decided then
Was “How to be a courtesan”

Number 272. Our topic was sex and some day I'll post the thing I wrote for it but not today. I could explain the context but, probably better not to.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Seen on Dover Priory Railway Station

There was a woman with a tiny dog
Also dragging a suitcase on wheels
One or the other is about okay
But both at once breaks the deal

Number 271 is about minor annoyances.

365 Poems in 365 Days: How Do Computers Work Anyway?

I’M WRITING TO YOU COMPLETELY IN ALL CAPS
SO MY FRUSTRATION COMES OUT OF THE COMPUTER BOX
I DON’T CARE IF DELIBERATE OR A MISHAP
WHAT THE HELL’S GONE WRONG WITH MY CAPS LOCK?

Number 270. I was taught two contradictory ways to use the Caps Lock and so often fumble with it.

365 Poems in 365 Days: I Actually Don't Really Know What I Look Like

In the mirror I have to concentrate
To see my face as a whole
I usually look at the detailed traits
The total so familiar, I lose sight of the goal

Number 269 is how I check my face in the mirror. Do I have anything stuck to it? Is my hair mad? No? Good to go! What do you mean I should look at the totality of it?

If I'm to believe blogger this is my 1000th post on this blog.  Time to take a look back at my first post.

Hopefully, this blog will never have anything of interest in it, and, even if I make a mistake and it does, only three people will ever read it. Which begs the question of why I'm doing this.

Yep, pretty much still true after 7 years.

Monday, October 07, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Tea

I wrote this while making cups of tea
One black Assam, the other is milky
A poem about hot drinks soon to come
Now extracted from the piece it originally came from

Number 268 is made of the bits left over after I cut up the previous one. Umm tea.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Not The Poem It Was

This may or may not be the poem you expect
It’s not the one where my feelings are told
The words on the page conceal the subject
I won’t say if it’s too boring or bold

It’s not the one where my feelings are told
The text is the surface that clearly reveals
I won’t say if it’s too boring or bold
Nothing for me; that’s part of the deal

The text is the surface that clearly reveals
A piece that says nothing about what’s to come
Nothing for me, that’s part of the deal
Add up the cost, total the sum

A piece that says nothing about what’s to come
The words on the page conceal the subject
Add up the cost, total the sum
This may or may not be the poem you expect

Number 267 was originally a pantun about making tea. No, seriously. Then I surgically removed all the tea references and replace them with mystery and it was much better. Number 268 is constructed from the lines about making tea.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Overhearing

Conversation overheard
Because they’re shouting every word
It’s taken an odd turn
That’s not something I want to learn

Number 266 introduces this classroom task from creative writing on the topic of overhearing or eavesdropping.

What's that on your hand?
Nothing
No, what is it?
It's a map of Ireland I drew during maths. That's Killkenny.
No the other hand.
Oh, it's the magic ring from when we dug up the treasure chest yesterday.
It's magic? What does it do?
I don't know.
So how do you know it's magic?
I just do. It's better than the necklace John found. He gave it to Mel and it was all pink and purple, and she just looked really stupid.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Chores

Made a phone call and it didn’t go wrong
So happy that I could break into song
But I’m not too enthusiastic with my thanks
Because now I have to go to the bank



Number 265 is all about my occasional bouts of insecurity.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Cleaning

Visitors coming so clean the bathroom
Even if it takes all afternoon
(Sparkling toilet, sink and shower
All done in a quarter of an hour)

Number 264 is mostly true.

Sunday, October 06, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Think Of The Children

Theatre and children
A dangerous combination
Get them early, get them hooked
Have them act out stuff from books
Admittedly it’s not that cheap
Until you watch them laugh and weep

Number 263 is the introduction to a piece I wrote for class for and about children.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Fun WITH names, Not Making Fun Of Names

Here’s some names I find fun to say:
From Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, Melinda May
I love to say “Marceline”
When Adventure Time features the vampire queen
My own creation Lacey Lee
Has a rhythm that makes me pretty happy
(If I thought this list needed a man
I’d give a shout out to my friend Stan)

Number 262. Everyone should have a name that's fun to say!

365Poems in 365 Days: Coffee

Dad has a new coffee machine
That sounds as though it’s farting
I’m not sure that’s a sound I like
To hear when the morning’s starting.

Number 261. Nespresso Pixie apparently.

365 Poems in 365 Days: The Wild Look

Looking slightly louche as I go to visit the accountant
Despite the morning’s testimony I wasn’t up all night
I just look slightly rough; as though trampled by an elephant
All the imperfections shown by unforgiving sunlight

Number 260. My hair was a bit rough and the shirt might have been improved by being ironed. Mostly though, this is an excuse to use the word louche.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Kids Comics Review

Number 259 is an acrostic review of a kids comic book.

Maybe you’ve not heard of Adventure Time
A cartoon about Jake the Dog and Finn the Human who
Roam the land of Ooo having, well, adventures. If that’s the
Case you might be adrift here – this is a spinoff with
Everything revolving around Marceline, a vampire who
Loves rock and roll. Her band in popular but disorganised.
In steps Princess Bubblegum as their manager to
Navigate the shoals of rock stardom, leaving her
Everyday job as ruler of the Candy Kingdom for a while.

All this could be a trainwreck, but the publisher
(Not a big one but Boom! Studios) choice of Meredith Gran to write and
Draw is the correct one. Each episode is one adventure/gig

That links to the next with the big climax being about
How the tensions of the tour have taken their toll on
Everyone and also the power of friendship (without quite being

Sugary-sweet to the point of being sickening.)
Confirmed Adventure Time fans I suggest you
Run, don’t walk to the shop and buy it now.
Everyone buy one! Other people, this is not really
A good introduction, but it’s fun and suitable
(Mostly) for kids, while still being clever and funny.

Quite by chance, adding this to my purchase
Upgraded my complimentary gift to a book bag.
Even though it’s not an Adventure Time one, still SCORE!
Enough fanboying about this; I love it, it’s
Neat, maybe you can borrow it if I
See you. The setting is fantasy, the characters are real.

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Not a True Story

Here are some things that are not true:
This train journey is a pain
I am tired of the colour blue
I’m not worried that my jacket’s stained
The woman on the phone is fascinating
I’m perfectly happy with the people in this carriage
The sun through the window is excruciating
Whoever she’s talking to is contemplating marriage
The guy without a ticket is not annoying at all
The vibration is an unpleasant sensation
My writing has run straight into a brick wall
The next stop is not my station

Based in part on a train journey I took, this is number 258.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Red Sky In The Morning, Means I'm Going To Be Yawning

The sun, blood red
Menaces the land
As it rises up and
Is there something a proverb said?

Number 257 is about getting up in the morning.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Meeting

Going to a meeting
Sure I’ve forgotten something
This feeling will be fleeting
Unless it’s an important thing

Number 256 is how I feel all the time. Unless I have no meetings.

365 Poems in 365 Days: There Will Always Be A Poem In Winterfell

The children of summer have never know the cold and dark
And I’m not talking about Bran and Arya Stark
I mean the kids I know born since year’s beginning
How can I tell them that winter is coming?

Number 255 is a bit Song of Ice and Fire, or Game of Thrones. Take your pick.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Time Passes

Midnight
Is out of sight
Noon
Will come too soon

Number 254 is self-evident.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Not Writing Sherlock Holmes

If I ever wrote a story of Sherlock Holmes
It would be one he solves with his big head dome
Without even leaving his own armchair
“Watson – fetch me The Times. It’s over there.”

Number 253 is true, apart from the fact that I have no intention of writing a Holmes story. Nevertheless I still contend that every collection of Holmes stories should have a mystery that Holmes solves without leaving his rooms, or preferably his chair.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Cowardice is not Bravery

“If he is brave, he cannot be a coward,”
I’m not sure that this is something I agree
The context – a duel that does not take place, I heard
Makes some sense of it I see

Number 252 is me riffing off a line that struck me in The Count of Monte Cristo.

365 Poems in 365 Days: The Candle Burns At Both Ends

Late to bed, early to rise
The sunlight is burning my eyes
I hate the sound of seagull cries
Maybe this wasn’t a smart thing to try

Number 251 is a really bad habit.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Introduction

Introduction
To an interview
Unexpected
In appearance

Number 250 is really an introduction to this fictionalised piece I wrote in class back in January. This was the in class piece on the topic of new starts. Other pieces based on this can be found here, here and finally here which also explains why this topic has turned into four poems eventually.

Reception looks more like a corporate office than a school. Maybe they always did and I just wasn't paying attention.

"Hello," I say to the woman at the desk. "Neil Willcox, here to see Jenny Anderson."

At her suggestion I take a seat. I wait just long enough to feel uncomfortable.

"Neil! Good to meet you." She has the Australian accent I heard on the phone, and a pink and black dress that none of the teachers I had at school would have worn.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Authority Over The Dead

He is the necromancer
The afterlife trancer
The ghost dancer
Where blood has been shed
He speaks to the dead
And records what they said
This dark sorcery
Has great utility
So we treat him tolerably.

Number 249 is about the social stigma attracted by talking to the dead, especially if they reply.