Tuesday, December 31, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Phoenix

This is poem number 365 of the 365 poems I wrote and posted here in 2013.

I never thought I would see a phoenix,
Feathers brighter than the sun, dagger beak.
Still not sure this isn't one of your tricks,
The supporting evidence is quite weak.

Feathers brighter than the sun, dagger beak,
In the sky it was the highest flyer.
The supporting evidence is quite weak,
Even as you approach the bird's pyre.

In the sky it was the highest flyer.
I've heard the stories and listened to the claims.
Even as you approach the bird's pyre
Will you really arise from out of the flames?

I've heard the stories and listened to the claims.
Still not sure this isn't one of your tricks.
Will you really arise from out of the flames?
I never thought I would see a phoenix.

Monday, December 30, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: 364

 Number 364 has 364 lines. In it I've shoved a lot of my thoughts on this whole 365 poem project. Still, I can't really recommend that anyone read it, so to sum up: 365 is a lot of poems and there are some that are pretty good, and quite a few that are mediocre. Anyway, take it away after the cut.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Break The Fall

Broken glass shines like bloody gemstones
The cut is deep right to the bone
Accidents are worse when on your own

Going to have to climb up the wall
Find the phone and make the call
Regretting the slip and fall

Number 363 just came to mind this afternoon.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Heroics

Number 362 is perhaps a little rough. What is a hero anyway? Maybe we need to ask Bonnie Tyler.

We take our heroes as we find them
Holding evil hordes at bay
Striving to protect the helpless
Doing good while they may

We make our heroes when we can't find them
Ignoring they have feet of clay
Upholding justice, seeking freedom
If not for always then for a day

Can't find or make heroes then we must be them
Do what we can for little pay
Hoping what we have is sufficent
If we ever find ourselves at bay

365 Poems in 365 Days: Love Me For A Reason; Let The Reason Be Love

Number 361. I had the line The reasons we love someone are not always the reasons we would choose hanging about for months and could not write anything that seemed to do anything with it. Now, closing in on a deadline, I came up with something that at least gestures in that direction. I note that choose rhymes with muse and nearly went down that path.

The reasons we love someone are not always the reasons we would choose
The things we miss when they are gone are not things we expected to lose
The world is strange and people stranger and relationships inexplicable
And people value in me things I otherwise find so very trivial

365 Poems in 365 Days: Dinner Party Invitation Apology

Number 360.

I don't think I'll make it out
So I'll send you all my love
Which is really what it's all about
When push comes to shove

(Well that and having dinner
Which I expect will be a winner)

365 Poems in 365 Days: Lovely Grub

Number 359 is about curry evenings.

Eating curry
In a hurry
So hot, I fear
I drank too much beer

365 Poems in 365 Days: Mystery of Mysteries

Number 358 is another letter from Lacey Lee, in reply to this one. All the Lacey Lee, Lady Detective, letters can be found in one place by clicking on this link. Click away! Due to the nature of blogging, the earliest can be found at the bottom and the newest, currently this entry, at the top.

Dear J S Plank
    It seems that fate
Has brought your letter not too late
As I have finished up the cases on my plate
And been stood up on my holiday date
I made the demolition hesitate
Until I had the evidence out the gate
(Some rubbish mixed in, not time to discriminate)
So my thanks; no hard feelings at any rate
From how you tried to discredit me at the Tate
(Still, I should not have taken the bait
Even when Inspector Jones began to berate)
I hope to soon wipe these criminals off the slate
Sincerely, Lacey Lee
  PS I'm sending some cigarettes in a crate
For you to have when it's time to celebrate
My bringing down the man we mutually hate

Monday, December 23, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Smoking For Fun And Profit

I know a woman whose
Cigarette Addiction
Is to smoke nine a day
Every morning she buys
Her favourite in a
Pack of ten, throws one away

Number 357 is about how smoking is big, clever and impresses everyone.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Elf Smith

I could have sworn I wrote, typed and posted this. But I can't find any trace of it. So I've rewritten it, as best I can for number 356. It is an elf-poem, and one of the first two I came up with after writing the original ten. This is of course the 'terrible black smith' from this one. It worked better in my head.

Our treaty with the mortal men
Asks us to deliver one hundred swords.
I undertake to fulfill the obligation.
I ask their captain to see the men they're for.
He laughs and walks away as I watch.
For ten days and nights I labour
Snatching food and sleep as metal cools.
On the afternoon of the tenth day I deliver.
The captain is pleased with the quality.
'Wait' I tell him and hand him the hundred and first.
It leaps from the sheath. easy in his grip,
Well matched to his size, reach and strength.
I watch as he goes through his exercises.
He says it is the finest sword he has ever held.
'I can do better,' I tell him.

A year and a day pass as they do.
I go to visit the captain's camp.
He takes me to watch his company practice.
I smile and promise to return with the new moon
Then hand him another sword.
It is difficult to see where man ends and blade begins
They dance together like partners of centuries.
He tells me this is the finest sword ever made.
'I can do better,' I tell him.


365 Poems in 365 Days: Midwinter Blues

Number 355. The heart of winter often does this to me. See here and here for examples on this very blog.

Oh thank god, things are supposed to get better, brighter
All the days becoming longer and lighter
The ways that the darkness oppresses
Are innumerable around winter solstice
At last we have reached the date
Sun, show yourself. I cannot wait

365 Poems in 365 Days: Firework Party!

I wrote this, number 354, after a fireworks party in November, and never posted it. Until now.


"There may be no minimum safe distance,"
I say, quoting Avengers Assemble on firework's night.
In fact there is but they choose to ignore it.
I stand back and try to enjoy the sight.
The garden's really too small, but it's not my party
Risk versus unpleasantness, I'll always lose that fight

Thursday, December 19, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Oafish Behaviour

I am the clumsiest of oafs.
Where most put one foot wrong, I put both.
Warn me of a hazard and I will always slip
Then laugh it off saying "That was a good trip."

Number 353 is my cackhandedness.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Not A Happy Christmas

I haven't got you a Christmas gift
I apologise for my Christmas thrift
And if it happens you are miffed
I hope there won't be a Christmas rift.

Number 352 riffs off this song which is much funnier.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: That Time Of Year

Apples and Almonds, Sugar and Peel
Raisins and Currents and Suet too
Mixed Spice and Lemon and Dark Rum for real
I will make mincemeat out of you.

Number 351 is not the whole recipe.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Hat-astrophe

The best thing about Christmas
Is you get to wear funny hats
When I say this people stare
Am I the only one who thinks that?

Number 350 is about Christmas and hats. Hats, on this blog? Whatever next.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Fake Bacon

Not every food can be improved by bacon bits
But today I’m not going to waste the spit
To talk about things that don’t go with bacon
Even some vegetarians use substitute ‘fake-on’

Number 349 is about bacon.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Bad Places

I enjoy places that suck
Boring, stupid and wanting your money
They don't pretend to give a fuck
Afterwards I'm always telling that story


Number 348 is about tacky over-prices over-hyped tourist spots. They're great! Not while you're there, but afterwards. Because moaning and complaining are some of my favourite things!

Friday, December 13, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: North West Limericks

There was a young lady from Barrow-in-Furness
Who has got into a bit of a mess
She’s had a few drinks
Ended head first in a sink
And is asleep in your bed I confess

Number 347, and posted on day 347. Am I up to date? Why yes, yes I am.

Someone was saying that the trick with Limericks was to pick and easy place to rhyme in the first line, "not like Barrow-in-Furness". Obviously I scribbled out a version of this in the next five minutes.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Beer Ordering

Writing circle pub often has Gadd’s beers on pump
I like to order the She Sell Sea Shells (not just for a stunt)
No Gadd’s last night so I had Castle Rock’s Harvest Pale
But kept calling it Harvest Gold. Beer naming fail.

Number 346 is how last night went terribly, horribly wrong. "Did you mean the Harvest Pale?" How I shudder when I recall those words.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Obligatory Christmas Stuff

Number 345 was for last night's writer's circle, where the theme was Xmas. I was stuck, so wrote this! The title is not 100% accurate.

I Couldn’t Come Up With Anything Christmassy So I Wrote About Not Having Anything To Say About Christmas

I don’t have anything to say about
Christmas that a hundred thousand people
Haven’t already said sometime this week.
Many of them with better words than I
Would use. In all, perhaps I should just go
Right back to basics, try to find and seek
The true meaning. Christ’s birthday. Well not his
Actual birthday. A celebration of
Some possible messianic mystique.

Alright there’s more. The whole family get
Together. Sending cards, and the presents.
Good choice, bad choice. It’s a matter of luck.
There will be eating and drinking galore.
An enormous roast dinner (not turkey;
For reasons I won’t give we’re having duck).
At some point I’ll have drunk far too much booze,
But maybe this time I won’t regret it,
Stay unhungover, not run amuck.

December grows older and the nights draw
In. For once I seem to have the shopping
Pretty sorted and not left it too late.
Is it really two weeks to go? If I
Believed the adverts and the music I
Would think it was already at the date.
As I said I don’t really have much
To say about Christmas. Maybe I should
Just stay quiet wait for New Year’s clean slate.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Inconvenient

I have a secret somewhat regrettable
It may make your enjoyment of these impossible
More ideas appear on the toilet than is comfortable

Number 344 is just how it is.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Got Off Lightly

Fortunately we weren’t affected by the flood
Mostly channelled away by flood defence
The quay is a lake in a sea of mud
And the playground has lost it’s fence

Number 343 commemorates the tidal surge.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Hosting Parties

One hopes that people are at their ease
And the food and talk make them pleased
By the time we put away the cheese

Number 342 is my aim for dinner parties. What do you mean there was no cheese? Argh!

365 Poems in 365 Days: Emotional Shutdown

Tears the only answer
To facts we cannot escape
I will never be
The person who can relate

This out of context scrap has been brought out for number 341.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Food Miles

November’s not the best time for fresh ingredients
Even here in the garden of Kent
Who knows from where this food has been sent?

Number 340, food again! Ironically the apple and blackberry crumble I served at my recent dinner party came from my parents tree and bush, but had been frozen. I don't know how well that adds up; local but not fresh?

365 Poems in 365 Days: Winter Rules, Summer Drools

As brown replaces green
The dieback of the plants
This I have always seen
As a welcome development

Number 339 is a love letter to winter.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Second Rule of Dinner Parties

I’m cooking up some kind of stew
And with it noodles or baked potatoes will do
Should fill you up, stick to ribs like glue

Number 338 is a plan, I suppose.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Winter, Yay!

Winter’s sharp edge tries to intrude
But I am ready for the arrival of cold
Darkness, rain, freezing air match my mood
Season’s fingers don’t my icy heart hold





Number 337 is about how it's always good when the weather matches your mood!

365 Poems in 365 Days: Dinner Parties Are Rad!

Some use the opportunity to flirt
Others use the words to wound and hurt
At the end of the meal they’ll get their just desserts

Number 336. I had intended to write some amusing rhymes for a dinner party, but it turned dark almost immediately. More to come!

365 Poems in 365 Days: TV Superheroes

Who is this Barry Allen
On TV’s Arrow, making quite a dash;
Felicity seems to like him but
I think he’ll be gone in a flash

Some actual, real superpowers made their appearance on Arrow this week, not just crazy archery and ninja skills. Also Barry Allen, whoever he is, and these two things are definitely not related. If you don't do comic book in jokes, then ignore this, number 335.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Soup

Making soup that’s filling or cheap
Use old veg or new, any day of the week
Which makes me unhappy to serve to guests
No matter how good, doesn’t feel like the best

Number 334 is about soup.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Do Elves Love Trees Or Are They Just Good Friends?

I farm the trees of this forest
For my brothers and sisters
In this cold Northern clime
They grow so slowly
Not at all in the winter months
Quickly in the long summer days
The wood of the evergreens is prized
For their tools, furniture and carvings
Boats, ships and longhouses
And their bows and spearshafts

Should we strip the forest to save the world?
What good is the world without my trees?
Your lord is not my lord
Still less is he my king
And I would not fulfil this order if he is chosen
Tell him I will make the choice
Of how much I must sacrifice
To feed the needs of this war
And if the world burns for lack of timber
I take full responsibility
As I have always done
These many centuries for the woods

Number 333 is another Elf Poem. It picks up a stray line from the previous one, and runs with it. Want more elf poems? Then click here.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Birthday Gloves

I got some new gloves
Which I very much love
For my October birthday
I won’t put them away
Until spring comes to an end
(I’ll keep them to hand even then)

I don't have a lot to say for this, number 332.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Boxing (Not) Clever

What’s in the box
Is it a rock
Or socks
A pair of crocs
A set of blocks
Or something that mocks
What’s in the box?

Number 331 is about boxes. The tutor in our creative writing group brought in a wrapped box and we riffed off it in class, five minutes for each. Here are my two:

1.
The box will never be opened.

It was left by someone, at some point, during the disasterous New Year party. Who, John and Mary never saw. Was it a relative who wouldn't talk to them again? Or a friend too embarrassed to refer to the events.

It got cleared away into a bag with the Christmas decorations.

2.
I am silence and shadow and cannot be seen by mortal eyes. I am the secret darkness in your heart. Trapped in the box since the light of creation lit up the sky I have been kept from the world. Now, though, I have been given as time's most terrible gift. When you open it - and open it you will - it will seem as though the box is empty, but you will never forget it.

Number 2 riffs off some of my elf poems, and Pandora's box too. I'm not totally happy with that, but "time's most terrible gift" is a phrase that needs to be used again.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Watch Out!

My watch tells the time to the end of my watch
Does it tick slower if I watch or not?
I watch the watch until the watch ends its watch
There’s not much to watch so I watch it a lot

Number 330 is rather silly, and an introduction to this five minute task from my creative writing class.

I break watches. When I was growing up I never knew where the ends of my arms were. Even now I often get home to discover scrapes and bruises on my knuckles and no idea how they got there. Watches suffer worse.

When I left my job, my colleagues gave me a watch. It had a raised metal edge, so no matter how wildy I swung it, the glass face was protected. I wore it climbing rocks in Australia, crossing mountain passes in New Zealand and cycling across France, and there wasn't a scratch on it.

Four years after I was given it, the strap broke.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Quite a Pickle

They bite, they sting,
They make a great crunching
With sandwiches or meat
They are something of a treat
I may cry, just a little
As you give those onions a pickle

Number 329 is for the pickling process. Vinegar AND onions? Do they WANT me to cry?

Monday, December 09, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: I Know I Know You, But Who Are You?

Meeting people I haven’t seen for years
I know who they are, just can’t say the name
It all returns shortly after we part

I just go blank okay? Sorry about that. Number 328.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Earoplane

The Earoplane. Does it fly? Does it listen?
When the rain falls on it, does it glisten?
Is it simply a result of a silly mistyping?
Or part of a fleet of drones sent to intercept skypeing?
An airfoil shape studded with ears.
I happen to think this a brilliant idea.

Sad to say, the earoplane, subject of number 327, is just a typo.

365 Poems in 365 Years: Poetry Day!

Writing on games for national poetry day
So I suppose it’s words which we’re going to play
Hidden meanings and allusions in all that we say
Strangers, confused, look on in dismay
Will it make sense? I think that it may.

Wrote this for creative writing classwork. It's on games as that was the topic for national poetry day two years ago. I am well up to date, me.

I wrote a poem for the Poetry Society competition, actually on water, this years topic, but sadly it will be disqualified if I 'publish' it here before the announcement date (March sometime?) thereby forfeiting my entry fee. Which means I wrote a poem but can't put it up here and count it towards the 365. Great planning! It also makes this one number 326.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Pie Eyed

May I ply you with some pie?
Or pie you with some ply?
It this cooking or DIY
Or slapstick straight in the eye?

Number 325 is the kind of thing that happens when I make a pie.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Melancholy Non-Communication

I write my words to you on the wind
I kiss like I mean it when you’re not there
I say what I mean only never
You see I am foolish or clever
You go I know not where
Your feelings cannot be pinned

Number 324. I don't quite know where this came from. On an unrealted note, why is my personal life always such a mess?

Sunday, December 08, 2013

365 Poems in 365 Days: Winter Sun

The so meagre hours of winter daylight
And half the horizon burns my eyes so bright
The low sun almost makes me wish for night

The sun comes out, but at this time of year it is so low it shines straight in my eyes. Love you too winter! Number 323.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Beard Poetry

My beard has grown and is looking a bit wild
It might shock or scare a passing tiny child
I would like to give it a bit of a trim
But the scissors have vanished somewhere within

Number 322 is an exaggeration. I have never actually lost anything in my beard.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Holding Grudges

I said they have grudges to hold
But that statement is probably oversold
Fairer would be that they let
Themselves forgive better than forget

Does this speak for itself? I hope so. Number 321.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Poem About A Poem That I Am Not Posting Here For The Moment

I wrote a love poem or
Perhaps a goodbye that
Ended it all but before
I publish something intimate
I will allow quite some time
To pass and finally draw a line

I wrote an ode for creative writing that, for now at least, I'm not posting here. Instead here's a poem about that ode and why I'm not posting it. Number 320.

365 Poems in 365 Days: Uncomfortable Compliments

If I told you every time I thought that you were beautiful
I’m pretty sure that very soon one of us would be uncomfortable.
We have separate lives and you certainly don’t need my approval.
But I’ll say this once: You look good and happy. That’s reasonable.

Have I ever told you were beautiful and then it was awkward? Sorry about that. Number 319.

I had had a clever adventy plan, but instead decided to go all NaNoWriMo in November, finally typing out the end yesterday (Saturday 7 December). Time to catch up!