That thing

There is a pretty songbird,
living on our street.
He wakes up every morning
and says ‘Tweet, tweet!’.

I know some day he’ll fly away,
and I will feel so strange.
Then I’ll write a soulful poem
about that thing called change.


When psychologists meet

— Hey, Arnie! Good to see you! How are you today?

— Yo Dirk! I’m out-going, creative, and charismatic. You?

— Oh, you know me! Quiet and mystical, but a tireless idealist who tries to inspire others.

— And the kids?

— Doin’ just great! Marcia is a bold and innovative experimenter, and Josh is spontaneous, energetic, and altruistic. His reliability cannot be doubted.

— Aw, that’s just great. And how’s your wife? I haven’t seen her for a while — she ok?

— Well, she’s a strategic thinker, you know? Bold and imaginative, one of nature’s leaders. She left me for a thoughtful and charming artist.


After Out

The Gates of Hell have opened,
bloated bodies line the streets.
Satan’s dancing outside Tesco’s
— there’s a sale on winding sheets.

Oh, the bully beef is tainted,
there is poison in the tea,
the fish ‘n’ chips are mangy,
and the beer is oh f—k me!

Signs and wonders now appear
in every vale and cot:
In Grimsby there’s a goat that sings
‘The Land that Time Forgot’.


In Lancashire there did appear
a bottle of brown ale,
dressed up as Margaret Thatcher,
but wearing a veil.


Bring out your dead in wheelie bins,
the council will collect ‘em.
Then find a new Prime Minister
— but let the French elect him.

[Chorus] and fade.


Recommended reading

I’ve been reading A History of Varnish,
by an eminent varnition.
He tells the story going back
to the time of Domitian.

Every age is covered
— though he glosses over some —
and there’s some really handy hints
about the use of dragon gum.

One chapter is devoted
to the uses of shellac,
and there’s a very useful glossary,
at the back.

So get yourself a copy of
A History of Varnish.
It’s available in hardback
— guaranteed not to tarnish.


Writing lesson

“There’s a full moon in the sky tonight”
— Well, where else would it be?
Did you ever see a full moon
in a glass of lemon tea?

Did you ever see a full moon
playing ninepins in New York,
or catching silver salmon
in the sea off County Cork?

Did you ever see a full moon
dressed in something kinky,
selling tiny tubes of curious lube
in the backstreets of Helsinki?

No, I didn’t think you did,
my dear, poetic love.
And please don’t get me started
about “the moon above”.