Saturday, 1 June 2019

Ships and things

Not much posting on here just now. Not much writing in general, truth be told. But that's OK. Lots of other people are writing fairly regularly so writing doesn't need to feel neglected or anything. I have been working (not writing-related), going out and about, trying to be more alive and less afraid (sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't...).

Still, some of my poems live on apparently (in my own mind, in the minds of others). Yesterday somebody quoted a bit of this old thing back to me so I thought maybe it could take another look out at the world. It's not in either of my books or online anywhere that I know of (though I think it was once on MySpace...). It is number 5 in my list of poems (I like a list) and the total to date is 519 so I must have written it a good while ago (maybe 1998?). Those years were a bit blurry though so I can't be sure. It is from my 'no punctuation at all in poems' period too. I miss those days

The Ship

More than a TV show
People have very different interpretations of this word

To me 'we're friends' means
I value you as a person
I see you as an equal
I am not better or worse than you
You have qualities I admire
That draw me to you rather than to others
I want to do things for you
And relax knowing that we will help each other
I trust you
Because you are my friend specifically
Not an unknown quantity
Or a floating voter
But a supporter
Supporting me whilst I'm supporting you
We're a feat of physics
A natural phenomenon
Proof that people help each other
For reasons other than finances and self-interest

I believe all this
Sometimes it seems stupidly
This word friends
Maybe I read too much into it

RF, way back when.

Tuesday, 12 March 2019

From the highest hills...

First post

Snowdrops and crocuses
keep their heads low,
but first among daffs,
how you rise up and shine.

Keen to see light
and feel the slow sun,
are you brave, or foolish,
or… don’t be stupid…

They’re flowers, aren’t they?
So who is the fool?
This is nonsense verse,
I ask you, but still.

Look at you there,
on the hill, in the park,
your window is open,
you’re blaring a glare.

Though it is early doors
and you do all this
only to be trumped
by mad March gales,

pissed on by labradoodles,
or plucked from the ground
by hungry humans,
desperate for pretty.

Will you learn from this,
go slower next year?
Or will you play even louder
till the sound gets through?

RF 2019

Just when you tell yourself you'll never write another poem ever (and feel relieved), out pops a new one just to prove you wrong. It's a vicious circle (or cycle) but there are far worse crosses. No one has to read it (though if you have, I thank you).

I popped over to Scotland's premier poetry festival (StAnza) this weekend so maybe that's to blame. I only went to one event (Tolu Agbelusi) but she was very good (go and hear this one if you don't believe me). I used to go to StAnza for days, enter things, throw myself in, but times change, habits change, and to be honest I have rarely felt anything like at home there (though I have some great memories - meeting Adrian Mitchell, for one).

And in the meantime, Spring (it's less depressing than Brexit negotiations).

Tuesday, 5 February 2019

A cup or five


Years ago, if I saw the word ‘coffee’ in a poem
I would groan and shift in my seat
At the tired cliché of a weary writer
Reflecting over a hot beverage, possibly abroad.

But now I, too, am tired like words, lost like sense,
And coffee calls from every side.
From choppy chains to specialist brews,
I buy it, drink it, know it’s too late.

RF 2019

Not many poems of late but here is a little one. And I NEVER post photos of food so here is a part of a recent birthday lunch. It was a bit frozen in the middle but that is January birthdays for you (and the company was good).

(Added later) And I forgot to say that this one makes me laugh (if no-one else) because there used to be a running joke with a Leeds friend about a 'latte' coffee being pronounced 'late' (early days of Starbucks in the city I think...).