Poetry, Uncategorized

Da-daa! Winner of the Bradshaw Books Christmas Poem Competition:


santa and the snowman

Beneath a haze of milky ways

And through the midnight blue,

Where solstice sunrise pewter rays

Pierce the wintry hue,


There stands a lonely figure white,

Tears run down his cheeks,

Trying hard, with all his might,

To stop defrosting leaks.


Christmas over and mercury rising,

As drops drip-drop to the floor.

Forgotten and slushy, it’s hardly surprising,

At sunset he’ll be no more.


Giggling girls and boisterous boys,

Happy hands that built him,

Now occupied with brand new toys

As twilight skies grow dim.


On a frosty breeze the sound of bells!

A golden sleighing sound

Of muffled hooves and Christmas spells

That light the snowy ground.


Here comes the Real Santa Claus

To rescue melting man –

And take him North before he thaws,

In his reindeer caravan.


With mirrored puddles all around,

As gently as he can,

He lifts the weeping snowman

Off the soggy ground


And tucks him safe inside the sleigh.

And then our cheery hero

Bellows, ‘Ho! Ho! Up, up and away!

To the land where it’s far below zero’.


Reindeer flight in the fading light

On the soaring, starry sleigh,

Towards an inky North Pole night,

Beneath the Milky Way.



Poetry, Uncategorized




I’ve got my crumble baking loot:

Purple, ripe and juicy fruit.


Apples blown down from the tree:

A yummy steaming pud for tea!


Make the most of autumn fare –

Soon the hedgerows will be bare.


For these chutney baking days,

We give thanks for summer days.


Sloe gin, jams and plummy pies

Our tummies bigger than our eyes!


As swirling mists are blown by strong

And squally, rolling ocean storms


Earth’s kind harvest warms us up,

Soothes our souls and fills our cup.



Poetry, Uncategorized


(With a little inspiration from Elizabeth Barrett Browning 1806 – 1861)

How do i love thee? Let me count the ways:
Silver, shimmering seaside days.
Summer sunshine happiness
In a floaty, cotton dress –
Lying on a beach in a state of near undress –
Feeling sun-bathed pebbles press against my chest,
Plunging into sparkling sea
Cool and deep and blue and free.
Greasy, garlic, blushing shrimps
Licked off sandy fingertips,
Toasting golden ends of day
With a dripping glass of Chardonnay.
Oh, let me count the ways
I’m happy on these sunny days.

Poetry, Uncategorized



Our dearest, darling Emmsy-tot

Who was that silly clumsy clot

Who spilled the scalding supper pot?

Your limbs were burned and got too hot

As beastly flames they upped and hopped

Upon your lovely legs and bot,

Over arms and toes they got,

It must have really hurt a lot!

Sat upon your Gertrude’s cot,

All bare-naked, ‘sans coulottes’

And slowly getting bottom-rot.

Through smeary tears and dripping snot,

Theatre, dressings, ouchy what-not,

You’ll feel it’s all a heap of rot,

But in time the pain will be forgot –

We’re awed at all the strength you’ve got.

For you we’ve got a real soft-spot

And think of you a mighty lot.

Despite the current grizzly-grot

You burns will matter not a jot

When you’re the brand-new Queen of Swat,

A cute & cured Nairobi sex-pot,

Cruising in a swanky soft-top,

Or lounging on a rich man’s yacht

Having won the Sweepstake Jackpot

And grooving to a funky-foxtrot.

I would send blooms and wine, the lot

A choccie cake and tea in a pot,

But dipsy ditties are all I’ve got –

So I’m sending you ALL the love we’ve got,

Knowing you’ll soon come out TOP!

Poetry, Uncategorized

In reply to Spike Milligan’s ‘Granny’


After that wild and windy day,

Just as Spike predicted,

Gran had been blown clean away,

And the parson’s rightly livid.


The cussing vicar’s near to tears

As the old dear rattles past:

Her petticoat around her ears –

His congregation aghast.


The spire had toppled off the roof

And Fanny’s wig was gone.

As if he needed final proof

Of weather going wrong!


And here’s the original, one of my all time faves:


by Spike Milligan

Through every nook and every cranny
The wind blew in on poor old Granny
Around her knees, into each ear
(And up nose as well, I fear)

All through the night the wind grew worse
It nearly made the vicar curse
The top had fallen off the steeple
Just missing him (and other people)

It blew on man, it blew on beast
It blew on nun, it blew on priest
It blew the wig off Auntie Fanny-
But most of all, it blew on Granny!


Poetry, Uncategorized


my friday night


Although I look old and past it, right,

I still look forward to Friday night,

and trying to recreate the magic

(at my age, some would say it’s tragic)

of when a boy would try to kiss me,

left me feeling like a princess, see?


In my time I been called a slag,

my skirts are short, I dance round my bag,

inside there’s a couple of Durex Play

(best be prepared, if I get my way!),

my purse with this week’s benefit,

a Smirnoff mini, just for the hellavit,


and half a pack of Marlboro lights.

My legs are bare, I don’t need tights,

dimpled thighs will look OK

under a layer of San-Tro-Pay.

Badly bleached and sort-of grey

Hair held firm with cans of spray.


To my Nan I made an oath,

to show some leg or tit, not both,

Nor to date with more than one gusset,

remember my brains are my finest asset,

and classy girls, not too chav,

always ask for French Cab Sav.


Brains are good, but I’m afraid,

they don’t help you to get laid.

Made-up to trade-up –

Chucked-up then fucked-up –

this attention-seeking whore

will strut her stuff about the floor



Off comes the nylon lon-jer-ray,

discarded, ripped, it’s had its day –

legs akimbo, what a sight,

the sickly orange urban light

makes her thinning hair seem blonder.

On the back seat of his Honda


the grunting of the spotty lad

makes her feel a little sad.

Granny wouldn’t like her style –

to be wanted for a while –

it’s not like asking for a lot –

anyway, it’s all I’ve got.


Later on, I’ll feel alright.

My boozy, floozy Friday night.

Poetry, Uncategorized



She loves those hills of rolling green,

And the barren parched-grey scrub:

That rust-red earth makes her dream,

Along a simple clichéd theme,

Of people dancing hand in hand

Across her ancient, sun-drenched land.

The golden beaches fringed with palms

Where people sway with open arms

To the rhythm of the sea

From today until eternity.

Her snowy peaks in cobalt skies

Will echo sounds of happy cries,

Of children dancing, always free,

Free from tribal tyranny.

Whirling, twirling, love as one,

Smiles beneath the yellow sun,

Or laughing in the rain,

And setting free the pain.

Poetry, Uncategorized


spring equinox


For a breath in celestial time

There’s perfection in Earth’s symmetry:

Harmonious in her parity,

Poised in obliquity,

Rotating on an even keel

And balanced on the level.


In the solar system’s mystic reel

She spins with solid certainty:

No degree of axial tilt,

Spherical stability,

Along ecliptic planes

And perpendicular poles.


At our doors the springtime knocks

We welcome light and buds and flocks.

Yin and yang, ebb and flow

Give and take, die and grow.


While in another hemisphere

Many thousand miles from here,

A reverse autumnal equinox

Affirms this biannual paradox.

Poetry, Uncategorized


Verse-tly I must apologise

For the lack of rhyme & balladry.

My mind has been prosaically blank

So I haven’t written lately.

There’s a couplet of reasons

Why I lost my quatrain of thought,

That creative efforts came to naught,

But they don’t matter, septet

To say I’m back in stanza-land.

And what really meters now

Is to wish you a lyrical day:

Happy World Poetry Day!

Happy World Poetry Day

Poetry, Uncategorized


moving house


IF I were a snail

I’d pack my shell

With clothes and books

And toys as well.


IF I were an elephant

I’d pack my trunk

With utensils and crockery

And wine un-drunk.


IF I were a pelican

I’d pack my beak

With lamps and candles

And old antiques.


IF I were a koala

I’d pack my pouch

With carpets and paintings

And my nice red couch.


BUT humans aren’t adapted well

So I have a cunning plan:

I’ll use my brain, not trunk or shell,

And hire a Transit Van.



p.s. I’ve been gripped by a serious case of procrastination: writing poetry when I should be packing boxes 😉


Poetry, Uncategorized


pussy riot

Dancing girls up rise & shock

Chanting anarchistic rock.

Miniskirts and balaclava,

Anti-government palaver.

Why did Putin put the boot in?

We thought he was the dancing sort.

Pussy Protest came to nought:

Prezidentsky Spoil Sport.

Protest ‘n’ sing is not his thing,

Freedom of speech, is out of reach

For the girls who strut their stuff

Upon the altar, it’s enough

To make the Kremlin’s boss see red,

He’d rather hear Tchaikovsky instead;

“The light-of-lime is all mine,

Sorry girls, you’ll do your time.

This carry-on’s beyond the pale –

You’ll rot away in Moscow’s jail.”

Poetry, Uncategorized


Old Habits Die Hard


That Celtic Tiger you thought was dead,

Replaced by the Rat of Recession instead,

Still echoes in the repossessed pads of the glitterati

Who’ve tightened their belts, but do SO miss the party.


Judged by mini-breaks and brand new cars,

They compare their lives to movie stars.

Competitive consumerism is alive and well:

In the Ladies room of a well-known hotel


Friends compete and, oops, drop names

From underneath their blow-dried manes,

“Santa’s bringing an iPhone 5

To dear little Cosmo, he’s only five!”


Wholeheartedly agreeing that aging sucks,

Admiring Botox and tummy tucks,

The horror of having a wrinkled face,

Un-plumped bits or hair out of place.


The pressure to stay looking twenty-three

For at least the next half century,

Plastic surgery’s on the rise

No-one’s beautiful in her own eyes.


Can’t afford to buy food for the larder,

But she’ll still buy the bag ‘n’ shades from Prada,

Homemade facials & DIY blow-dry,

Designer ‘vintage’ from the bring-and-buy.


Moet’s made way for Prosecco,

Lidl and Primark now the way to go,

Not a whiff of Versace anywhere,

Still wearing her Laboutins from last year.


The Bank is spoiling all her fun

By cancelling her cards one by one,

And negative equity in varying themes

Haunts her sober, daytime dreams.


She’s eighteen months been out of work

But loathe to sell her sporty Merc.

Luxurious habits are hard to kill,

But don’t underestimate her will,


In her smooth and hairless guise,

To face Generation Spend’s demise,

And confront her braying creditors’ chorus,

Looking skinny, tanned and gorgeous.


© Alex Barton 2013

Poetry, Uncategorized


kate and wills dolls

People love to take the mickey

Of those with privilege and money,

But silly pranks turn tricky

And then it’s no longer funny.

Caught in the midst of a tasteless joke,

Piss-taking tragedy of late

Means that I’ll no longer poke

Fun with poems at Wills & Kate.



by Alex Barton Sept ’12

Deep in remotest South of France

Kate thought she’d like to take the chance

To lie by the pool under Provençal soleil

Sipping a fruity Beaujolais.

Apparently she lit a Marlboro Light too,

But this is conjecture and probably not true.

Pleasantly warmed by late summer sun

She noticed her bikini top come undone.

An all over tan seems like a good idea

‘I’m sure no one can see me from over here’.

Unbeknownst to the innocent young thing

A paparazzo’s lens was zooming in.

‘Sacré bleu’ and ‘Oh là là’,

The Duchess of Cambridge without a bra!

The Duke of Cambs said ‘We’re not amused

That our right to solitude has been abused.

Kate has been snapped without her top

Intrusion like this has got to stop!’.

Invasion of privacy: quelle horreur;

They’re out to get that editeur.

Photos that caused shock-waves and ripples

At the unusual sight of royal nipples.

The French think they need to keep it real

Bare boobs in France are no big deal;

Typically British to be such a prude

We do it all the time: there’s nothing rude.

The Palace feel this carry-on is lewd

And will make certain that the culprits are sued.

The lawyers accepted the case in a flash:

A job like this will make tons of cash

Most people don’t care: they’re only tits,

We’re all of us human and got the same bits.

Never mind Kate, your dignity’s intact.

It could have been much worse, in fact.

Remember Fergie all those years ago

Caught sucking that balding Texan’s toe?

Now that the unwelcome peeping’s been curbed

You can enjoy your tanning undisturbed.



Poetry, Uncategorized


sports personality

It could be Brad, how bad,

Maybe Jess, anyone’s guess.


Or Mo, who’s to know?

Chris Hoy, will he be the Boy?


They’d love it to be Andy,

Or Boatman Ben –

Victory their modus operandi.


The Rise of Rory is a sporting story,

Or will Ellie win the award from the telly?


Success is no stranger

To Nicola Adams or Katherine Grainger.


Can David Weir get near?

Sarah Storey may find glory.


Gary, Clare and Sue are here,

Goodness gracious: WHAT A YEAR!

Poetry, Uncategorized




The fir-tree gleams with coloured lights

Putting on its Christmas show,

Sparkling eyes on snowy nights

Underneath the mistletoe.


The fire’s dancing in the grate

And we can too, just make it slow,

Will you be my Advent date

Underneath the mistletoe?


It may be chilly, I don’t mind,

When we run through fields of snow,

Coz later we’ll be intertwined

Underneath the mistletoe.


While the world is celebrating

We’ll be kissing, hearts-a-glow,

To the music, hips gyrating

Underneath the mistletoe


Snuggled here when midnight chimes,

We’ll sway in gentle concerto,

Grinning at the happy times

Underneath the mistletoe.


o-er, hang on a minute . . .

All that wine and Christmas drink

Has left me feeling faint and so

Into your arms I’ll gently sink

Underneath the mistletoe.


I feel myself begin to sway

Clasp me tight & hold me . . . whoa,

I think my legs will soon give way

Underneath the mistletoe.


Christmas time is such a laugh

But my head is reeling to and fro

And, oh my God, I’m going to barf

Underneath the mistletoe!

merry christmas

© Alex Barton 2012

Poetry, Uncategorized


books 2

(to be read in a library whisper)


Through the library he quietly crept,

Stealthily past librarians’ looks,

Toward the aisles he gingerly stepped,

Plunged into rows of regiment books.


Bathed in anxious anticipation,

Through the library he quietly crept,

Putting on gloves in preparation,

Sweating palms, his pulse-rate leapt.


Down the spines his fervent gaze swept,

Eagerly searching ‘fiction’ for ‘D’.

Through the library he quietly crept,

Knowing exactly where it should be.


Deftly hidden in folds of his cloak,

Surely no ordinary biblioklept –

Stolen to order: his thievery bespoke,

And out of the library he quietly crept


Thanks to a prompt from dVerse Poets Pub this is my attempt at a Quatern.

What’s that? A sixteen line French form composed of four quatrains.  It has a refrain that is in a different place in each quatrain. The first line of stanza one is the second line of stanza two, third line of stanza three, and fourth line of stanza four.  Each line should be 8 syllables, which I haven’t stuck to . . . but I have tried to make each line 4 metric feet.


Poetry, Uncategorized


Does one say scone,

To rhyme with swan?

Or scone,

To rhyme with bone?


Eaten for breakfast with eggs and ham?

Or afternoon tea with butter and jam?

With bergamot-y Earl of Grey

Or milky Builders’ Tay?


Accentual tautology

Results in classist proclivity,

And on condimental predilection

Rests prejudiced preconception,


Pass judgement if you must:

Lower class or upper crust?

People are quick to opinionate

When it comes to the way we enunciate.


© Alex Barton 2012

Poetry, Uncategorized


If you knew the story, you wouldn’t laugh,

Of poor old Nooks who fell in the bath.

Looking forward to a relaxing soak

She slipped and, ‘crack’, her knee was broke.


Everyone panicked and called the medics

Who rushed her off to orthopaedics.

There followed days in hospital

To recover from the wretched fall.


Dozens of doctors prodded and poked

‘We might have to amputate’, they heartily joked.

But did she complain? Did she hell!

Always cheerful, and smiling as well.


Now many months later, she still can’t walk,

While specialists continue to ponder and talk.

She’s bored of being pushed around in a chair,

And taking the lift instead the stair.


Now, I think I have a cunning plan

Requiring neither x-ray nor scan.

Go to the garden shed, and there-in,

There’s WD-40 in a blue-yellow tin.


A daily squirt of this oily potion

The offending knee will resume full motion.

Lubricating all swelling and pain,

And promptly Nooks’ll be right as rain!


© Alex Barton

Poetry, Uncategorized


Granny Sarah is full of delight,

Her village is going to party tonight,

They’re celebrating victory,

A jiwe-ya-maili  in history.

Jambo sana!

Barack Obama.”


Sipping several Tusker beers,

Whooping, shouting rowdy cheers,

Eating nyama choma,

And dancing to lingala.

Mazuri sana!’,

Barack Obama.”


The men will sit and kuvuta a puff,

While ladies imba and wiggle their stuff,

All the children cheka with glee

This’ll go chini in history!

 “Hakuna matata!

Barack Obama.”


* * *


Here are some Kiswahili translations that might help:


jiwe ya maili (self-invented expression!) Jiwe – stone, maili – mile, hence: milestone

jambo sana – A big hello

Tusker – popular brand of Kenyan beer

nyama choma – barbecue

lingala – popular Congolese music

mazuri sana – very good

kuvuta – to smoke

imba – to dance

cheka – to laugh

chini – down

hakuna matata – no problem


Poetry, Uncategorized


Savings all gone down the drain

Credit card refused again

Bailiffs knocking at the door

Demand my home and then some more

Pension stolen by the bankers

Theiving, grabbing lot of wankers.


No money, house or job: no life

The neighbour’s messing with my wife

A nicer bloke than him by far

But he drives better car

A twenty-twelve four-by-four

Mine’s a hatch-back with two doors.


Leave her, divorce her, that’s what I ought’er

But I’m scared she’ll take our daughter.

Since I’ve left the gravy train

Life will never be the same

Our good Lord, He takes the piss

There must be more to life than this?

Poetry, Uncategorized



Morning lids flutter

Sensing empty space

Abandoned by you

 * * *



Dulls pain but not sensation

Frozen, but conscious

 * * *

Being a fresher to the blogosphere, this is my first attempt at taking part in a poetic ‘prompt’.  The prompt comes from Haiku Heights and the theme was ‘conscious’.  Actually, it’s strangely addictive writing haiku and far from being a challenge, I find the strict syllabic rules oddly helpful.  The haiku I’ve posted are my two favourite that I came up with today – I couldn’t decide which one I preferred as they are completely different!  I’ve really enjoyed reading the other submissions and the diversity of thought prompted by a single idea . . .


Poetry, Uncategorized


Us fighting men have had enough

Of patrol and combat in the buff.

Making us go nude en masse

Just to save Prince’s Hairy, sorry, Prince Harry’s ass.

Facing the Taliban au naturel

Didn’t serve us very well;

The local folk are not impressed

We think it’s time we all got dressed.

Sand in every nook and crack

We really need our civvies back!

Tally-Ho! We’ve been courageous,

Please, no more parties in Las Vegas.



(if this doesn’t make sense please refer to my poem ‘Tally Ho‘!)