As it’s ME Awareness Week…

It’s a living hell

I’m lazy they say
It’s all in the mind
It’s just that I’m not really trying
I’d like to get up
I’d like to go out
I’m too tired to even be crying

It takes all my strength
To get to the loo
Although they think I should be at school
To get some fresh air
To still have a friend
Wouldn’t that make my life just so cool

If I go downstairs
Or even get washed
These are times when I’ve really done well
I pay for it though
The following day
When my muscles and bones ache like hell

Yes I look ok
I talk, even laugh
But with this illness, symptoms aren’t seen
My mind is just mush
Words come out all wrong
I’m nothing. Just a broken machine

It’s been four years now
I’m sixteen you know
All you go through in that time has gone
The doctor told me
There’s no cure for this
There’s a chance it’ll go on and on…

If you have ME
Then your suffering
Is the same size as dying of AIDS
Except that for me
It won’t end in death
I could feel just as bad for decades


Thank you Mr Osborne

It’s alright for the privileged few…


I’m alright Jack. It’s all about me
Out of work? Lazy! Don’t you agree?

Benefit sanctions are working well
So a few kill themselves. What the hell.

Less pressure then on the NHS
Costs down and targets met, that’s success

Found dead. Ex-squaddie. Diabetic.
No food to eat and no electrics

Couldn’t store insulin in the fridge
We didn’t study that at Oxbridge

To be disabled – what does it mean?
Only no arms nor legs to be seen

Everyone else is trying it on
Test them with PIPS and you’ll see they’re cons

We shouldn’t pay tax to help such scum
We must stay rich, keep all our income

No, I’ve never been down on my luck
In any case, I don’t give a fuck

Be prepared

For anything

You never know what’s round the corner
You could be a winner; you might be a mourner

Just when life couldn’t be much better
Well that’s when you get a redundancy letter

You think you’ll always be on your own
Then love suddenly blossoms with someone you’ve known

Don’t believe me? I can’t say I care
As I know that change can come out of nowhere

I once was a healthy, working mum
Then like a house with subsidence my spine turned to crumbs

What’s certain in life isn’t that strange
We’re born and we die, and in the meantime there’s change

It’s time to say ‘President Trump’

Oh what have you done?


Who would have thought we’d see this day
When the new President of the USA
Is mostly famed for his toupee

He’s known for other things of course
Vile racism with no remorse
And spouting nonsense til he’s hoarse

He has to send thousands of tweets
Is off the scale with his conceit
Denies all tax and vote deceit

Talking of women he’s so crude
To many he’s been really rude
His take on life totally skewed

Good luck to you all in the States
But if you want to emigrate
The UK’s not much better, mate

It’s Christmas!

Yes, it’s that time of year again


What if there were no Christmas
Except in the Christian sense
A service in church that’s all
The changes would be immense

How much money would you save
And think of the time spent too
Buying all those cards and gifts
Just before the sales are due

And what about the worry
Will everyone have good fun
Will Uncle Frank be too pissed
Or the turkey overdone

All those with other beliefs
And those who are on their own
Wouldn’t feel quite so left out
That they are just home alone

No trees in lots of windows
No tinsel or twinkly lights
No tacky signs and snowmen
Just normal, everyday sights

No over-excited kids
Ripping wrapping paper off
Disappointed with their gifts
Then the family fights kick off

Instead it would be peaceful
You could watch a DVD
Don’t wait for that speech at three
Or the usual crap TV

No New Year greeting of debt
No extra pounds you must lose
No broken toys discarded
Nothing but the winter blues

Grammar Police

Be careful…

I belong to the grammar police
It has a spelling department too
Every time that I see a mistake
My verbal handcuffs could be on you

I’ll give you a little example
When someone says they have a sole mate
Do they refer to a friendly shoe
Or soul as in their spiritual state?

Then there’s there and their and also they’re
And write and rite and even what’s right
I’ve seen it wrong on formal letters
Despite the might of spellcheck’s insight

I’m also talking punctuation
As in it’s and its and you’re and your
Apostrophes for simple plurals
Like ‘photo’s, just use the ’s’, not more

All language is now in my remit
So don’t let me start on cliches please
They are among the worst offenders
I’d put handcuffs on and lose the keys

Do ya think I’m sexy?

Teenage girls have always been concerned about their looks but their bodies have never been plastered over social media before…


This is a poem addressed to parents
About your daughters’ suggestive selfies
Surely you’ve seen what they post on the net
In so many ways it is unhealthy

Boobs pushed up and out and proudly on show
Provocative poses and ‘sexy’ pouts
Two girls are hugging and some even kiss
It’s their bodies not their brains that they flout

That’s the message they’re giving to guys
Women? What are we, just tits and ass
Don’t be surprised if that’s how men treat you
You’ve pushed feminism back in the past

And there are the pathetic platitudes
‘Omg’ ‘you look sooo amaazing’
‘Stunning’ ‘Beautiful’ ‘That’s such a good look’
It’s such empty, over the top praising

So you think it’s ok, do you parents?
That men are lusting after your daughters
Thick with make-up they could pass as thirty
While inside they’re lambs ready for slaughter


After what happened at Nice on Bastille Day….


Pourquoi vous etes remplis d’haine
Pour faire une chose inhumaine

Vous avez telle férocité
Pour faire cette atrocite

Votre acte terrible et noir
donnera tant de cauchemars

Des milles de coeurs sont detruits
Mais ce qui dure c’est l’esprit


After news of another abuser


What gave you the right to think my body yours
Take what you wanted and make me feel I’m flawed

Did you even care that I was just a child
Did you do the deed and go home with a smile

Why did you come back and fill my heart with dread
I suppose you knew that nothing would be said

You were free to go and get on with your life
Pretend to the world and parade with your wife

Yes I blamed myself though I know better now
You are a devil who lives with it somehow

But you ruined me and broke my soul apart
I’m still sick inside and I bleed in my heart

You still have power though you should be in chains
I’ll never forget. You put tears in my veins

My job (part one)

I was a feature writer for magazines. I couldn’t believe I was paid to travel and meet so many amazing people.

I used to be a journalist
For years I met all kinds of folk
Prime Ministers in Downing Street
And one MP who told me jokes

I looked round Julio’s bedroom
Of course this was before he wed
And met a couple of Royals
‘Oh hailowe thair!’ is what they said

Spent a day with Leonard Cohen
That man has a deep, sexy voice
Shame that he had to go back home
To go with would have been my choice

I went inside a killer’s cell
He had rows of knives and wood blocks
He was a model prisoner
Even made me a jewellery box

I spent one cold night living rough
Listening to some terrible tales
Kids who were forced to leave their homes
And lives that had gone off the rails

Who was your all time favourite
So many people want to know
They expect some celebrity
It was those who showed strength through woe

Valentine’s poem

Ordered to go on a card


It’s hard to be bold when I don’t know
if you feel the same way about me

It’s easier to swear that I don’t care
I’ll just leave it to destiny

If I’m not brave, I can always say
Well Fate’s not on my side

But if I let go of this girl I know
I’ll always be dissatisfied.

I’ve got nothing to lose except an emotional bruise
If you don’t like me too

So I’m telling you here, my heart full of fear,
NAME, I’m mad about you.

I miss you

This is part of a poem written for a man whose much-loved dog had died.

You were my best friend for a very long time
In your own special way
Even when you were no longer in your prime
You always made my day

You were so happy every time I came back
Even if I wasn’t long
Wagging your tail, barking like a maniac
Your love for me was so strong.

You saw everything that happened in my life
And stayed there by my side
Then that awful time that I had with my wife
You licked me as I cried

You enjoyed all the walks we had every day
Everyone was your friend
Running and jumping, non-stop chasing and play
You didn’t want it to end

You always came back to me though when I called
And still you wagged your tail
It was a shock the day I said ‘walk’ and you stalled
I knew then you were frail

You looked in my eyes as the end slowly came
I stroked your soft brown fur
Your tail kind of shook as I whispered your name
Tears made my eyes a blur.

At the end of the garden I buried you
Where you would sniff and dig
My feelings for you, boy, still make me blue
The hole you left too big.

Congratulations – you passed!

For a mother who wanted to surprise her daughter…

I felt for your instructor
And hoped he had nerves of steel
It seemed no time since you were starting to walk
That you were learning to drive was unreal

You drove off and up the road
Jerking and rev ving loudly
I put my head in my hands
Not a mum watching her daughter proudly

You came back an hour later
The instructor shaken and white
‘I think it might really help
if she knew her left from her right.’

Maybe he was short of business
But he came back every week
‘Now we just need to practise
what’s called the turning technique’

I think he meant the wheel
You weren’t ready for a three point turn
Apparently you still had
‘Rather a lot to learn’

To give you some more practice
Dad said he’d take you out
He joked it was like the dodgems
And earned himself a clout

You proved you could do an emergency stop
When you had that ‘concentration lapse’
The pedestrian was fine, thank goodness
But the wall all but collapsed

You passed the written test
As you knew the manual by heart
But then came the actual driving
That was the difficult part

Now I am a proud mum
Of course you passed first go
But please don’t ask to borrow my car
The answer will be no.

You worked and saved so hard
But could only afford anti freeze
So we’ve got you an old run around
Here, darling, a set of keys.


A recent family bereavement made me think about the loss of a loved one.


So sorry for your loss, they murmur
If there’s anything I can do…
I nod and shake their hands
And robot like, repeat thank you.

What else can they say?
It’s awkward to be near grief
Especially so raw
Time’s a terrible thief

I feel like I’m gliding
It all seems so surreal
Like this isn’t my life
Like I don’t know how I feel

Soon though I’ll be angry
That he left me on my own
That I didn’t go first
Into the unknown

Then I’ll sink into gloom
Though my tears won’t bring him back
I’ll want life as it was
Before it all went black.

It’s a lie, what they say
Time. It doesn’t heal
You just have to cope
With life’s crappy deal.