ABOUT POETRY ITSELF
FEAR OF WHOSE WORLD IT IS
Daddy says this is a man’s world.
I am supreme being in charge.
I do what I want to do
According to my ideas and skills.
Mummy says this is a woman’s world.
I let him think he is all in charge.
I invite him to do what I want,
So he thinks it was his idea.
Daddy says this is a woman’s world.
She thinks she can control it all.
She manipulates what she wants,
Which is usually what should be done.
Mummy says this is a man’s world.
He thinks he is supreme but
He only has his physical strength
To enforce what he wants his way,
And mostly he does it well - ish.
August 2012 November 2019
The School Concert
Back after school closed.
The dust that was cleaned
Still hanging in the air.
The hall chairs backed up the ramp
As if washed up there by a wave,
That left the hall floor slightly damp.
The last rehearsal in a small cupboard for cleaning,
Nervous of having the right clothes and what’s to come.
Teachers fussing and gibbering and herding
Up onto the gym stage, the choir is called,
Through the chairs now arranged into wonky rows,
Moved by the parents to get a better view.
There's my girl – Proud.
JACB Aug & Nov 2019 & Jan 2021
FAME GETS TO YOU
I am not famous in my own home
Even though I have written a tomb.
I am not famous in my own street
Even though I have done a rude Tweet.
I am not famous in my own town
Even though I have written it down.
I am not famous in my county
And the press has not come to see me.
I have posted a piece of what I write
And have been published on their website.
But that’s it.
Why am I desperate to be famous?
Why am I so keen to be known?
I don’t like comedians and actors
With egos overblown.
They seem so desperately driven,
Frightened of public failure
Of disappearing from the limelight.
They live the centre of attention,
To be a national household name.
Giving up would seem a defeat,
They are not deterred at all by age.
They are still famous for being famous.
But is it good?
Unwanted fame can easily destroy.
Noticed by the papers for their own ends.
Twisting the truth to support their story.
Forcing self-doubt about reality
Being made to live as an imposter;
Do I know my stuff or am I passing it off?
Why do I feel the need to feel special?
The pressures it brings are very real.
Is it a weakness, or a human need?
Should I be above it or ignore it?
Is my poet’s talent up to the game?
How do I do it, this public madness,
To put my head over the parapet?
Do I pay to have my ‘blog’ designed?
Is poetry enough or should I add
A play, a book, or a talk for the day?
It is vast out there, full of the famous
Amazingly brilliant people
Who are not household names.
I only want fame in my area,
The nation is too big.
Just my own exhibition and print.
And I promise not to frown
If I am treated like a pig.
The sudden end is the way out for some
Farewell at the top of your game.
Or should it be the care home for the famous
Where there is an abundance of plays
And acting and reading for each other
To enormously generous self-gratifying praise.
Jacb Oct 2020
As I walk through the village
I am moved by the sight of tall
Pink Hydrangeas in the garden
Behind the low front brick wall.
Its full balls of white and pink bloom
Invites you, yet hides the front room.
Greenness speaks of hugging welcome.
Of fullness and furnished garden.
Its voluptuousness is full and rich,
Inviting. It speaks of an openness.
Uptight roses, cut borders and mown lawns
Look good but aren’t really so important.
Hydrangeas are open arms to life.
Of rooms full of scent and fresh flowers,
Of food cooked gladly to perfection,
And a long cold drink to satisfy.
jacb 22nd Aug 2020
THE SOUND OF RAIN
Silently, oh so silently,
The tiny drizzle droplets fall.
‘Cos it hasn’t rained for ages
They darken the bricks of the wall.
Pitter, patter, pitter, patter
falls rain on the roof’s clear plastic.
The drumming on the extension
Makes reading an act heroic.
Then splosh and splash and splish and splosh,
The noisy rain you cannot miss.
So much rain hits the wet pavement,
The beat becomes a sharp-edged hiss.
Jacb Oct 2020
WHO IS RESPONSIBLE
Who sounded the gong; Who made a bad pong
And who did not do what they should have done?
Who carried on; Who put more in their wallet,
Who worried about now and how they felt?
Is there a way off of this slippery slope
Or are there too many of us to agree?
Could we all work to give us hope
And can we leave our kids worry free?
jacb Jan 2020
The poem Norway is about one of the most amazing we trips we ever took.
We have a certificate to say that we crossed the Artic Circle, and we have a certificate to say that we survived a Force 10 gale with 12m waves and 25m/s gusts.
The ship's captain said it was the worst weather he had experienced, and we were travelling on the normal post boat that took the mail and other things to every other port up the coast, and to every other every other port on the way back. Amazing.
The sun set at Molde
Colours the snow with
Purples, pinks, ‘n’ mauve.
All the town’s buildings at Arlsund harbour
Seem to have been newly decorated
But are suffering from weather and age
The town on a Tuesday afternoon
Feels like a wet Sunday afternoon
With few people and little traffic
The water of the fiord is so still,
Even the car ferry doesn’t leave a wake
Almost as if the water is gelatinous.
Is this the real essence of Norway
Or just the way we find it this winter?
Either way I like the feel of the place greatly.
With thanks to Slartibartfast, credited in the book The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, as having been responsible for the design of the Norwegian coastline, to the detriment of his mental health.
jacb Jan 2020
Can a staycation be good like a holiday?
Going to cities in a different county?
To see old buildings built by those who conquered us,
Paintings painted to the wishes of the patron?
Speaking the same language we can experience other lives.
Lives lived and worked, established in the local environment,
Whose knowledge was constrained by the ability to travel,
With Gods worshiped and obeyed with traditions from way back when.
You can try the shops, with different goods, and the way you buy it.
Different counter layout, and shop keepers’ expectations.
Wrapped for you while you wait, in plasticless throw away packing.
After paying cash you walk out with it all in a string bag.
Jacb Sep 2020