Who Cares? - Diane Scantlebury

You can always tell
The crazy ones,
They have an air
A vacant stare,
They drift along,
Without a care,

You can always spot
The cocky ones,
They jog along
Their shirts undone,
They have an air,
They don’t care,

You’ll always know
The happy ones,
They always smile
Stop to chat for a while,
They have an air,
Because they care.

Diane Scantlebury

Bus Pass - Lester Queripel

I’ve not yet reached my pension age.
but I’m not far off that stage.
I know I don’t need to worry or fuss.
because I’ll get a free pass for the bus.

I can ride around to my heart's content.
not a penny of my own money will need to be spent.
every single second on the bus will be free.
but it’s a shame they don’t give you a cup of tea.

but I’ve never been one to complain.
I’ll happily ride round again and again.
although I hope I can wait in a bus shelter.
I don’t want to wait in the rain.

and why do they call it a bus shelter?
it’s there to shelter people not the bus.
but like I said I won’t cause any fuss.
I’ll be happy just to ride for free on the bus.

Lester Queripel

Secret Cabaret - Ian Duquemin

In this secret cabaret
Sheets in twisted disarray
Hair disheveled, skin unclean
The mirrors misted ghostly sheen
Amidst this den of tortured lies
Still echoing perverted cries
Bodies stretched now lying still
Contented with unholy fill
Sweat drips cold on hot licked flesh
The sins which neither shall confess
Heartbeats simmer, silence loud
No love in here allowed
In the shadows candles dance
Ignited by a spirit trance
One which holds no bounds of sleep
Enticing those to fall in deep
In an act of mortal whim
Where every bent and splintered limb
Shall blindly fall undignified
And keep their shame inside

Ian Duquemin

Juneau, Alaska - Kathy Figueroa

Juneau city
Views are pretty
Streets are gritty
Tramps want spare change

Ravens chatter
Footsteps patter
Workmen clatter
Some sights are strange

A port of call
For one and all
With mountains tall
A snow-capped range

A kind greeting
Pleasant meeting
Make time fleeting
At gold rock grange

Kathy Figueroa

Too Much Chocolate - John Carré Buchanan

Last week we heard a distant roar
that drifted on the air,
it crept ever closer
and bought with it despair.

The pillars are still falling
and all around us now
the constant whine of chainsaw
lays our forest bare.

You'll turn it into pasture
or cover it in palm.
Drag away the timber
to turn into a barn.

In places you'll plant cocoa,
where it shouldn't really grow
and it will leach the soil
and the insects they will go.

Then the birds that feed upon them
and the plants they pollinate
will vanish in a moment
from the hell that you'll create.

This Easter as you celebrate
the life that was reborn,
remember us, I beg,
for you decimate our forest
for a f***ing chocolate egg.

John Carré Buchanan

Epitaphs - Sally Forth

The things we do leave their mark:
pale scars, cave drawings, photographs,
imprints in clay, shadows on glass,
echoes, verses. The list goes on.

The things we fail to do, it seems:
missed opportunities, lost dreams,
choices avoided, moments gone,
hours not grasped, days allowed to pass,
that failure to ignite the spark.
With these we shape our epitaphs.

Sally Forth

Room At The Top - Lyndon Queripel

And as you leave, close the door
I don't want to breathe anymore
Stale air coming up the stair
All the way from the thirteenth floor

And as I sit staring at the ceiling
I don't fit, I've lost the feeling
All alone with the telephone
Off the hook to look more appealing

And even though I'm not to blame
I don't even know my neighbour's name
And for a while though I try to smile
My face just grows tired of the game.

Lyndon Queripel

I got POEMS, me - Tony Bradley

I have an affliction, it's not hereditary
I got POEMS, me, they're coming out my ears
it started when I was a nipper
so I suppose it's been a few years .

Throughout Medical History, other people have had POEMS
Wordsworth, Shelley, Milligan, McGough
Doctors can't help you, with sick-notes & tablets
it's not like syphilis, . . . or 'flu, . . or a cough.

These POEMS can fester into Fame or Fortune
those malignant growths would really mess up my 'ed
if they're diagnosed for me, on top of these POEMS
I just hope they'll stay small, 'till after I'm dead .

Tony Bradley

New Neighbour - Trudie Shannon

You are stranger to me than stranger alone.
Stranger because my image of you
Was conjured from disparate sounds
That emanate from the walls that stand between us.

Footsteps, a cough.
Water running, door slamming.
A muffled voice.
A squeaking tap.
The swish of a hand through water.
Creaking floorboards.
Early morning baths.
Foot shuffle.

All came together to paint my portrait of you.

Female, thirty something, neat and tidy.

But today as I drank tea beside my window
I happened to see your shaded form through the hedge
That separates our gardens,
Saw you, as you left your house,
Slamming the door shut behind you.
And I saw the distinct figure
Of a young man in a hoodie,
Shoulders hunched, hands pocketed!

From a series of disparate sounds
That emanate from the walls that stand between us.
I have made a stranger,
Stranger than merely stranger alone.

Trudie Shannon

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