A graceful corner

The wind that wafts the cypress trees
That sway as dancers, to and fro
Within this place of make-believe
To tickle fancies, fast and slow

Brings little joy to residents
Nor tourists struck by wanderlust
Who hurry onward, business-bent
And grit their teeth against the dust

These quiet passages bear marks
That whisper other sides to life
Some ooze what passes after dark
The noisome remnants of our strife

And yet my mind is pausing here
A pleasant hour to pass. I wait
Enclosed by those with much to fear
Without this sanctuary gate

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Naturalism

Considered cleavage, crimson pout
We advertise the goods to sell
With careful maintenance when out
Avoid descending into Hell

Of pheromones and mating calls
Preferring genteel falsehoods to
The crack of heads and sweaty balls
As suitors fight to fuck anew

And propagate genetic lines
Where charmless boors have oft struck out
By brutal force, return those times
Before our race had rules to flout

We wave away old Darwin’s hook
To pick and choose on likes alone
Replace his theories with a book:
(Creator’s love; Proof; Tombs and Tomes)

High heels, vajazzles, hair dye looms
Upon horizons clouded by
Illusion – we are not baboons
Yet find bright colours draw the eye

The Stand Up Comedy Hour

One day she will somehow surely find
A man who doesn’t make her wait
For hours on end as waiters mind
The poor stand-up whose date is late

And twitchy, hover round the edge
To titter at deluded Hope
Who hesitates o’er meat or veg
While others see the running joke

It’s too unfair, her sitting there
The butt of comments far and wide
As serving staff pour drinks and stare
Embarrassment she cannot hide

The constant refills mean the can
She wanders off to pee once more
Still pondering the galling man
Whose loud and boisterous guffaw

Now seems to ring in both her ears
As face is fixed in bathroom stall
Frustrating as the angry tears
That threaten pretty soon to fall

The promise of a lovely sham
An evening of eating out
She laid her plan to catch a man
But found herself caught out

Doubtful

He does not lose his human rights
Because you now accuse him
You set the man within your sights
And callously abuse him

But nothing you have spoken yet
Has evidenced your viewpoint
Events I witnessed, can’t forget
Don’t lead me to conclude guilt

You play the victim very well
That much I will concede true
But lacking proof from either cell
I cannot quite believe you

Back Off

There have been a number of articles in the UK press recently regarding introversion and extroversion (I suspect somebody famous within the self-help field must have a book coming out, although I will plead ignorance as to who this might be for the time being as I am not all that well read in this particular genre). Having long been interested in human interaction, common character traits, personalities and the way we categorise people, I can all too easily see the danger of those who stick out as ‘different’ being consigned to the rubbish heap by those only interested in promoting mainstream thinking and behaviour. The trouble is we are all different. If we weren’t, nothing would ever change. We wouldn’t create or build anything, as things would be set up to suit everybody. The whole of humanity would stagnate.

In the interest of promoting diversity of personality type in the workplace, I scribbled the following:

Introvert, but still adept
At social scenes, though quiet, yet
My presence: one they don’t forget

The schemes I hatch for work, refined
Some ‘off the wall’, but hold, rewind
They fit, is what I tend to find…

And though you might not quite agree
That workers should, in mind, be free
(You feel the urge to pester me)

To oversee the half-baked plan
Leaving your mark as ‘man who can’
But this is not your also-ran.

So give me time and space to breathe
Without the stress of need-to-leave
And see what we may both achieve

Frustration (or why the female of the species is more deadly than the male)

The clown at work
Who wrecks his tech
Until you’d, cheerful
Break his neck

The letch en route
Who’d lick your thighs
Whose comments make you
Roll your eyes

The slobs, commuting
That don’t share
Shift bag, nor arse
To spare a chair

The manager
Who can’t decide
To rule the troops –
Job suicide

The lover’s ears
That don’t retain
A single word
Of our refrain

Trusted

If cuts are made to NHS
As government will do, I guess
What may become of services
That great and good have seen as theirs?

We’ll pay the same, and more I’d bet
But fewer beds and longer yet
May grow the lists of those who wait
On tender butcheries of State

And leashed upon a marketplace
Already flooded, with no space
For those whose qualities are such
We can’t afford to give too much

As nurses, doctors seek the dole
When cast out of their former role
We’ll pay them not to cut and stitch
Not staunch a wound, nor soothe an itch

But tell their tales to DSS
Who can’t assist those in distress
Where platitudes are rarely bought
And sympathy unknown, if sought

Those managers of life and limb
For them, the outlook will be grim
With reputation poor at best
We’re subsidising workless rest

And gaining nothing, paying twice
For healthcare that we’ve put on ice
While skills hard-earned are left to rust
The NHS ends in mis-Trust.

Violence

Generally I have a very cool and level head, but there are certain occasions when keeping a lid on my temper costs me something by way of personal sanity. On the day the gang-affiliated tosspot half my age decided to amuse himself by deliberately spraying his deodorant in my face from the seat behind me on the bus, I held my tongue and counted to ten (I’m not suicidal), and did a lot of silent cursing while the tears of ocular irritation ran down my face. Then I penned this vicious little snippet.

There are days when I wish
For a knife or a gun
So the dickhead behind me
Receives what may come
Controlling my temper
Gets harder to do
Imagining harm
Satisfying and new
On occasions where patience
Has already snapped
Where my favoured response
Involves scalpel and sac
I content myself knowing
A hex may do more
Inflicting revenge
For the merciless boor

Representative

By popular demand, here is the edited version of the poem I wrote on International Women’s Day. Please note, this was not written with political correctness in mind.

Glass ceilings are not
All that’s holding back women
No more are all men
Keeping us from the boardroom

If gender equality
Is what we seek
Then we’re hurting our cause
And the outlook is bleak

Don’t admit that our views
May be voiced in our stead
By another we trust
To express what we’ve said?

If no woman believes
That she is represented
Without being present
Can that be prevented?

For trust in our colleagues
Is vital, it’s true
Give and take may be needed
But faithless won’t do

If we all demand seats
At each meeting that’s held
Then no business would pass
With agendas upheld

Until companies topple
And deadlines are missed
As our jealous mistrust
Means change could not exist

Individual roles
Are all part of the structure
Yes, without foundations
The top doesn’t matter

I fear what we’re seeking
Is not really equal –
Statistical parity
Won’t write this sequel

‘Til men may bear children
Biology means
That our gender’s unequal
All thanks to our genes

While traditional roles
Are both frowned on and praised
Then confusion will reign
As both genders are dazed

By our own expectation
Of having it all
While constrained by our talents
Time, body and soul

There are some who’d prefer
To fly high at their job
And yet others who value
Their place at the hob

And please note I make no
Reference to their gender
So long as they’re happy
Why else would it matter?

If merit means much
Individuals will
Find their place in the world
All according to skill

But there isn’t the space
At the top of the tree
For each birdbrain to perch
Just to squawk – “Look at me!”

On International Women’s Day

I tried to write a poem
For the women I have known
But the words kept on repeating
Like a litany of moans

Every small injustice suffered
Was enshrined in natty rhyme
But the sentiments uncovered
Were not altogether mine

With each line I scribbled while the bus
Kept up its steady crawl
Hoping soon I’d feel inspired – at home
Decipher bitter scrawl

The syllables collectively
All spoke in tones, irate –
During furious descent into
A semi-lettered state

On no account may these be seen
By those who read my page
Or all would label them obscene
A poorly crafted rage

Instead I will try gently
To uncover what I’d say
If I’d had a more productive pen
Upon this woman’s day