Friday, August 31, 2012




I've never seen anyone saved. Have you?
I presume they are sometimes used,
But they've always been a feature
Whenever I have cruised.
They seem rather solid, heavy things,
Not in the least pneumatic,
And being saved by one of them
Must be, in the least, dramatic.
There you are in the boiling ocean,
With waves about twelve feet high,
Towering over you, menacing,
And blotting out the sky,
When here comes a hard sort of doughnut,
Which may hit you on the head!
You'd shout a loud expletive
If you weren't so well-bred!
Your mouth is full of water,
Likewise your eyes and ears,
And the fins that are slowly circling
Ignite your wildest fears!
Now you have to grab the doughnut
And poke your head through the hole
But you have to duck under the water
To achieve that simple goal!
Whoa! Now the waves have got you!
They think you are a boat!
They toss you about in your little craft
Although you can scarcely float!
'Hold on!' they're shouting from starboard,
'See if you can catch this rope!'
And since you never were good at sport
There doesn't seem much hope!
If you survive this treatment
And actually survive
I think you deserve a medal!
You've managed to stay alive!


'It must be Alzheimers!' we cry!
At the thought we want to die!
But everyone forgets now and again.
When you're halfway through a door
You think 'What am I here for?'
You'll remember, if you just count up to ten.
The other day I heard
An encouraging little word
(Well, several in fact, but it had to rhyme!)
On the subject of forgetting,
Which can be quite upsetting,
And which happens  to the Writer all the time!
If a key is in your hand
And you just can't understand
Which door is opened by that certain key,
You're perfectly alright,
Quite unworrying your plight,
You know a key's an opener, you see.
But if a key lies there
In your hand and you just stare
Wondering what it does, you'd better worry!
Treatment may be needed
Your problem should be heeded
You should seek expert advice, and in a hurry!
Next time you have a lapse,
Half-way up the stairs, perhaps,
Consider what I've written and feel glad.
Your memory's OK
You're just having a bad day
Which is something every one of us has had.
On Wednesday we performed a melodrama called 'Between the Sheets' for a group called U3A. This stands for University of the Third Age, so I tried to be a bit more educational than usual! I started with a mini-lecture bout the History of the Melodrama. I once did a full-scale series of lectures on the subject so I was able to adapt my notes. Then we performed the play, and we finally got members o the audience to get up and act. Our Virgin turned out to be a male Psychologist so I don't know if he psychoanalysed me from my play!
                               Not a great photo but at least it will remind me of a good day.

Uncommon Noddy



They call you a Common Noddy and it's true you're not a star;
You don't fly in the mountains up where the eagles are.
Your colours are not startling; you have a curious name.
In fact you don't do anything entitling you to fame!
But you are very devoted to the single egg you lay
And sometimes food and sustenance are very far away.
The little lady Noddy sits patiently on the nest,
Living in hope that her faithful mate will do his very best
To bring back food to sustain her as she just sits and waits.
This is the way of many birds devoted to their mates.
The male does not object when he is sent to look for food,
But sometimes the little female falls into a morbid mood.
'Will he return? Will he neglect me? In the long night I despair.
I long to look up in the sky and see him fluttering there.'
And sure enough, in the morning, he's back in her embrace,
Being given a welcome that shames the human race.
Sometimes human dealings seem verging on the shoddy.
But the same cannot be said of the uncommon Common Noddy.


I don't care if it's Photo-Shopped!
I don't care if it's merged and cropped!
I don't care if it's quite unreal!
The image has a magical feel.
In unison, the little red feet
Perform this quite amazing feat!
Asiatics are represented
As people who are regimented!
We picture the ultimate precision,
The mind-over-matter firm decision,
The power to spring up and obey
In a very, very un-Western way.
In the West, a spring like this
Would  be a matter of hit or miss.
Some little girls would be seen mid-leap,
 And three or four would be fast asleep!
Some would be looking to left or right;
Some would be at a too-high height!
In the West we muddle-through;
Apart from the stunning one or two
Who actually achieve perfection
While the rest of us look in another direction.
But I always picture the youth of China.....
Every one a toe-the-liner,
Submitting to discipline night and day
Leaping in a concerted way!
O.K.! It's probably Photo-Shopped!
And maybe such trickery should be stopped!
But this to me looks very Chinese!
Don't try to disenchant me, please!

Thursday, August 30, 2012


chose the topic

(An Acrostic)

Loving notes sent through the mail;
Everlasting paper trail;
Treasured items through the years
Thoughts that bring a smile or tears
Every letter a surprise
Ready for enquiring eyes.
Saved and savoured as they're read;
Do you prefer email instead?
(Surely not!)



"I know I told you on Saturday night
That we had a future that was really bright.
But then you were in that satin dress
And you looked a vision of loveliness.
I loved the way it reached your ankles.
But here's the thing that really rankles....
Now you've stripped off to your bra
And panties, I can see you are
So much sturdier than before,
When your pretty dress reached to the floor.
All my passion has evaporated.
It cannot be too firmly stated.
I somehow cannot take my eyes
Off those really enormous thighs!"




What little person could resist
 A window that is not to be missed!
Not like a window in a house,
But shaped like the ears of Mickey Mouse!
What is he gazing at so long?
The people and places of Hong Kong!
When children are as young as he
They're full of curiosity,
So much to learn, so much to know,
So much to taste, so far to go!
Right on into senility
Let us bask in curiosity.


A pilot and a passenger were flying in a plane.
The aeroplane was twin-engined and the passenger was a pain.
He cursed and swore about the time of estimated arrival
And the pilot's thoughts about him became really adjectival.
Finally! Disaster! One of the engines failed;
It coughed and spluttered and then it died as high in the sky they sailed.
'More trouble!' growled the passenger; ' What are you going to do?'
Said the pilot 'We can fly on one engine almost as well as two.
The only problem that we'll have is the fact that we might be late.'
'Call yourself a pilot!' snarled the passenger; 'This is great!
Flying on one engine! Can't you do anything right?
If this one goes we're in trouble! We'll be up here half the night!'

Wednesday, August 29, 2012



(An Acrostic)

Goofy! Such a harmless fellow; not a lot of brain.
Odd in looks and odd in speech as well.
Only in a cartoon can such characters remain
For there they cast a very special spell.
Yes! Political correctness now denies us such a treasure!
A harmless, tender-hearted fool who brings a lot of pleasure.



Dogs may have a sense of smell that beggars all belief.
Among the band of Sniffers, the dog is absolute Chief.
To him the world is full of scents, that titillate his nose;
Whereas we have to bend and inhale quite hard to enjoy one little rose.
He is surrounded by perfumes that we would treat with scorn.
He knows when Rover from down the street has passed across the lawn;
He pounces on a smelly sock and straightway knows the owner;
He almost knows if a titbit comes from Greece or Barcelona!
But he pays for this with a dreadful lack; he sees the world in grey....
Well, not entirely grey it seems, but heading along that way.
His world is murky, dull and dun; a vision of sepia scenes.
Not for him our scarlets, mauves, yellows and pinks and greens!
Enjoy the glorious brilliance of the colours seen above;
Think of the favourite colours that human beings love.
Turquoise, carmine, daffodil, heliotrope and tan;
Colours that have enchanted us since recorded time began.
A sense of smell must fascinate our canine friends, it's true,
But it can't make-up for never seeing silver  and midnight blue.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Mascara Free

The Mona Lisa; Leonardo da Vinci



Unadorned, yes, that's the word; these eyes are simply eyes.
They are jut as nature made them, without the least disguise.
No contact lenses colour them a brilliant blue or green;
No false eye-lashes flutter there, no make-up adds a sheen.
Would they have danced so merrily had they been so enhanced?
Would the artist have managed to capture the merriment as they danced?
Cover the lips, so sweetly curved, and you will clearly see
That the expression is in the eyes, mascara-less and free.
It's not as though the eyes are huge, they're really rather small,
Then there's the's simply brown, a humdrum brown, that's all.
As for the 'whites' they are not white, they're a sort of honey-gold,
And lashes hardly exist at all! There's nothing to behold!
And yet they are magnificent, these eyes from long ago;
They make us feel that here's a girl we'd dearly like to know.

Compare the two, and make a choice. I know which choice is mine.
Give me the Mona Lisa! Her eyes are quite divine.

                                                     Gerald Gee


Gerald Gee? I never knew him,
Yet I pay a tribute to him.
He was just a chap on line
Whose sense of humour was akin to mine.
When I heard that he had died
I didn't sob, I merely sighed.
After all, he was no friend.
And, after all, life has to end.
Yet Blogging lost some of its zing;
Just like a step that's lost its spring.
Here is one of his little jokes;
He was one of those jokey blokes.
Yet his 'real art' was lovely, too,
Gerald, I publish this for you.

The Icon and The Colon

The most common uses of the colon.



A colon is an oddsome thing, God wot.
It's just a spot upon another spot.
An icon is a holy thing, they say,
A picture that helps worshippers to pray.
A colon has few uses (see above).
It's not a thing that writers tend to love.
An icon is a Russian sort of thing,
A picture of an angel or a King.
They haven't much in common, that's for sure
And either one could tend to be a bore.
But put them in double-harness and you'll find
That they express the odd quirks of our kind.
We make them smile, we often make them scowl,
We make them laugh, we even make them howl,
Add 8 and sunglasses appear;
They add concern, they add good cheer.
A Smiley Icon gives a little hint
As to how we view the words we print.
We find it can, in endless ways,
Add to the enjoyment to our days.





So when the Great Change comes,
And the world around us alters,
And the seas rise up and warm
And everything living falters,
Will we adapt like the water-lily
Floating on a pond,
Managing survival
To forever and beyond?
The water lily seeks for soil
Yet it has learned to float,
It lies upon the water
Like a fragile petalled boat.
Dragonflies glide above it;
The little fish swim below;
It does not live in a garden
Yet it has learned to grow.
Our altered situation
Need not mean that we are trapped;
Over evolution's aeons
Mankind may adapt.

I spouted poetry at the Country Women's Association meeting last night. What a very nice crowd of ladies! (It always surprises me that, although we hear about horrid people in the news all the time, daily life seems to abound in really lovely people!) Anyway, here they are en mass. And they make delicious marmalade too. Malcolm will benefit from a pot.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Magical Dusk

The Wordle


we are asked to use all the words in the Wordle


I write from a land where the sun collapses, suddenly, into night;
One moment day, then a speedy fade to darkness from the bright.
But in another, far-off land, dusk lingered on for hours,
As the sun, majestically, slowly, divested itself of its powers.
One could sit in a summer garden where roses climbed the fence
And trace the sun descending in a sky pale and immense.
One of life's essentials was, of course, a glass of wine,
That and a good companion, a recipe for the divine.
One could be forgiven for sensing a link in the chain
Of all the magic of nature, wind and sun and rain.
And one could imagine an operator working the scenery
On a great blue empty stage where the bright sun used to be.
But, at last, after hours of sinking, the sun dips on its way
And the cold night makes an entry, etched in a pencil-grey.
I have seen the sun set many, many, many times,
But I still miss the magic of dusk in those far-off northern climes.

(An Acrostic)

'Geriatric'! What a word!
Really! It is quite absurd!
Old externally I may be
While inside I am just a baby!
Isn't it a crazy thing!
Nature has a definite Spring!
Gardens don't mix-up each season!
Only humans commit this treason!
Letting Spring bloom in the heart
Defying each other Wintry part!

Patterns on the Ceiling

                                      The Big Room;Andrew Wyeth

supplied the illustration


A very different picture and yet it brought back memories
Of a very different childhood long ago,
When I lived in a colder climate where winters lasted long,
And the air was often full of sleet and snow.......
I'd never heard of Andrew Wyeth and his 'Big Room' work of art,
So I looked them up on Google (as you do),
And I read that he was sickly as a child and spent his time
In his bedroom, with the four walls as a view.
He didn't go to school and so he had a narrow life,
With a member of his family as teacher.

Later, when he was painting, he recalled his childhood days
And the fire in the fireplace was a feature.
My own bedroom wasn't this grand.

And, suddenly all in a rush, I remembered my own youth,
Spent in another time, another place,
And I recalled a bedroom and a lovely cosy bed
With a fire crackling in the fire-place.
It must have been a novelty; I recall it as a treat;
I think I was unwell, confined to bed.
Did I have the measles? Or did I have the mumps?
Or was it, maybe, the chicken-pox instead?
All I know is I lay in bed, cosy as I could be,
All through the day and on into the night,
And the fire in the fireplace crackled and then flared
And, as daylight went, the fire grew more bright.
My light turned off, I lay in bed gazing up at the ceiling,
Where firelight patterns flickered, dancing gold,
And I found it quite entrancing, it was 'just like fairyland',
Reminding me of stories I'd been told.
I don't remember sickness, only comfort and delight,
With the blankets pulled right up to reach my nose,
And my eyes upon the dancing shapes performing just for me,
And warmth that reached right down into my toes.
Thank you Mr Wyeth, and thank you Google too!
That memory was buried very deep.
Such memories sustain us and it's good when they're recalled.
Flames and crackling and patterns...........and then sleep.

(Written a couple of years ago!)

It gave them so much pleasure
Discovering Sub-Prime!
The Bankers bloomed and blossomed
With ecstasy at the time.
They borrowed, lent and borrowed,
And the web spread far and wide.
Everyone could own a home!
Nobody was denied!
Oh the pleasure of the dealings!
The rubbing of the hands!
The syphoning of money
From other distant lands!
Then, one borrower defaulted!
The scheme had a nasty smell!
Then another and another!
Like dominoes they fell!
Does it give the bankers pleasure now,
To see their land laid low;
To see the assets dwindling
Where once they used to grow!
'Pride comes before a fall' they say.
And 'Look before you leap!'
Too late for little sayings!
The whole thing's gone too deep.
And all of us were guilty
Very guilty indeed;
What we mistook for pleasure
Was simply boundless greed.

Poles Apart


I wonder just how true this is!
Just look at all those thoughts of his!
Sex seems to dominate his brain.
I've heard that time and time again.
'Every two seconds' I have heard
A man thinks of finding himself a bird.
Every two seconds? That can't be true.
Not when there's so much else to do.
Some men write enthralling books;
Some men are bankers, some are cooks;
Those men would be failures! They'd be wrecks!
If all they thought about was sex!
And where are 'Cars' in the illustration?
Many men I know have a car fixation.
Then we come to the female version......
Admittedly 'Talk' is a great diversion.
But 'Shoes'? I scarcely give them a thought
Except when they just have to be bought.
However I have friends who find
Shoes are often on the mind.
'Love' and 'Babies' do dominate,
Plus the serious task of finding a mate.
Yes to 'Security' and 'Respect';
They matter a lot so that's correct.
This picture's for fun, no doubt about that,
But how much truth are we looking at?

The Nazis burn books in the 1930s


What did we lose, I wonder; what wisdom and what wit,
When Hitler piled the books on high and the eager flames were lit.
Mercifully, many authors had books in print elsewhere
But there were countless manuscripts that vanished in thin air.
Maybe we lost the answers to questions we still ask;
Maybe we lost the instructions to some still-puzzling task.
Maybe some glorious poetry to thrill the human soul
Went up in smoke for ever when Hitler took his toll.
Maybe works of science to improve our human lot,
Flared and died  and disappeared and he didn't care a jot!
We'll never know what we have lost;  but the thought still gives us pain.
Surely the Burning of the Books could never occur again!
Rebecca, my daughter, hates me to take photos of her but she published some shots herself on Facebook yesterday and I've stolen my two favourites.

Blake, my eldest grandson, 13.
And Blake's Mum, Rebecca.
Good genes, but none of them mine!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Mid-Life Crisis

asks us to use the translation, in blue, from Dante's Inferno


Midway in life's journey we get a nasty jolt.
Suddenly it hits us like a thunder bolt.
We' re no longer youthful; we're on the downward slope;
Now's the time for stock-taking, not for living-on hope.
All our youthful dreaming has simply come to nought;
We didn't 'make it by thirty'....that's a solemn thought.
The fifth decade is hard to bear....well, it was hard for me.
Without youth's happy thoughtlessness or age's gravity.
Fifty is a tricky age, we carry society's load,
And we're not yet sweet old ladies folk will help across the road!
I hated being fifty! It was such a sexless age!
Youth is gold, old age is mauve but fifty's sort of beige.
As a young girl I was carefree, and today I feel the same;
Now I'm eighty life, once more, is just a simple game.
No mortgages, no dependants, and no hopeless expectations;
This 'second childhood' is great fun despite its limitations.
Midway in life's journey life can seem rather glum,
But hang on and keep smiling.
Better days are sure to come!


If I should be a dragonfly,
Knowing I were going to die,
What would my view of Heaven be
As I existed flutteringly?
Would I think of a cloudless blue
With nothing else for me to do
But skim the flowers and the trees
Floating on a personal breeze?
Would I expect to skim and soar
For evermore, for evermore?
The only certainty would be this......
An eternity of endless bliss
Was waiting for me in the sky!
Oh foolish, foolish dragonfly!