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D.A. Prince: East Midlands Angst

I'm sure the train is fine − no strain,
no traffic jams, no blinding rain −
but it's already gone. It's plain
they've changed the timetable. Again.


L. A. Mereoie: Seed Sick

Now fields of grass are like green seas
That wind-whipped waves keep racing through . . .
Excuse such borrowed similes,
But, out of doors, they’re all too true
Since what is blowing to and fro
Recalls a gale-tossed ferry trip −
I’m full of pills and lying low
Just as I was on board the ship.


Morgan Downs: Donald the Great

You are so great – the best. Oh, that you knew!
But it is past the scope of speech to tell,
And I lack words to make it clear for you −
I've used up my last monosyllable.


William Greig: Too Short?

Is a lifetime too short to read all War And Peace
before making an unfinished exit?
Maybe so, but I’m sure many people agree
it’s too short to complete Britain’s Brexit.


Elizabeth Horrocks: The Modern Cricket Scoreboard

When the batsman at the wicket
Can do no more than lamely snick it
So Fate decrees his first ball lands
In second slip’s great grasping hands
Polite folk say, “What rotten luck!
This match is really nip and tuck!"
Alas, the scoreboard now will light up,
With cartoon ducks that point his plight up.


Damian Balassone: Scenes from a Suburban Restaurant

I let one rip and in a flash
I see the chef appear:
"I’m flattered by your flatulence,"
he whispers in my ear.


Bob Newman:: Simon says

Nothing can stick to me; I’ve such emptiness inside.
If I’d had no oil, I’d never have stir-fried.
I am a wok.
I am a frying pan.


Jerome Betts: Burning Ears

Plants will, addressed in human speech,
Respond to pep-talk, praise or prayer –
Prince Charles and New Age gurus preach
Such vocal tender loving care.

So, farmers, you with weeds in corn
That laugh at all sprayed antidotes,
Stock up with words of withering scorn −
It's time to so-and-so wild oats!


Paul Willis: Valerian Varieties

(Valeriana sitchensis)

Sitka valerian, valetudinarian,
stubborn white as anything,
second childhood in the spring.

Scouler’s valerian, pedantical grammarian,
chalk dust powdered in his hair,
declining cases everywhere.

Sitka valerian. White flower