INTERVAL ONE: A Slew Of Sixes

Colin McKim: No Jumbo For Dumbo

An elephant is not a pet that one should take aboard a jet.
The cabin's narrow confines mean that somebody will cause a scene,
Since, even if your pachyderm gives comfort when you feel infirm,
People when they’re being crushed will whine and howl and won’t be shushed,
And, should a trunk explore a lap, it's bound to cause a further flap.
That 's why it’s wise, I always find, to leave my elephant behind.

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Richard Fleming: The Cheetah

They don’t come faster than the Cheetah:
of fleet-foot beasts no beast is fleeter.
This bee-line feline high-speed cat
goes naught to sixty just like that.
Look anywhere upon the planet
there is no creature faster than it.

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L. A. Mereoie: Chef’s Progress

In Kathmandu, young Jock, a cook,
Learned all he could of goat cuisine
Then in a cruise-ship post he took
Acquired some skill in boat cuisine
And now, at home once more, just look,
He’s back with Scottish oat cuisine.

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Damian Balassone: The Talker

She was born
with one mouth
   and two ears,
but she talks
twice as much
   as she hears.

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Tonia Kalouria: A Man And His Beard

A man and his beard are never apart
and much lurks inside it that's dear to his heart.
Look closely, indeed, you’ll find it is home
to Vindaloo Pork laced with stout’s frothy foam,
fried eggs-over-easy, blood sausages too,
plus meat pie or kidneys with fine creamy roux.

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Peter Wallis: Love me the way you love your smartphone

Touch me with finger-tips,
stroke my face, read me, let me entertain, inform.
Check me out, share, like . . .

Press my buttons, dance thumbs up and down.
In your private places, keep me warm. Always
know where I am. Charge me. Turn me on.

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Michael Beadle: Wait For It

When Hamilton the musical
opened in Siberia,
shows sold out, mass hysteria.
The figure-skating version
caused quite a stir –
especially the scenes with Aaron Brrr.

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Mandy Macdonald: All you need to know about the movies

The baddie wears sleek black leather
with redundant buckles.
The goodie wears floppy grey gabardine
and a haunted expression.
Guess which one loses the fortune.
Guess which one gets the girl.

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Terry Tosh: Distracted Thought

Copious notes untaken.
Cappucino high.
Cornucopia of thoughts
Mingle and fly
To unremembered heights
Never to return
But do.

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Richard Westcott: Humbug

Happy Christmas, Seasons Greetings – everything’s jolly and everyone’s glad.
Up with the cards, kiss under the mistletoe, switch on the lights, banish the bad.
My friend – just dwell upon lovely things,
Babies and holy cows, girls with swans’ wings,
Universal benevolence, gift-aided giving – we can be proud of all that we do . . .
God, Scrooge was correct. Humbug’s the word. Is too much goodness, too good for you?

Wood-carved cherub's head with Christmas cap