No News from Nowhere

road nature trees branches
Photo by Pixabay on


No News from Nowhere

They slope off and they mooch back,
But where do they go, by-and-by ?
Don’t bother to ask, for there’s no chance of craic –
“Oh, Nowhere”, will come the reply.

I never observe as they’re leaving, alas,
Or fathom the paths they must tread.
There’s no point in asking where lies the green grass –
“Oh, Nowhere” is all that is said.

For they all are real Nowhere Men
When all dressed up with Nowhere to go.
Then there’s nobody home till I’ll see them again,
From the middle of Nowhere with nothing to show.

I’m never invited to join in their trip,
And they never announce their departures, I find.
So the seconds and minutes and decades will slip –
They’re all going Nowhere, and I’m left behind.

They then reappear with a look on their face
That they must have forgotten was there.
It’s happy or guilty or staring in space,
But don’t bother asking, they’ve nothing to share.

A dark place of nightmares or land of their dreams,
A dawdle with boredom, a dance with divine –
They all of them head off to Nowhere, it seems,
And it’s ev’ryone’s business but mine.



To be a Rock and not a Roll

audience band concert crowd
Photo by Thibault Trillet on


To be a Rock and not a Roll

I know you want to be yourself,
I know you want to quit the dole,
I know you want some easy pelf
To split from squares for rounder holes,
You want the sex and drugs and fame,
You want to slay them at the Bowl,
But dude, the nature of this game
Is Rock, not Rock & Roll.

There ain’t no Elvis hereabout
So put away your blue suede shoes,
Don’t tutti-fruit, don’t twist & shout,
Don’t hit the road to G.I. blues,
Don’t rock around the clock tonight
With Johnny B and King Creole –
That stuff’s so old, it’s outasight,
It’s only Rock & Roll.

I know it is a mongrel beast,
That blends the pixie with the troll,
I know it often loves to feast
On blues and swing and folk and soul,
Yet from these breeds a diff’rent stock
That bends the riffs it stole:
So what you’re playing, dude, is Rock,
And Rock ain’t Rock & Roll.

So roll over Peggy Sue,
Smoke gets in my eyes for you,
Good golly, sweet sixteen,
It’s only Maybellene.
Amazing Grace, Chantilly Lace,
But this isn’t who you are –
So dude, put down the double-bass
And plug in your guitar !



Pens Down !

Exam Hall


Pens Down !

For all our tappy-typey lives,
For all the keyboards we must pound,
Still ev’ry Summer there survives
A world of scritchy-scratchy sound:
Ev’ry Summer, ev’ry school,
The wriggly-ragged spiders rule !

It seems we do not think exams
Are punishment enough –
Who cares if they know volts from grams,
Or pantaloons from ruffs ?
Their future jobs lie in the grip
Of under-pressure penmanship !

You know, I reckon if we’re honest,
Few of us could truly claim
Our efforts wouldn’t look the same.
For all they pressed upon us
Their italic script or copperplate,
Calligraphy was not our fate.

To all the pupils suffering
From writer’s cramp and knuckles rapped,
Your talents ever under-tapped –
At least you’re not alone.
To all ex-pupils struggleing
With inky hands that biros give,
Our meanings lost in hieroglyphs –
It’s time that we atone:

It’s keymanship that should be taught,
So crisp upon the pristine page,
With fingers fast as any thought –
It’s time to write the modern age !
For all that pens have served us well,
Let’s end their scribbly-scrawly hell –




worm s eye of white and black inside basket
Photo by Pixabay on



There’s a glassy ceiling above me,
Way up the greasy pole
But I’m still down in the basement
Just pence above the dole.
A fraction of us may hammer the ceiling,
Always demand more,
But most of us working stiffs are afraid
Of the rise of the quicksand floor.



Summer Block

clear glass cup with fruits and water inside beside slice fruitas
Photo by Pixabay on


Summer Block

Ah, the lazy days of Summer:
Long and languid afternoons,
When cares are short and drinks are tall,
And lives are endless honeymoons.
So who would sweat on metric feet,
To try to pen a tricky rhyme ?
Just close the jotters, pencils down,
And let it go.  It’s not the time.

On such a scorching hummer
When our cares are short and drinks are tall,
And lives are endless honeymoons,
Then no-one thirsts for verse at all.
So let it go, it’s not the time –
Just close the jotters, pencils down.
Our brains would only overheat.
If assonance should raise a frown.

On long and languid afternoons,
Just who would sweat on metric feet
When no-one thirsts for verse at all ?
Our brains would only overheat.
Don’t try to pen a tricky rhyme
On such a scorching hummer.
No assonance should raise a frown
On the lazy days of Summer.



Beside the Seaside

Periophthalmus schlosseri by F A Lucas


Beside the Seaside

Mudskippers: day-trippers,
Walking out along the beach
And paddling in the foam.

Mudskippers: toe-dippers,
See how far they dare to reach
From out their briny home.

They love to breathe the ozone airs,
And dig their castles in the sand;
Between the waves and folding chairs,
They comb their shingled land.

Mudskippers: tide-rippers,
Love to surf the wash and breakers,
But a wipe-out leaves them drowned.

Mudskippers: land-shippers,
Masters of their seafront acres:
Beached, but never run aground.