Friday, 22 February 2019

Hey Negrita

Hey Negrita

I say: let's shoot Katara, beautiful face.
You say, roll it Katara, set dress this place.
Heat it hits us, break beat tattoo,
heat back slaps us, swoon in tune.

Jump cut removes us, from certain ruin
to touch and greet us, on desert dune
sand that salts us, cross cuts your back
and what we don’t lack, we can never lack.

Pepper tilts us, hot tongued goodbyes,
then oh Katara, wild months they fly.
Winds they reel us, memories smack,
winds they whip us, face front wink back

kites we flutter, shimmer tasteless tack
tatter tassels and sticky tinted matte.
Fig peel your plunder, oh no maƱana,
close up suck banana, oh yes, Katara.

Surf it swells us, glissando aftermath
full shot it guessed us and telegraphed.
Reel and swooned us, posed photographs
dance loud and joyous, ecstatic in laugh.

Ever green yet darken us, never can we break,
every night we parley, we talk too late,
singsong together, parting petaled flowers
swish pan whisk, freeze-frame strip showers.

Text slow emotion, table top insertion,
unscripted murmurs, of some sex desertion,
still we send us, our pictures frappe,
but clapper-board cut and fade to latte.

Thursday, 14 February 2019

Memory Motel

Memory Motel

I hit the ocean’s bottom yet there’s still so far to fall
hear your sighing voice so sweet and silver call
 walk down gone spaces that are hardly there at all
talk of places within lost moments that enthrall
tread passages and channels of our other world
smile backpack sashay soft handsome gorgeous girl
 word-whisper in my ear from times that now are past
fingernailing love's brick graffiti wall couldn't always last
 falling faster but there’s still some ways to know
your love handclasps firm grip and never now let go
ivy clings to choke where love grew and ever lives
in air to kiss our lips then turn coat tumbling gives

picking at your heart-stringed bass guitar
that used to mean so much to me
strum some other low slung bass guitar
that maybe brings it back to me

your waning smile shimmers and I pray you use it well
use it well
to stop waxing angel come forth and break the spell
break the spell
block gusty desert winds to save us both from hell
who can tell

We must leave when our time is come and gone
chance to chant some words in grief is surely wrong
touch the places in my mind where once we both gave
wander through love’s living spirits late and sad unsaved
my cupid fingers brushing everyone I once kissed
blessed them in blisses we swore each night we never miss

oh darling, my spirit crystal drifts through empty classrooms long
breathes ghost waking memories of faded swimming sun
and now I can no longer touch I leave you with my song

Mufti Day

Mufti Day

“Grandad! Grandad!”

A little girl, with hair the colour of ripe peaches, is shouting at the top of her voice. And can you guess who it is? Well it is three thirty in the afternoon, after all, on a wintry Monday afternoon.

Well, of course it’s Faith; out of breath and home.

Now, as you know, there is nothing that Faith looks forward to more than coming home from school. She rushes out of her stuffy classroom, the one that smells of coconut mats, dried onion powder and dead hamster cage, pelters helter-skelter down streets, skids round the corner into Lumpslap Close, fusses at the gate latch of number 36, skitters up the path, yanks the door and slams it behind her.

On different days, she walks irritably with Morgan and Patience - that is, of course, when her sister remembers to make her, but Faith finds them so slow. They never, ever hurry.

Today, in any case, Morgan was hanging around on the corner by the shop with his mates, talking about rubbish like football, You Tube and girls, while Patience and her pals giggled at them in a quite ghastly way while doing odd things like filing their nails and taking selfies in awkward poses.

It was quite easy to give Patience the slip and dash home.

“Grandad! Grandad!” Faith hurled herself on the old sofa and tipped the contents of her bag on the floor where they made a tatty heap. She listened carefully for noises from upstairs. Where was he? Well, he might have been doing yoga or having his sixties power nap. But, no, it was quiet. Was she alone? Should she run upstairs or look in the garden? Faith scrabbled through the heap in front of her, looking for a particular piece of paper that her teacher, Mrs Gridney, had given her earlier.

“Grandad! Where are you? I’ve got something to show you!”

Suddenly there was a blood curdling thud; a noise quite hard to describe. I suppose it was a bit like the sound of a large wooden packing case - the ones that people who move houses put their valuables into, rolled up in scuddy newspapers - falling ten feet down and smacking into a tray of very ripe oranges that had been left floating in the bath. Now, obviously, when this happens the oranges explode and make a delightful mess all over the wallpaper. I urge you to try it.

Although moving houses can be quite heavy. So, if you try that, do watch your back.

Faith bounced off the sofa and rushed to the foot of the stairs. She peered upwards, making out the shape of a small man rolling on the upstairs landing in pain, groaning and wheezing like Mrs Dander’s dog after it had scoffed everything from Grandad Biggert’s dustbin sacks on a Thursday. Before they were collected.

“Grandad?” Is that you?” Faith rushed upstairs, where Grandad Patches was a heap, a little bit tangled up in a rickety aluminium stepladder and large plastic container full of trinkets. His tie-dye romper smock had managed to get itself snaggled over the top of the steps; his head was inside the container and he was waggling a finger at both as though they’d been very naughty indeed.

“Grandad? Are you alright? What happened?”

Grandad, in a bit of a daze, took the container off his head and blinked as various bits of bric a brac toppled around him. He looked up at the ceiling at a hole that led to the loft. “Look out, Faith, my dear!”

A large rectangular piece of wood tumbled down and shanked him on the head. It was the roof of the loft. “Darn and blast!” he shrieked in pain, blinking at the little girl in front of him. Then he shook his fist at the wood, “you didn’t need to do that, you know.” And he sat up, untangled his smock and felt his head gingerly for lumps.

Faith looked at the wooden loft hatch covering in surprise. “Can it hear us, Grandad?” she asked. Grandad blinked some more, still looking a bit wobbly, so she started doing a little war dance around it. “Darn and blast!” she shrieked, happily, “darn and blast, darn and blast, darn and blast…” she continued and every so often gave it a kick for good measure.

Grandad stood up and stopped her. “Of course it can’t hear us, it’s a piece of wood. It’s not alive.”

“But you said wood came from trees. You said trees are alive. You said that in the sixties, your group ‘Inspector Trembly’s Tree Huggers Pipe Band’ used to sing to trees before the woodcutters…”

“Well…erm…did I say that?” spluttered Grandad, looking uncomfortable.

“Yes you did. Darn and blast, darn and blast, darn and…”

“Now, Faith, please stop saying that.”

“Is it a bit rude, Grandad?”

“Well, yes, a bit rude.”

“But you said you never, ever used rude words like Grandad Biggert does. You said it to Morgan, when he said ‘old farter’ yesterday.”

“Yes. Oh dear, I seem to have got myself in a bit of a pickle, haven’t I? Now you see, Faith…please stop shouting, you see, Faith…well, those words are not really rude because ‘darn’ could mean…er, sewing, and ‘blast’ could mean, ah, a man with a bad cold who just lost a race and can’t pronounce his words.”

“Can’t pronounce his words?”

“Yes. When he said, ‘I came blast’, he probably meant to say ‘I came last’. Stuffy nose, you see?”

“I think so, Grandad.”

Grandad Patches smiled, relieved, and ruffled Faith’s hair.

“Grandad? What’s an ‘old farter’ then?”

“Let’s go downstairs. By Jove, what have you got there, Faith?” And he took the paper from her hand as they descended. Possibly too hastily, as he shepherded her into the lounge.

As they plonked themselves on the sofa, Grandad rubbed his head one last time and unfurled the paper like a flag with a flourish. “Po,po,po,po…what’s all this, then?” And he squinted at it, the way he does when he’s forgotten his glasses or jabbed a spicy mung bean finger into his eye by accident when cooking. “Goodness gracious me, well I never, Mufti Day. Well, well, well, that takes me back…do you know what this is, Faith?”

“No, I don’t Grandad. But Mrs Gridney said I had to dress up tomorrow. Why do I have to do that?”

“Well of course you’ll have to dress up,” said Grandad, stressing the word ‘course’ as though it was either important or they were having one of those posh meals that Ma occasionally served if her friends were coming for supper on coupons day. “Of course you will. Why, yes. Now, do you know? I do recall, back in the sixties when I worked as a film director for ‘Public Hazards and Nuisances’, we directed a series of safety films…”

Faith yawned. “What’s for tea?”

But Grandad leapt to his feet. “There’s no time to lose, Faith!” And he dashed back upstairs, leaving Faith to turn the paper over and over in her hands in puzzlement.

A short time later, to her astonishment and, I might add, irritation (if Faith knew that word yet) they were heading back to school. Although her tummy was rumbling, Grandad Patches took no notice and strode ahead through the biting air with a purposeful gleam in his eye, holding Faith in one hand and a chain in the other. Well more like a dog’s lead; the type that Mrs Dander would use to shackle her dog to the gate post after it had been caught biting the tyres of passing cars.

“Pom, pom, pom, pom,” he would mutter, in between some po, po, poing, as they scuttled along the streets, past Patience and Morgan - now doing some juggling and keepy-uppies with a tennis ball - until they were across the road from her school, facing the bright green painted gates. And there they stopped.

They stopped because of the traffic. Rivers of it flowed past, brightly coloured streamers in red, yellow and silver, trailing like long, silent, electric ribbons. But Grandad Patches did not look entranced, by no means. Instead he rubbed his chin then looked at Faith. “Hmmm. I thought so, my dear, I thought so. No wonder Mrs Gridney wants you to have a Mufti Day. Look at all this traffic, polluting the lungs of the earth. And right in front of your school as well.”

“But Mrs Gridney says that electric cars don’t harm the world, Grandad.”

“Did she? Po, po, po. Did she indeed. Pom, pom. Indeed, she did?”

“Are you cross, Grandad? Grandad, will you say ‘darn and blast’ again?”

Grandad shook the metal lead in his left hand and it rattled like old bones. “Just as well we bought Mufti along, Faith, my dear. It seems that Mufti is needed again. You know? I long suspected this might happen. Which is why I kept him safe all these years in the loft. It was by pure chance that I happened to be up there today in my romper smock looking through my treasure box for keepsakes. And there he was, in the corner, fixing me with his one good beady eye.”

“What’s a beady eye, Grandad?”

Well, if you’re clever, you’ll probably be thinking that it means somebody’s keen eye keeping a lookout for danger or French spies…but no, you’d be wrong, because Grandad replied: “Well, it’s an eye made from a bead, Faith.”

Faith stared at the lead because on the end of it was a large stuffed squirrel. It was on wheels and looked a bit tatty – bits of fluff here and ripped stitches there. It was not in the best of shape at all. And, Faith noticed, as it was pulled, bumping along the pavement, one of the wheels squeaked. Loudly.  Faith stared at it and scratched her head. “I see.”

Which is more than Mufti can do, isn’t it?

But Grandad wasn’t really concentrating on Mufti, otherwise he might have said more. Instead he was waiting for the traffic to slow down, or at least stop, so that the three of them could safely cross the road.

But it just kept coming. “Now where do you suppose the lollipop man is? There should always be a lollipop man outside the school. The situation is much worse than even I suspected. Yes, we must see Mrs Gridney at once, Faith.” And Grandad Patches’ voice and stare was one that made Faith realise that there was something very, very wrong indeed.

“Patches! Patches! What the blazes have you got there, you blind old crumpet muncher?”

Grandad Patches stiffened and the hairs prick-prick-pricked on the back of his neck as though they knew danger was approaching. And, sure enough, a familiar shape was shuffling towards them.

It was none other than Grandad Biggert.

Now, I’m not sure what it was, but he flicked something bright and smoky into the privet bush alongside the pavement as he approached. He was pointing at Mufti the Squirrel. “What the devil is that?”

“Grandad Biggert. I might have known you might have something to do with this.” And Grandad Patches moved Faith behind his back. Just to be on the safe side because he spotted the rolled up newspaper in Grandad Biggert’s left hand and a gigantic yellow pole in his right.

In point of fact, Grandad Biggert was, for him, dressed very strangely indeed. He was in a long white coat, wearing a peaked hat and pinned to the lapel of the coat was a badge which had this slogan written on it: ‘Don’t be carried home in a coffin, listen to and obey your Road Safety Officer boffin.”

Still, Faith, being Faith, let go of Grandad Patches’ hand and ran towards him laughing happily. “Grandad Biggert!” And she made as if to hug him until he swiped at her head with the newspaper. “Get out of my way, wretched child. Unless you have any lollipops. Do you have any lollipops?”

“No, Grandad Biggert. I gave you the last one this morning.”

“Bah. I thought not.” And he pushed her away and strode up to Grandad Patches. He began jabbing him in the chest with the newspaper. “Get out of my way, you feeble, pacifist bean gobbler. I need to buy some fags and you’re blocking my path.”

But Patches refused to budge. “You can’t tell me what to do.”

Grandad Biggert smiled, but not in a nice way. “Well, yes I can, actually.” And he pointed at his badge. “Obey. See? It says here. Obey. And that’s official. So get out of the way.”

“What badge? I can’t see that,” grumbled Grandad Patches, “Where’s my glasses?”

Tearing the hat and coat off, Grandad Biggert threw the first onto the pavement and thrust the other into Grandad Patches’ eye, who read the badge out loud. “Huh, that doesn’t even scan,” he said, but I’m not sure what he meant by that, anyway.

Looking again at the badge, as if he couldn’t quite believe it, Grandad Patches declared, in a rude voice, “where did you get that?” which was a reasonable enough question, I think, given the situation.

Grandad Biggert laughed in an evil way, like they do on those old films about Flash Gordon and Emperor Ming that your dad will show you. Or the pirate ones. “Ha ha harrr. You will never know.”

“He is our lollipop man,” Faith said, quite helpfully

“Is he?”

“Yes, Grandad. If we want to cross the road we have to give him lollipops.”

Bristling like a shaving brush, Grandad Patches glared. “Lollipops? Lollipops! Does he indeed? He’s abusing that badge of trust. Well, the authorities will hear of this. You scoundrel. I’ll see you are stripped of that coat and stick, you see if I don’t.”

Making noises like a chicken, Grandad Biggert strutted up and down the pavement in front of them – first five paces away from Grandad Patches and then back. On each return, he swiped Patches’ head with his rolled-up newspaper. “Pah! You haven’t got the cojones, you truffle snuffler!”, he declared loudly, “and in any case…” he continued, strutting away five paces, “…even if you did…” strutting back and taking another hefty swot, “…you won’t get very far. I was forced to do this by the council.”

Enraged, Patches snatched the paper off him, halting another inward bound strike of the bonce. “I demand you step down and stop these lollipop shenanigans. If you do not…I’ll…I’ll report you!” he snapped.

“Step down? Step down?” Biggert thrust his face forward as far as he dared, “What’s a few lollipops to you, Patches, eh? And, in any case, think of the poor little children having to cross this…” he waved at the ceaseless traffic, “…without someone to help them. You won’t sleep easy with that on your conscience.”

“The children don’t need you anyway, not with me around,” the other snapped in return, “I am an expert on road safety. Why, back the sixties I directed several award winning…” But Grandad Biggert didn’t wait long enough to hear the end of the sentence. Suddenly he was tearing off down the road as fast as his old legs could carry him.

Scratching her head, Faith puzzled at the departing back. “Why has he disappeared? Look, Grandad, he’s left his coat, hat and stick behind.” And she pointed at the pile on the pavement.

“I don’t know,” replied Grandad Patches. And then he turned. And blinked.

Strolling towards them was another person in uniform, holding a different kind of stick and tapping it against her thigh. Tap, tap, tap.

Grandad Patches smiled. “Good afternoon, Police Constable Muff. How nice to see you.”

But PC Muff didn’t return the smile. Indeed, she looked rather cross. But then she always does, doesn’t she? After all, a policewoman’s lot is not a happy one these days, is it?  In fact, she positively growled. “Grandad Patches. I’ve had reports of a lollipop man stealing sweeties from children in the vicinity of this school. There are some angry mothers down at the station. That’s not you, is it?”

Shuffling sideways so that his body partly concealed the pile on the pavement, he coughed, “No, no, no, of course not. I believe the man you’re after went that way.” And he pointed towards where Grandad Biggert had recently disappeared.

PC Muff looked at him suspiciously. “Are you sure?”

“Why yes. In fact, we’re only here because of Mufti Day. It is my belief that we need to make people more aware of the dangers. Mufti can only help. Did you know, that during the sixties, I was in charge of…”

But PC Muff had gone.

In the meantime, Faith had unsteadily picked up the bright, yellow pole that Grandad Biggert had discarded in his haste to escape. On closer inspection, it was in fact striped, yellow and red. And on the top was a large saucer shaped sign containing bold words which read ‘Stop! Children Crossing!’ Now, the peculiar thing was that, as soon as she waved it at the road, like a magician with a wand, all the brightly coloured traffic screeched to a halt.

And then, if she stopped waving, they started up again. So, Faith tried it a few more times.

Traffic braked and squealed. Coughed and started. Braked and squealed. Started again. “Wow,” breathed Faith, impressed, as though she had discovered a brand-new colour for crayoning in. “Look, Grandad.”

“Excellent!” smiled Grandad Patches. He gathered up the hat and coat, ignored some angry looks from drivers, seized the pole and they crossed the road, dragging Mufti the Squirrel behind them.

Once they were inside the school, Grandad began shouting. “Mrs Gridney? Mrs Gridney? Is anybody here?”

There was no answer.

“Po, po, po,” muttered Grandad, “now where do you suppose everybody is?”

Shouting once more, the two of them entered Faith’s empty classroom. Not even Mr Muggins, the caretaker, was anywhere to be seen. Faith sat down at her tiny desk and Grandad Patches, being too big for the seat next to her, perched on the top. He placed Mufti the Squirrel on the floor where he wobbled like a jelly then toppled over with a loud squeak. “Hmmm. Mufti seems a little bit unsteady on his wheels.”

“What are we going to do, Grandad?”

“Well, we’ve come an awfully long way to leave empty handed. But all the teachers seem to have gone home. You would think they’d be marking books or having a meeting, wouldn’t you? I’m sure that when I used to teach, back in the sixties…”

“Can we go home, now? I’m very hungry. Ma might be home from work.”

“Po, po, tiddly pom. By and by, Faith dear, by and by. First we have to get you ready.” Grandad Patches looked around the classroom and soon saw what he was looking for – a large pair of scissors and some brightly coloured pieces of card. He leapt up, seized them with a flourish and scratched his head. “Now…where do you think Mrs Gridney keeps the glue?” And he began cutting great chunks off Grandad Biggert’s coat.

About an hour later, Faith was standing outside the school and facing the traffic again. Only this time she was on the opposite side of the road, outside the school gates, and dressed differently. Over her head, she was wearing a cube mask made out of brightly coloured card. Grandad Patches had chopped some holes in the front so she could just about see and had painted a large green cross on each of the faces. She was also wearing Grandad Biggert’s hat and coat – except that the hat had been stapled firmly onto the top of the cube to prevent it toppling off and the coat had been snipped into bits.

“Well, well, well, Faith, you look splendid,” nodded Grandad Patches, approvingly, “we are sure to win the prize for Mufti Day.”

“What am I, Grandad?”

“Well, you are the ‘Green Cross Road Code Boy’.”

“What does he do?”

Now, he would have ruffled her hair, but Grandad Patches couldn’t, because Faith was wearing a cardboard box, wasn’t she? So, instead he laughed, waved the stripy pole vigorously and traffic screeched to a halt again. In fact, I think one or two cars might have bumped into each other this time. Certainly there were a few angry noises coming from the middle distance. “What does he do?” he answered, probably not hearing the rumpus, “why, he helps Mufti cross the road. You see, Mufti is not very good at crossing the road and nearly always does something silly and causes an accident.”

“Is that because he can’t see?” asked Faith, her voice a little muffled by cardboard, and remembering the beady eye.

“Point your camera at Mufti,” he answered, “this takes me back.” And as Faith began filming, using her phone of course, Grandad began to speak in a terribly serious voice. A deep voice. Quite unlike his normal one: “Mufti the Squirrel wants to buy some lollipops from the lollipop shop…but what’s this?”

“I have some lollipops,” interrupted Faith, feeling around in the coat pockets. “Grandad Biggert left some.”

“Don’t interrupt, Faith my dear,” said Grandad, now back in his usual voice, “keep rolling until I say ‘cut’.” And he got down on his knees and began pulling Mufti along the pavement by the lead. “We’ll edit out the squeaky wheel later. Heh, heh, heh.”

“Sorry, Grandad.”

“But what’s this?” continued Grandad, all serious and sombre again, “a busy road. Surely Mufti can’t be intending to cross here between all these parked cars? He’ll be squashed to smithereens like the last time. Doesn’t he learn, children?”

“There aren’t any parked cars, Grandad.”

Rubbing his chin, Grandad saw that Faith was correct. The traffic had begun to move again. Well all the cars except for the two or three that had bumped into each other. They weren’t moving at all. In fact their drivers had, by now, got out and were pointing at each other in a less than friendly fashion. “Wave the pole again, Faith,” he said, kindly, “that should stop the others.”

Faith was only to pleased to do as she was asked.

The cars stopped in an untidy line. Grandad Patches, still on his knees, began to crawl backwards, pulling Mufti into the road, who continued to squeak noisily. “Oh dear,” he continued in his gruff voice, “who can save him now?” And he looked at Faith in expectation as she continued waving the pole. “Who can save him now?” he repeated, pointedly.

Now, I think that Grandad Patches expected Faith to do something. And, indeed, he stood up, leaving Mufti in front of the stationary cars and hurried over to her. “You’re supposed to save him, Faith, dear.”

“Save him?”

“Yes. ‘You’re the Crossing Cross Code Boy’. You appear from the skies in a mighty flash and shout ‘Stop! I’m the Crossing Cross Code Boy! Stupid squirrel, Don’t you know your road code? Never, never, never go between parked cars!”

“OK, Grandad.” And Faith put the pole down.

Now there was horrendous rattling, clattering and a quite terrible clang because as she did so, the cars sprang into life. Mufti the Squirrel, hit by the first one, bounced, cartwheeled into the air, clunk clicked the windscreen of a second one then descended back onto the road where he was squashed flat.

Oh, dear.

Inside her box, Faith began to laugh, I’m afraid.

Grandad Patches looked appalled. “Mufti!” he yelled, “That wasn’t supposed to happen!”

But worse was to follow.

Because this time the halted traffic showed no intention of moving. Doors opened and several angry looking people began marching towards Grandad Patches. One or two were even shaking their fists. And, Faith observed, the nearest woman was holding Mufti’s squeaky wheel.

“I can explain,” Grandad was saying, as he backed up towards the school gates, “Er…back in the sixties…”

Even before the first motorist got to him, though, there was a terrific commotion from across the road. Grandad Patches looked above the livid heads and pointed, “oh dearie me, look out everyone!” Because, racing red faced towards them, as quickly as he could, was Grandad Biggert, followed by Police Constable Muff and behind her, hot on their heels, snarling and drooling ferociously, was Mrs Dander’s dog, looking as though it hadn’t had a square meal in ages.

“Patches! Patches!” screamed Grandad Biggert, “You feeble lentil scringer. You’re to blame for this.” He pushed Grandad Patches in front of him like a shield.

Mrs Dander’s dog stopped, his hackles raised, growling menacingly at the crowd gathered in front of him, eyeing first the motorists, then Police Constable Muff, Faith and finally Grandad Patches. “Nobody move,” he said, “Back in the sixties, when I was a dog handler for Crofts, I was taught that…”

But Faith was getting hungry. “It’s only Mrs Dander’s dog,” she said, taking off her cardboard mask, “he probably wants you to throw him something, like a stick. Here boy!” And she took Mufti’s wheel from the nearest woman and skimmed it, like a frisbee, across the road.

And do you know what? He barked and tore after it like an athlete doing a 100 metres sprint.

“Of course, Faith my dear,” smiled Grandad Patches, ruffling her hair. “Mrs Dander’s dog was attracted by the sound of the squeaky wheel.”

“Was he?”

“Yes if course. Dogs can hear sounds at a high pitch that we humans can’t.”

“Can we go home now?” Faith took off the rest of her costume. I think she’d had enough of being the Green Crossing Code Boy, even though it had been quite good fun. “Will we win the Mufti Day prize?”

“Pom, pom, pom. I’m sure we will when you show your film and costume to Mrs Gridney.” Grandad Patches took Faith’s hand. “Now, let’s be careful when we cross the road, my dear.”

However, Police Constable Muff had seen quite enough. “Now just hold on a minute, Grandad Patches. I want to know who’s responsible for this carnage.” And there were several voices from the rest of the crowd raised in agreement. “Just who was waving that pole and stopping the traffic?” And she took out her notebook, flipped it open and licked the pencil tip. “Are you the lollipop man?”

“Yes, Patches, you goat gruffler,” snorted Grandad Biggert, stepping out from behind the school gates, “I’m sure we’d all like to know that, wouldn’t we?”

But as he did so, the motorists started to stare at Grandad Biggert intently. One or two began to point fingers. Murmuring voices could be heard: “That’s him. That’s the man that charges two lollipops for halfway and three to get to the other side safely. That’s the scoundrel…”

“Is it, indeed,” snapped PC Muff, pointing at the costume on the floor “Is that your coat, sir? Could you turn out the pockets? I am going to have to ask you to come with me to the police station, if you don’t mind, sir.”

“Patches!” shouted Grandad Biggert, “Patches!”

But Grandad Patches had gone, holding Faith’s hand to see her safely home.

Now, I am sure you’ll be pleased to know that Faith did indeed do very well in the Mufti Day procession that following afternoon and Mrs Gridney gave her third prize for coming dressed as a squirrel, although she didn’t get to see the film because it had been deleted accidentally by Grandad Patches when he was editing out the squeaky wheel.

And Ma didn’t get to see it either.

And as for that squeaky wheel, I hear that some boys are still using it in the park to play toss and catch. When they can wrestle it from Mrs Dander’s dog, that is.

Thursday, 7 February 2019

Cherry Oh Baby

Cherry Oh Baby

She comes to me so virtually
I looked down past so I never seen
she passed by my room so sweetly
I sense scent but lost in dream
she glance at my dance so meekly
I drown back beat up down stream.

She steal me up ever so slowly
I sometimes caught unaware
idle she feel me up and she roll me
I see teasing eyes wink and dare
she mouths words calm and control me
I linger touch wet felt hair.

And every night she bids me well
I gasp for her every morning
she tells me never kiss never tell
I building and some burning
she say never break her spell
I push fingers in wet and yearning.

She chocolate cake kiss me private
I blaze sit far fool above
she hard stroke and she drive it
I too worn out to fall in love
she writes harder and she psychic
I smooth inside her fit like soft glove.

She take me take her driving
we lie pounding in warm wheat
she laugh and she joke and she jiving
we thrust loving inside her heat
she grateful and weep forgiving
tears if we lose what we both seek.

She tell me such things could be perfect
I say it should not now end
she say that the pain will be worth it
I bewilder once where and when
she spells words I false interpret
cast off from the ruins we were in.

She scolds me her ever so virtuous
I blocked presence can never show
she say she loves me so obvious
I try to kill love but it still flow
and what we grow to be precious
we each will never not now know.