I recall sitting on a stone wall
in awe of Hale-Bopp trailing by
it looked all upside down
with tail splayed out above
as the Earth span
and that spectacle of cosmic light
moved counter to the common stars
I thought I could never see
such beauty with my own eyes again
until our orbits caused to coincide


CLP 17/04/2023


Kumquat, as he was known

Worked each Saturday morning
In Fruit & Veg, it was said
And school holidays
When not playing cricket
Which was all winter
And much of the summer too
Given so much English weather
Is unsuited to chasing leather
Across a field freshly mown

In China the Kumquat’s known
As the golden orange fruit
It’s bitter-sweet
Quite a thing to eat
Its thin skin and all
Unlike the cricket ball
Which were it to meet
Someone’s front teeth
Would provoke a ghastly moan


n.b. NaPoWriMo 2023, Day 17 prompt, a specific fruit poem.

Kumquat was a keen cricketer and turned out to be a decent player and all round good bloke. Great nickname, in a team of mostly great nicknames.

“Chasing leather” refers to the fielding part of the game of cricket. It means to chase after a cricket ball.

Cricket balls weigh at least five and a half ounces (159.99g) and no more than five and three-quarter ounces, (163g).

They are made of a cork core, which is bound tightly in string, before being incased firmly in leather. The two pieces of leather are joined by a raised seam.

Cricket balls are solid, hard objects which can seriously hurt a player if not fielded correctly.

CLP 17/04/17


I am sick of the sound
of your voice
You're always moaning
I'm sick of the sight
Of you
and your tears
What do you know about it
About anything
You're stupid, pig thick
Don't start
Don't interrupt
Oh, do be quiet
Haven't you got anything new to say
Hurry up
Get on with it
I haven't got all day
Not now, later


n.b. NaPoWriMo 2023. Day 16 prompt. A negation poem. Sadly too many of us have been on the wrong end of negation. Maybe, it’s why some of us write.

CLP 16/04/2023

April Showers

ancient paving smooth as mirror
underfoot as slick as ice
reflects back mountainous clouds
rolling around the fenland skies


n.b. NaPoWriMo 2023. Day 15. Prompt: feet of clay. Beyond me today.

CLP 15/04/2023

How The Bankers Foreclosed About Him

How the bankers foreclosed about him
We shall never know
How he stretched his credit rating
That is covered too

Spreads the bank its interest charges
Bold about the boy
Whose unpaid for hat and jacket
Sum the history


n.b. NaPoWriMo 2023. Day 14 prompt, parody of, or satirise a well-known poem.

Here using Emily Dickinson’s ‘How The Waters Closed About Him’

How the waters closed above him
We shall never know
How he stretched his anguish to us
That is covered too

Spreads the pond her base of lilies
Bold above the boy
Whose unclaimed hat and jacket
Sum the history

CLP 14/04/2023

on Ukraine

corporate killers
recruiting mercenaries
business as usual


n.b. The Wagner Group is the ultimate in government outsourcing operations. How can the war end when so many make money from conflict?

The EU has just reiterated sanctions on Wagner Group associates. Meanwhile shares in weapons manufacturers soar. See BAe shares for the past three years , for example. See how the value of shares has rocketed since the war in Ukraine began.

Wars do not happen in isolation.

CLP 14/04/2023

Ha Bloody Ha

"Tell me a joke,
she said
"something to make
me cry"
"With laughter?"
I asked
"Not necessarily"
she sighed


n.b. NaPoWriMo 2023. Day 13 prompt. Surely not? Are you joking?

CLP 13/04/2023

on poetry

Ink drawn down by a ball
Tracking the shapes of symbols
Forming letters, leaving words
That flowed down the arm
Impulses sparked from synapses
Passed out of the cranium
Onto a leaf of compressed tree
Watched through the eyes
Images impress on the retinas
Checked back into the head
Compared with the thoughts
Originated in a jumble
Memory, imagination, emotion
Characters coughed up from a character


n.b. NaPoWriMo 2023, Day Twelve: Where’s it from, what’s it about, what’s the point? Or something like that.

CLP 12/04/2023

on Ukraine

oh by the way, food
Black Sea Grain Initiative
the world needs feeding


n.b. Would you mind passing the bread basket, while you’re at each other’s throats?

The blithe expectation that wheat grain from Ukraine will not only be sown, grown, harvested, but shipped out, despite the nation being invaded by Moscow and the mercenaries, strikes me as odd.

According to the New York Times, the two warring nations are not fully in agreement on the protocol for letting the staff of life get through the Black Sea.

Perhaps, now, we’ll focus on stopping the killing?

CLP 12/04/2023

Passing Conversation at the Service Station, Folkestone, Kent, October 2019

They’d not seen each other for simply ages

It used to be regular, when they’d got their wages

Off for an evening, best clobber on

Leaving at home Bert, Harry and Ron

(except, that Ron’s been long since gone)

You still doing those dating sites?

Asked Sheila, needing to adjust her tights

Yes. replied her friend with a weary sigh

Knowing they were bound to ask, after a while

Remember, I said, when you first gave it a try

It’s about quality not quantity. That was my advice.

That’s if you don’t want to be left up on the shelf.

Well, I think, at last, I worked that out for myself.

Oh! That’s such good news! Is that the truth?

No, not really.
Owned up, disillusioned Ruth.


n.b. Napawrimo 2023. Day 11 Prompt: an overheard funny.

Honestly, what you hear when travelling. I nearly stepped in and said, “I’m free. Would you like to join me for supper?”

Then I thought better of it, I had just had a very late lunch.

Names have been changed to protect the anonymity of the protagonists, as well as to fit the loose rhyme scheme.

CLP 11/04/2023