on Iran

in the name of god
armed men chase, beat, punch and kill
defiant children

p.s. The Guardian of London reports that 58 protesting children, some as young as eight years, have been killed by the ‘Morality Police’ and their cadres, in the current freedom rallies.

One thing all children hold dear, is a sense of fairness. Any teacher of any year group, will confirm this to you. The children of Iran are no different.

Women. Life. Freedom.


CLP 20/11/2022

on guard

threat? self-determination?
people get ready


n.b. Graffito on a low-rise social housing development in a beautiful, wooded district on the north side of Birmingham, Alabama. Not just scrawled on a wall, but painted large across the building.

At first, my response to these words was that this slogan, for it is big and prominent enough to be a political slogan, was an act of immature bravado, possibly delineating gang territory. However, this is not necessarily the case. Gang signs are usually more subtle, more discreet, almost meaningless to the naïve passerby, instantly recognisable to friend and foe.

Here in Birmingham Alabama, (the neatest, tidiest city centre in the whole of the USA as far as I have seen), there has been a long history of open warfare on people of colour by racist whites.

As a civil war was fought, as legislation was introduced, as civil rights were argued for and established, the racists have beaten, bombed and murdered people in this small city for speaking up for their basic rights as citizens of the USA. The racists in this city, made it a point to openly and brutally resist the changes USA society needed to go through to begin to live up to its constitutional promise, “all men are created equal.”

Birmingham, Alabama is a place of pilgrimage. A place to pay respect to the church-going children fire-bombed, the Freedom Riders set upon, the brave people who endured attacks by police dogs, batons and boots, our fellow human beings who were treated worse than dogs for boycotting, travelling, marching, sitting in, or simply praying.

This history of living memory does not just disappear overnight. It might be, given the attack on the Capitol Building in Washington DC on 6th January 2021, that some people do not feel entirely at ease with the increasing aggression of the extreme right.

It might be that the public murder of George Floyd and the deadly shootings of so many other black young people by police officers around the USA, has provoked some to think that if the ghastly NRA can argue guns are for defence, then these young people are not going to be sitting on their hands and hanging about for official help in policing their community.

In the USA those, who have made sure access to firearms is so easy, need to appreciate that self-defence means everyone has the right to be armed. These trusting in “YUNG GUNS” are taking the freedom to carry deadly weapons argument for defence to its obvious conclusion. If you believe you can’t trust the police, courts and the prison system to act humanely, who can you trust?

Then, after asking who do you trust, the next question needs to be “Who do you love?”

Unfortunately, sadly, awfully, I have since heard that the YUNG GUNS who had sprayed the blue paint on the wall, (barely visible on the brickwork in the photo above), had been enforcing their own form of terrifying justice locally.


CLP 06/10/2022

on time

three men on corner
The Man should be here by now
nervous gathering


n.b. There used to be a police station fifty yards from here, but it’s a pub now. Money saved, lives wasted.

CLP 17/08/2022

on Ukraine

where's the crime asking
How many children have died?
Moscow is the place


n.b. Marina Ovsyannikova has now had the Moscow police searching her family home for evidence of crimes. This is a witch hunt.

CLP 10/08/2022

on getting home very, very late

'Ello, 'ello, er
so what's all this about, then?
none of your business


n.b. Nice to see Norfolk Constabulary out and about in such numbers on Norwich Pride day. I saw seven officers, wearing various rainbow motifs, transfers, face paints, etc., interviewing a lone male who had been travelling on an unlicensed electric scooter in the city centre.

Meanwhile, the Met declined to interview, or even send a questionnaire, to the covid lockdown partying Prime Minister. Elsewhere, fossil fuel companies are robbing us blind and no, no one is looking at the legalities of their exploitative monopoly behaviours.

CLP 31/07/2022

on time

crossing road, stops, waits
leave, or carry it over?
hedgehog prickles sharp


n.b. It’s been some time since I have seen a hedgehog alive. Their natural defence is to stop, curl into a ball then hold still until the perceived threat passes. They have yet to work out that this doesn’t work when approached by motor vehicles.

This beauty stopped right in the middle of the street as I was passing last evening, so I lifted it with barehands and placed it behind a low wall on some grass on the side it was heading.

A few moments later three police vehicles rolled by very slowly and quietly. They turned left and pulled up to make a raid. The hedgehog would have had no chance against that convoy.


CLP 24/05/2022

on light

sirens from below
concrete and glass flicker blue
Friday night normal


n.b. Just people doing people things at a sub-atomic level, thankfully.

CLP 04/03/2022

Raid (i)

night, asleep

after valentines

messaged “night”

he wakes; strange silence

no traffic, just the night bird

drapes back-lit by blues


n.b. NaPoWriMo 2021 Day 7 prompt syallable count forms (i) Shadorma 3/5/3/5/7/5. See below Raid (ii) for an example of (ii) Fibonacci 1/1/2/3/5/8.


CLP 07/04/2021

Can I come in? It’s not safe out there

…it never has been, I thought

I read the news, have seen the stats

hear the doppler rise and fall of sirens

bouncing off the city walls insistent

on untrammelled passage

scrambling wits of locked in drivers

blocked in lanes unsure quite where

the blue lights approach from

or head toward, what they are

and who they’re for


May I? For a moment, until it clears.

Could it ever, I wondered after

weeks, months, years have passed?

Some still remember how it felt

to bump accidentally into friends

or brew a fight with a stranger

or catch the light in a smile

(while sharing a smoke at the cool side-door)

agreeing to something a little more intimate


n.b. NaPoWriMo 2021 Day 6 Prompt, take a line from a story as a prompt, then write the poem, then

“Actually, one of them was supposed to come today, but because of the commotion going on out there they sent me instead.” 

From Samsa in Love by Haruki Murakami first published in The New Yorker, republished in Desire Vintage Classics / Penguin Random House (London, 2017).


CLP 06/04/2021


L3 (Day 35) Snowed In

Well done for getting out!” he said

as if I’d slipped out

past the plastic police

of Serco plc

who run Yarl’s Wood

Immigration Removal Centre


In fact, all I had done

was walk to town

in the snow


CLP 09/02/2021