They’ve Taken Way the Steps


They’ve taken away the steps

the ones leading to the first floor

where JB HiFi is

cordoned off ‘coz of covid

the ones I climbed for practice

in case I made The Great Wall

but there are other steps

to keep in mind

that Stairway To Heaven

for instance

the one we all have to climb

to get to our Heavenly home

but if the climb takes as long

as the eight minutes of the song

we all might be in a spot of bother;

hopefully St. Peter has a rescue brigade

of angels on call

or a St, Bernard or two with a small barrel

of whisky around their necks

for those who didn’t practice often enough

on Earth





 
 
 

Slouch

I don’t like the way the branches slouch,

my grandfather would have said.

It shows a lack of moral fibre.

Grandfather did not approve of droop

though I think he could have cut the branches

some slack.

The best people slouch at times.

Oscar Wilde certainly did though he was no slouch.

And Tilda Swinton and Anne Hathaway were spotted

slouching at the Golden Globes.

I like the way Fridays slouch towards the weekend.
Poems should slouch a little too.

They should not appear cinched and pained

as if wearing a tight pair of underpants.

pic courtesy of Wikipedia

A Cozy Crucifixion

Harvesting the cane would do it, so would elite tennis,

pounding the pool for Australia,

all fodder for the physio:

you lie prostrate on the plinth,

narrow as an ironing board

head down in the gap,

arms at yr sides, feet fastened at the base —

a cozy crucifixion,

planking for Jesus,

while muscles are massaged, kneaded.

coaxed into submission,

the little pummeling fists of current bringing you

to the shores of bliss

Arthur

You’re in for a treat, I say.

We’re off to see Arthur.

My toes do a little tap dance on the floorboards.

Come on, you two. Mustn’t be late.

We hop in the car and we’re off.

Thirty minutes in the Waiting Room

then the call.

The doorman lets us in.

Arthur bounces up to us.

Cheerful. Chubby. Cherubic.

Have a seat, he says to my toes

resting my feet on a pouf.

30 seconds one foot.

3o seconds the other.

Done and dusted.

All over red rover.

It’s a tough job,

but someone has to do it.

he says, chirpy as a cherry.

See you in six months.

My toes do a little dance

on the way out.

The Woods

The rash on my back

has dimmed:

angry red

to demure blush.

I wish I never

had thrush

in my left nostril —

in that cramped cave

hard for the air

to get through

but the meds kept

the wolf at bay,

subdued.

Almost out of the woods

like Red Riding Hood.

Nuisances and Nits

Every now and then

I clear out the belfry of my brain

of nuisances and nits.

Does it pang my conscience?

No, not a whit.

It keeps my train of thought

from being derailed,

from being snailed

by useless baggage,

I’m unattached as the cabbage

on the shelf,

and the best part —

I’m free as a fart.

I get to be myself.

Fridays circa 5p.m.

There’s nothing I like better doing

than sitting here in a quiet corner

of the pub

with my Mongolian beanie on

waiting for my mates to rock up

while I have a quiet read.

I know it smacks of vanity

when I pull out my iPhone

and scroll through my posts,

reading what I said, what others said,

how many likes I got.

I like what I wrote and how I say it:

the long, slouching sentences,

the laconic phrases

[Hey! I’m an Ausssie]

the odd syntax here and there

[ like the first line of this post ].

One should be as comfortable in one’s voice

as in the clothes one’s wearing.

I like the merry banter of patrons in the bar too,

the warm embrace of companionship

as I like to gather my poems around me

like boon companions

until my real friends, my flesh and blood friends,

turn up

Have You Ever Noticed?

Have you ever noticed how placid an ad becomes

when you put a cow in it?

Farmers too when they milk?

All my good ideas came to me while I was milking a cow,

the American painter Grant Wood

declared.

Have you ever noticed how much more pleasant

‘The Farmer Wants a Wife’ is

compared to the bitchy, sniping

‘Married At First Sight’?

We should all pat a cow in the morning, hug a tree

if we are to start the day right.

Riot-prone areas, prisons too should be equipped with cows

their melodious moos

soothing the seething masses.

Bovine Buddhas

emblems of placidity

a state we aspire to in these troubled times.