It’s summer and the park is knee-deep in meadow flowers.

It’s also the end of the academic year – time for sports days and garden parties, which explains the following notice, tied to gates of the local school:
Continue reading “picky”

voices from the past **

My past has caught me up: this afternoon
I checked my e-mail, as I always do,
and found a message from an old flame who
I hadn’t seen since school. Out of the blue
a bolt that sends me tumbling through the years
to adolescent angst and teenage tears,
to poems scrawled in chalk while classmates jeer
and playground fights that fade when Sir appears.
I was his One True Love, there’d be no other.
At sixteen I was far too young: I fled.
But now he’s tracked me down; who needs the men
from Pinkerton’s when Google is your friend?
(Though Google’s failed me time and time again
in my attempts to trace his younger brother.)

Continue reading “voices from the past **”

make it fresh: pizzas and poetry

Pub sign "Pizza's made fresh"
The publican’s apostrophe in the picture caught my attention.

Closer inspection suggested that it wasn’t the only problem: my friend wondered what would happen if he turned up with a pizza that had seen better days and ordered them to “make it fresh.”

I was reminded of telling another friend about a poetry competition on the theme “Fresh voices” and her suggestion made that “fresh” ought to be reserved to describe bread, milk, eggs, etc. That discussion might have been pedantic, but it inspired me to write a winning poem.

Hunting around for it in the archives, I am amazed to discover that it was written in the year 2000. It also surprises me that I have never posted it on the blog. Here it is:
Continue reading “make it fresh: pizzas and poetry”


'Dreams?' she apostrophised
Apostrophes almost always give Spaniards problems. But they – the Spaniards, not the apostrophes – do love the “genitivo sajón”, as they call it, and seldom miss an opportunity to use it, even when, as in the case of the club whose sign this is, it isn’t appropriate.

To be fair, it can be complicated trying to unravel who owns what.
Continue reading “possessed”

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