The Girl From Floor 15

The Girl From Floor 15


I stood beside her in the lift
Each moment there a treasured gift
In truth, I did not know her name
But still I loved her all the same
Her tangled hair, the scent of mint
That overlaid the subtle hint
Of fag smoke, and her yellow teeth
Her tired skirt, those legs beneath
That in my slightly fevered mind
Rose seamlessly to pert behind.

A shudder, and the doors were closed
Another shudder, up we rose
What joy inside, what secret bliss!
The working day was made for this !
Imagination running riot
In this metal box of quiet
Would that I could find the words
To make my secret feelings heard
But lips as dry as Desert Storm
Could never utter thoughts so warm.

And so in silence we ascended
Me and her, my sweet intended
Her a vision fit for Vogue
Me in slightly sweaty brogues
My smell, her scent, my age, her youth
Together, rising to the roof
But then! A shudder, number three
A sudden lurch, then her and me
Inside a lift now broken, stuck
A chance! A chance to try my luck!

I turned to her and raised a brow
The words were there! Oh holy cow!
“Oh dear,” I said with gentle smile
“We may be here for quite a while!”
She looked at me and said, quite calm
“Just press that button by your arm
And Bob will come, and set us free –
I hope he’s quick, I need a wee.”

Her voice! Her voice! Such sweet dictation
Though she spoke of urination
In my heart she’d just proposed
And I, her knight, her one true rose
Could act, with sweet alacrity
To save my love, then she’d save me
We’d leave this lift and head for bed
And in a fortnight, we’d be wed.

But lo, behold, my dreams were crushed
In seconds (Robert must’ve rushed)
The lift was fixed, we rose ten floors
And through the newly opened doors
Away she strode, my heart’s last rolo
Leaving me still flying solo
Yet my heart was light as cloud –
I’d heard her voice! She spoke aloud!

Tomorrow, nods of recognition
Maybe then a certain frisson
Flirty eyes, a waft of mint
A mirrored bedroom, zebra print
Oh ecstasy! A life adrift
Now tethered by a broken lift
Tomorrow! Love! Our souls laid bare!
I hope she doesn’t take the stairs.

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Parental Guidance

Parental Guidance

A man who loves his children
Can forgive them many things
Put up with every foible
And the trouble that it brings
But yet the most devoted,
Caring, loving, dad must shun
His offspring now, forever
If the buggers read The Sun.

Don’t read The Sun, don’t read The Sun
A red-topped sheet of bile
Rip it up and burn it
Sweep the ashes in a pile
Hold your children closely
Give them love and family fun
But sever all connections
If they go and read The Sun

They can vomit in the motor
Leave a poo upon the floor
Put lego down the toilet
Dirty handprints on the door
They can steal the chocolate hob nobs
Bring home vagabonds to shag
But they’re gone, and gone forever
If they ever read that rag.

Don’t read The Sun, don’t read The Sun
Vindictive, twisted shits
Scumbags with a keyboard
Rip integrity to bits
Raise a man to Hero
Rip him down, besmirch his name
Then pay him to abase himself
Say sorry, cry in shame.

Each man must tell his children
When the playful day is done
You can rob me, wreck me, hurt me
But don’t ever read The Sun!

I Shall Die In Mid-September

I shall die in mid-September

As the summer ends

With the trees half green, half gold

And the sun still afloat after dinner

Just.

I shall die as the summer dies

Still warm

With the echoes of TMS not yet muffled

Beneath the leaves of autumn.

I shall die as thoughts turn to anoraks

Sturdy shoes

Outside bulbs and one more cut before oiling

And storing the mower.

I shall die as the summer dies because I am the summer

In all its glory

I am endless days, cricket, the sound of distant music

The face turned skywards to feel the gentle sun

Through closed lids.

Not for me the darkened afternoons of winter

Those grey sludged pavements, whipping rain

Cold fingers

The endless search for warmth, no comfort

In a too distant Christmas.

When I die with the summer it shall be in triumph

All will be well

I will die with the fading summer sun, cold skin warmed

By the certainty that for me, at least,

The winter will never come.

Reading Festival

I’m old now. I wasn’t always. I went to my first Reading Festival when I was 17 (RHCP, Senser, Radiohead, Therapy?, Wildhearts, Terrorvision. Gutted that Soundgarden didn’t show up) and ended up going for 10 years in a row. I did my time in the mud and the dirt. I saw bands I loved, bands I hated and bands I’d never heard of. I drank the beer and ate the sausages. I went to Feet First on the Thursday nights and stumbled back over pitch black guy-ropes. I saw explosions and heard fireworks and laughed when people fell into the hidden brook. I stayed up too late around campfires, then fell asleep to the dulcet tones of a thousand campers shouting “Bollocks”. I woke up freezing at the crack of dawn.  I saw a riot that started from a single, well aimed egg and ended up with mounted police and plastic bottles full of wee. I dallied with girls that I shouldn’t have, failed to dally with girls that I should have and all in all had a stupidly good time.

But I’m old now. Those wild indulgences of my youth are nothing but fond memories, happy thoughts to pass the time as I make another cup of tea. And the strange thing is that I don’t mind. Not a bit. I’ve moved on and grown up. I remember being worried, back in the day, that the world would end when I was too old to be young. How would I cope with the boredom? The endless nights at home? Well here’s a message for my younger self: Stop worrying, fuckwit, and go enjoy yourself. I’m fine. You will be fine. Don’t sweat it.

It’s Festival time this week, of course. That’s what’s brought all this to mind. My walk home from work takes me along the IDR and towards the Festival site, so I’m knee deep in campers for most of it. Today was quite tame, compared to previous years ( the queuing cars were actually moving this year, albeit very slowly) but it was still rammed. This year’s bunch of pedestrian campers looked pretty much like any other year’s bunch of pedestrian campers, but I found myself surprised by the luggage. Mainly because it was exactly that: luggage. Actual suitcases, on wheels, with no sign of mud anywhere. Absolutely spotless. With name tags. If you’d taken a nice neat labelled suitcase in my day you’d have been burnt at the stake, but I guess times change.

Anyway. I’m waffling. I wrote a poem as I walked through the crowds, and I’ve pasted it below. I’m too lazy to come up with a proper title, so in the immortal words of Eddie Hitler, “I think I’ll just put bollocks”.

Bollocks!

Backed up along the IDR
The camper-vans and hatchback cars
Their parcel-shelves stacked up with gear
(Tents and bags and crates of beer)
Just sitting in the crawling queue
Their speed, perhaps, an inch or two
Per hour, whilst past on either side
Totemic teenage tramping tides
Fill every foot of pavement space
Identical in form and face

(The nonchalant, well practiced miens
That mask the minds still in their teens)

A route march down to Campsite G
An army, this, it’s plain to see
Whilst I, demobbed and pensioned too
Just cross the road to join the few
Who spurn the turn-off to the site
Then take a resident’s delight
In sudden calm beyond the throng
My ears immune to siren song
And I, demobbed and healthy yet,
(A battle hardened Festy Vet)
Walk home, to all I need in life
Adoring children, loving wife
And I, demobbed, a wiser beast,
Sit down. Inside. A man at peace.

Not quite The Monkees

The Monkees sung about loving Valerie, so I wrote a poem about loving Valkyries. (As Barry Norman may have said: “And why not..?”)

Valkyries
As tall as trees
Those buxom breasted broads
Leather tunics straining
Into battle, swinging swords
Flaxon braids, a sheen of sweat
Flashing blades, a crimson jet
Of blood. A kill. My Valkyrie
Victorious once more
Removes her leather armour
As I step in through the door
Valkyrie erotically
Divested of her swords
Rides again in battle
Lewd, Licentious, buxom broad.

Doubting Tommy

Wrote this today while I walked home from work.

Doubting Tommy

“Oh ye of little faith!” they said

And thought that I was silly,

But still I couldn’t couldn’t countenance

That God could have no willy.

.

“But what about his son?” I said

“That Jesus bloke that died –

How’d his mum get pregnant?

How’d God’s semen get inside?”

.

“Immaculate Conception, dolt!”

Said Sister with a sneer,

“Mary was a virgin!”

Then she cuffed me round the ear.

.

“Balderdash! What rot!” said I

“You nuns are full of cack!”

So they took me to the basement

And they put me on the rack.

.

“A stretch will do you good,” they said

“And stop you being so silly.”

But it didn’t. I’m now 9ft 10

But God’s still got a willy.

Figuring out weather

I’ve been trying to figure out weather. I haven’t got very far. It’s just too full of contradictions. Take sunshine, for example. The sun is very hot, and sometimes when the sun is out the weather is very hot too. But sometimes it isn’t. Sometimes it’s freezing when the sun is out. That’s understandable when it’s windy as well as sunny, but sometimes the sun is out and the air is calm but it’s still cold. So, logically, that must mean that sun and wind have no relation to ambient temperature. Except that’s bollocks. Because sun and wind do affect the temperature.

If logic is bollocks, and sun and wind do have an effect on temperature, then that effect must be unlogical, random, unpredictable. In which case all those weathermen on the telly are talking out of their arse. They must have no more idea about incoming weather than we do. So they should be fired. We should close down the Met Office and use the savings to fund research into something more useful. Like chocolate kettles or left handed rakes, perhaps. Or – whisper it gently – a robot that can figure out the weather.

The sun is bright, the sky is clear
But more than that I’ve no idea
Freezing? Boiling? Don’t ask me –
I hate you, Meteorology.