Saturday, 23 June 2012

This place

This blog is a new home for a lot of my older poems (it's easier to manage than a website...). On here you will find some poems that have already been published elsewhere by someone else, some poems that have been published in my book "More about the song" and some poems that no-one will probably ever want to publish anywhere. As on the old website the posts are arranged, roughly, by subject/theme/content/size. Click on the links below to move more quickly to a particular group of poems... or just move about at your own pace. Email me if there's anything you like and/or want to use. Newer poems are on my up-to-date blog and scattered about elsewhere online and on paper.

Circle of Life Poems

Distress and Recovery Poems

Little Poems

Love Poems

Modern World Poems

Nightclub Poems

Poems for Occasions

Poems about People

Scottish Interest Poems

Seeing and Believing Poems

Song poems

Poems about Writing

Song poems

Poems that are about songs or like songs or that have been made into songs at some point.

A fairly old poem of mine, 'Significant other deceased', is now a song on the new album by Scottish musician Kim Edgar 'Untold Stories' (2016). That poem is still available on a postcard too.

First, a poem of mine 'Michael Marra's Visit to the Links Hotel' that became a song by Montrose singer/songwriter Gary Anderson:

Gary also took my 'Angus Adoption Song' and gave it a tune (as well as 'Auchmithie Road' but no video for that):

Some other bits and pieces... a song of mine...

Toon (audio here)


I live in a little town,
It picks me up
And it slows me down.
I stay in a little town,
Aye, I stay…

Watch tides, at the waterside,
Sea sure for its share,
River fights, its course to keep,
Gulls float, going nowhere.


Flat lands, green against the blue,
Long days, long beaches,
Hearts wake, for a golden day,
What that might teach us.


Bide, close, can you hear the words?
Poets past, modelled faces,
Tall street singing high above,
These are our places.


And some old poems/lyrics... some have been songs previously but are currently... resting.

A dream is a song of hope


'Live the dream', that's what they say
Then they go on living anyway
That's not a dream, that's just a plan
To have the house, the car, the man
A dream can hold so much, much more
Than a posh haircut and a 4 by 4

So much to fix, so much to try
And time so quickly washing by
We have to save the world, it's true
That leaves us quite a lot to do
So we have to train ourselves once more
To dream of things worth hoping for

Let's dream of kindness every day
Let's not give up, let's lead the way
Let's be naïve, let's dream awake
Let's live our lives for all our sake
Let's give those dreams a cracking song
And sing it loud and keep it strong







If religion's rejoicing
We can use rock'n'roll
If prayer's deep and heartfelt
For that we have soul

If gathering together
Is one purpose of faith
Now we have Glastonbury
How much togetherness can you take?

You want contemplation
Try acoustic auteurs
You need revelation
Pop has the poseurs

You want vocal leaders
They're thick on the ground
Bono and Geldof
The preachers abound

We have our religion
It comes on CD
Or turn on the radio
And worship for free








It's still blowing, Bob


How many roads must they build around here before they run out of land?
How many seas must we empty of life before we begin to understand?
How many times will we regret what we've done before we can make better plans?

The trampolines, round here, are blowing in the wind
The trampolines are blowing in the wind

How many years can a child save their tears before they are drowned in the sea?
How many years can we try and buy love before we shut about me?
And how many times can we get it all wrong before we learn life's ABC?


How many songs must there be in this world before we hear what they say?
How many words will we throw all around before we clear some away?
And how many Bobs do we see nowadays and how many more on their way?






Just the one song


I don't long to live forever
No desire to be a star
No ambitions like Madonna's
To stretch myself way, way too far

I don't sweat with channel fever
Or plan to launch a fragrant scent
Keep away the range of handbags
Keep your money well unspent

I would have instead one good song
One to sing when it's my turn
I would study, keep it ready
I would watch and wait and learn

Time would pass, I'd get my chances
One would be just right, just right
I would make the one-off debut
Have a starry, starry night

There might be a little clapping
A kiss, a 'hey', a 'look at you'
I might like the feel of smiling
It might warm me through and through

Then I'd sit and it's all over
On to someone else's sound
If we all take just one moment
There'll be enough to go around





Love song without a tune


There’s a hole in my hearth
Where the fire should be
My guitar’s short a string
Is it G, D or E?
My music’s too lonely
It sings a sad song
And sad can be tiresome
When it goes on this long

There’s a gap in my life
There’s no lace in my shoe
Cos I’ve plenty of stuff
But I can’t find a you

I’ve no warmth in my bed
It’s a double for one
No surprise in my cornflakes
The food without fun
There’s a huge gaping hole
Where my loved one should be
I’ve a big full hot teapot
But no two for tea


I’m not a bad person
I have love to share
But I can’t find a taker
And I’ve looked everywhere
So the hearth remains cold
And the bed just the same
I’d find you much quicker
If I just knew your name





Musical chores


Robert Plant helped with the ironing today
Kate Rusby gave a hand with the cleaning
A little bit of Bjork did the trick up till tea
And some Eels gave the dishes more meaning

Nina Simone is a wonder in the home
Any chore's less a bore with our Nina
And when June Tabor sings, why my dishcloth has wings
No, I never shall be wanting a cleaner





Not tonight, Radiohead


Please, my love, perhaps not Radiohead tonight
Right on the pulse of our lives it may be
But it's dark, so dark, and I need to feel light

I work all day to keep up the fight
To smile in the face of that creep misery
So please, my love, perhaps not Radiohead tonight

Now I know that light can be taken for trite
(Or something much worse which also rhymes tight)
But sight can play tricks and you might never see
How in darkest of dark, you can so need light

And we may love truth with all our might
But at times less pain can set us free
So please, my love, perhaps not Radiohead tonight

Instead joyous sounds, so hot they ignite
Disco or banjo or sweet harmony
When it gets this dark, it's not wrong to need light

I don't want a fake promise, it'll be alright
I'm not stupid, you know, just a little weary
So please, my love, perhaps not Radiohead tonight
In the dark, cruel dark, give me light, warm light







School gates, no mates


What do you call a group of mums
A cluster, a natter, a curse?
Primary ones think their life's tough
But being a mum can be worse

Here we are now stood at the gates
Hovering round about three
Some have a gang, some have a clan
Others bob loose, lost at sea

Group ones are just really local
Group twos are older and rich
Group threes are sort of related
Group fours are here for the bitch

Group five - childminders and aunties
Group six - predominantly grans
Dads are around, blanking it out
Oh, what a freedom is man's

The children are anxious about all sorts
Sliding and numbers and clowns
But here at the gates there are pressures
The smiles only just cover frowns

Who has the fanciest audi?
Who has the best behaved kid?
Who has the record for housepoints?
Who knows what so-and-so did?

Who is invited to this do?
And look now who's pregnant today?
Who is that wearing full make-up?
Some people, I ask you, I say

Oh, to be local or family
Oh, to be somewhere but here
Oh, but I'm not, I'm just waiting
Can't wait for the end of the year





Second to nun


Clothes out of curtains and warbling nuns
Big dreamy moons and sleepy old suns
Seeing a lighthouse from high on a swing
These are a few of my favourite things

Chocolate fingers and friendly bus drivers
Finally calmer rave era survivors
Hearing the radio starting to sing
These are a few of my favourite things

Big umbrellas and good working plumbing
A real surprise you didn't see coming
Lemon and tonic and ice cubes and gin
These are a few of my favourite things

When the bills come
When life's no fun
When I'm feeling done
I simply remember my favourite things
And then I don't feel so glum





Sing when you're nervous


Say up in a plane
And you're having a panic
You're looking at exits
And feeling quite manic
There's one thing to do
And it won't please the rest
Just fill up your lungs
Give your larynx a test

Yes, sing when you're nervous
It covers the quiet
It brightens the terror
Why don't you just try it?
Sing any song
To channel emotion
Sing it with soul
With hope and devotion

Outside the dentist
And hit by that smell
Inside's so scary
A vision of hell
You so want to run
But your teeth need to stay
Close your eyes tight
Let your song lead the way


Lost in the shops
Swamped in a crowd
Feel so like screaming
Or howling out loud
Instead sing a chorus
And aim for a tune
Harness some energy
Fly to that moon




The sisters said it best


I've always been
Lost in music
It's never felt
Like a trap

It's always felt
Just the right place
To wander loose
Off the track

Here I go now
Lost in music
I'm not sure if
I'll be back

Saturday, 28 April 2012

Circle of Life Poems

Before I drop


"Nobody's mother can't not never do nothing right" Liz Lochhead

There's a few months yet
The job will be done
Later I'll rest
Today I'll work on

Think of sleep and of vigour
All soon to be gone
Later I'll plan
For now I'll work on

The washing, the worries
All that put upon
Let's not waste the quiet
Go on fool, work on

I'll drop what I carry
One labour part done
Till then I'll be working
Work on girl, work on





History at 40


There's so much I don't remember already
Names, faces, whole unsuitable relationships
And there are places that I know, for sure, I've been
But no matter how I strain I just can't see
The getting there, the what it might have cost

My memory is a poor scrapbook so soon
Some jaded birthday cards, much background music
A lonely old photo of a dog we once kept
But some of the connections are painfully frail
Who chose the dog's name? What did the dog think of us?

And now I think, so late, of tackling history
But it seems an odd choice, all things considered
If I struggle to remember my own little past
What hope is there for all the giant rest
The queens, the battles, the damned industrial revolution?

There is one blue day I see clearly - my friend's Dad
(Staff Sergeant in the British army, Scottish, huge moustache)
Took us to Belsen, to teach us something
Because at 12, we thought we knew it all
And what a joke that was, a trick of the light

It was all emptiness
The photos of the starving, the quiet trees and sky
'There's no birdsong here, do you hear that?'
He was harsh with us and rightly so
We liked to complain about washing dishes, about waiting in the car

The drive back was different, we said nothing
No i-pods to hide behind, hell, walkmans were still new then
We looked out at the huge expanse of land moving
And counted our lucky stars, I think
We were shocked by the hole of history, too scared to breathe





Just like the dinosaurs


Not if but when
We are extinct
How will we be remembered
By those that come after
By those that never knew us?

Will we be icing pictures on party cakes
Like the dinosaurs?
Will we feature in blockbuster movies?
'Oh those crazy humans
Didn't they do anything
But kill and maim and torture all the time?'

Will there be whole academic departments
Of newer cleverer beings
Studying our bones and tracks
And mysterious ways?
'They did what?
They had how many pairs of shoes?'
Will they unearth
Long-forgotten episodes of the 'Love Boat'?
'Ah, they lived on water'
Or discover crushed-up carrier bags and crisp packets
A whole new layer of the earth's crust?
'You see, the convenience era, very significant'
Will they perhaps look at a wristwatch
A pot noodle and a Marilyn Manson CD
And wonder what on earth we got up to
Once we stopped hunting and gathering
And all that old-age stuff?

Whatever they suggest
They will never imagine
Us as we really were
The highs, the lows
The what was hard and what was really
We will be unknown and unknowable
Largely forgotten temporary inhabitants
We are not so special
Look carefully, watch
See us as we disappear






Optimistic afterlife


They go for walks about
When we're not looking
They relive merry times
When we're not there
They're glad to be in truth
All that we're not being
They don't dwell so much
On what is fair

We watch them solemnly
They betray not a thing
We dress them florally
They show no taste
We cry for lost love
And it remains that
They never understand
The words like waste

There in the tall grass
The souls are wandering
They have a playground
If short on slides
It is a quiet place
Not really frightening
For those who settle there
And there abide





Our voices break too


Teenage girls want to sing
But mostly they want to look just right
Be in tune with fashion
Just enough, not too much

Their voices are awkward
They stammer out 'who am I?
The pretty one? The clever one?
The one no-one really likes?'

They wobble and warble
And cautious ears listen
For any answers
That might be coming

'Am I girl now? Or am I…'
They can't even say the word
Are they women already
And finished so soon?





Rosebuds all


Leaves and stalks and twigs and flowers
This is all your business now
Children, worries, finance, ours
You moved on from why to how

Watch you working so intensely
Nature never had such aid
Years of caring helps immensely
You know what needs sun or shade

Do you wonder as you labour
Quite how many springs you'll see?
Are seasons shorter now or longer?
Is anything as sweet as tea?

You weed like there is no tomorrow
Perhaps because there is some doubt
You poison, murder, love and water
Perfect show it's all about

Life cannot be kept in order
Humans cannot be pruned back
But look at that herbaceous border
That at least is still on track

The modern world is quite a puzzle
Tortilla wraps and cash machines
Youth is all - it's quite a muddle
TV shows instead of dreams

Endings gesture from the bushes
Herbicides will be no use
Strokes and cancers and dementias
Age brings with it bitter truths

So turn again to this year's roses
Clip and fuss and feel so proud
Watch the bud so if it closes
You can mourn it fierce and loud





The dog house


Hear yourself shout
God what a horrible sound that is
Bark of a bitter dog
Little pup is unconcerned
Gets on with its own games
Thinks old mutt is crazy
And sometimes prone to
Unreasonably high expectations
Pup wags its tail
Jumps up sniffing
'Play with me', it pants
'I won't be this fresh forever'





The last leaf


You are the last leaf
On that branch of the family tree
The generations fly by
You hang on, only just
A few fibres still catching
Strong ones, determined
Like those last strings
Keeping a baby tooth in place

The wind tries to move you
But you're tough, well-weathered
Storms have blown, rains have poured
You've kept busy, kept going
And you're dry now, almost powder
Wrinkles have been and somehow gone again
Leaving your skin flat, smooth
It's resilient, kind of beautiful

You're awkward, a little baffled
Only just connected to our silly modern world
You look down at the ground
Where the leaves all fall some day
And wonder how it will be
To lie in the mulch for a while
You look back up to what you can still see of the sky
You hang on to the branch, to your life, a little longer

To fade


At 6 years old
You still sing all the time
When you're doodling
When you're scootering

And I wonder when does it stop
The joyous twittering?
When angry playground voices shout
'Shut up stupid'?

Or do we censor ourselves slowly?
'Time to turn it down now'
'Time to go inside' and finally
'Time to face the music'
To fade…


Now it is work to breathe, for sure
And though you don't really want the air
There it is encore

The stage is quiet, almost foreign
Your long gown brushes the boards again
But your voice has flown

Finally, maybe

This is the dream where I ask you all those questions,
Where I see your face again after so much time,
And it doesn’t know me.

This is the touch I thought might never come,
One more chance to hold you,
And I don't even mind if your heart's not in it.

This is the place we all try to imagine,
Last-dance saloon, grabbed set of moments,
And it is hard to be here but here we are all the same.

All poems by Rachel Fox (some time after 1997)

Distress and Recovery Poems

25 year tears


Tears come
When they want to
When you let them
Only then

Tears saved
One by one for years
Appear strangely
On rainy days
In unexpected places
Feel comforted
By watery friends
Flow freely
Almost happily
Relieve tension
So clearly
Of long-forgotten
Constant grief





A way away


The one track road goes one way up
It's northwards to the sea
Water flows in varied ways
It seems at least more free

Sleepless nights in windy ports
The revving of the air
A stewing mess of worn-out thoughts
A hairy shirt to wear

The green outside is startling
My eyes can barely cope
They breathe a little better now
A rinse has eased the soap

The empty beach is magical
It sells no candy floss
Alone with you I smell my life
The getting and the loss





Alone place


Don't leave me
Alone is not a place
I want to be
It's not
What it used to be
It's not
A chance
For rest or recuperation
It's not
At all
It's the most noise
And screeching confusion
In the smallest space
I stand on
One leg
Or one toe even
Balancing in that most
Unbalanced way
Bombarded on every side
By noise and waves
And prodding fingers
Energy wastes itself
Beating my every surface
When I'm alone

When you're here
It leaves me be a while
I know that's not
An answer
I know that's
A cop out
I know
I should I really should
This time
Counselling, alternative therapies and yoga
I know I know
But that doesn't help me
When alone
When fear does its
Paralysing worst
Gets me
On the
One toe
Head bowed
Brain suitably whipped and battered
My, my, this masochism
Really must stop
We must stop meeting like this
I and I
In the small space
The smallest of small
The end of it all
The throwing it all away
No sad song does it justice
It is a loveless matter
I and I
When alone
It is the fullest emptiness
I know
Don't go
And yet
Don't go





D days


Some days
Words appear
Like presents
I don't deserve
(Or do I?)
Some days
I see nothing
Feel less
I can't help it
(Can I?)
Some days
I watch TV
It's easy
All I'm good for
(Is that right?)
Some days
I gloom
And pick my head
It annoys me
(So why's that?)
Then some days
I write and
Write and
It never amounts to
(Nothing right?)
And some days
I just try
To be normal
But that won't work
(It never does)
So some tired days
I don't try
I just play dead
(And I'm quite good at it)





Float on


It feels like
Walking downhill
Even when it's flat

It's very
To be feeling that

There's no pain
But it's hurting
I'm very ill at ease

It's more like
Fear of floating
On land as well as seas





Free at last


Just maybe I'm a balloon
Rubbery surface, taut skin
That would explain all the hot air
The floating business, the holding in

A leftover plaything
From a fun day or fête
Perhaps tied to a pushchair
All thoughts on escape

I pull and I tug
Because upwards feels right
So light, I feel empty
My string thin but quite tight

If I ever break free
I will lose sight of ground
I will fly high, flit quickly
I will never come down





Hiding in the toilet of life


Shivering and terrified
Overwhelmed by everything
Deep inside I go to hide
Not coming out for anything

It’s small in here but sort of safe
I see the door, it’s closed I’m sure
There’s noise and laughing just outside
I hear it all and nothing more

I sit quite still, it’s all too harsh
The sound, the light, the spinning sphere
My heavy head against the wall
Where can you run once you’ve run here?





Just thinking


Doing the dishes
Walking the dog
Waiting for buses
Hating your job
Climbing a mountain
Assembling a shelf
All of these chores
Give you time to yourself
To think your own thoughts
And to hear your own say
We need the quiet time
We need peace, every day





Problems with value


I am not worthy

I breathe in
Approximately one eighth
Of the required amount
Of air to fill my lungs
I tell myself
Make do with that
You greedy
Spread it thinly
It'll last

I breathe out
And hurt

I am
A little hard on myself







I simply had a heavy rucksack
Nothing metaphorical about it
No worries
Just a bag full of
Spare trousers
In case of rain
What a bloody relief





Simple stuff


Stream rushing down the hillside
Cool, clean and with direction
How I would like to be you
Not dazed, not lost, not sad
Too murky to mention
Not hopelessly, stupidly
Stumbling through

Tree growing tall in woodland
Strong, useful, admirable too
How I would like to be you
Not pathetic or rattled
By a host of minor phobic complaints
Not rootless
No let's hear it for roots
For without them what is there
To remain true to?

Sand collected down on the shoreline
Intricate, simple, the best of extremes
Oh how very much I would like to be you
Broken but whole, moving but still
Dead but so very busy still being around
The answers I crave
I see them in you





The way life should be


There's something that keeps on bothering me
It won't go away, it's always there
This isn't the way my life should be

I won't be going down in history
I've done nothing special so who would care
That there's something that keeps on bothering me

No honours, no glamour and no money
Just routine and hum-drum days to spare
This isn't the way my life should be

I try to watch less on TV
The pace of life seems so unfair
And all these things keep bothering me

I look around and the world I see
Seems made for those who do and dare
This isn't the way my life should be

I've let myself down spectacularly
Self-pity mixed up with true despair
And that something, it keeps on bothering me
This isn't the way my life should be





This colour


Are you
Low in mood
In the pits
Below blue
Down where it's kind of
Or blue times blue
Where it's bluer than
You can imagine
On the days when
Other colours
Can still be seen
Remember green anyone?
I see green
But I don't believe it
Now I think
No I am sure
That what looks like green
That grass that tree
That's merely blue in thin disguise
It looks like green because
Unbeknownst to us
We all wear yellow-tinted glasses
To hide the terrible truth
About blue





Waiting for a cure


Sitting in a darkened room
Listening to quiet
Making lists of everything
Too afraid to try it
Traffic splashing past
Dreaming oddly in the day
Disappearing fast
Taking herbal pills and tea
Kingdom come has been
Looking at some Nescafé
Finding it obscene
Cutting down on alcohol
Becoming very staid
Watching through a telescope
A very sorry trade
Hoping for a miracle
Never seeing one
Sitting in a darkened room
Is there worse still to come?





Warts and all


Which bit of you
Do you most despise?
Your feet? Your nose?
Your little piggy eyes?

Do you have fat layers
That you wish weren’t there?
Well, my friends, work with me,
Learn not to care

Let’s learn to love failings
From heads down to toes
See strength in our weak spots
Just highs in our lows

Let’s take the worst night out
And make it our best
We are better and wiser
We are up to the test





Worry cycle


Stress you out
Stress keeps you up
You start to panic
Breeds panic
Breeds more panic
Too much panic
Is depressing
Makes you tired
But you can't sleep
For the stress
That's sad
Sad and useless
Totally inexcusable
What have you got
To worry about exactly?

All poems by Rachel Fox (some time after 1997)

Little Poems

A little sh


Words speak
For me
They even sing
Or bark
It's nothing
That I have
No voice
For words
Will bring
Their own
Sound in







I don't worry so much
About the establishment
I have seen them up close
They're nothing to write home about





And so it goes


Our world is just
The strangest place
We wave at the car
And not at the face





Crowded out


Even in the in-crowd I've always felt out
I've never quite known what in/out is all about
I sense it's nonsense but to some it's all
Being big and central or sidelined and small
But we are small beings and we should all know
We'll all be put out when it's our time to go
So best be out and ready, waiting for the ride
It can be oddly pleasant, here on the outside







Years of experience
In a plastic crate from B & Q
Considering all that's in there
It's very quiet when you lift the lid







You can be aware that you have a lot to give
To other people
But not have the faintest idea how to go about it

This can make a person miserable
And in turn reduce what it is they have to give
To virtually nothing





Family smug


Don't be family smug
It's really very trying
Others around you
Will end up crying






We judge books by covers
And women much worse
For the female of this species
There is more than one curse

Flat good


I have a picture
Of the sea
It has a calming
Effect on me
This is no small feat
Not small at all
For one so flat
And hung on a wall





Girls learn this only once


Tall, hard and cold
Men you like
Who don't like you
You bend
You twist
To fit them right
You waste your precious time
That's what you do





It started with a sneer


Anger breeds anger
Hate breeds hate
Break up the cycle
It can be too late





Learning the words


I am really so easy to read
Take me steady, line by line
Don't start fretting, huffing, sighing
Follow the lines and you'll do just fine







Everything's ridiculous
Too ridiculous for words





Living for beginners


Breathing's important
Food is good too
Everything else
Is just something you do





My way


A family of women
Of strong opinion
Is never quiet for long
Each one has her say
Each day in some way
And no one admits to being wrong





Number one fan


At six I loved Donny
Right till death us do part
At seven I moved on
Oh, the young, cheating heart







What can the matter be?
What can the matter
Is more like it





Pluses and minuses


(a) A few words on positivity



(b) A few words on negativity

I don’t really see the point of this exercise







You have much to answer
You fill the world with
No-one wants to go to
But has to
For FR
Of missing





Puzzled mind


A badly shuffled
In a paper bag
What a day
What a week
What a time
It's had





Running the home


You're everything
And nothing
All at the same time
You're vital
And redundant
You're one of a kind





Save the music, save the world


I’d like to hear the world just sing
Without that Simon Cowell
His cutting prose and stupid pose
Oh, peace throughout the land
That’s what I’d vote for





Sex and drugs


Sex and drugs
Do go very well together
You're high
Times high
You're gorgeous
And so's what's-his-name





Short love


I loved you for 3 weeks
Or maybe longer
It may seem a short love
But it was stronger
Than you might imagine
From its length





Some words in lines


Handfuls of paper
Some written, some typed
Poems and articles
Notes and the like
Bits that fell out
Of a man full of holes
Meant nothing to no one
But proof of his woes




Sweet nothings


You are nothing
I am less
Let's admit it
We're a mess





That job'll be the death of you


My leaving present
Was a fine headstone
Named and dated
I carried it home





The far wrong


Vote that way
Then kill yourself
Because you know
Inside and out
To all intents and purposes
You're already dead







Oh, all of us are weirdos
It’s odd that, but it’s true
And the more you call me ‘weirdo’
The less hope there is for you





Why one is childish rather than pretentious


Because quite enough other people
Already do
So well
And so regularly

All poems by Rachel Fox (some time after 1997)

Love Poems

All in the tone


Call me anything
But call me now
Call me gorgeous
Or silly cow
Call me Lucy
Or call me Kate
Call me Marjory
For goodness sake
Call me Trevor
If that seems right
Call me crazy
Both day and night

Call me sweetheart
But mean it true
Call me Shirley
It’s up to you
Call me later
And call me soon
Call me cheeky
You call the tune
Call me Romeo
From up above
You call me anything
But call with love





Avon kiss


I'm not in love
But I've read the book
I've rubbed the creams
And I've got the look

I'm all dressed up
And I've done my face
I've cleaned and fussed
In every place

I'm waiting now
For the perfect one
To come and find
My switch marked 'on'





Chileno on my mind


Hand in hand firmly
We walk
Through the medieval setting of the city
A touch on the flat-footed side
You walk meaningfully
Each step placed exactly
In place
The afternoon sun as ever
Makes walking hard
Makes buying ice-creams almost
A necessity

To treat you
Is all I want to do

Your smiling
Charming eyes
The sun to me
At 19
Have nothing to do with balls of hydrogen
Mean simply warmth and happiness
And lucky skin that gains a glow
You walk with me
Man made of sun
You walk with me
But never really see me
As I see you







Enjoy love
You are worth it
Fall down deep
Don't try to surf it
Swim in the happiness
It's all for you
Soak long and leisurely
Get drenched, wet through





Don't squeeze my shoes


A love, like shoes, must feel just right
Not too loose and not too tight
Not too high or far too low
And if you're young have room to grow
It must look good with any clothes
It must be kind, not pinch your toes
It must last well and not wear through
It must be just the thing for you
The style you choose, however strange
Must show ability to change
To cope with rains and frosty morns
To help you dodge bunions and corns
Your love must fit and not break banks
It must not always expect thanks
It should be happy being there
The chosen one, the happy pair





Free love


You can keep your twenty grand weddings
With the limos and jazz bands and suits
Give me that day we cycled to Lunan Bay
The hot sun, the empty beach
The lying in a mansize cup of sand in the dunes
The cycling home again the long way round

You can keep the diamond ring in platinum
The weighty jewel from a far-off mine
I'll take a handful of that icing sugar snow
That shines up on a sunny winter morning
Now that's what you can call sparkle
It's hard to find, harder still to keep

I'm sure love is not about the price
The menus or the pantomime
Love is the days when everyone's tired
But still no-one gets the blame
Love lies around the house quietly
Waiting, so quietly, to be needed





Let me be your fridge magnet


Let me slip into your home
Like a leaflet for a loan
Hidden in a free newspaper
Or supermarket circular
I'm not proud

Oh how I'd love to be your Baby on Board
Suckered on to your smoothness
I'd feel every bump in your road
Know exactly how much air was in your tyres
If you let me

I could stick faster still
If you'd let me be your fridge magnet
I'd hang on to your cool place
So perky, so keen
I wouldn't let you down

I'd be superficial for you, gladly
Cling to any surface - as long as it was yours
Then I'd ask softly 'do you understand now?
Do you get the message?
Do you read me at all?'





Poetic love


You might say my eyes were green like fresh new leaves
You might write a phrase to praise my skin
You might stroke my hair
When I've just dyed it
You might marvel at its feel and sheen

You might stay up all night just wondering to yourself
How it is this angel came to be
You might try a sonnet
You might try an ode
You might shed a tear or two or three

If I had chosen poet this might be my life
It might be my golden cage of yore
With you I'm flying free
But still feel treasured
All those compliments could be a bore

You help me understand how mobile phones work
You pick me up and sometimes make my tea
You hold me close
Whenever possible
I don't need odes
You're it for me





Significant other deceased


I wasn't ready
You're gone too soon
The kitchen's quiet
Lost its tune

I'm not prepared
No good alone
Why is it you
Who won't be home?

You're ripped to shreds
I'm picked apart
My love is gone
My love, my heart

All poems by Rachel Fox (some time after 1997)

Modern World Poems

Cynical souls 


A lot of hardworking people have spent a very long time
Teaching us, slowly, all that we know -
That change is pointless and humanity selfish,
That there is no limit to how low we can go.

We are useless, we’ve learned that, we’re not good at changes,
We don’t eat well or think well or learn from our past,
We don’t want clean energy and we like all those landfills,
We want lasting happiness and we want it so fast.

Oh horrible humans – so fickle, so loveless,
No patience, no tolerance, no fondness, no hope.
What will become of us now we’ve this knowledge?
Whatever the future, we know we won’t cope.





Dads army


In combat trousers
Some long
Some short
They wear the modern camouflage
For parks and play areas
It's a must
The beige and grey and khaki green
Nice modern men blend in
Avoid unnecessary conversations
Mums can't seem to dodge so well
These are the loaded guns
"He's very small isn't he?"
"Does she eat fruit?"
"Oh, an only child"

Shaven heads
Trainers in winter
Maybe risking open sandals
In summer
But in a neutral colour
Dads keep their mouths closed
Their eyes and ears open
Not at war but always prepared
They don't fall in traps
Mums could learn a lot from their approach
No hearts on sleeves
No nervous wittering
No defensive play
Just cropped heads steady
Resolve firm
No time wasted
We're here to play, kids
So play





Got the Bridget Jones, Love Actually, Four Weddings blues


Richard Curtis
How you hurt us
You know not surely
But you do
London's quiet
Reneé's diet
All this stuff
It's just not true

No-one's poor and no-one's hungry
Everyone has a central flat
Don't forget it snows at Christmas
How could you have forgotten that?

England is a picture postcard
A chocolate box, a pastel scene
Full of men like Hugh and Colin
Every high school prom queen's dream

The England I knew didn't match yours
It always rained more than it snowed
Hughs and Colins - all obnoxious
The spacious flats - all gone, been sold

Now you can say it's just a fiction
A happy world for Saturday night
But all those larks with perfect diction
Make for a strange unsettling sight

It's like the sixties never happened
The seventies, eighties, nineties too
England stuck in post-war limbo
Jolly chaps and work to do

I don't think you mean to do it
You seem a human sort of bloke
You were carried on a moment
But just saying 'fuck' is not a joke

So let's have no more Bridget Joneses
Let's have no more love times love
Whatever happened to Blackadder?
What would he make of this guff?

And look at all your charity work, sir
If you really care at all
Stop polluting life with drivel
False impressions, stories tall

So can you stop please
All this film cheese
Can you stop it
Kill it dead
England's story
Needs less glory
Honest hope
It needs instead





Grander than thou


Ah the lifestyle housing programme
That rather unrealistically
Makes everyone in Britain
Want their own castle
And computer-controlled audio-visual environment
Never mind the fact that
Many of us still live in
Council flats
Hovels owned by private landlords
And Bed & Breakfast establishments
(Drawbridges optional)





In June


Another light night draws curtains slowly
And we don’t enjoy it as we could
We’re not wandering the hilltops
Or cycling the coast road
Or watching the sun pour itself away
There’s so much more we could be doing
We know it all and yet
We’re tired, hemmed in by something
We watch TV – it’s never-ending
The sun falls unseen again, another day





Pay heed to the special need


Personally I need a lot of help with moving
I need public transport, I need constant soothing
I need my hand holding and I need some quiet time
These needs are special and these needs are mine

You might need a teacher, you might need a school
You might need some help with obeying a rule
You might have a thing about folding and drawers
Those needs are special and those needs are yours

I can't do sitting in well-behaved rows
Snobbery and claptrap get right up my nose
I'm not very good at just following a line
So many needs out there but these ones are mine

You might be allergic, you might be alone
You might need assistance from more than a phone
You might need a moment, a break, just a pause
Because all needs are special, especially yours





Save the trees (or else)


Blend in with the trees
Make use of their breadth
Think wild, no one sees
Rediscover some depth
Sycamores have keys
So that's where they're kept
Open wide the wood door
Remember what it's for





Self-help shortcuts


Let's save the £14.99
And learn to cure ourselves
We'll save a heap of time as well
And have more room on shelves

So (1) let's eat a balanced diet
That's not just sweets and fat
(2) Let's get some sleep at night
And (3) let's buy less tat

(4) Let's work quite hard
But (5) not too much
(6) Make sure we have some fun
Some laughter, treats and such

(7) Let's get some exercise
But (8) not overdo it
(9) Live in the here and now
There should be nothing to it

(10) Let's like where we live
Or work to make that so
(11) Ditch that Joneses thing
Comparisons can go

(12) Look in the mirror now
And who's that gorgeous creature?
(13) We can live with us
A semi-permanent feature

(14) Let's not bottle up
And (15) work guilt through
It's horrible to know yourself
But better to be true

(16) We must find a love
And (17) explore sex fully
(18) We should not be bullied
Or (19) be the bully

(20) Let's find clothes that suit
(21) Be kind to skin
(22) Watch less telly
Go out more and stay in

(23) Enjoy music
It's so good for the spirit
(24) Read a poem now and then
It's not that painful is it?

And (25) if we must
Rot our bodies and our brains
With too much recreation
Then there will be (26) pain

(27) Read widely
But avoid the self-help bibles
(28) They're a waste of space
Not very reliable

(29) Don't take advice
From the dense and glossy quacks
(30) Life gives lessons free
Let's read our own hardbacks

All poems by Rachel Fox (some time after 1997)