Saturday, 23 June 2012

This place

This blog is a home for a lot of my older poems. On here you will find some poems that have already been published elsewhere by someone else, some poems that have been published in my first 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.



Distress and Recovery Poems

Little Poems

Love Poems

Modern World Poems

Nightclub Poems

Poems for Occasions

Poems about People

Scottish Interest Poems

Song poems




Song poems and singers

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

One of my fairly old poems, '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.

Also, one of my poems 'Michael Marra's Visit to the Links Hotel' became a song by Montrose singer/songwriter Gary Anderson (now using name Kinnaber Junction to avoid confusion with darts players...):




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








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




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?

Chorus
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?

Chorus

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?

Chorus

 

 

   

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

Chorus
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

Chorus

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

Chorus

 

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

   

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

Chorus
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

Chorus

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

Chorus

 

   


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

Distress and Recovery Poems

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

 

 

 

 


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
Useless
Stupid
Wasteful
Creature
Spread it thinly
It'll last

I breathe out
Tense
Scared
And hurt

I am
Perhaps
A little hard on myself

 

 

  

 

 

This colour

 

Are you
Low in mood
In the pits
Below blue
Down where it's kind of
Dark
Navy
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

 

 

  

 

 

 

  

 

Worry cycle

 

Worries
Stress you out
Stress keeps you up
Awake
You start to panic
Panic
Breeds panic
Panic
Breeds more panic
Too much panic
Is depressing
Depression
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?
Well…


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

 

 

 

 

Alternatively

 

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

 

 

 

 

Diaries

 

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

 

 

 

 

Drained

 

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

 

 

 

 

Curses

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

 

 

 

 

Life

 

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

 

 

 

 

Nurse!

 

Therapy
Therapy
What can the matter be?
What can the matter
Not
Be
Is more like it

 

 

 

 

Pluses and minuses

 


(a) A few words on positivity
Yes

YES

YES



(b) A few words on negativity

I don’t really see the point of this exercise

 

 

 

 

PR

 

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

 

 

 

 

Puzzled mind

 

A badly shuffled
Jigsaw
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

 

 

 

 

Weirdo

 

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
Pretentious
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
Winning
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

 

 

 

 

Diving

 

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?'

 

 

 

 


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

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
Moat
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



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.


All poems by Rachel Fox (some time after 1997)

Nightclub poems

City girl

 

She gave it her best
Shot
She threw herself in
Wholeheartedly
She loved the tarmac
Rolled on pavements
Into gutters
She poked her fingers into
Exhaust pipes
And licked them clean
She stayed out all night
Because there's nothing so shitty
As the 24 hour city
She didn't cleanse
Tone or moisturise
Let urban grime
Care for her complexion
She stood
In the thick of it
And rubbed her eyes
She rubbed the dirt
Right in
She ate filth
Not hard this day and age
More fertilisers
More fat
As saturated as it comes please
She took up passive smoking
As a hobby
She washed her clothes
You'd never know

 

 

 

 

Set text fever


Night time is the right time,
The time to change direction,
The time to shake your measly body,
Like you've never shaken anything before.

Seriously.

And honey, I don't care who you are,
How important, how seminal,
When the night call comes,
You will respond,
You will leave your daytime (don't you know who I am?) bullshit at home,
Put on the most ridiculous outfit,
Cram yourself in with the masses,
Sweat like a bastard,
And lose yourself,
Yes, you will lose yourself,
In the dark.

Take old Phil Larkin over there,
He is going for it big time,
He has finally removed that damn suit and tie,
Taken off those infernal glasses,
And look,
He has set himself free,
Free, free, freer than free,
It's beautiful to watch really,
He is grooving, totally grooving,
I think he might even be
Communicating with the bottom of his soul,
And whilst you wouldn't normally have him down
As a guy for leather shorts and nipple rings,
People can surprise you,
And there he is now,
Reaching for the higher plane,
Finding his happy place,
Dancing on a podium ,
With poppers up his nose.

And check Sylvia (the sweetheart),
She is smiling like you've never seen her,
One ecstasy tab short of a hospital visit,
She's right out there, flying.
I bumped into her just now in the toilet
And she grabbed my bare arm tight and said,
'This is so extreme
I don't think I can get any higher',
And I just hugged her,
We all did,
We told her that we loved her,
That we always will, whatever,
And that she should rave to the grave, baby,
Rave to the grave.


But it's hard for her because just look at Ted go,
He is the king of the jungle,
The ruler of the beasts,
The man to end all men,
No DJ can get near him,
With that huge frame,
That thick mane,
He is the Master at Work,
The Brother in Rhythm,
Standing in the middle of the dancefloor,
Barechested and vibrating,
With his arms outstretched,
His fingers pointing at something somewhere
That none of us can see,
And he is howling,
Full and hard like a wild creature
(You can't hear him for the music
But somehow we all feel it),
He is howling like a wolf.
That wants to eat and live.
High on life.
Starlight barking.
He is howling.
At the moon.
At the earth.
At the night.





Cocaine club

 

Constantly turning people into
Snorting machines
With dead eyes
No hearts
Empty memories
No souls
Spouting theories
Well
One tired theory over and over
One that means nothing to nobody
But as nobody is listening
Everybody's talking
This is not identified as a problem

 

 

 

 

The biggest love affair

 

We loved everybody
Even ourselves
We hugged everybody
Even the bouncers
We understood everything
But couldn't explain it
We went way, way too far in
It seemed a good idea at the time


All poems by Rachel Fox (some time after 1997)

Poems for Occasions

A funeral affair

 

There must be lots of things to say
About you now you're gone away
But most of them might seem unkind
At least the ones that spring to mind
You were not fair or good or true
You only seemed to care for you
You showed no heart or sympathy
So let us end you honestly
No one will cry for you today
At most a little prayer they'll say
Perhaps they'll urge you try again
But for god's sake be still till then

 

 

 

 

A wedding poem (not to be read at weddings)

 

Oh, another girl in big frock
Oh, another suited groom
Oh, another messy, lost flock
Oh, another sense of doom

Oh, another huge tiara
Oh, foundation everywhere
Oh, the bride looks like her father
Oh, those looks weren't made to share

Oh, another hundred places
Oh, another chicken dish
Oh, just look at those grim faces
Oh, they should have gone for fish

Oh, I bet they all want ABBA
Oh, except that fierce young man
Oh, he'll want early Nirvana
Oh, that's not the thing for Gran

Oh, are weddings ever special
Oh, they can just merge as one
Oh, they can be simply dreadful
Oh, may my day never come

 

 

 

 

Bad interview technique

 

What is it they say?
Imagine them naked
At the job interview
And I do
But it’s not bare bodies I see
It’s stark naked souls
Most disturbing
It makes me twitchy
And unlikely ever to gain employment

 

 

 

 

Happy war

 

I just can't do it
Can't write one of those inspiring
'They gave their lives with honour' numbers
Packed full of glorious verses
Poppy fields swaying
Twelve geese a-laying
It's not happening

Can't manage either
An anti-Bush and Blair anthem
Would love to write one
But just can't find the words
Blair, Blair
It's not fair
It's not looking good

Even avoiding the 24 hour news diet
War can be just too graphic for words I think
Men and women are taken to pieces
Some quickly, some slowly
Some end widows, some widowers
And what is the word for a mother, a father
Who no longer has any children left living?

The radio talks of war
And I see arms and legs
Loose without bodies
And lots and lots
And lots of blood
No poppies, no roses, no flowers really
Just boxes and bags of bits of people

Even the oh-so local papers can't avoid it
Every day faces smile out of people now dead
They are gone past us but the smiles remain
Unsettling, unfair, unbearable
Smiles show strangely the pain of loss
The quite possibly perfectly pointless sacrifice
They make writing difficult, living difficult.

 

 

 

 

Happy new hope 

 

Years have to start with hope, this is essential
We have to feel that good things are to come
A lack of hope can be most detrimental
It can stop New Year’s Eve from being fun.
No, seeing smiles ahead is fairly vital
We should see triumphs and tranquillity
We listen (hark) for fanfares by the skyful
Between them sighs contented, full and free.
We need to feel our hearts are in it with us
That hope has made it, somehow, through and through
Life’s switches may be always out to dim us
But we can think of ways to glow anew.
This New Year’s hopes might be the ones to make it
The outstretched hand - we see it, match it, take it.

 

 

 

 

Short valentine

 

Roses are red
Violets are violet
Please love me
My life's in the toilet










All poems by Rachel Fox (some time after 1997)

Poems about People

Andy's ears

 

He's on
The telephone all day
His ears full
Of all the complaints
Human beings can muster

After dark
His ears crave
Strings
Ivory
The thrill that is
The human voice
When it's hanging
By a thread
Vocal chords fighting
Duels with each other

His ears make
The most of their diversions
They dance
By night
Free from the tensions
Of their daytime employment
They slurp down
Intoxicating alcoholic sounds
They live it up
Right up in there
They make believe passion
Is all there is
To hear
They tire themselves
To sleep and dream
Of aural joy
That's all days
And forever

 

 

 

 

Born-again renaissance man

 

He'll be angry forever
World owes him big time
He's all over spiky
And he likes that just fine
He pouts when he thinks
No-one cares about him
He's brilliant, talented
Full to the brim
He's creative, it swamps him
His feelings are rare
He is thought, he is meaning
He's beyond all compare
How could you know anything
When he knows it all
He's one big huge wonder
So you must be small

 

 

 

 

Cakes in rain

 

Here at your close we stand
Knowing
Little
Clear
Thinking racking torturing
We want
You to be
Here
You left so soon and before time
Escape
Has left us
Numb
We want to meet you
Set a date
Aware
You'll never
Come
We want to tell you struggling
Is over now
We're glad
We come to lay your brain to rest
A mighty
Fight it's
Had
You tried to draw the perfect plan
Your pens
Were filled with
Ink
Confusion wasted ever drop
You turned
Too tired to
Think
And then to bake the world a cake
Feed every
Girl and
Boy
But in your final set of scales
Sadness
Outweighed
Joy


 

 

 

 

Questions for a queen

 

What do you think of your children's divorces?
Do you close your eyes and dream about horses?
Is it tiring to always be part of a show?
Do you care when a poet to honours says 'no'?
Do you feel like us, do you cry wet tears?
Have you changed, as we all have, over the years?
Has it been a real life, has it felt real to you?
To us it seems fiction, your story, untrue
Parades and carriages and armies of staff
Do you never just long to run your own bath?
Do you like it, would you choose it, would you be queen again?
Or would you rather live quietly, just one of them?
Less money, fewer banquets, not a sniff of a crown
Just headscarves or, better still, hair let right down

 

 


 

 

She’s not there

 

(Joan Eardley – ‘Joan Eardley, 1921 -1963, Artist’ 1943)

 

There are bad days
Not even half days
And when they come
The broken pieces of her face
Seem so perfectly formed

Reassuring, they say
‘The sky is still there
The colours still worth seeing
Being broken simply isn’t
The worst thing you can be’

Comforted, I brush my crumbs together
And look carefully, cautiously
At the slightly scrappy, sorry collection
Still sad but less lonely
In their fragments than before

The portrait feels like family
Or so I can imagine
We are the not quite whole people
The bits and pieces people
The hundreds and the thousands

 

 

 

 



The loveliest girl 

 

Her smile spells
HEART
In big letters
She is most truly
Too good for this world
She lives
Breathes
Fights
And stamps her feet to dance
Her voice is raised alright
But just to sing

 

 

 

 

Unfulfilled Annie

 

She wants a record in the charts
(and crisps and pie and jam-filled tarts)
She wants a trust fund full of cash
(and bags and bags of shopping trash)
She wants love and health and money
(and to be kind and warm and funny)
She wants to paint and sing and dance
(the moonlight, music and romance)
She wants the latest in all fields
(plus someone else to cook her meals)
She wants so much it's plain to see
She always will awanting be


 

 

 

Widows

 

Widows talk about the war
An old kiss
They dance the quick steps
Their feet miss
The photos are grey
But the hearts pound
Some widows are half
Buried underground





The man


You stink of power
Sweaty, wrong
Your stupid vests
Off white, too long
Your meat-slab hands
So mean and low
Your eating habits
Far to go

You're selfish, greedy
Cruel, lazy
More TV dinner
Than Scorsese
You're hooked on women
Screw by screw
What you don't care
Is why or who

And yet you're craved
With passions strong
At home we wait
Full hungry throng
We know it's fatal
Falling so
God damn you, Tony
Soprano




All poems by Rachel Fox (some time after 1997)

Scottish Interest poems

Auchmithie road

 

We all live on the edge
But some of us live
More on the edge than others


The road goes straight
Until it bends
And home just waits
There at the end

The sky's the picture
We watch below
The sea sees more
The rocks just know

We think and look
We tire and sleep
The waves still move
The path's still steep

Life seems different
In this place up high
Living by the sea
Living by the sky

And the road is straight
Until it bends
There's beauty there
Right at the end

 

 

 

 

A visit to the William Lamb Studio, Montrose

 

Everyone is always fishing
And the wind so often blowing
Bits of some of life are missing
If not fishing then they're sowing
Wood is twirled and softly curving
Brass is firm and treacly brown
Faces, bodies, looking, learning
Hands of Lamb, so right, so sound

 

  

 

 

Looking up in Montrose

 

Here the sky has every blue
Cornflower, indigo, violet too
Every grey and pink and white
A different black for every night
What else on earth can you possibly need
With so much choice above your heid?

 




Michael Marra's Visit to the Links Hotel (Montrose)


It really doesn't have to be all about hell
I've seen the light and it came from Dundee
Via Michael Marra to the Links Hotel

Was it from heaven to us that he fell?
Soulful and funny and bright as can be
It really doesn't have to be all about hell

He brings quite a singing voice with him as well
Maybe from the bottom of the deep blue sea
He creaks, does Michael Marra, at the Links Hotel

The audience and he just somehow gel
There's never any plugging of the latest dvd
It really doesn't have to be all about sell

When Michael Marra plays the score you can foretell
Happy warm hearts and faces worry-free
Adored is Michael Marra, at the Links Hotel

So up on the deck and ring the loudest bell
Tell it how it is, we love him endlessly
It really must be all about the spell
He weaves, does Michael Marra, at the Links Hotel

 




My man

 

My man
They say here
Like the Germans
Mein Mann
He is great
My man
How would they say it?
Wunderbar
He works
He is warm
Sehr warm
Like a heater
He remembers
That's a tricky one
Er erinnert sich an
Bloody hell
I can remember it
Ich kann

 



All poems by Rachel Fox (some time after 1997)