Thursday, 19 March 2015

Supermarket Sweep

Their eyes, and hands, met as they reached simultaneously for the last tin of Heinz baked beans on the supermarket shelf.
Her velour leisure suit hugged her figure in a series of lumps and bumps, and perfectly coordinated with the familiar turquoise label.
Instantly Sam looked away, embarrassed, but he still noticed her perfume, Katie Price Stunning Eau De Parfum, the last perfume he'd bought Chardonnay for Christmas, before they'd split up for the seventh time.
Lauren looked up at the last tin, her red hair pulled back, tight to her head, Croydon facelift style, her face, caked in La Bronze 43 fake tan, was a perfect match for the tomato sauce that coated those pearls of orange deliciousness.
As she held the tin, she saw her plastic, pound shop, fingernails lightly brushing the backs of Sams fingers. She knew she should stop, but somehow she couldn’t let go.
Was it Sams warm hands? His cute smile as he tried not to look at her? Or did she just really, really want those beans ?
Sam finally looked up, those few seconds had felt like, well seconds, but their fingers were still intertwined around the aluminium container and something had to be done to end this encounter. “Sorry, all yours” he said quietly, slowly disentangling himself from what, now, felt like a bear hug around his hand.
“Thanks....wanna share them ?” Lauren tentatively dipped her hefty size eights into the dating waters, it was out there now, no going back. She waited, her breath, flavoured with the aroma of Red Bull was shallow, her heart pounding out the latest Calvin Harris beat, her mind creating several emergency exit procedures.
“What? You mean half a can each ?” Sam really hadn’t thought that through properly. He was naive in the world of women, Chardonnay had told him that after their fifth breakup, she'd said he wouldn't know what to do with a real woman, even one that came with instructions, though over the sound of Call of Duty, Sam only heard, sandwich, Hellmans and construction. Who knows what went through a womans mind at times ?
Lauren stood, confused by his response, but went to def con two, eye fluttering, which was difficult when one of your eyes was slightly lazy, and an attempt at a sexy pout. “I meant wanna share them over a meal of beans on toast, you buy em, I'll cook 'em, a glass of Lambrini, that sort of thing?”
At last the penny dropped at the implication of his stupidity, “erm...yeah, yeah, I'd like that,” he was flustered, talking wildly, “What about the bread, should I get that, and the Lambrini, shall I get that as well ?”
Lauren tipped her head slightly, her large hooped earring, clattered heavily against her shoulder, making her wince, “I'm sure I have a few slices of bread, just grab a bottle”
They exchanged numbers, arranged a date and went their separate ways, Sam clutching the tin of beans as if it was a bar of gold, he wasn't letting those out of his sight.
On the day, Sam even managed to remember the bottle of Lambrini, its tartness cutting away at the taste of the most delicious beans on toast, he'd ever had. Afterwards they sat in the lounge, A DVD of Notting Hill played, in the background Ronan Keatings delicately precise tones singing “When You say Nothing At All”.
They began to talk, and talked late into the early hours, so late that Sam was invited to stay the night, on the sofa of course, Lauren wasn't that kind of girl, it took two dates to get her, hard to get, body into bed, mostly because it was upstairs and the climb had to be worth it.
The second date took place the following night. Apparently Sam didn't need instructions, well that’s what Lauren had told him anyway. That was nearly twenty years ago, and even now, they celebrated their anniversary with beans on toast and a bottle of Lambrini, ahh the good old days.

Sunday, 15 February 2015


Smiling eyes hide raging pain.
Dont leave me alone with my
thoughts, they'll eat me alive.
A kiss,  unreal, wakes me breathless,
watching me hold onto nothing.

Monday, 20 October 2014

More Than Ornamental

Among stinging nettles and dock leaves
stands a single weeping willow.
Resolute against a galing storm, its branches sway wildly yet lose none of their elegance.
Strong well rounded roots, stand beneath the smooth, slender trunk.
Beneath the bark breathes an inner beauty.
A beauty that awakens the eye of the beholder.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Summers Past

As he walked, shoulders slightly bowed,  hands clasped behind his back,  along the well trodden grass, that formed a makeshift path through the avenue of weeping willow trees, that floated gently overhead,  his mind turned to summers gone by.

The smell of a freshly cut lawn, the purr of a rotary lawnmower being pushed and pulled back and forth.  Birds chirping happily in the trees or on roofs, as children played with gay abandon in the streets, jumping out of the way of bicycles and carts drawn by large, sluggish shire horses. The driver booming out his traditional "Raggggggg bonnnnnnne!!!!!" and giving out balloons or goldfish to the children who handed over their mishmash of clothes and toys.

The clatter of the milk float over cobbled streets,  the bottles gently kissing and clinking together,  as they jumped ever so carefully from their crates.

Those were the days before mobile phones and mp3 players filled the air with a cacophony of digital beeps and drones. No one talked anymore,  it was all, text this, Facebook that, tweet the other, as if conversation was an alien lifeform, consigned to a deep underground laboratory,  to be prodded and probed to see how it worked.

No more mothers stood on the back door step shouting their offspring in for tea at the table,  now they sat on the couch,  sending an instant message on the phone,  silently calling them home like a dog whistle,  the radio waves guiding them home like a homing beacon.

He remembered sunlit walks along the river with his beloved Emily,  the bright rays bouncing off the surface and making them both squint.

They watched the serene glide of a boat being rowed along the water, as young ladies laid back in their seats sipping wine as their beaus rolled up their sleeves to navigate around the long sweeping bends.

This was a time when families came together and lazed in the park, eating picnics or joining complete strangers for a game of football, cricket or rounders.

Those long warm days that stretched onto twilight and he would remove his jacket to place over Emilys chilly shoulders,  before walking her home and getting a quickly stolen kiss on the cheek as his reward.

How he longed to see Emily again, to walk her down this path again, hand in hand, picking and eating blackberries and cherries,  whilst happily planning a dance date at the weekend in "The Fiesta"

Too much time had passed by now,  Emily no longer with him, but he still came here every week en route to the churchyard,  picking her favourite wild flowers to lay on her grave.

The conversations were all one way now,  but he would always have his memories

Tuesday, 7 October 2014


In the silence, a heart pounds noisily.
Flickering screen projects eerie shadows onto plain walls
Breath once shallow, is momentarily paused, watching morse code dance
Skin prickles with electricity
Words are read.
Reply and repeat

Monday, 29 September 2014


a silent tune plays it's melody.
The relentless beat,
of a dance unseen,
echoes inside an empty hall.

Saturday, 16 August 2014


When we were young
We used strange words
Like scoffs for sweets
And girls were birds.

Croggy was a lift on bike
And cash was known as dosh
Knocked up was a wake up call
Food was nicknamed nosh

A bondy was a garden fire
A tarzy,  a rope swing
If it took a while, you waited yonks
Mint was a good thing

Bad was good, when we were kids
A mucka was your mate
Mafted meant you were hot
And cool meant it was great

So looking back when you were young
What words did you use then
To describe the things you used the most
While sitting in your den.