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Thursday 25 November 2021


for Arthur


I don’t believe in god

until I read a story

about a six-year-old boy

who died screaming

no one loves me

and in this moment

I think there has to be


out there

to reveal the love

he never saw

in life


no one

is ever truly loved

until everyone



[based on a recent news story]

Wednesday 24 November 2021


I think, if I were cancelled, it would be a lot of fun:

I’d write for The Spectator and The Telegraph and Sun.


I’d get a slot on Question Time and maybe Fox News too. 

Just think, if I were cancelled, of the things that I could do:

Joe Rogan would come calling for a guest slot on his show,

and Peterson would venerate my bravery and so

I’d tour around the world declaiming righteousness out loud

and say I’d been ‘no platformed’ to my vast, adoring crowd.

If only I were cancelled then I’d get a chance to bleat

in every major outlet for the corporate elite.

I’d pen a hardback book about the voice I’d been denied,

its pages would be laden with the truth they couldn’t hide, 

and everyone would read it and they’d know my bloody name,

for once I had been cancelled life would never be the same. 

The snowflakes wouldn’t like it but their impact’s next to none;

I think, if I were cancelled, it would be a lot of fun.

Sunday 21 November 2021


You can’t trust a toddler not to make a mess

You can’t trust a Coke not to effervesce 

You can’t trust a steak with a lioness 

And you can’t trust the Tories with the NHS

You can’t trust Spurs not to cause you stress

You can’t trust a cheat in a game of chess

You can’t trust a Murdoch with a printing press

And you can’t trust the Tories with the NHS

You can’t trust Prince Harry in fancy dress

You can’t trust a stalker with your home address

You can’t trust a Johnson with faithfulness

And you can’t trust the Tories with the NHS

You can’t trust a corpse to convalesce

You can’t trust the bailiffs not to dispossess 

Underfund and privatise? That’s my guess

Cos you can’t trust the Tories with the NHS

Friday 19 November 2021


from the NHS and I want nothing more

than to open it. She is at work, and I know

she wouldn’t mind. It’s sitting on the living

room table and I try to peek inside, without

breaking the seal of the envelope. I know

I should leave it, but I want to know what this

letter says. I decide that I need to fill up time

for the next few hours until my wife gets home

and opens the letter herself. She is not me;

the letter is not mine. I am me and she is her.

I know that. Through the last several years

I have come to know that. We each get separate

letters. I write poems whilst she gets on

with her day. The letter is still on the table

and I must not touch it.

Sunday 14 November 2021


A story emerged yesterday that Matt Hancock has been offered a sizeable advance to write a book on how he ‘won the Covid war’. The veracity of the story has since been called into question, but not before I boshed out this poem. Enjoy. 


Cases rising more and more

Horse has bolted? Lock the door!

Inefficiency galore:

How I Won the Covid War

Every day worse than before 

Get advice that I ignore

Failure oozing from each pore:

How I Won the Covid War

Offer aid? I’m not so sure 

Affair with aide instead in store 

Chinless wonder to the core:

How I Won the Covid War

Dignity crashed though the floor

Twist the truth, distort the lore

Camel’s back, here’s one last straw:

‘How I Won the Covid War’

Saturday 13 November 2021

A Poem for #Edutwitter

I interact with lots of teachers on Twitter, and it is astonishing the degree to which they are constantly at each other's throats. Perhaps it shouldn't be so shocking that people who are so passionate about their vocation should have such strident views, but it does seem to be a bit of a minefield at times. Anyhoo, here is my poem on the matter.


I know a place that oozes doom

where monsters wander through the gloom

and people bark and rant and fume

and claw each other’s eyes; 

a place where rancour’s sour breath

infuses with the stench of death;

a place where holy shibboleths 

bear weapons for the prize;

a place where bullies grin and gloat

and newbies try to stay afloat

and rival factions slash at throats

to gain the upper hand;

where progs and trads square up and bray 

and everybody wants their say;

it’s just another fractious day

in Edutwitter land.

Friday 12 November 2021


This poem has a second job:

one thousand pounds per letter.

No matter that it’s middling

and there are plenty better.

You may well bleat that

profiteering isn’t in its brief

and that the simple joy of words

should be its sole relief

but times like these are tough;

this poem’s suffered more than most.

So now that you have read it

there’s an invoice in the post. 

[scandal in Parliament about MPs raking it in with second jobs]

Tuesday 9 November 2021


Duty calls? I’m not at home 

Tossed my mask and lost my comb 

Holidays at no expense

Shuffle bottom on the fence 

Wiffle, piffle, bluster, bluff

Latin quotes - can’t get enough!

Shirking roles? I’ve had my fill

Hiding in the hospital 

Bodies? Let them pile high!

Shoddy suit and wonky tie 

Act the jester, that's my trick

Proles will gobble up my schtick

Rules do not apply to moi

What’s my brief? Je ne sais pas

Gurn and wave, you know the drill

Hiding in the hospital

Cash for me and for my mates

Sitting out those dull debates

Bolly chilling at the bar

Buller! Buller! Ra Ra Ra!

Loads of children, don’t know names

Politics? It’s just a game

At shamelessness I win ten-nil

Hiding in the hospital

Johnson ducks key debate on Tory Corruption by visiting a hospital in Hexham 

Monday 1 November 2021


work out the right way to go

when we get lost;

picture a million different universes

in my head;

comfort my sister

when she cries in the night;

put a thousand comic books

in the correct order;

make everyone laugh; 

help dad with the cooking; 

make a story last for hours;

hit the crossbar

from the edge of the box;

outwit opponents

with my agility…

so why

do they call me

Low Ability?