All entries for April 2010

April 14, 2010

Chaos Theory

It’s called Chaos Theory because

it tries to explain the connection

between events that have no discernable link.


For example, each time I sneeze,

a puppy somewhere in the world

spontaneously combusts.


Although Chaos Theory insists

butterflies and storms have more in common,

I can’t help feeling for the children

I may be inflicting with emotional pain.


As my mild allergies

could be causing carnage,

I buy anti-histamines willingly.

It’s the least I can do.

Buckets and Spades

We built sand-castles and dug moats

for the incoming tide to flood.


We hid toys for our parents to find,

and buried the spades for fun.


The toys were unearthed, but not the spades;

the tide swept over the sand that encased them.

April 11, 2010

Of course, in an alternate universe things would be perfect

I read the story of a cult leader who used to address his followers while under the influence of laughing gas. I was preparing a best man speech at the time and it got me thinking. I wrote this poem sitting in this square:

I was the only tourist and, apart from my pale complexion, shorts and sandals (everyone else was wearing jeans and jumpers), I think I blended in well.

Of course, in an alternate universe things would be perfect

I gave the speech and,

despite your objections,

I used the nitrous oxide.

It wasn’t pretty but I think I made my point.

The groom’s mother looked at me with murderous intent;

it’s the same expression whenever we meet.

I can see she’s planning a few frames in advance;

looking at my throat like it’d be no trouble.

She’d have a fresh pair of marigolds in her handbag,

bought from a supermarket out of town, with cash.

She’d just have to rinse them under a tap,

run a bit of washing-up liquid over them.

No one would suspect a thing:

the gloves would go to the Shrewsbury WI;

she’d put them in the Men’s lavs at St Peter’s

during one of their monthly meetings.

Nothing ever happened at St Peter’s, she’d think;

they couldn’t even shift Joan’s sponge there,

and the steward was the only man

who ever went near the place.

Her domestic automatons-of-a-certain-age

would encase me in pastry

and my flesh to raise enough money

for a whole school, with a teacher.

She thanked me for being best man;

her eyes narrowed and she applied foundation.

I said it was no trouble when

really I meant: ‘Make your move.’

April 2010

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