The joke about Trump dying in Israel,
suddenly, whilst was on a state visit.
Shocked his hosts said they would freely allow
special burial. They would permit it

in Gethsemane holy, sacred site,
free of charge. Otherwise, alternative,
to return to the U.S on a flight.
Cost of burial there, a million quid.

After the Americans had conferred,
said, would fly the body back to the States.
Hosts asked, ‘why not in holy land interred?’
Reply was ‘we took account of the place.’

‘Once a dead man here, came back to life, fixed.
With President Trump we can’t take that risk.’

FANTASY (based on the Eurovision Song Contest being held in Lisbon).

You can call me Renault or Claudio.
Herman, Dmitri, whoever you know.
It’s your way to enhance love, I suppose.
Think, then, I’m Cristiano Ronaldo.

Say I’m Jorges, Gregor, Luis, Luc, Alphonse.
Whatever it is, you’ll get a response.
It won’t be trouble. Be no contretemps.
Just think Cristiano for excellence.

I’m not sure who you most want me to be.
These could be men you’ve known, conceivably,
and you’re associating them with me,
whilst acting in this way, intimately.

Don’t even mind Harry or Hernando,
but prefer Cristiano Ronaldo.


A ‘fah’ she said, it started with a ‘fah’.
Let me explain that sound. Quite close to ‘fur’.
The ‘A’ like ‘R’, without the rounded ‘r’,
so, ‘far’ but more ‘fa’. Can’t describe it more.

It was the 5 year old’s turn with ‘I spy’.
We’d had a number of successful goes.
Now she’d chosen. To name we’d have to try.
Beginning with ‘fah’, the answer she knows.

‘Family’, I guessed, ‘fingers’, perhaps ‘feet’.
‘Food’ was also ventured. How about ‘fish’?
‘Face’. ‘Friend’. No, she said. Tough, this to complete.
Failing to find it. That we could, we wished.

“Everyone’s got one”, clue, so be known,
she said. Then I got it. ‘Fah’ was for phone.


The women discussed French men’s behaviour.
A mistress for them is customary.
Patriarchal custom, the enabler.
Accepted. Expected how men will be.

Said as if it is how the wives betrayed,
but with leisure, may too take a lover.
Girlfriend of a well-off man, sort of paid.
Sex and shopping, gifts to one another.

Safe space and discretion, part of the deal.
Came across this obvious arrangement,
when in my hotel room, a couple still,
post-lavish meal, and clothes on which cash spent.

Better, I thought, this Gallic loving thing,
than tennis stars, for whom ‘love’ means nothing.

CONFESSING TO THE DOG (on fireworks night.)

A short, sharp report. Sound like a shot fired.
A bang. Of all nights, on this night of bangs.
Who would have thought, admitting it required,
But upon doing, release from fear hangs.

Because the noise of fireworks distresses.
Sudden explosions in nearby places.
And the poor dog, with worry, obsesses.
Shivers and shakes and his young heart races.

So I had to comfort him, and confess.
Explain this latest was not a banger.
Know the fact, in his own best interest.
Not pretend it was a doppelganger.

It was me. The crack he heard came from me.
He should know, one of mine always likely.


Michael Caine in ’68, well-muscled.
What can you say; a blonde God on the screen.
A cat-burglar, the role playing, we’re told,
in Deadfall. In lead, he has to be seen.

He’s tanned and tuned-up in the Spanish sun.
Youthful, he climbs the walls and steals the safe.
Love problems, difficult to overcome,
with wife of accomplice. She is the bait.

Husband, who later, preposterously,
admits to being her father, is gay.
But Caine gets caught up emotionally,
and goes to rob, for reason I can’t say.

As escaping, she arrives, and he’s shot.
Film’s not great, but Michael Caine’s what it’s got.

TOURETTES (Jessica Thom.)

My poetry … biscuit …is like tourettes.
It communicates … biscuit … but disturbed.
What I say, may or may not be complex,
biscuit … biscuit …but often with some word.

Affected actress, bravely performing
…biscuit … Samuel Beckett’s …biscuit … ‘mouth’ play.
‘Not I’ … biscuit … The words she’s recalling,
with one more … biscuit …throughout, all the way.

Biscuit … biscuit … but other things are said,
and repeated by other sufferers.
I have heard the old …biscuit …, to my dread,
say again … biscuit …the same thing. Recurs.

Just a case … biscuit … of getting used to.
Allowing … biscuit … the voice to come through.

ON SEEING HOLLIE McNISH. (Iambic Pentameter.)

The poetry was full of sexiness.
A part of her experience, no doubt.
The audience taking an interest.
Absorbed; intrigued, by topics verse about.

Displaying sense of humour presenting,
the young woman was audacious, I’d say.
Quite personal in stories attempting.
But understood. Not salacious, her way.

A little rude, if think it so, perhaps.
A lot of reference to body’s role.
The circumstances, private, told as fact,
of her observed sex life, to reach her goal.

Which, eagerly, is modern poetry.
To write, from woman’s view, the melody.


Remembering Herr Robert Oelbermann.
He loved nature, the fresh air, and the Sun.
Founder of the youth group, Nerother Bund.
Died in Dachau in 1941.

Camping and hiking, and intense friendships.
Such groups were disbanded by the Nazis.
Join the Hitler Youth instead, they’d insist.
He refused, and with comrades did not cease.

Prosecuted under criminal code
revised to punish homosexuals.
Imprisoned, until the end of the road,
for five grim years. Was unacceptable.

One of the tens of millions murdered.
Respect, Robert. Your fate was undeserved.

ABBIE. (neighbour).

Splendid Abbie, the Shetland survivor.
From that far north island, an escapee.
Overall, her time there did delight her.
Bed and Breakfast, then, was her cup of tea.

Superb Abbie, with sheep as her neighbours.
She’d greet them with “Good morning” … or “Hello … Boys”.
Her guests well looked after by her labours.
The worst of the weather, now she avoids.

She wrote, in those times which she had to spare,
intelligent text for publication.
Through cold, rain, light and dark hours, at home there,
until the time for her embarkation.

Abbie the Brave, now in Tod, can report.
Abbie the Bold, like a fine single malt.


‘Splendid defeat’. That’s what I will call it.
The ‘glory’ may be personal deceit.
The struggle to just keep on, exalted.
The importance of oneself here, conceit.

But victory can be claimed, however,
in the very process being alive.
Be described as ‘a worthwhile endeavour’.
From a spirited resistance, derive.

Leonard Cohen called it ‘invincible’.
“Your invincible defeat” he sings of.
Impossible …, to inevitable.
The passing, though, if there is luck, brings love.

‘The splendid’, therefore, in at the last stage.
Facing, … indeed enduring, with courage.

SHOPPING SPREE. (Young Man in Black.)

The young man in black. He chose to wear black.
Made him look good. Slim and sleek, if noticed.
Star buy, a black coat, like an anorak.
Mock fur on the front of the hood, posted.

Black, too, the trousers with plenty pockets.
Another pair with less, but same colour.
Draw string at the waist. Design exotic.
On one pair. I think, too, on the other.

Shirt with style. Dark green lines over black mix.
Lastly, hooded jumper to the basket,
with front zipper to comfortably fix.
Whatever put on, carefully crafted.

Known as the man in black, was Johnny Cash.
Paul will be too, now that the cash been splashed.