Surprise: More Poems


Words are brutal things

If used for a sinister purpose

They can start a war

End a relationship

Or build an army of discontent

One thing stands alone

Once uttered

A word cannot be denied

It stands beside your reputation

For better or worse

Your moment with kingdom come

Or a devil’s curse

So heed this well you who speak loud and often

If your words are missives

That seize the minds of others

Leading them astray or into foray

It is you who must pay

You who will meet the harvest of criminal intent

As you fall into line

With the ghouls of the ages

Who generate rages

And sully the human condition without consent

That is it then

Judgement will come

As surely as the rising sun

Judicial words 

Will have a different tone

They will echo in the halls of justice forever

And brand you guilty

Thus to pay for what you have said

Life Is A Terminal Illness

Walking is a challenge now that I’m old

I wear lots of clothes because of the cold

And my movement resembles a circus trick

As I need to walk with a walking stick

Ho hum beat your drum

I look for my finger and find my thumb

My poor back aches with both knees in pain

As I try to pick things up in vain

My vision is weak with my hearing poor

I need a hearing aid what’s more

Fiddle de dee and can’t you see

I’ll soon have a place in a nursery

Blood pressure’s up with cholesterol

My doctor’s off to Sebastopol

There’s gout in my foot, arthritis in my fingers

A constant ache and the memory lingers 

Hi ho you should know

My hair is white as Christmas snow

When I am seated it’s hard to rise

So I perch on a stool to compromise

I can’t watch the news as I fall asleep

I forget so much it makes me weep

Boo hoo that is true

My whole poor life is a hullabaloo

I go to great length to cure my ills

It takes me ages to count my pills

And so my life goes on and on

So much to be frowned upon

Rage rage listen to the sage

Now I can’t learn to act my age

But one thing stands like stone

Dead people cannot moan

The ultimate test is still the best

As I am not yet laid to rest

So it’s ho ho ho and time for bed

I must stop my moaning for I’ll soon be dead

Right Honourable Hypocrite

You always know what to say, don’t you?

Always have a position to take

That will not harm your ill-gotten reputation

Words flow from your mouth like drugs

Purchased in a back lane hit

Overt guilt-free monologues of mendacity

Designed to strengthen your niche in the polls

O how virtue oozes from your lips

As if you were of the hallowed few!

Fear not

Most loyal drones will not see through you

As I do through your glass darkly

I notice the subjects you avoid or just skim over

Projecting shame on others

With devilish dexterity

Your demeanour implies 

You are born and deserve to rule

Your smile of fake benevolence flickering forth

Between your lies

Lulls each listener into false awareness

And your arranged interview 

With chosen images

That illustrate your day

Works to divert observers from your true reality

So rant on counterfeit knight in glistening armour

Deliver your spiel to your followers

As you lead them down to hell

And it shall follow, as the night the day,

You will remain in power

Coal-fired Power Stations

There’s a storm coming

Not a little thing gently disturbing tranquility

But instead a monstrous violence

Shaking the earth with venomous vigour

Daunting flaunting haunting humanity

With horror and terror and dread

As many, so many, lie dead

It is not a mere ruction but vast destruction

Fists of anger beating up the earth

With force undreamed of before

Then will come the cold

Icicles hanging from the branches of trees

As even the sun seems ill at ease

Cars sliding backwards down icy roads

As snow many frozen deaths forebodes

And the wind is a dagger that pierces your clothes

A gruesome pain your very soul loathes

An awful way of dying

Look at those bodies wrapped in ice

Nature’s revengeful cryonic device

And then

At last that wind’s abated

Silence rules the world created

See, there’s a lonely one resisting

Still by chance only just existing…

So all this will be

As mankind burns divinity

When The Sun Goes Down

When the sun goes down I have company

Even though I am alone

Realities from the past drop into my mind

In ways 

My critics would never imagine

Teachers, physicians 

Heroes from sport I have never met

A lover or two

Other people who tolerated me 

And the odd pet dog

Come forth as recollections that cannot die

There’s something about relationships

It’s that particular sharing 

That makes you what you are

A product of experience

Unique but so dependent on others

That’s me

Old and frayed and at times dismayed

But linked forever 

To different figures from my life

Constantly with me they are

At times of their own choosing

Lingering on 

In spite of everything …

Old Tom for example

Reminding me

Of our radical cures for society

Over a glass of wine

There’s Mr Manuel 

Who taught me to love poetry

And that parallel lines meet at infinity

He stirs my brain still

Hound dog Baxter

Runs with me 

When my legs are supple and functional

Even though only in my mind


Still teaches me where heaven is

And suddenly one is two

Doctor Miles

Tells me that my heart is working well

Even though it is broken

Don Bradman

Still plays just for me

On Sydney Cricket Ground

Quite often

I hear a song that Crosby sings

Without a record on the gramophone

So there it is you see

Blessings need to be counted

Although I am on my own

I am never alone

A Lone Bagpiper

I’m listening to a lone bagpiper

Just stumbled across him 

On one of my unpredictable journeys

The sun is setting too

So the atmosphere is poignant

Darkness is lurking

What do you think he does to me

That solitary figure?

Is his melody 

A source of pity or contempt?

Contempt most likely …

It is it seems a lament

Perhaps a mourning for chances missed

Or a denouncement 

Of the things 

I have failed to do

And the mistakes I’ve made

So many

Down so many years

Duty is in the eye of the beholder

So I bow my head

In acknowledgement of my flawed existence

It’s a tough game, life

When you are a failure

Everywhere you look 

Is a dead end …

Ah! There it is again

The music

Yes it’s a dirge

That piper knows me

Better than I know myself

Listen for the tune

Can you hear it?

Or is all this a figment of my imagination?

Possibly so

But I need to get on with what’s left

Of reality


Time flies

On vulture’s wings

And old age knows how to end things

Hark now it’s dark

You had best listen to the last notes play

Because I’ve nothing left to say


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