I’m being a bit distant socially and media-wise lately. Soreeee.

Focus Issues.

Excuse my poor response to all who've posted,
Don't feel lost, abandoned or- God forbid- ghosted,
These last few days I find all my good humor's gone,
I guess I'm just not happy to be entertaining Omicron.

Between my tiresome bellyaches and pains
Short sharp temperament and long migraines,
Red snotty nose, sore ribs through coughing fits
I'm sick as a kicked dog- ain't that the puppyshits?

How hard we'd tried to keep ours a non-toxic household,
So I'll admit then testing positively made my blood run cold-
Masked up religiously, prayed God keep Covid from our door,
A positive outlook? well, no worries about catching it anymore.

Now I'd (better) thank my sweet spouse- best wife ever!
She soothes my fev'red brow, so I hold no ill will whatsoever-
Tho' viral transmissibility from her Nursing Facility brung it home;
(I'm such a shit patient she sez I'm her 'lil' Irritable Bowel Syndrome.')

She scoffs 'basic man flu,'
So I snap 'Sexist and untrue!'
Does it simply never occur?
Obviously I'm sicker than her!

I wake brimful of mucous, with a fuzzy unfocused brain,
My mind tracks back on the same track again and again,
Foggy thoughts goin' round 'n' round on an endless loop...
I'm of half a mind I'm repeatedly stuck on an endless loop...
Was that just deja vu or did I mention a flippin' endless loop?

Moaning in my sick bed, phone slipping 'twixt slick hands,
Cain't comment on fresh posts like a good host demands,
So 'scuse me while I sourly swab away the night's sweat,
Till I'm upright my tired 'Like' is 'bout the best you'll get.

                                 'There's 'under the weather' and then there's 'pretty snotty''             


Having a baby in the USA don’t come cheap. High Health Insurance costs ensure you’ll have a fit when handed the bill; That should leave you spewing and sobbing like your baby.

Overdue Thanks.

We cain't leave without thanking the Maternity Team-
To those oh so many who helped deliver us our dream
Understand, this poor mother was full of Nitrous Oxide
And an eight-pound boy who wasn't ready to be outside.

Salutations to all in the endlessly rotating parade of staff
Who worked with us as she laboured for a day and a half,
We're sorry, to all those many nurses who came and went,
Believe me, those flippin' curses weren't personally meant.

Untold thanks to the NHS* for giving so freely of their time,
We're blessed to know we can go not owing one thin dime,
Happily we three can leave- scot free- the Royal Infirmary-
If he'd been born in the USA we'd be paying for all eternity.

*The National Health Service, free to all residents in Scotland and the UK.

‘All part of the Service’


Over in jolly old England the fickle summer sun flits fleetingly down upon a pretty pastoral village green scene. In the cricket pavilion anticipation is in the air…

The Ducks Back.

In most every quaint English village on a summers Saturday
Two teams of lads clad in Cricket Whites stoically stand and wait
To see whether today could be the day the sun comes out to play,
Knowing fine talk of a change in the weather forecast is … precipitate.

The older sit back with a cuppa and talk of the old glory days
When Great Britain ruled o’er a vast empire, and the waves,
When pasty white chaps showed in peculiarly English ways
The way the proper Englishman abroad eccentrically behaves.

Wherever an intrepid Englishman landed and stuck his flag,
Into whatever hot dry dusty plain the Captain chose to settle on
Someone would reach into the hold, haul out the wrinkly kit bag,
Someone would mark up a cricket pitch, someone put the kettle on.

In India the wallahs looked up as the sun reached its apex,
Puzzled as twenty-odd Englishmen went out in the noonday sun,
That sun blazed down on those fair tender reddening necks,
Why, one steaming idiot batted the ball- up and down they’d run!?!

Off in the West Indies or in the Land of the Long White Cloud
Limey sailors would soon whip out their trusty balls and bat,
Soon the foibles of this batty game were taken up by the crowd,
The locals saw the Brits at their best and thought ‘we can better that.’

The Poms marked out their pitch on South Africa’s dusty loam
The games began while the colonised looked on, nonplussed,
By the time the Brits picked up their bat and balls and went home
The keen apter pupils had left the old troopers trailing in the dust.

When the Olde English had had their fill of robbers, thieves and cheats
They packed ’em off on prison ships to Aussie penal colonies forthwith,
And even now in the genteel Ashes clashes history sometimes repeats;
See the sleight of hand of *Vice-Cap’n Warner and Skipper ‘Slick’ Smith?

Strange that the English invented the archetypal summer sport,
Odder is the fact this this crazy game is now played by sweaty millions
While back home in Britain where they have summer (of a sodding sort)
The avid fans spend most Summer days packed in fuggy pavilions.

It’s a rare fine Saturday when its not a choice of cancel play or drown;
Everywhere saturated fans look out over some English village green
Looking glumly as the black clouds roll in and the heavens tumble down;
The only way most English fans will see blue skies is on a Sky TV screen.

*For non-cricket following readers- Two poor sport/dirty rotten cheatin’ Aussie bastards of the lowest order, a couple of fair dinkum prize pricks.


‘Oh, top catch, Snodgrass-Wittering! Next at bat for Little Worksop is Heyhoe-Flynt.’


First Putin sets foot into Ukraine- so then the big Western boys take out their business from the Russian market.

Appetite For Destruction.

President Vlad Putin went off on a Righteous war
Like many a mad Right dictator has done before,
And though 44 million Ukrainians maligned him
Millions more Russians rallied right behind him.

Most know Vlad's always had a long-term agenda;
If he had a heart, 'twas stone, not warm and tender,
When the Iron Curtain fell, up sprung a warmonger,
In Vlad's eye-spy eyes still burns a powerful hunger.

But for sad Vlad his war games gone wrong, not right,
In Old Petrograd Western sanctions have begun to bite,
If the proletariat can't fill up on Pepsi, Coke 'n' Big Macs
Someone might be tempted to take out the old battle axe.

                                     'See ya later, dictator.'

(Starbucks are bailing out of Russia too, but they can have ’em; who needs the dregs?)



The seasons cool, taking on that autumnal change; Well, I, for one, don’t like it.

Complete 365.

Summer's about done,
Autumn is nearing,
That warm effulgent sun
Fades, leaves disappearing.

Mother Nature turns
Her other cheek,
One swiftly learns
The future is bleak.

Long winter lingers...
Months in store...
Poor snap frozen fingers
Awaiting the thaw.

Winter draws on
And on, bone-chillingly,
When all warmth is gone
I turn, unwillingly...

Hands clasped I pray
'God, Great Pater
Take winter away
Jeez Please, sooner than later.'

'Spring's fine, summer's sublime, autumn blows, but winter- winter sucks big time.'


The Palace let their guard down again. (Crystal Palace 1, Burnley 1.)

Home Truths, Selhurst Style.

Back home happily to Burnley the Clarets* run-
Came up to Selhurst Park** pointless, leaving with one,
For this Palace fan another frustrating Saturday
Watching another two f- flipping points slipping away.

*Nickname for Burnley Hoof-ball Club.
**Selhurst Park- Home ground of Crystal Palace Charitable Football Club. (Own goals given freely away almost every Saturday.)

'If Burnley can't stuff the ball in the net, trust the home team to stuff it up and in.'


The woes of this crazy ol’ world are becoming more irritatingly personal by the minute.

Far And Away.

As two good parents we believe
It's ones duty to care and prepare
Your child for the day they leave
To explore that big wide world out there.

And so she ventured Forth,
Far and away she did roam,
From Southern Seas to frozen North
There to make her own family and home.

So we became the distant in-laws;
Then one day she called, unexpected,
Then, after a pregnant pause...
Suddenly all the dots connected.

Once, nothing could stop us going,
Once, we'd happily hop on an Airbus
Or aboard some Dreamliner Boeing-
Once, before this globe-trotting virus.

So, we awaited his birth,
All we could do was wait
Here on the far side of the earth;
Boy, he arrived wayyy past his due date!

Oh, though how we yearn
To hold close our grandchild
We stay put, with due concern;
That crazy Omicron's still running wild.

Oh, to be there by their side,
To gently tuck in the over-tired,
Sooth and comfort the red-eyed,
Even- ugh- change brown nappies as required.

To simply have, to hold,
To rock away his lusty wails,
To try out those good old
Mid-wive's and nurses tales.

To sing our old familial lullaby,
Lull your weary child to sleep,
Be on baby watch as the hours slip by
While letting his mother snore loud and deep.

Yes, we get to see him grow,
Already he's grown so much,
Yes, we can Zoom in on video,
Yet that still lacks the human touch.

So we remain half a world away
Waiting for the miasma to clear,
But we will get there, one fine day,
Meanwhile, they're there and we're here.

                            ‘One day we’ll just have to wing it.’


Another sad tale from a long-faced long time Crystal Palace follower.

Time Bomb. 
(Chelsea steal the win, last minute, 19/2/22.)

Once again this long-suffering Crystal Palace fan
Marvels at how well his players play to Pat's* plan,
Fully focused on keeping the opposition scoreless,
So many times Palace's defence is so close to flawless.

The times I've watched as injury time runs deep-
Then's when our blinking back line goes to sleep,
And in one single moment of slack-jawed yawning
We're back rueing their mistake on Sunday morning.

The way Palace let themselves get robbed is a crime!
Must we relearn our lesson, time after time after time?
Wouldn't it be wonderful, just once, for us to scare late?
Wouldn't it be great to see Patrick Vieira finally celebrate?

Wouldn't it be some turn up if Palace scored last at last?
Wouldn't it be terrific to not leave Selhurst** downcast?
One day the scoreboard will say (I pray with heart and soul)
A Palace player scored the late winner- and not an own goal.

*Patrick Vieira- Managing brilliantly for eighty-nine minutes every game.
**Selhurst Park- Palace's home ground and field of broken last minute dreams.

‘Last minute panic at the dismal Palace again!’


I’m a first-time Grandad, happily welcoming a new addition to the family! Oh, how I recall our postpartum fun filled days. And nights.

Who's A Pretty Tired Daddykins Then?

After nine months of her puking in dawn's watery light
My sweetie's waters breaking came as a tinkling delight.

When first I beheld our bonny bawling first-born
It felt like some kind of miracle to gently hold her,
Tho' a self-centred man this solemn oath was sworn;
With unending patience, in gentle arms I'd enfold her.

I gazed down on our cherub, eyes welled up at the sight;
'Tis a pity pappy's eyes and her nappy weren't watertight.

First week at home and from sweet sleep I'm torn,
If one's babe cries half the night, feed, don't scold her-
Our formula is; one bottle, taken expressly before dawn,
Babe takes comfort in warm milk; I, from milk stout, colder.

My better half told me it's my turn to be up half the night,
After nine months of nausea she is overdue some respite.

Tho' 'tis no joy to wake early every morn with a weary yawn-
My clock shows a tick past thirty-something but I feel much older,
My nightshirt ill-befits me, threadbare, sweat-soured and careworn-
But what warmth I feel as she fills her nap and sicks up on my shoulder. 

‘And a One, and a Two…’

( I’m proud to be a grandad- its a boy!- but what an exhausting experience! All through the thirty six hours of my daughters painfully slow labours I was desperately staving off sleep. I hope she appreciates my unselfish and unflagging support. And not once did I suggest she was taking her sweet time and she should get a wriggle on, though I wasn’t coping well with losing out on my beauty sleep. Still, I’ve never been a selfish guy…)