Robert_Haigh's Saved Poems

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TitlePoemPoet
Jigsaw Puzzle

The scene is all set: I'm sitting outside With a giant jigsaw called, "Passion and Pride." On it are scenes from my life, past and present, And also future projections, quite pleasant! The sun shines bright and the birds sing their song...

Robert Haigh
Legend of the Leeds Lions

Four large stone lions guard Leeds Town Hall; They sit with poise and style. No-one sees them move at all, Though children see them smile! One hundred and fifty years they've been Guarding without a sound. Many a sight they must have seen While h...

Robert Haigh
Reading Poetry Out Loud

My wife has gone out with a girlfriend for the day, so I sit and read some of my favourite poems out loud. Really loud! Reading a poem out loud brings out the musicality of the piece. I let my lungs rip into Larkin, then follow with a foray into...

Robert Haigh
Cold Lies and Sad Goodbyes

I hate cold lies And sad goodbyes, But life can sometimes deal you those. No matter what You think you've got, It can be bogus, I suppose. I loved you dear, And held you near, But I was never in your heart. You led me on, And then were gone; It ...

Robert Haigh
Fair Weather

Fair weather clouds beat fair weather friends Squaring the circle does not make amends Jesters are telling us what we should do When evidence shows they don't have a clue Down at the crossroads we must choose a way You say tomorrow but I say tod...

Robert Haigh
Being Me, Being You

Being me is something you don't really see, Just as Being you is something I could never do. ~*~ We are all different bottles lined up on the wall. In time We'll fall, when we receive that predetermined call. ~*~ Meanwhile, I'll be me and you'...

Robert Haigh
Child's Play

Nothing seems to matter much when you are a child. You want to play, the livelong day, and can't be reconciled with, "Bath and bed, you sleepy-head!" But that's the life that this man led, when he was a child! _______________ Copyrigh...

Robert Haigh
Spring Must Wait

Winter shakes his robes of white And storms around the stage, As Spring waits calmly in the wings, Observing Winter's rage. The skies, like lead, are heavy now, And not about to lift. For Winter's tale is far from told, As snow begins to drift. ...

Robert Haigh
Sharks, Snipers and Snakes

I swim alone in shark-infested waters, trying to reach a distant, safe shore. Barbed arrows, disguised as wise words, are shot by enemies masquerading as friends. When allies turn out to be snipers, you begin to question the order of things. I ...

Robert Haigh
Love By Any Name

If I'm a bee, you're the honey. If I'm a bank, you're the money. If I'm a plant, you're the flower. If I'm a clock, you're the hour. If I'm a bottle, you're the wine. If I'm a sprinter, you're the line. If I'm a dance, you're the dancer. If I'm...

Robert Haigh
Hooligan Wind

I watched the wind having wicked fun today Stripping leaves from trees and hurling them like confetti Forcing flowers to frantically dance to any old tune Sucking up grit and spitting it in unsuspecting faces Snatching hats from the heads of haple...

Robert Haigh
Copper and Tin

You compromised on those dreams of old; The ones you thought were silver and gold. You traded them in For copper and tin, And only did what you had to do. You'd see it through — that much I knew. You prowl the mansions of my mind, And hold a key ...

Robert Haigh
The Man Inside My Head

The man inside my head keeps telling me Some things are not the way they ought to be. He says I should be happy with my life, Instead of courting misery and strife. I say to him, that's just the way things are; That happiness is not kept in a jar...

Robert Haigh
Long Time Coming

It's been a long time coming, But I've found love at last! The sad song I was humming Is now part of my past. I'm singing songs of happiness, Of wonder, and good cheer! I tell you (though I'm sure you'd guess) True love is finally here! I've had...

Robert Haigh
Adventures of Isabel

Isabel met an enormous bear, Isabel, Isabel, didn't care; The bear was hungry, the bear was ravenous, The bear's big mouth was cruel and cavernous. The bear said, Isabel, glad to meet you, How do, Isabel, now I'll eat you! Isabel, Isabel, didn't w...

Ogden Nash
Three Light Limericks

PINK CAT I once saw a cat that was pink. Someone had dyed it, I think. It walked down the street, Looking quite sweet, And no, I'd not had a drink! *** *** *** *** *** GOLD DIGGER He had neither charm nor wit, But she did not mind one bit. She...

Robert Haigh
Inspiration

Inspiration came into my mind and into my hands. Through my mind and through my hands, inspiration came and quickly left again. Inspiration came as the clock struck eleven. It was already leaving by the time I had pencil and paper in my hands. A...

Robert Haigh
Dandelion

Oh dandelion you are a weed! Much despised when gone to seed! We may curse you in the ground, But myriad uses can be found. Culinary and curative, You have benefits to give. And your beauty's plain to see, Loved by beetle, bird and bee. You'll...

Robert Haigh
The Trees

The trees are coming into leaf Like something almost being said; The recent buds relax and spread, Their greenness is a kind of grief. Is it that they are born again And we grow old? No, they die too, Their yearly trick of looking new Is written ...

Philip Larkin
Cut Grass

Cut grass lies frail: Brief is the breath Mown stalks exhale. Long, long the death It dies in the white hours Of young-leafed June With chestnut flowers, With hedges snowlike strewn, White lilac bowed, Lost lanes of Queen Anne's lace, And that h...

Philip Larkin
From Dusk to Daylight

A nightmare haunted me last night; It filled my mind with dread; An eerie sound, an awful sight, Right there inside my head! I saw the earth devour the moon, While lonely lovers sighed. The piper ceased to play his tune, And romance slowly die...

Robert Haigh
The Man I Might Have Been

A portrait of the man I might have been Hangs in a darkened room within my mind. A different me, the world has never seen, In subtle shades, with brush strokes well-defined. That portrait though is not on public view; In truth, it shows a road I ...

Robert Haigh
The Lesson

Chaos ruled OK in the classroom as bravely the teacher walked in the nooligans ignored him his voice was lost in the din 'The theme for today is violence and homework will be set I'm going to teach you a lesson one that you'll never forget' He p...

Roger McGough
Writing

often it is the only thing between you and impossibility. no drink, no woman's love, no wealth can match it. nothing can save you except writing. it keeps the walls from failing. the hordes from closing in. it blasts the darkness. writing is the u...

Charles Bukowski
Uncle Dan's Will

Uncle Dan wrote out his will, All legal-like and proper. He knew he'd not much time to kill Before he'd come a cropper. He'd truly lived a merry life And led us all a dance. He never took himself a wife, But loved a good romance. A ladies' man h...

Robert Haigh
Japanese Quartet

NIGHT SCENE (Haiku) The moon sets her sails to navigate the night sky with great majesty Stars twinkle and shine in a deep velvet backdrop as dreamers dream on *** *** *** *** MAN IN THE MOON (Dodoitsu) The man in the moon told me heaven is o...

Robert Haigh
Cut While Shaving

It's never quite right, he said, the way people look, the way the music sounds, the way the words are written. It's never quite right, he said, all the things we are taught, all the loves we chase, all the deaths we die, all the lives we live, the...

Charles Bukowski
Perfect Pattern

I looked for a perfect pattern within my life, Thinking everything should always make perfect sense. But then I learned that fate can cut just like a knife, Taking things away, without any recompense. "Into each life some rain must fall,&quo...

Robert Haigh
Poem Heading South

This poem is heading south As it drips down the page Letters pool into words But they make little sense Ideas and emotions All swirl around my head But words refuse to speak And the verse remains blank I coax but do not plead As words lurk in sh...

Robert Haigh
Prime Time

Millstones and mishaps all mess with my mind. I have no idea of what I might find Tomorrow, next week, or even next year; Yet freedom is one thing that I hold dear. Anchors and anvils are weighing me down; They're keeping me here, in this one-hor...

Robert Haigh
My lady can sleep

My lady can sleep Upon a handkerchief Or if it be Fall Upon a fallen leaf. I have seen the hunters kneel before her hem Even in her sleep She turns away from them. The only gift they offer Is their abiding grief I pull out my pockets For a handker...

Leonard Cohen
Nightmare

I walked along the boulevard, But everything looked strange. The traffic lights were stuck on red, With voices out of range. I dreamed that I was dreaming, And woke to find the truth: An everlasting nightmare Had robbed me of my youth. I had no ...

Robert Haigh
Send Me a Postcard

I know you search for your rainbow's end; I hope you find it soon, my friend. I settled right here — no rainbow in sight, And time will tell if I got it right. Rainbows are so elusive, I fear; If you get too close they disappear. I lazily lounge ...

Robert Haigh
A Piece of Empty Sky

She flew into my life out of the blue; A lost angel, looking to start anew. With sunlight in her hair and in her smile, But with rainbows in her eyes, all the while. I never asked about her troubled past. I loved her, but knew our love could never...

Robert Haigh
Ordinary Man

He's an ordinary man who lives an ordinary life. He works a mundane job, but has a very pretty wife. Just what that angel sees in him he'll never understand, But true love and devotion he always gets, first-hand. This ordinary man is just an aver...

Robert Haigh
Insomnia

I stand by my window, looking out at the night sky. Silver stars twinkle in harmony on a clear, velvet backdrop, as the crescent moon sings a silent serenade, six hours before sunrise. Such a beautiful, peaceful night; yet sleep evades me. This li...

Robert Haigh
God's Great Masterpiece

When God created mothers He made them stronger than all others (including fathers, uncles, nephews and brothers). He gave all mothers nerves of steel To cope with young kids who squeal And older ones who argue a great deal. He gave each mother a...

Robert Haigh
Get Ready

With devils riding high, and angels flying low, Some wonders of this great big world I guess I'll never know. Most things that pass for modern art don't do a thing for me. I'll stick by the old masters, whose greatness I can see. ********** I se...

Robert Haigh
Shadow of Doubt

Where does my shadow go When I'm asleep? Does it rest till daylight? Or does it creep Away, to live nine lives Out on the town? Meeting other shadows — Getting it down? You might think I'm crazy, But I'm concerned. My good reputation Has been h...

Robert Haigh
be kind

we are always asked to understand the other person's viewpoint no matter how outdated foolish or obnoxious. one is asked to view their total error their life-waste with kindliness, especially if they are aged. but age is the total of our doing. th...

Charles Bukowski
as the sparrow

To give life you must take life, and as our grief falls flat and hollow upon the billion-blooded sea I pass upon serious inward-breaking shoals rimmed with white-legged, white-bellied rotting creatures lengthily dead and rioting against surroundin...

Charles Bukowski
as the poems go

as the poems go into the thousands you realize that you've created very little. it comes down to the rain, the sunlight, the traffic, the nights and the days of the years, the faces. leaving this will be easier than living it, typing one more line...

Charles Bukowski
Edwardian Drama

Rescued from the wreckage of of a loveless marriage, She rode with her lover in his horse-drawn carriage. It was back in the year of 1907 When everything changed, and she found her own heaven! *** *** *** I'm not in the business of naming or...

Robert Haigh
Let Me Die a Youngman's Death

Let me die a youngman's death not a clean and inbetween the sheets holywater death not a famous-last-words peaceful out of breath death When I'm 73 and in constant good tumour may I be mown down at dawn by a bright red sports car on my way home f...

Roger McGough
Jagged

People say that love is blind, With thoughts and feelings kind. But words to me seem jagged, While rolling through my mind. I tried to write a love song, But somehow it went wrong. The words were sharp and jagged, And they did not belong. So my ...

Robert Haigh
It's a Jungle Out There

On leaving the house you'd best say a prayer Take my advice and don't travel by train As Tarzan said to Jane, 'It's a jungle out there.' I'm not a man who will easily scare But I'd rather lick maggots than get on a plane. On leaving the house you...

Roger McGough
Ghost of a Memory

You are the ghost of a memory from the distant past I turn a cobwebbed corner in my mind And suddenly there you are Long forgotten it seemed; but your memory refuses to die Should I laugh or maybe cry? The laughing left before you did and the...

Robert Haigh
the harder you try

the waste of words continues with a stunning persistence as the waiter runs by carrying the loaded tray for all the wise white boys who laugh at us. no matter. no matter, as long as your shoes are tied and nobody is walking too close behind. just...

Charles Bukowski
Jumbo Jet

I saw a little elephant standing in my garden, I said 'You don't belong in here', he said 'I beg your pardon?', I said 'This place is England, what are you doing here?', He said 'Ah, then I must be lost' and then 'Oh dear, oh dear'. 'I should be ...

Spike Milligan
The Poem That Wrote Me!

I tried to write a cheerful poem, But much to my surprise, The poem began to change my words; It told me they were lies! I tried my best to stay upbeat, With verses full of joy. The poem soon rejected those, As part of its weird ploy! It chased ...

Robert Haigh
Big Small World

I like my own company; some of the time. Sometimes I live in a world with a population of one. A part-time loner who never gets lonely. I can do what I want; whenever I want. But don't feel bad, my friend. You are always welcome here. I can o...

Robert Haigh
Hallelujah

Now, I've heard there was a secret chord That David played, and it pleased the Lord But you don't really care for music, do ya? It goes like this, the fourth, the fifth The minor fall, the major lift The baffled king composing Hallelujah Halleluja...

Leonard Cohen
Coming

On longer evenings, Light, chill and yellow, Bathes the serene Foreheads of houses. A thrush sings, Laurel-surrounded In the deep bare garden, Its fresh-peeled voice Astonishing the brickwork. It will be spring soon, It will be spring soon — And I...

Philip Larkin
Negative Indicative

Never to walk from the station's lamps and laurels Carrying my father's lean old leather case Crumbling like the register at the hotel; Never to be shown upstairs To a plain room smelling of soap, a towel Neatly hung on the back of a rush chair, ...

Philip Larkin
Past days of gales

Past days of gales When skies are colourless The corn falls, Dies; so for this space Autumn is motionless. Because the sun So hesitates in this decay, I think we still could turn, Speak to each other in a different way; For ways of speaking die, ...

Philip Larkin
for they had things to say

the canaries were there, and the lemon tree and the old woman with warts; and I was there, a child and I touched the piano keys as they talked — but not too loudly for they had things to say, the three of them; and I watched them cover the canarie...

Charles Bukowski
Fall and Rise of a Poet

The poet said, "I'll write no more! Erato has walked out the door! Love has left, and nothing does remain! "She was my Muse, my love, my life! Without her, all has turned to strife! Now all I hear is lost love's sad refrain!" I tr...

Robert Haigh
Hunting for Poems

Armed with pencils and reams of paper, I'm hunting for poems inside my head. Nothing gets written throughout this caper; No poems are found. Perhaps they're dead! Is this the end, I ask myself? Is Calliope's store now bare? No lines of verse left...

Robert Haigh
Mindfulness

Mindful of my newfound mindfulness I awoke to the infinite possibilities shimmering in the exquisite web of interconnectedness. As soon as my feet touched the floor I knew it was going to be a good day. 'Today will be a good day,' I intoned. I w...

Roger McGough
I Hear the Heartbeat of the Moon

I hear the heartbeat of the moon Above the ocean's roar. I feel the pulse of every star As we walk by the shore. I hear love's voice upon the breeze Whisper, "Mi amor." I see the moonlight on your face And starlight in your eyes. I watc...

Robert Haigh
Songs of Angels (Sonnet)

When songs of angels reach these mortal ears, I cease my daily toil and listen well. Such glorious sounds can soothe away all fears, And every lingering doubt they will dispel. These songs are borne upon the winds each day, Though seldom heard ab...

Robert Haigh
Long lion days

Long lion days Start with white haze. By midday you meet A hammer of heat — Whatever was sown Now fully grown, Whatever conceived Now fully leaved, Abounding, ablaze — O long lion days!

Philip Larkin
Winter

In the field, two horses, Two swans on the river, While a wind blows over A waste of thistles Crowded like men; And now again My thoughts are children With uneasy faces That awake and rise Beneath running skies From buried places. For the line of...

Philip Larkin
A Dog's Best Friend Is His Illiteracy

It has been well said that quietness is what a Grecian urn is the still unravished bride of, And that a door is what a dog is perpetually on the wrong side of. I may add that a sachet is what many a housewife's linen is fragrantly entrusted to, Bu...

Ogden Nash
Temporary Art

I wrote a love poem For you On a steamed-up window On the bus But it soon evaporated... Just like "us" __________ Copyright © Robert Haigh 2017

Robert Haigh
Back to You

The girl on the corner is flashing her legs. The drunk at the station is down to the dregs. I try not to answer each question that begs, And I long for a train back to you. The platform is crowded, with nowhere to sit. It's dingy and draughty, an...

Robert Haigh
New Brooms

New brooms sweep clean Old brooms can't be fussed New brooms are mad keen Old brooms can't stand dust. New brooms are young bulls Can't wait to get their teeth Into the kitchen carpet, Up the stairs and underneath The fridge and the cooker Where...

Roger McGough
Light Sleeper

My wife is such a light sleeper That when I come home late After a night out with the boys I always remove my shoes And leave them at the bottom Of the street. Image my surprise, when On retrieving them this morning I discovered that they had be...

Roger McGough
Roshi

I never really understood what he said but every now and then I find myself barking with the dog or bending with the irises or helping out in other little ways

Leonard Cohen
The Ones Between Us

I'd know you if I saw you, Although we've never met. I see the ones between us, With more to come, I'll bet! Love is such a dismal dance Without you in my arms. I date the ones between us, Whilst dreaming of your charms! Each day I hope I'll fin...

Robert Haigh
À Bas Ben Adhem

My fellow man I do not care for. I often ask me, What's he there for? The only answer I can find Is, Reproduction of his kind. If I'm supposed to swallow that, Winnetka is my habitat. Isn't it time to carve Hic Jacet Above that Reproduction racket...

Ogden Nash
Grandpa Is Ashamed

A child need not be very clever To learn that "Later, dear" means "Never."

Ogden Nash
Old men

People expect old men to die, They do not really mourn old men. Old men are different. People look At them with eyes that wonder when… People watch with unshocked eyes; But the old men know when an old man dies.

Ogden Nash
Angel Eyes

Her eyes, her very eyes, would have lit up my room — and my life — if she had cared to enter. But she looked away, and our eyes were destined never to meet again. __________________ Copyright © Robert Haigh 2018

Robert Haigh
So Fair Is She

So fair is she! So fair her face So fair her pulsing figure Not so fair The maniacal stare Of a husband who's much bigger.

Spike Milligan
Days

What are days for? Days are where we live. They come, they wake us Time and time over. They are to be happy in: Where can we live but days? Ah, solving that question Brings the priest and the doctor In their long coats Running over th...

Philip Larkin
Cupid Doesn't Care!

I called for Cupid's help today to melt your icy heart. But he would not (or could not) even play his part. His quiver was quite empty, with not one arrow left. He shrugged his dimpled shoulders, leaving me bereft! He wouldn't look me in the eye...

Robert Haigh
Sally and Ben

Ben was kinda rough around the edges, But Sally didn't care. He came without promises or pledges, But at least he was there. She'd loved many men in her time, and yet None had treated her well. Would Ben turn out to be a better bet? Well, only ti...

Robert Haigh
When Words Have Wings

When words have wings, and each line sings, The writer should take pride. Woman or man, each poet can Bring forth that magic ride! Words combined can woo the mind To make us laugh or cry. Artistic bent, with true intent, Can lift us to the sky! ...

Robert Haigh
the trash men

here they come these guys grey truck radio playing they are in a hurry it’s quite exciting: shirt open bellies hanging out they run out the trash bins roll them out to the fork lift and then the truck grinds it upward with far too much sound . ...

Charles Bukowski
Grandma's House

I loved to go to grandma's house When I was very small. Those big old empty rooms upstairs Always seemed so tall. I'd play up there without a care; With just one chair, that's all. Imagination was my friend; I'd gladly play alone. I'd be a pirate...

Robert Haigh
Granny

Through every nook and every cranny The wind blew in on poor old Granny Around her knees, into each ear (And up her nose as well, I fear) All through the night the wind grew worse It nearly made the vicar curse The top had fallen off the steeple ...

Spike Milligan
beagle

do not bother the beagle lying there away from grass and flowers and paths, dreaming dogdreams, or perhaps dreaming nothing, as men do awake; yes, leave him be, in that simple juxtaposition, out of the maelstrom, lucifugous as a bat, searching bat...

Charles Bukowski
She Said Please Write a Poem for Me

She said, "Please write a poem for me." I told her I would try. But soon she sailed across the sea And left me high and dry! We were just friends and nothing more, But I still think of her. And now, beside the ocean's roar, A strange sc...

Robert Haigh
Dreamland

Night is calling and dreams are falling, As elephants dance inside my head. Serried hedgerows and herds of rainbows Are closing in as I lie on my bed! Now fantasy meets with tangled sheets And reality's wearing borrowed clothes. Nothing, it seems...

Robert Haigh
I Wonder...

Did the winds and waves obey All good wishes On that fateful, "goodbye" day? Did you reach that distant shore? And did you find Whatever you were looking for? Did stars help steer your course? And did you see Beyond the sun, a greate...

Robert Haigh
tigerdreams

i go to sleep on all fours ready to pounce on any dream in which you might appear Claws withdrawn i want you live the image fresh as meat i want you live the memories flesh to eat Every nightmare its the same prowling through forests growling your...

Roger McGough
The Duck

Behold the duck. It does not cluck. A cluck it lacks. It quacks. It is specially fond Of a puddle or a pond. When it dines or sups, It bottoms ups.

Ogden Nash
Quid Pro Quo

There's no free lunch in this mean town, my friend. You have to play the game, and learn to bend. It's quid pro quo, or shiver in the cold. Just do as I say and you'll hit pure gold! There's money to be made, if you're no fool; Now oil the wheels...

Robert Haigh
A Hammer Seeking a Nail

Yes, he was a hammer, seeking a nail; She was a sweet girl, so precious and frail. It seemed like a mismatch; one forged in hell. But strange things occur when love casts its spell. He was hot-tempered, but she soothed his soul. Soon they were w...

Robert Haigh
Elevator Mirrors

My father had a moustache, But not his father or his brothers I am very tempted In the new hotels The elevators are often so dark The mirrors are useless (Like this one) I don't want to go anywhere I’ve been to the Acropolis (1959) I sat on the...

Leonard Cohen
Apparent Turbulence

You were the last young woman to look at me that way When was it sometime between 9/11 and the tsunami You looked at my belt and then I looked down at my belt you were right it wasn't bad then we resumed our lives. I don’t know about yours but min...

Leonard Cohen
I can't break the code

I can't break the code Of our frozen love It’s too late to know What the password was I reach for the past Keep coming up short And everything feels Like a last resort Tho' we’ve called it quits And there’s nothing left Still I hear my lips Mak...

Leonard Cohen
Riding Out the Storm

When lady luck has turned her back on you, And nothing seems to work, choose what you do, You still keep on believing things will change. You know deep down your goals are within range. You find a way of riding out the storm. When all your plans ...

Robert Haigh
Good Old William

- 'I concur with everything you say,' smiled William. 'Oh yes I concur with that. I agree.' ' If that's the general feeling you can count on me. Can't say fairer.' Good old William, the Concurrer.

Roger McGough
The Perfect Crime

The sword-swallower stabbed his unfaithful wife to death Before disposing of the murder weapon in one gulp.

Roger McGough
Cabin Fever

Rain is drumming hard on the old tin roof. The kids Are restless, and just about to flip their little lids! They both want to be out there, playing in the sand. I tell them it's too wet, but they don't understand. We play 'Snakes and Ladders,' bu...

Robert Haigh
Happens to the Heart

I was always working steady But I never called it art I was funding my depression Meeting Jesus reading Marx Sure it failed my little fire But it’s bright the dying spark Go tell the young messiah What happens to the heart There’s a mist of summe...

Leonard Cohen
A Caution to Everybody

Consider the auk; Becoming extinct because he forgot how to fly, and could only walk. Consider man, who may well become extinct Because he forgot how to walk and learned how to fly before he thinked.

Ogden Nash
Road Musician

He's an aging road musician, Still playing his guitar; His fingers gnarled and stiffened. Too late to be a star. He's restless and he's rootless; He'll never settle down. The road goes on forever, From town to dreary town. He sleeps in cheap mot...

Robert Haigh
These Paths and Lanes

These paths and lanes I've walked along So many times before. They've barely changed throughout the years; Still steeped in days of yore. Old memories cry out to me, And tales of family lore. The cottage where my parents lived Lies empty, looking...

Robert Haigh
Sad Steps

Groping back to bed after a piss I part thick curtains, and am startled by The rapid clouds, the moon’s cleanliness. Four o’clock: wedge-shadowed gardens lie Under a cavernous, a wind-picked sky. There’s something laughable about this, ...

Philip Larkin
Aubade

I work all day, and get half-drunk at night. Waking at four to soundless dark, I stare. In time the curtain-edges will grow light. Till then I see what’s really always there: Unresting death, a whole day nearer now, Making all thoug...

Philip Larkin
Solar

Suspended lion face Spilling at the centre Of an unfurnished sky How still you stand, And how unaided Single stalkless flower You pour unrecompensed. The eye sees you Simplified by distance Into an origin, Your petalled head of flames Continuousl...

Philip Larkin
The Whitsun Weddings

That Whitsun, I was late getting away: Not till about One-twenty on the sunlit Saturday Did my three-quarters-empty train pull out, All windows down, all cushions hot, all sense Of being in a hurry gone. We ran Behind the backs of houses, c...

Philip Larkin
That Poem You were Writing

It's not easy being a poet nowadays. Especially if you wander away from the desk and pick up a newspaper, or listen to the radio, switch on the TV, or be drawn into conversation. That poem you were writing, the one about your father taking you to...

Roger McGough
in a neighborhood of murder

the roaches spit out paper clips and the helicopter circles and circles smelling for blood searchlights leering down into our bedroom 5 guys in this court have pistols another a machete we are all murderers and alcoholics but there are worse in t...

Charles Bukowski
the bluebird

there’s a bluebird in my heart that wants to get out but I’m too tough for him, I say, stay in there, I’m not going to let anybody see you. there’s a bluebird in my heart that wants to get out but I pour whiskey on him and inhale cigarette smoke ...

Charles Bukowski
In my craft or sullen art

In my craft or sullen art Exercised in the still night When only the moon rages And the lovers lie abed With all their griefs in their arms, I labour by singing light Not for ambition or bread Or the strut and trade of charms On the ivory stages B...

Dylan Thomas
Bazonka

Say Bazonka every day That's what my grandma used to say It keeps at bay the Asian Flu' And both your elbows free from glue. So say Bazonka every day (That's what my grandma used to say) Don't say it if your socks are dry! Or when the sun is in y...

Spike Milligan
Mosaic

A mind badged and barnacled by the many vagaries of life. Finding his own perspective on fate's uneven hand. A mosaic made of a thousand broken pieces. Each fragment relevant and valuable, in its own intrinsic way. Poignant relics from a past th...

Robert Haigh
Maveric

Maveric Prowles Had Rumbling Bowles That thundered in the night. It shook the bedrooms all around And gave the folks a fright. The doctor called; He was appalled When through his stethoscope He heard the sound of a baying hound, And the acrid smel...

Spike Milligan
A Dutch Picture. (Birds Of Passage. Flight The Fifth)

Simon Danz has come home again, From cruising about with his buccaneers; He has singed the beard of the King of Spain, And carried away the Dean of Jaen And sold him in Algiers. In his house by the Maese, with its roof of tiles, And weathercocks...

Henry Wadsworth Lon…
For Anne

With Annie gone, whose eyes to compare with the morning sun? Not that I did compare, But I do compare Now that she's gone.

Leonard Cohen
Belinda

Belinda was an artist Who painted things from life. She'd be there at her easel, With brush or palette knife. She always looked so calm, With not a hint of strife. I'd see her in the cornfield Or on the village green. She always looked so lovely,...

Robert Haigh
the pleasures of the damned

the pleasures of the damned are limited to brief moments of happiness: like the eyes in the look of a dog, like a square of wax, like a fire taking the city hall, the country, the continent, like fire taking the hair of maidens and monsters; and h...

Charles Bukowski
Do not go gentle into that good night

Do not go gentle into that good night, Old age should burn and rave at close of day; Rage, rage against the dying of the light. Though wise men at their end know dark is right, Because their words had forked no lightning they Do not go gentle int...

Dylan Thomas
The Fly

In his black armour the house-fly marched the field of Freda's sleeping thighs, undisturbed by the soft hand which vaguely moved to end his exercise. And it ruined my day — this fly which never planned to charm her or to please should ...

Leonard Cohen
Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? (Sonnet 18)

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate. Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May, And summer's lease hath all too short a date. Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines, And often is his gold complexio...

William Shakespeare
Children's Party

May I join you in the doghouse, Rover? I wish to retire till the party's over. Since three o'clock I've done my best To entertain each tiny guest; My conscience now I've left behind me, And if they want me, let them find me. I blew their bubbles, ...

Ogden Nash
my cats

I know. I know. they are limited, have different needs and concerns. but I watch and learn from them. I like the little they know, which is so much. they complain but never worry, they walk with a surprising dignity. they sleep with a direct sim...

Charles Bukowski
The Look:

I once bought a toy rabbit at a department store and now he sits and ponders me with pink sheer eyes: He wants golf balls and glass walls. I want quiet thunder. Our disappointment sits between us.

Charles Bukowski
Life Keeps Trying to Knock Me Down

Life keeps trying to knock me down, With problems thrown my way. It makes me wear a fitful frown, As blue skies turn to grey. I've taken knocks all through the years, But still I battle on. Pleasures often plagued with fears Are what I feed upon....

Robert Haigh
Body of Loneliness

She entered my foot with her foot and she entered my waist with her snow. She entered my heart saying, "Yes, that's right." And so the Body of Loneliness was covered from without, and from within the Body of Loneliness was embraced. Now ...

Leonard Cohen
Irving and Me at the Hospital

He stood up for Nietzsche I stood up for Christ He stood up for victory I stood up for less I loved to read his verses He loved to hear my song We never had much interest In who was right or wrong His boxer's hands were shaking He struggled with...

Leonard Cohen
The Letters

You never liked to get The letters that I sent. But now you've got the gist Of what my letters meant. You're reading them again, The ones you didn't burn. You press them to your lips, My pages of concern. I said there'd been a flood. I said ther...

Leonard Cohen
I Could Be Wrong — But I'm Not!

When I was a lad summers were longer. Families were closer, and somehow stronger. There were surely more birds and butterflies That flitted and fluttered and filled the skies. I could be wrong - but I'm not! Roads were much quieter - less traffic...

Robert Haigh
Long Sight in Age

They say eyes clear with age, As dew clarifies air To sharpen evenings, As if time put an edge Round the last shape of things To show them there; The many-levelled trees, The long soft tides of grass Wrinkling away the gold Wind-ridden waves— all ...

Philip Larkin
The Importance of Elsewhere

Lonely in Ireland, since it was not home, Strangeness made sense. The salt rebuff of speech, Insisting so on difference, made me welcome: Once that was recognised, we were in touch. Their draughty streets, end-on to hills, the faint Archaic smell...

Philip Larkin
Gathering Wood

On short, still days At the shut of the year We search the pathways Where the coverts were. For kindling-wood we come, And make up bundles, Carrying them home Down long low tunnels. Soon air-frosts haze Snow-thickened shires; O short, still days...

Philip Larkin
The Gander

Be careful not to cross the gander, A bird composed of beak and dander. His heart is filled with prideful hate Of all the world except his mate, And if the neighbors do not err He's overfond of beating her. Is he happy? What's the use Of trying to...

Ogden Nash
A Lady Thinks She is Thirty

Unwillingly Miranda wakes, Feels the sun with terror, One unwilling step she takes, Shuddering to the mirror. Miranda in Miranda's sight Is old and gray and dirty; Twenty-nine she was last night; This morning she is thirty. Shining like the morn...

Ogden Nash
Always Marry an April Girl

Praise the spells and bless the charms, I found April in my arms April golden, April cloudy, Gracious, cruel, tender, rowdy; April soft in flowered langor, April cold with sudden anger, Ever changing, ever true — I love April, I love you.

Ogden Nash
Tales Of A Wayside Inn : Part 2. The Sicilian's Tale; The Bell of Atri

At Atri in Abruzzo, a small town Of ancient Roman date, but scant renown, One of those little places that have run Half up the hill, beneath a blazing sun, And then sat down to rest, as if to say, 'I climb no farther upward, come what may,'-- The ...

Henry Wadsworth Lon…
To Failure

You do not come dramatically, with dragons That rear up with my life between their paws And dash me butchered down beside the wagons, The horses panicking; nor as a clause Clearly set out to warn what can be lost, What out-of-pocket charges must b...

Philip Larkin
A-Z of Good Thinking

A - Appreciate what you already have. B - Believe in yourself, or no-one else will. C - Consider all options, wherever possible. D - Don't be quick to judge. No-one is perfect. E - Eat healthily to promote holistic well-being. F - Family and frien...

Robert Haigh
the power of poets

the man on the veranda outside, giving coppers to the old tramp and feeling good isn't me. I am the veranda. I could have been the tramp or even the coppers. However I choose to be the veranda and it is my poem. Such is the power of poets.

Roger McGough
Teeth

English Teeth, English Teeth! Shining in the sun A part of British heritage Aye, each and every one. English Teeth, Happy Teeth! Always having fun Clamping down on bits of fish And sausages half done. English Teeth! HEROES' Teeth! Hear them click!...

Spike Milligan
Kyrie

There was a porter who had ideas high above his railway station always causing righteous indignation he wanted to be giant amongst men saviour come again to earth but his teachings only met with mirth one bright winters morn packed in his job be...

Roger McGough
Scintillate

I have outlived my youthfulness so a quiet life for me where once I used to scintillate now I sin till ten past three.

Roger McGough
Storm

They're at it again the wind and the rain It all started when the wind took the window by the collar and shook it with all its might Then the rain butted in What a din they'll be at it all night Serves them right if they go home in the morning and...

Roger McGough
Cousin Nell

Cousin Nell married a frogman in the hope that one day he would turn into a handsome prince. Instead he turned into a sewage pipe near Gravesend and was never seen again.

Roger McGough
Cousin Daisy

Cousin Daisy's favourite sport was standing on streetcorners. She contracted with ease a funny disease. Notwithstanding.

Roger McGough
One Perfect Summer's Day

One perfect summer's day I walked o'er field and country lane. The sights and sounds of nature in her glory filled me fain. Strolling through these environs would lighten any load, So on I went, till presently I found a winding road. It l...

Robert Haigh
The ABC

Twas midnight in the schoolroom And every desk was shut When suddenly from the alphabet Was heard a loud "Tut-Tut!" Said A to B, "I don't like C; His manners are a lack. For all I ever see of C Is a semi-circular back!" "...

Spike Milligan
Two Children

Two children (small), one Four, one Five, Once saw a bee go in a hive, They'd never seen a bee before! So waited there to see some more. And sure enough along they came A dozen bees (and all the same!) Within the hive they buzzed about; Then, one ...

Spike Milligan
The Lion

If you're attacked by a Lion Find fresh underpants to try on Lay on the ground quite still Pretend you are very ill Keep like that day after day Perhaps the lion will go away

Spike Milligan
Me

Born screaming small into this world- Living I am. Occupational therapy twixt birth and death- What was I before? What will I be next? What am I now? Cruel answer carried in the jesting mind of a careless God I will not bend and grovel When I die....

Spike Milligan
The Soldiers at Lauro

Young are our dead Like babies they lie The wombs they blest once Not healed dry And yet - too soon Into each space A cold earth falls On colder face. Quite still they lie These fresh-cut reeds Clutched in earth Like winter seeds But they will not...

Spike Milligan
Contagion

Elephants are contagious! Be careful how you tread. An Elephant that's been trodden on Should be confined to bed! Leopards are contagious too. Be careful tiny tots. They don't give you a temperature But lots and lots - of spots. The Herring is a...

Spike Milligan
Entropic Thoughts of You

I whispered our secrets to the north wind, Little knowing they would reach other ears. I dreamed we had an everlasting love, But those dreams turned out to be illusions. Opposites attract, but some opposites Are too polar to accommodate change. ...

Robert Haigh
Armchair Critic

He is an armchair critic Who likes to watch the news Staring at his old TV He mumbles as he views And when the politicians speak He almost blows a fuse! He disagrees with everything Or so it seems these days He doesn't like the news anchor Or hal...

Robert Haigh
Gone but not forgotten

Was it really that long ago? Where the years have flown heaven only knows We think about him often As the nights close in and the whisky flows O the wit of the man the yarns he could spin About Cambridge and MI5 Undercover at Greenham Common An...

Roger McGough
How Distant

How distant, the departure of young men Down valleys, or watching The green shore past the salt-white cordage Rising and falling, Cattlemen, or carpenters, or keen Simply to get away From married villages before morning, Melodeons play On tiny...

Philip Larkin
To write one song, I said

To write one song, I said, As sad as the sad wind That walks around my bed, Having one simple fall As a candle-flame swells, and is thinned, As a curtain stirs by the wall — For this I must visit the dead. Headstone and wet cross, Paths where the ...

Philip Larkin
A Tale of Two Mirrors

The mirror that hung in the hall Posed problems, for you and for me. Although it looked chic on the wall. On that point we both could agree. But you said, "This just will not do! I can't see my nose nor my mouth! I put this proposal to you: ...

Robert Haigh
Clockwork

the crow knows exactly where to sit on the yellow bench the wave exactly where to break the jaw that will not unclench is fastened perfectly to the writer's skull future generations come like clockwork under the damp cement arches to include ...

Leonard Cohen
Fly on the Wall

The pen picked a fight with the paper The four walls looked on in disdain The pen broke its nib in the caper But inflicted a horrible stain The pen lay there battered and broken The paper had two big black eyes No words were written or spoken Whi...

Robert Haigh
The Vision

Sitting alone, as one forsook, Close by a silver-shedding brook, With hands held up to Love, I wept And, after sorrows spent, I slept. Then, in a vision, I did see A glorious form appear to me: A virgin's face she had; her dress Was like a spritel...

Robert Herrick
poetry

it takes a lot of desperation dissatisfaction and disillusion to write a few good poems. it's not for everybody either to write it or even to read it.

Charles Bukowski
woman on the street

her shoes themselves would light my room like many candles. she walks like all things shining on glass, like all things that make a difference. she walks away.

Charles Bukowski
Q

I join the queue We move up nicely. I ask the lady in front What are queuing for. 'To join another queue,' She explains. 'How pointless,' I say, 'I'm leaving.' She points To another long queue. 'Then you must get in line.' I join the queue. We ...

Roger McGough
The Mower

The mower stalled, twice; kneeling, I found A hedgehog jammed up against the blades, Killed. It had been in the long grass. I had seen it before, and even fed it, once. Now I had mauled its unobtrusive world Unmendably. Burial was no help: Next...

Philip Larkin

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