Tag: Poem

It’s all so QUIET!

If anyone’s been wondering where I’ve been and what I’ve been doing with my time (seeing how I’ve rarely been posting), I’d like to let you know that I’m now a radio presenter on Enjoy Radio!

I never intended for it to happen, but it did.

I do two shows:

Words and Music – Wednesdays 12-2

A luscious combination of spoken words and music. The words are often written and spoken by amateurs, and the music often lyrical and storytelling.

To send work in to be read out, or to send recordings of your own work just email lesley.atherton@enjoyradio.co.uk.

You have nothing to lose!

Stranded in the Seventies – Friday Nights 9-11

Often with a co-presenter, I play the best, the worst and the silliest of 1970s music, adverts, theme music and so much more. A low-key amusing end to the working week.

I now also have a website called http://www.writingandradio.co.uk where you can find catch-ups, reader and writer recordings, playlists and much more.

Or to listen live to any of my broadcasting colleagues – http://www.enjoyradio.co.uk.

More about writing and radio.

#internetradio #internetradioshow #internetradiostation #poetrycommunity #poetrylovers #poemsociety #poemaday #shortstory #shortstorycollection #shortstories #shortstorywriter

Prom Dress Poem – Acrostic

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Perplexed, I’m in a mother’s shock. We’re shopping for a posh new frock

Retracted plan to boycott prom, now keen to try big dresses on.

On entry, met by satin swathes, assistant squeaks and jumps and waves.

Met at a gig with mobiles spelling, now two girls giggle, hugging, yelling.

Dresses tried in beige and steel, my girl, a giant in 6 inch heels

Recoils at strapless silicone, while tightening lace and corset bone.

Eleven dresses tried, excited. Select, of course, the first she sighted.

Stroll downstairs to pay deposit. Strip lights buzz while two girls gossip

Sue in denim prints receipt. Decision made, we leave to eat.

#meredithschumann #author #authors #poem #poetry #prom #promdress #promdressshopping #harrystyles #acrostic

You Didn't Get Much Sleep Last Night – a Poem About a Poorly Child

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You didn’t get much sleep last night
You snored and thrashed: a soul not right
You shouted, screamed with night-time fears
Your puffy eyes glowed red with tears.

You shivered, sweated, sobbed with shakes.
Boy not asleep. Boy not awake.
With clammy hands and sodden hair
You sought relief that wasn’t there.

You’re hot, you’re cold, you’re cold, you’re hot.
You shouted through. ‘I need you lots.’
My comfort sought, you cuddled tight,
You bed me ‘Stay with me all night’.

I laid me down, and your head flopped
Your eyelids closed, your breathing dropped.
You sleep a bit, move left then right.
You toss and turn all through the night.

You woke, excited, giddy, healed
Your body strong, it didn’t yield.
I’ve borne your burden. Wretched. Old.
You’ve given me your stupid cold.

I laid in bed with you last night
You shivered, boiled and whimpered light
You shouted, screamed with terrors deep
I didn’t get a moment’s sleep.

‘You’re Ashen Pale’ my friend she said
While making toast, and tea and eggs.
‘Just you relax. We’re going that way.
I’ll take your lad to school today’.

And when she left, with you in tow
I heaved relief, and tears fell slow.
I picked at breakfast, sipped at drink
Then poured it down the kitchen sink.

I didn’t get much sleep last night
You snored and thrashed: a soul not right.
Now half past nine, my duties gone
I’m back in bed. Awaketime none.

#meredithschumann #author #authors #poem #poetry #child #cold #flu #motherandchild

What I Fear

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A strangely structures circular prose poem.

What I fear about FOOTBALL is the obsession with BALLS.
What I loathe about BALLS is the sheer bloody MACHISMO.
What I dislike about MACHISMO is EVERYTHING there is.
What I object to about EVERYTHING is its overwhelming BIGNESS
I don’t like BIGNESS because it makes me feel SMALL.
I don’t want to feel SMALL because I’m not UNIMPORTANT.
I hate feeling UNIMPORTANT because NOBODY is.
I’m unhappy about NOBODIES because the term is so INSULTing.
I hate INSULTS when they scorn the WEAK.
I fear for the WEAK who may well fail at SPORT.
I totally despite SPORT because it attracts CROWDS.
I don’t like CROWDS because they follow the PACK MENTALITY.
And I am scared of the PACK MENTALITY, especially when it relates to FOOTBALL.

#meredithschumann #author #authors #poem #poetry #football

Degree of Delight

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‘Our sky-clouds of doubt and worry always being worse than the realities of everyday life, my patient Luke must confront the pointlessness of worrying. It cannot possibly achieve anything positive.’ Doctor Earnshaw stopped writing and put down his pen, then leaned back on his chair and sighed. His clinic notes were becoming more poetic. Eloquent. Flowery. He really must re-think his profession, as he didn’t seem all that suited to the scientific life.
From the brown leather armchair, aged and cracked from the bodies of hundreds of previous patients, Luke Jones, postured and leaned.

He began to speak.

‘So this is the freedom I was willing to kill for. This is it? Betrayal on top of betrayal, and all leading to cold and bloody, congealed murder.’
Puzzled, the doctor watched his patient. Had this man read the poetical notes? He wouldn’t put a bit of mind-reading past him, as Luke was one of the world’s terrifying missing links between humanity and the Gods. Intelligent, charming and both sharp and cold as steel.

Luke Jones spoke further.

‘The liberty to choose is frequently too much liberty, with too much choice and too much pointless and needless responsibility.’

Struck from his poetic thoughts, Doctor Earnshaw realised he had to earn his salary, and probed further.

‘I’m not sure what you mean. Are you saying that each of your 19 victims was guilty of negativity and betrayal of you? Even those who were unknown to you, and when you were unknown to them? Even those too young to have any personal responsibility?’

‘Doctor, doctor, doctor… you should know better than to ask such a thing.’
Luke Jones rose from his seat and walked over to the consulting room’s large sash window. The curtains were open, and the window glass was too. Outside was the rest of the world – a world that would be permanently sealed off from Luke, if Doctor Earnshaw’s report did what it should.

Come on David; we’re going to get through this, he told himself. Luke Jones is nothing special and is not insane. He’s just a cold-blooded criminal.
Dr Earnshaw walked joined his client by the window, and they watched in silence for a few seconds.

The rain fell. It spattered against the window with dull irregular thuds. Icy and harsh, the droplets were expanding.

‘Let’s sit down, Luke.’

Luke shrugged. ‘You can appraise me just as well standing up.’ Then he shuffled a little, fell against the doctor slightly, then moved back to his chair and sat.

‘We’re here for the same reason, Luke. We all want what’s best for your victims and to try and help you. And that’s always going to involve knowing the truth.’

Luke’s legs twitched.

‘So, let’s begin again at the beginning. What happened on the night of the 17th of March?’

Luke’s left shoulder drooped a little, and his right shoulder raised.

‘OK, then if you don’t want to talk about that one, what about the events of January 12th 2010? With the lovely young lady who I believe is still in a coma?’

Luke’s head retracted into his wonky shoulders even further.

‘Or the young gentleman who ended up in the mortuary the week prior. With your DNA profile discovered in skin cells underneath his fingernails.’

Luke Jones held out his hands, seemingly in supplication.

‘But doc, it wasn’t me,’ he wailed, and then fell onto the floor in a fit of cackling.

It was rare for Dr David Earnshaw to feel such contempt and simultaneous fear of a client. Usually, his innate professionalism would kick in at the moment he felt the least amount of disgust for a patient.

But Dr Earnshaw knew that Luke was on remand and awaiting a verdict on his mental state. That was why this middle-aged psychiatrist was watching, listening and attempting to converse with cocky twenty-two-year-old Luke Jones, who was to stand trial on seven serious cases – of murder, of abuse, arson and torture.

Dr Earnshaw had met a great many dangerous men and women – psychopaths, sociopaths, psychotics and the plain evil – but couldn’t put his finger on why Luke’s presence had such an effect on his mental state.

The wind whooshed around the window panes, blowing the rain harder onto the glass. David looked at his wall clock and realised the meeting would be over shortly and would have to leave the jail’s suite of consulting rooms, and drive back home in this weather. How he disliked rain clouds.
Hail clouds were even worse, and he dreaded his journey home.

‘I miss her,’ said Luke, pushing his voice into the doctor’s thoughts.

‘Miss who?’

‘Your daughter, of course. She was a great lay.’

David took a deep breath and stood up from his desk.

‘Luke. Enough. If you don’t help me, I can’t help you. You insult my family, that’s not going to get me on your side. OK?’

‘OK,’ said Luke.

He smirked at Dr Earnshaw. It was only when the smile stopped that the doctor realised the reason behind it. In Luke’s hands was the cigarette box he’d stolen from his doctor’s pocket. And David knew the contents of that packet. Six or seven filter tips, a small, black lighter, and a slim yellow box of matches.

‘No, Luke, don’t…’ he began, but Luke Jones was too far gone to hear.

Precisely one hour later, the entire administration block had been evacuated. The fire had been contained, but was fierce and burned even brighter when assisted by the contents of Dr Earnshaw’s brandy decanter. Of course, the fire extinguisher was no longer a defier of the flames. Luke Jones had used it as a weapon of war against not only his psychiatrist but against the three guards outside on the corridor who now lay stunned on the cold, tiled floor. He accessed a fire axe and several items used for restraint (including leg irons, handcuffs and what he thought might have been a cattle prod). Luke Jones broke through four sets of locked doors, working his way into the outside world.

Nothing could stop him as he left through a fire exit.

Nothing, apart from the hailstones that hammered down on his barely-clad body. They didn’t stop. But they did slow enough to allow the jail’s security to have congregated around each entrance. Each of them was clad in multiple layers of protective clothing: necessary against the dagger-sharp hailstones.

Dr Earnshaw heard rather than watched Luke’s arrest, for once gratified by the presence of the appalling weather. He considered his professional diagnosis. No way was he going to make life easier for this man in a mental institution where he’d be protected, treated and encouraged to grow as a human being. No. This man was bad, not mad, and David Earnshaw had every intention of helping the powers-that-be to lock him up in the harshest prison possible, and for the longest time possible.

Thank goodness for the weather, he thought, as he stood outside the foyer, allowing the hailstones to wash his body clean.

Creation and Re-Creation

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‘Creationist,’ he said. ‘That’s what I am.’
I nod, and shuffle in my seat.
Willing to listen.
Hoping to understand.
Struggling to accept.
I ask why his scientific mind would be so keen
To reclassify all he’s ever known.
He says it isn’t like that.
He’s seen a video or two.
They explain it all.
Along with the intellect of Trump.
The empathy of Johnson.
The terrorism of Labour.
I’m sorry, I say, as I leave the room.
Torn between out-loud laughs of disbelief
And terror for my baby’s mental health.

#meredithschumann #author #authors #poem #poetry #creationist #evolution

There's More Than One Way To Bin Your Kin

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Daphne was driven. The life she’d been given
Was clearly no better than bad.
Her husband, a user, a nightmare, a loser.
And she knew that she’d surely been had.

What reason was there, for his ripped underwear?
For his stubble, his hairpiece, his scowl?
And how might he explain his pretences of pain
When presented with spade or with trowel?

If his body was lazy, his mind it was too,
He lived in a permanent mist
Of smoking and drinking and drug-addled thinking.
Of his vices… she’d written a list!

Of how he would curse, in the car it was worst,
Of how he would hate and berate her.
And then he would calm, say ‘I’m sorry, no harm’
And take it all out on her later.

Oh, but how he relied. And how she had cried,
When again he demanded her wages.
She screamed ‘It’s abuse’, but still couldn’t refuse,
For fear of his terrible rages.

On Friday she planted a kiss on his cheek.
She said, ‘See you later, okay?’.
‘Whatever,’ he said. That’s when she wished him dead.
Cos he didn’t care, he had nothing to say and she knew that he’d always
Keep acting that way.

It was all about him, how he’d gain, how he’d win.
It was all about what he could get.
He exploited her caring with his own brand of sharing
A minefield of doubt and of debt.

She lay in the bath, contemplating her wrath,
And thinking of what she might do.
She came up with a ruse for her crime without clues.
And was sure what she needed to do.

She would get her revenge, she would seek out new friends.
She’d prevent her life plunging to hell.
She would simply say ‘Bye’ to the hate of her life
And leave him to fend for himself.

Inspired by Paul Simon’s ’50 Ways to Leave Your Lover’

#meredithschumann #author #authors #poem #poetry #revenge #paulsimon


Photo by Evie Shaffer on Pexels.com

2020 is the year, for reaching goals and squelching fear.
There’s much to do, so I’ll command, prioritise, set up and plan.
Though short of time, I’m strong and wise. I’m talking time to organise.
I’ll schedule all the months ahead, with useful tasks, more work, less dread.

I resolve to eat less fat, to drink less wine, less this and that.
And use the food that I have got, not let it ooze nor let it rot.
Sugar will be much reduced, and I will thrive on cabbage soup.
And alcohol won’t be a crutch, more of a friend I don’t see that much.

I’ll make a start on leathercraft, I’ve got the gear so need to graft.
I’ve got my dremel, studs and stamps, needles, pins and frames for lamps.
Embossing and pyrography, enamelling, photography. Wooden sculpt, and painted tin, basketry to keep things in.
But aren’t they all a waste of time, these useless, pointless tasks of mine?

I’ll work less hard and play much more. Try not to be a writing bore.
I’ll close my mind, spend time outdoors, I’ll learn to dance, to ride a horse.
Switch laptop off, take time to rest. There’s no need to be the best.
For who and what must I impress? There’s no exam, life is a quest!

I’ll love my life, I’ll light my way, and never dwell on yesterday
When things go bad, I’ll stand up strong, and trust that I’m not always wrong.
I’ll take more care, and get more sleep, I’ll look before I cross and leap.
I’ll rise and shine, enjoy my toil, though never burn the midnight oil.

But something doesn’t feel quite right.
Something keeps me up at night.
Selfish thoughts and selfish needs
Self-centred tasks and boastful deeds.
They swarm through me, those nightmares mount.
With crippling guilt, and dreadful doubt.

So, it’s best to take another heed of resolutions, wants and needs.
To turn things round, to start again, consider women, children, men.
And work for victims, help, assist. To make a difference, help, insist.

So that’s my resolution, now.
Do something useful. Make that vow.
Take time from life to help and serve.
Just hope I have the strength and nerve!

#meredithschumann #author #authors #poem #poetry #2020 #resolution #happynewyear

I Only Cheat For Chocolate

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I only cheat for chocolate, said the diabetic dryly.
At times I pinch leftover treats from off the children’s plates.
I like my crisps, of course I do, but I don’t eat them daily.
I show restraint, especially on the school run, when I wait.

I only take a candy bar or two.
An Allsort here, a Humbug there.
I’ll only have a very few.

I only cheat for chocolate, and I only cheat a little.
I only cheat when I can cheat in secret, bite by bite.
I only cheat for chocolate, and I only cheat at weekends.
The cheating is my secret, I’m most secretive at night.

I only cheat for chocolate, and I munch enthusiastically.
Its cocoa dribbles run right down my chin and to my shirt.
A cream egg yolk is what I craved, I stuffed them in quite drastically.
I bought a pack of six, and just one more aint going to hurt.

Its only there a moment on my tongue.
It’s worth it, though. It’s so deelish.
It never lasts for long.

I only cheat for chocolate, and I only cheat a little.
I only cheat when I can cheat in secret, bite by bite.
I only cheat for chocolate, and I only cheat at weekends.
The cheating is my secret, I’m most secretive at night.

#meredithschumann #author #authors #poem #poetry #food #chocolate #dietcheat