Ice cold tonic
To sizzle the tongue.
Sharpness of lemon
But no gin.
Surprised to find herself among
Those who abstain, though not
From sin.

The dice rattles
As the wheel spins.
One number on the red.
Good job she sacrificed
All those gins
And spent her cash
At the casino instead.

Just for a moment
Elation flows.
Regrets would come later
But a handsome stranger
Just handed her a rose.
What price now her virginity?



Holding your coat by the collar,
Trailing it in the dust.
Raising your face to the sun,
Eyes full of trust.

Sky will be blue forever.
Weeks seem like years ahead.
Freedom from school seems
Like never.
Oh! How the holidays sped!

Now your school mates are racing,
Laughing, jeering aloud.
Some one is always chasing
One who’s alone in the crowd.

Traffic sounds blend
With you running.
There is movement and life around.
Back to school in a city
Where you scarce get change
From a pound.

Years later, this child
Has vanished,
Yet still to the city he goes,
Trading in stocks and ventures
While the pound in his pocket grows.

No longer trailing his jacket.
Dressed now by Calvin Klein.
It seems he has made a packet,
But has everything turned out fine?


Her phone it has no credit.
She’s completely out of touch.
Her bank account’s in debit.
Her flat’s a rabbit hutch.
She might play the trumpet,
But lessons they are few.
She won’t play the strumpet,
But what else can she do?
Because she is a poet
And completely out of cash,
The rent it seems she’ll owe it,
But she will not barter hash.
She thought to use her poems
And happily recite
From the steps in Piccadilly
And be famous overnight!


Behind the stall
Stood Emily Brown;
A church warden
Of local renown.
She works at the stall
All day.
Determined to make it pay.
The church was
Emily’s life
Because she was
Nobody’s wife.
As she fingered
The second hand treasures
The gifts were her
greatest pleasures.

A rhinestone necklace.
A carved wooden box.
Clothes scarcely worn.
A brooch shaped like
a fox.
Chains for the neck.
Bracelets many.
A yellow bowl.
Books galore.
Pictures of birds
That had been in store.
Crockery, glasses,
Knives and forks.
A tool for removing corks
A blue felt cat
with red stitched edges.
A pair of shears
For cutting hedges.

At the end of the day
When she counted her take.
Emily had stood without
a break.
The church can demand
And show little appreciation.
But if the thanks
were poor,
Emily knew who she was
working for.
She’s willing to wait
For her reward
In the smile that shines
From the face of our Lord.