Life and War with Mikey Fatboy Delgado
Tuesday, November 17, 2015
Hotel Kultur

In the Kultur Hotel’s Plato suite
the Secretary of State masturbates
over an issue of Slash, Stab and Beat.
A priest of the culture fulminates
in the Aristotle Conference Room
against setting the Amalekites free…
‘Kill the enemies of God. All are doomed
unless they come to the Father through me.’ 

Down the corridor the Medici Hall
hosts a jamboree for oil-company reps
and girls who do business on Capitol Hill.
On the Machiavelli disco steps
and in the toilets of the Borgia wing
are citizens who can get you anything.

Sunday, October 18, 2015
A Companion Reader to The Chilcot Report

Can't wait for the Chilcot Report? 
Can't wait to reckon the price of blood?
Read the Unofficial Appendix while you wait.
A snapshot of the state of the nation back then.

The more things change, the more they stay the same

looking to buy someone a present and don't know what to get? look no further... £7.99
The Book Depository £7.99, includes free delivery worldwide

Before Hutton, before Butler, before Chilcot,
Mikey Fatboy Delgado was looking into the matter...
In the spring of 2003 the Iraq war is underway and
Mikey is almost all in favour of it. It makes for good
television and is improving his sex life. If only the BBC
would sort out those green pictures of fighting in the
dark he might even be prepared to cough up for a licence.
And if only corrupt policing and the amount that Blair grins
weren't so unsettling he would be able to relax and enjoy
watching the highlights of the fighting more.


“Saddam has bitten the kids and pissed on
the mat and eaten our ganja and he won’t
stop fucking barking, so bosh, ta-ta, thanks
for all the fish, and fucking goodnight Irene.
Your services are no longer required, Saddam.
You are going up the motorway, pal.”




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Tuesday, September 01, 2015
Mikey Delgado's dream, part 3

The Famous Five and the Arab Boy

To be perfectly honest Tony was a little bit uncomfortable around Donald.
When they had first arrived at camp Tony had been overjoyed to see that
there were bunk beds and he had baggsied one of the top bunks but Donald
had gone awfully strange and..well…Donald had been rather beastly to Tony.
He had turned to Tony and because of the sun shining on Donald’s glasses
Tony couldn’t see his eyes. All he could see were Donald’s thin lips moving,
and though Donald spoke softly he sounded frightfully hostile to Tony, if the
truth be known.
  “Listen, kid,” Donald said, “you ain’t nothing here. You ain’t what we call a
man. A man knows another man. And I’m a man. And I know you ain’t one.
You...” and he stopped here for what seemed to Tony like an awfully long time
“are just a kid pretending to be a man. Well, kiddo ...that crap don’t cut no ice
with me. We are going to need someone to switch the lights off and that bunk
down there,” he pointed to a bottom bunk next to the door, “is next to the switch,
and you are going to be in it because you are going to be the light-turner-offer.
  Tony was quite taken aback by that and turned to George and Condie and Dickie
and Wolfie for some support but none of them seemed to have heard, even though
they were right there in the room. They were all looking the other way and Tony
thought for one odd moment that they were simply jolly well pretending not to
have heard. Uncle Colin had heard though and he just laughed and thumped Tony
on the back good-naturedly.
  “Hahaha,” Uncle Colin chuckled, “well I guess Condie has got her dog, and now it
looks as if Donald has got his pussy.” 

Friday, May 15, 2015
things to do when elected

For those who suffer the heat
of homogeneity, launch gentle
butterflies of rain, paroxysms of
blossom snow, quick guides to
pensions, blizzards of sweet money,
ladders of wristwatches, taxis to payday,
caplets of relief, evaporated paper,
peaches. Launch more words, tears
torn from water, conclusions of lines,
bunches of flowers (in which lilies
predominate). Turn back the miracles of the
feast, purges, unveiled hair, suffrage, written
reports, high buildings, intervening canyons.
Work longer. Write letters of intercession. Buy
envelopes, women poets, moisturiser, dogbrush,
shoeshine, scissors. Plus de guerres vagues.
Sunday, May 10, 2015

These things grind us to such a sharpened point -
the brightly-lit room, the gaunt sick faces,
the corridor and our feet constantly
shifting to give way, the recesses called
bays as if the grey men there have at last
a view of the sea, and where with stumbling
dread we feel sure the tips of our horror’s
honed blades will catch against the curtain and
cut it open to a vista of dread
and oblivion that will not be like
going to sleep – there will not be postponed
things to complete upon rising, or a
breaking of the fast, or rain, or sun or
a knock on the door and a returning
love, but in so bright a place memories
come flooding in – a man interrupting
an embrace says ‘you dropped your ticket, you
must be in love,’ – how true, the broken bed,
the stained sheet, the passionate protesting,
two arched backs and bodies fused at the hips
making a wishbone on its side, testing
its own strength – where is she now all these years
later? Has she gone on ahead herself?
Will word get to her that I’ve gone? These things
in the rain after diagnosis bring
such pain, such a flood of knowledge of what
a look may mean – in every face already
the November weather, the air-filled damp,
the terror, the fixed masks of a planet
of walking dead, the queued traffic as it
crawls up Pond Street, exhausting grey,
screaming to you “accept no leaders, not
one of them, friend, is worthier than you”


Wednesday, January 21, 2015
For W…. in Cardiff who I thought of tonight

I had come back at the end of a war to the same room I left at the start of it.
Because so much had happened I expected as I turned the key that the room
would be as different on my return as I was. It wasn’t. Rooms don’t change much
when no-one has been in them, not to us anyway. We are too big to notice
the small real deaths of mites in the carpet or the life in the decay of some crumb
teeming with change between a chair and a wall. I wrote something to W…. who
would never read it, I wrote quickly about what I saw when I came back through
the door. It seemed momentarily as important as what I’d seen while I’d been away.

I have returned from a long journey, and the forgotten half-cup of tea
with two dead flies in it returns me to mourning in the empty room
where nothing knows or cares of the monstrous sadness of a forgotten
half-cup of tea with two dead flies in it. The air is so still, nothing that
cares has moved through it in all this time. Every night now the door

is left unlocked to let you in and find me.

All these years later and there is war again. This time I have stayed in a different room.
I haven’t gone to the new war. All these years I have kept Nigel’s drawing of the cup
with the two dead flies in it which he drew after I sent him a copy of the note I’d written
to W…. who would never read it. I sent the note to Nigel to let him know I’m back.
He sent the drawing to me by way of saying good. Tonight I have taken the drawing
down from the wall to gaze at it, to imagine him reading and then drawing, perhaps
like this, like me, in a lamplit room in the early hours. Earlier tonight I read Schuyler’s
poem that has a cup in it, Schuyler’s beautiful poem about a cup half-filled with sunlight.
That poem made me think of Nigel’s cup and of W…. and of how I’d like after all these
years to write something about what happened between us all, all those years ago,
some poem, or something as beautiful as the drawing, but here you are, almost at
the end of this, and still no poem.

Cup - (Nigel M ©)

Shimmer    -   James Schuyler

The pear tree that last year
was heavy-laden this year
bears little fruit. Was
it that wet spring we had?
All the pear tree leaves
go shimmer, all at once. The
August sun blasts down
into the coolness from the
ocean. The New York Times
is on strike. My daily
fare! I’ll starve! Not
quite. On my sill, balls
of twine wrapped up in
cellophane glitter. The
brown, the white and one
I think you’d call ecru.
The sunlight falls partly
in a cup: it has a blue
transfer of two boys, a
dog and a duck and says,
"Come Away Pompey." I
like that cup, half
full of sunlight. Today
you could take up the
tattered shadows off
the grass. Roll them
and stow them. And collect
the shimmerings in a
cup, like the coffee
here at my right hand.



Friday, January 09, 2015
How (it seems) I came to be tattooed in the house of W**** R**** in the Old City of Jerusalem

It was the sour stench of tear gas
rising up the steps of David Street
from the alleys of the Christian Quarter.
It was the Border Guards beating
their prisoners after Friday prayers.
It was the blueness of sky,
it was the air-powered hiss of bus doors,
it was dein goldenes Haar, Margarete.
It was a haircut at the barbershop
in the Muslim Quarter,
it was the date (1714) on the ironstone house
in which my father was born.
It was Karl Marx writing
that the worker has no homeland,
it was the failure of the Enlightenment,
it was the McMahon correspondence,
it was the Balfour Declaration,
it was a Yemeni girl on Kibbutz Shomrat.
It was the coastal plain seen
from the Galilee highlands,
it was arriving in Nazareth,
it was tomatoes growing in sand
in the Wilderness of Zin,
it was George McRae singing Rock your baby.
It was the gold teeth of Bedouin girls,
it was kif on the Lebanese border,
it was the greyness of England,
it was looking for work in Tiberias.
It was her name scratched on a hotel wall,
it was passing through deserts in buses,
it was the rest-stop near Yad Mordechai,
it was a signpost to El Arish,
it was the panic of an animal in front of a fire.
It was the indiscriminate pursuit of affection.
It was the footsteps of a priest.
It was mist at dawn on the Jaffa Road,
it was the stars seen from the desert at night,
it was the chemicals in the hair dye,
it was the sound of earth landing on the pine.
It was the strength people need.
It was the evening
and the black walls of the passageway.
It was the blind man on the Via Dolorosa,
it was haji painted above the shop doors,
it was the mother suffocating her baby
to protect it from fedayeen.
It was not knowing the names of trees.
It was being afraid of snakes,
it was not knowing the names of birds,
it was organophosphates in the orchard,
it was poor sight in the dark,
it was the mirrors turned to the wall,
it was the streetlamp’s small circle of light.
It was the loneliness of people who believe they believe,
it was the hopelessness of choirs,
it was the smell of stone and wood in churches.
It was the callousness of killers,
it was the casual cruelty of soldiers,
it was arrested development,
it was abortions we procured.
It was Graham who died at four,
it was the fearful child’s bedroom,
it was the abusive neighbour,
it was everything that has ever happened.
Tuesday, September 30, 2014
Case History

 'Most Welshmen are worthless,
an inferior breed, doctor.'
He did not know I was Welsh.
Then he praised the architects
of the German death-camps--
did not know I was a Jew.
He called liberals, 'White blacks',
and continued to invent curses.

When I palpated his liver
I felt the soft liver of Goering;
when I lifted my stethoscope
I heard the heartbeats of Himmler;
when I read his encephalograph
I thought, 'Sieg heil, mein Fuhrer.'

In the clinic's dispensary
red berry of black bryony,
cowbane, deadly nightshade, deathcap.
Yet I prescribed for him
as if he were my brother.

Later that night I must have slept
on my arm: momentarily
my right hand lost its cunning.

Dannie Abse
Thursday, July 31, 2014

By day we wait for war again. We listen
 for radio items that make no sense: for lists,
numbers, archaic words and usages…clues
to the call-up of reserves. We walk barefoot
to the supermarket, watch lovers inflaming
each other. We imagine those women turning
to catch us peeping as they wave their men off to war.

At night we sit on the flat roof listening
to the distant sea. How the noise of the daylight hours
disrupts the senses. Late at night when it’s quiet
we can smell the ocean from here. We can taste it
on the salty breeze. We have learnt to say omelette,
matches, the time, because the women here are beautiful,
slowly, I don’t understand.

The English-language newspaper writes often
of terrorist incursions in the north. We imagine
Bedouin trackers and their private photographs
of dead fedayeen lined up like fishing trophies
between the smiling hunters. We debate the foolishness
of travelling to the border to buy matchboxes full of kif,
 and we go just the same.

We communicate with Galilean Arab girls there in nods
and smiles. They reward our earnest attention with golden-teeth grins
 and we wonder about their strong thighs, and what if things
were just different enough for them to yearn to come into the trees
with us, or for us to slip into their lives as serious prospects.
 On the train back south we talk of how the death of Elvis shook us,
even though none of us can stand rock and roll.

We talk of how we might extract the morphine from Diocalm.
We talk of the wonderment of Fantasia on drug-addled senses.
Catching our drawn faces reflected in the window between us
and the night I wonder what the oldest Arab girl, beautiful
with those heavy breasts beneath her embroidered Bedouin dress,
must have thought of us today, as we sat at the roadside café
guzzling the cheapest red wine, bleary-eyed, bullshitting.

Sunday, July 27, 2014
life and war
Life and War with Mikey Fatboy Delgado

What is it with those people who live over there? We were saying down the pub
last night that the problem over there is that it’s too hot, mate. It’s like when you’re
on holiday in Spain and you sit on the beach all day necking bottles of that San Miguel.
It does send you a bit loopy and, be fair, we’re only over there for a couple of weeks.
Imagine if we were in the sun all the time like those Iraqi lads, we’d be as potty as they
are.  And it’s not just Iraq, it’s the whole area. It’s like going south of the river at the
weekend. Those Israelis had to chop some more of the Arabs living in their country
tonight for taking the piss after they’ve been told to simmer down. Anymore pissing
about and we’ll chop the lot of you. Kill one of ours and we’ll do fifty of yours
You can’t fault that can you? They don’t fuck about, those Israeli lads. It’s like they’ve
been taking lessons from Davey Ribnecklace Gallagher. Step on their feet at the bar
and they’ll have your fucking legs off, mate.

Friday, June 20, 2014
the afternoon's incessant chatter

Fanatics discuss matches in memory
and Marjorie watches the football float slowly
across the pale blue eggshell of sky,
above the straining hearts of the hand-holding lovers,
past the tightened throats of stranded defenders
betrayed and adrift in no man’s land.

Marjorie talks to herself about how the ball
never came down, about how in the time
it takes to light a cigarette it has transmogrified
into a dark bird, with a delta, and swift,
and has ascended above the stadium’s rim,
fleeing the afternoon’s incessant chatter.
Marjorie holds her hand flat across her brow
to block the glare, to see the bird buffeted into tumbling
by the frenzied air, like sweet papers, like a cellophane bird
in the wake of a train. The ball itself, but for its plotted line,
barely registers. It skips the way a flat stone might skim
above a green smooth ocean after leaving the arm
of a boy on the shore. The body of the crowd,
a raucous channel packed with boats bobbing at anchor,
in slow motion twists and gasps to see
the same ball do the same thing again and again .

At half-time talk is of the shadow of the stadium roof,
of how it leaves one small oval of the crowd golden
in the last light cast at sunset. Marjorie imagines
hearing him speak of how in the language
of the heavily-armed state the word for ball
is the word for bullet, and how the poor deserve
their misery. The striker – “he’s gone down
like Capa’s militiaman for a penalty” -
holds their attention instead. No-one links
the shot of the dead ball specialist rebounding
from the marshalled wall, and the fusillade
which felled the puppet emperor Ferdinand
as he held the hand of his white-shirted general.


spain v spain (Cerro Muriano, Sept 1936)

mexico v mexico (June 1867)

Friday, June 13, 2014
Mission accomplished - Dumb and dumber

Life and War with Mikey Fatboy Delgado

Bush flies onto that aircraft carrier all dressed up like some fucker out of Top Gun,
only with Bush he just looks like the back end of a fucking pantomime horse in all
that gear, mate. He’s a scream. You can’t help finding him comical. Not like old
Blair. And the geezer on the BBC news made us laugh when he was commentating
on it and he said that Bush did his national service by flying round Texas a couple
of times and then ducking out of going to Vietnam.

I like Bush when he’s making his speeches. He’s a scream. He’s like a cheeky little
kid. He always looks like there’s some fucker behind him tickling his arse with a
feather. He looks like he wants to burst out laughing at the crap those bods have
written for him to tell the American people. Not like Blair. Blair looks like he doesn’t
think anyone’s going to swallow what he’s got to say but his eyes are bulging and his
arms are flapping about because he really wants them to. “I say this to you..” or “I want
to make this perfectly fucking clear..” and crap like that. And Blair just looks fucking
stupid when his people slap a guitar in his hand and try and make him look a cool fella
for the young people to get into. He just looks like an area manager for British Home
Stores in a grey suit holding a guitar. Shape up, Tony, for fuck’s sake.

But that speech old Bush gave on that ship was funny as fuck, mate. That guff about
freedom and darkness and captives and light. He looked like he wanted to fall over
side ways. He’d be much happier telling it straight. “These motherfuckers fronted us
up so we bombed the shit out of them. Did we get the right ones? I don’t know, but if
we didn’t we’ll bomb the fuck out of them till they learn who’s the fucking daddy.
God Bless America.”


Tuesday, June 03, 2014
These are horrible times
But I feel angrier than I ever felt then. The way in which the crisis of 2007 got flipped, so that suddenly it's not bankers but people living on welfare who are the problem, was extraordinary. These are horrible times.

"At one level, it's not all defeat," he says, citing gay rights, the women's movement and race as areas where things have at least improved in the last 40 years. "Everyone asks why people are so passive, but my experience is that they aren't, it's just that a lot of the fights now are defensive – keeping nurseries or libraries open."

Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Happy trails, Bob

England in 1819

An old, mad, blind, despised, and dying King;
Princes, the dregs of their dull race, who flow
Through public scorn,—mud from a muddy spring;
Rulers who neither see nor feel nor know,
But leechlike to their fainting country cling
Till they drop, blind in blood, without a blow.
A people starved and stabbed in th' untilled field;
An army, whom liberticide and prey
Makes as a two-edged sword to all who wield;
Golden and sanguine laws which tempt and slay;
Religion Christless, Godless—a book sealed;
A senate, Time’s worst statute, unrepealed—
Are graves from which a glorious Phantom may
Burst, to illumine our tempestuous day.

Song to the Men of England 

   Men of England, wherefore plough
For the lords who lay ye low?
Wherefore weave with toil and care
The rich robes your tyrants wear?

Wherefore feed and clothe and save,
From the cradle to the grave,
Those ungrateful drones who would
Drain your sweat -nay, drink your blood?

Wherefore, Bees of England, forge
Many a weapon, chain, and scourge,
That these stingless drones may spoil
The forced produce of your toil?

Have ye leisure, comfort, calm,
Shelter, food, love's gentle balm?
Or what is it ye buy so dear
With your pain and with your fear?

The seed ye sow another reaps;
The wealth ye find another keeps;
The robes ye weave another wears;
The arms ye forge another bears.

Sow seed, -but let no tyrant reap;
Find wealth, -let no imposter heap;
Weave robes, -let not the idle wear;
Forge arms, in your defence to bear.

Shrink to your cellars, holes, and cells;
In halls ye deck another dwells.
Why shake the chains ye wrought? Ye see
The steel ye tempered glance on ye.

With plough and spade and hoe and loom,
Trace your grave, and build your tomb,
And weave your winding-sheet, till fair
England be your sepulchre!

Percy Bysshe Shelley

Friday, February 21, 2014
kitchen window, early morning sun

through east facing kitchen window, early morning sun
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
I was leaning

I was leaning back in my swivel-chair, with my feet up on the desk, magazine open,
and I was enjoying this little essay. It talked about Schuyler's history of stays in psychiatric
hospitals. I liked the snippet that said Schuyler had been making poems for about thirty five
years before he gave his first public reading. By then he was 65. It took him that long to
overcome his extreme shyness enough to stand before an audience and read his poems.
According to the essay the queue for tickets stretched several deep around the block.
Imagine that – people queuing to hear a poet.

I can imagine that little piece of information comforting a few people who may write poems
and who may want at some time to be known for writing poems and who may want at some
time to stand in front of an audience that has queued to buy tickets to have the chance to listen
to these poems being read. I imagine some of them thinking that they too are terrified of public
speaking, or that they too haven't the faith in the poems that they have made to dream of reading
them aloud to strangers. And I imagine them looking at Schuyler's age and thinking that they are
only 27 years old or 34 or 51 or 63, or whatever they are, and so they still have time, and that
maybe they will get there in the end, by the time Schuyler did, and that they too will be writers.
And because of that they don't give up because they are too old, or not good enough, and because
little by little they think they may be finding the voice that is theirs, or all of the voices that are theirs,
or at least a voice that is casting off what was put into it in schools and opinion columns and other

I can imagine this because I remember reading Kerouac by the side of a road in Greece as the hills
turned purple at dusk, and then on Basel railway station, and then in a flat overlooking the beach
at Portreath, and I remember thinking that Kerouac was late getting into print and that I had still
got a few years to get to how old he'd been when On The Road was published and so by that age
the three pages that I had written and had spent years endlessly rewriting would have grown to a
great novel that would make all further novel-writing redundant.

When I passed the age that Kerouac had been and my piece had grown only to an endlessly revised
seven pages I thought of Henry Miller. He'd been even older. I would still be able to make it by the age
he was when he'd got his book out in Paris. And as I was thinking this I shifted my position a little in my
chair and I knocked a glass of water with my feet and it went over my keyboard. I didn't pay much
attention to it immediately because I was enjoying this article I was reading in this magazine, and I
was enjoying the thoughts it led me to. But then I started to get a tiny panic about what would happen
if I wanted to write something at the speed that I need a keyboard for, but I call someone on the phone
as I read and am assured a keyboard can be sent to me in a few hours. And so I continue to read about
how Schuyler returned from a European trip with his dream of being a short-story writer. In the same year
he suffered his first major episode of psychiatric illness and I read that over the next 35 or so years he
is hospitalised around ten times and then the article comes to what strikes me as a fine piece of
poetry, something Schuyler wrote, an elegy for Frank O'Hara,  Buried at Springs. The poem

There is a hornet in the room
and one of us will have to go
out the window into the late
August midafternoon sun. I
won. There is a certain challenge
in being humane to hornets
but not much….

and at that particular sitting that is about as far as I got with the essay since those lines made me agitated,
as poems or journalism or fictions often will, and I had to get up and move about. For some reason
I decided I should get outside so I decided to take the binbag out to the bin. It was March and very 
sunny and my porch is brilliantly white, and with the intensity of sunlight that day bouncing off the walls it
felt like stepping onto a porch on Mykonos. On the waist-high ledge of the porch, by the left
supporting pillar, there was a wasp, dead, on its back. It shouldn't have been there. It was only March.
I couldn't fathom how a dead wasp could be there in March. I stood there, already agitated,
almost paralysed with thought about how that wasp could be there, dead on the wall of the porch.

I came back into the house, puzzled, and that feeling was in the back of my throat, that feeling of
agitation that comes when I think I'm going to have to try to explain something to myself by hitting
the keys of a keyboard and then reading afterwards what words that hitting has made, and from that
see if I can see what it is I was trying to explain to myself.

But the keyboard was fucked. From the water. Some of the keys worked, not all of them, but no
numbers, no commands, not always spaces, no tabs. I was in that frenzy again. I threw everything
out of a cupboard and got a hair-dryer out and plugged it in and with one finger typed and with the
other tried to dry out the keyboard. I got something down before the frenzy stopped and when the
frenzy stopped it let me stop. I could just stop and read what hitting the keyboard had done but I
don't suppose it explained much at all.

Mykeyboardis        fucked/betterthanitwas/the       numberswork
butstillfucked/    youcanseetheproblemhuh?/nospacebar/
soIhadhopedthati          wasntgoingtowanttowr        iteapoem/

soishouldneverhave started readingschuyler writing
thebitaboutthe       hornetintheroom/whichihadn’t
readbefore/                  youseeitwas sunny heretoday andtheporch
brilliantwhiteporchwasa dead wasp-  on its  back   -
and ican’t for thel ife ofme figurewhereit came from

Wednesday, January 22, 2014
Southernmost Point Guest House / Pretend Genius Press

Southernmost Point Guest House
poetry from Pretend Genius Press

poets: Raewyn Alexander, Alex Barr, Lynn Blackadder, 
Sean Brijbasi, Susan Campbell, David Cooke, Tim Craven, 
Mikey Delgado, Vanessa Gebbie, Kim Göransson, 
James Browning Kepple, Charles Lambert, Laura Lee, 
Andrew Mayne, Geraldine Mills, Stephen Moran, Nuala Ní Chonchúir, 
Richard Peabody, Lynsey Rose, Judi Sutherland, Lee Webber. 

Buy here
and here


Tuesday, January 14, 2014
Southernmost Point Guest House -- Poetry
Current reading - Southernmost Point Guest House 
Reheated Cabbage   --   Irvine Welsh

This collection brings together poetry by writers currently living
in America, Britain, Ireland, Italy and New Zealand. They have
little in common other than finding themselves here, in this book,
and in the early part of the 21st century, with something to say.
Contributors: Raewyn Alexander, Alex Barr, Lynn Blackadder,
Sean Brijbasi, Susan Campbell, David Cooke, Tim Craven,
Mikey Delgado, Vanessa Gebbie, Kim Göransson,
James Browning Kepple, Charles Lambert, Laura Lee,
Andrew Mayne, Geraldine Mills, Stephen Moran, Nuala Ní Chonchúir,
Richard Peabody, Lynsey Rose, Judi Sutherland, Lee Webber.
The title is taken from a poem by Alex Barr.
Best price here:
Also available from Amazon

Tuesday, December 10, 2013
Willesden Herald International Short Story Prize

Willesden Herald International Short Story Prize

Get your entries in, the deadline is approaching,
the trophy has been polished and shined and put on public display.
Closing date for entries, Friday 20th December 2013

This year's judge is the excellent Charles Lambert

How to enter


Thursday, October 10, 2013

 Léo Ferré, Avec Le Temps
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
top 40 vilest

chunkymark gives it to them in fine style

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Sunday, May 12, 2013
Willesden Herald Short Stories 7
willesden herald short stories 7   


The prize-winning stories from the Willesden Herald International Short Story competition.
Book available here

Sunday, April 21, 2013
Tears shining like slug trails

This week I witnessed the most pitiful sight imaginable, a true end-of-an-era moment.
As a gun carriage dragged a dead woman in a box covered with a decorated piece of
cotton through the cleared streets of London to a performance by a man dressed in the
garb of a witch in front of an assembly comprised of charlatans, chancers, and class warriors,
I saw a man burn his own poems.

Monday, April 15, 2013
amsterdam girl

from Prison: A Monologue
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Glenda Jackson remembers Thatcher's victims
Thank you, Glenda


Friday, March 29, 2013
Our Bog is Dood

Our Bog is Dood    --   Stevie Smith

Our Bog is dood, our Bog is dood,
They lisped in accents mild,
But when I asked them to explain
They grew a little wild.
How do you know your Bog is dood
My darling little child?

We know because we wish it so
This is enough, they cried,
And straight within each infant eye
Stood up the flame of pride,
And if you do not think it so
You shall be crucified.

Then tell me, darling little ones,
What’s dood, suppose Bog is?
Just what we think, the answer came,
Just what we think it is.
They bowed their heads. Our Bog is ours
And we are wholly his.

But when they raised them up again
They had forgotten me
Each one upon each other glared
In pride and misery
For what was dood, and what their Bog
They never could agree.

Oh sweet it was to leave them then,
And sweeter not to see,
And sweetest of all to walk alone
Beside the encroaching sea,
The sea that soon should drown them all,
That never yet drowned me.

Thursday, March 21, 2013
Eulogy Fir Robin Cook
by   'Jason King'

Edinbury's mobbed the day
but awfay circumspect
for a Scottish statesman droaped doon deid
n it's time tae pay respects

Eh did ehs bit fir freedom,
Fir justice n fir truth
No like thon toss in Downing Street
The yin wi the hoor's mooth

Erse-lickin yon Yankee cunt
Oan the issue ay Iraq
And sendin oor lads to the front
N some widnae come back

But Cooky had his principle
His courage, gall and pluck
'Where ur they WMD's then?'
'Thir no thaire - git tae fuck.'

And comrades oan the benches
They were craven, timid swine
Thir erseholes in tight clenches
As they towed the perty line

The track his only respite
Fae the Middle East debate
The Tory press cried him a traitor
Wi thir Arab racial hate

Eh died up in the hills eh loved
Nae doaktirs on alert
But it was the liars doon in London toon
Thit broke that brave, brave hert.

from the story Kingdom of Fife from the collection
If You Liked School, You'll Love Work by  Irvine Welsh

Monday, March 18, 2013
booking hall, spalding
waiting room, spalding

Thursday, February 14, 2013
"....they'd kill us all to make a buck."

Fuck the Tories, fuck their class war, fuck their urban clearances.
Fuck all those who accept the trinkets and baubles of the Tory establishment.
Fuck all those who collaborate with them.
Fuck all those whose wealth and contentment is dependent on the poverty and misery of others. 


Song to the Men of England   -----------   PB Shelley

Men of England, wherefore plough
For the lords who lay ye low?
Wherefore weave with toil and care
The rich robes your tyrants wear?

Wherefore feed and clothe and save,
From the cradle to the grave,
Those ungrateful drones who would
Drain your sweat -nay, drink your blood?

Wherefore, Bees of England, forge
Many a weapon, chain, and scourge,
That these stingless drones may spoil
The forced produce of your toil?

Have ye leisure, comfort, calm,
Shelter, food, love's gentle balm?
Or what is it ye buy so dear
With your pain and with your fear?

The seed ye sow another reaps;
The wealth ye find another keeps;
The robes ye weave another wears;
The arms ye forge another bears.

Sow seed, -but let no tyrant reap;
Find wealth, -let no imposter heap;
Weave robes, -let not the idle wear;
Forge arms, in your defence to bear.

Shrink to your cellars, holes, and cells;
In halls ye deck another dwells.
Why shake the chains ye wrought? Ye see
The steel ye tempered glance on ye.

With plough and spade and hoe and loom,
Trace your grave, and build your tomb,
And weave your winding-sheet, till fair
England be your sepulchre!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


Saturday, January 26, 2013
Johnny Parent reads Civrene K. Brabt's taxi music  -----

text of the poem here

Monday, November 12, 2012
Adam Hu Gesher and The Mizrachim play live
at The Center for Distressed Poets

Thursday, November 01, 2012
Driver, out

 and here,

and talking of here , something stunning

Thursday, July 19, 2012
Imagined Poetries
MF Delgado

"Shooda won that Turner thing..."

Sunday, May 06, 2012


Friday, April 27, 2012 bring us back to the truth, to a consciousness of what we need,
to those deep desires for justice and meaning, for respect and commonality,
for freedom from debt, from the monomaniacal ideology that creates
the plantation and calls it the world. 

Sunday, April 22, 2012
literature / art

Literature / Art

Buy Willesden Herald New Short Stories 6
Friday, April 13, 2012
Willesden Short Story Prize 2012: RESULTS by Steve Moran
(film recording from Katy Darby's You Tube channel)

The very affable and amiable Stephen Moran announces the winners of this
year's competition. Stephen is a great champion of the short story form and
through his founding of the competition, and via many other venues, he has
given great encouragement and support to many others, including myself.

Buy the book here
Thursday, March 01, 2012
Moving Poems

curated by Dave Bonta


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