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New Vlog – I Grew A Beard

It has been some time since I have done a vlog, but here’s a new one for you. I thought about reading some of my poetry before, but have been experimenting with different ways of recording since my compact camera broke. Most recently I borrowed a digital video camera but, as you can see from the vlog, the sound levels are not great. Can’t I just get a cheap camera with good quality video and decent sound levels? Apparently not! Anyway, turn up your volume to max (you’re going to need that volume!) and enjoy the poem. Oh, and I hope you enjoy the intro thing I created too.

If you want to read any more of my poetry you can on wattpad in my collection ‘Bad Poetry You probably never want to read.’

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New Poem: I Grew A Beard

Well this poem came out of nowhere! Basically I got a bit too lazy to shave then decided I would grow a beard for a bit until I could be bothered to shave properly again. After a week’s growth, my wife said that it really suited me. Then other people, after initially asking me when I was going to shave, started to say they like it. So there we go, I now have a beard. Only problem is that I have no beard trimmer so it is all starting to look a bit crazy. You can read the poem the beard inspired below, and even see my beard to decided whether it looks good or not. It is hopefully written like a journey, from unsure stubble, to proud beard owner onto unkempt fraud. If you want a few more clicks you can also read the poem in my poetry collection on wattpad entitled ‘Bad Poetry You probably never want to read.’ There is other poorly written poetry there too!

 

I Grew A Beard

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I grew a beard

When the stubble appeared

I looked like a zero

More hobo than hero

 

I grew a beard

A path I almost veered

When people started asking

How long this fluff was lasting

 

I grew a beard

I thought you’d sneered

At my lovely bristles

A face full of thistles

 

I grew a beard

But it’s not what I feared

I thought it would itch

Until full-bodied and rich

 

I grew a beard

I thought it looked weird

But it looks quite good

Much better than it should

 

I grew a beard

I didn’t get jeered

Just got asked a question

About my hairy direction

 

I grew a beard

Glad I persevered

It doesn’t look too bad

My view’s now ironclad

 

I grew a beard

Now it’s quite revered

It’s talk of the town

A metaphorical crown

 

I grew a beard

And now I’m cheered

A sophisticated man

Part of an elegant clan

 

I grew a beard

It’s got dog-eared

I don’t have a trimmer

How can I get it thinner?

 

I grew a beard

With food it’s smeared

Why won’t it behave?

I think I’ll just need to shave

The good old (slightly late) end of year review – 2018 Edition

Another year over, another review of the year. This was supposed to come out at the end of December but it has been a very hectic festive period. Right, on to the review, it’s been a great year for writing with the release of my comedy fantasy novella, at last! Also lots of poems written and my sci-fi serial novel going well. So here we go, a quick look at 2018…

 

cover-blogA Close Shave with Destiny

Three years ago I started writing a short story to sell for 99p so I could raise money for Movember, a charity that helps men’s health causes. You grown a moustache in November and get sponsored. The short story developed into a 40,000 word novella so I felt it best to donate some money to Movember and release the book as a piece of work in its own right. After three years of writing and editing I finally released the book in both e-book and print formats. I am really happy with the story but could have done with more proofreaders. Still, I hope people enjoy it. You can get it on Amazon using the following links…

Kindle UK

Print UK

Kindle US

Print US

 

Islands-of-Hope-CoverIslands of Hope

My serial novel was in its second year in 2018, again the plan was to update something every Saturday, even if it was only about 150 words. I am happy to say I managed that, updating every week. The story is now about 45,000 words long, so almost actual novel length. I will continue to update it throughout 2019. I have just got to a good bit so am excited to carry on. If you have not read it yet, it is set two hundred years in the future where a corporation runs most of the Earth. Kira, a girl living in a slum, steals some bread and is caught. She is sold into slavery, but her buyer is not the cruel man people think he is, instead he is building a resistance. If you want to read it so far you can on wattpad, just click here.

 

Bad Poetry Cover BLOGPoems

I don’t write poems that often, just four or five a year when I get some inspiration. They are housed in my collection on wattpad entitled, ‘Bad Poetry You probably never want to read.’ I managed six in 2018, which I think is pretty good. You can read the whole collection by clicking here, or head to the blog posts for each of the six poems (just click on the poem titles), they were…

JanuaryPolishing a sheep is a so hard job – the title comes from a phrase my, then four year old, son said. It made me think of something a crazy farmer would do, for some reason it rang around my head in a west country accent. I wondered what else the farmer might do, like iron a chicken or hoover a cow. But why do that? To get them ready for a show of course!

MayA Great British Holiday – In the Easter holidays I went to stay in a holiday cottage with my parents, wife and children. We had a great time sampling the delights that the midlands had to offer, however it kept raining. This poem is my love affair with what Britain has to give to the traveller, even though the weather can be less than desirable.

AugustAn Ode to the Greatest Toy – As a parent you can shape your children to like the things you like, reliving your childhood through them. I made sure my son was into Lego a long time ago. We always worked together to build models, however, in the last year my son has become able to make models by himself. He now likes to rebuild old models we did together so I have been relegated to brick finder, this poem speaks of my frustrations.

OctoberChange – Change is a poem about a tree growing, dropping seeds and new life beginning. It was written for National Poetry Day. There is not much more to say it about it really.

NovemberCancelled – I wrote this poem at a train station whilst waiting for a train after the one I should have been on was cancelled. Even more annoying was that I had rushed to get the first train. Oh well, at least it gave me an idea for a poem!

DecemberThe Boy who Saved Christmas – My last poem of the year was released just before Christmas. The family had visited Father Christmas and the big man’s hat had fallen off. My son picked it up and gave it back to him, I like to think he may have saved Christmas. Even if he did not, I got the idea for this poem out of the situation.

 

2019

So, all in all a good 2018 in terms of writing. I set my goal as ‘just write’ as usual, and I feel I definitely achieved that. So what about 2019? Well, I have never hit targets when I give myself a list of them, so I will go with ‘just write’ again. I seem to write more with less pressure on me! Having a time-consuming job and a young family also means I do not have the time to write that I would like. That said, it would be good to get my Young Adult novel, ‘The Fifth Coin,’ ready to send to publishers for query and complete the first draft of my serial novel, ‘Islands of Hope.’ I do also want to write another Super Lizard short (I’m actually part way through one) and a flash fiction for ‘The First Flash of Hope.’ So, yeah, plenty to keep me going.

 

Right, I will sign off with a Happy New Year, thanks for reading my stuff, and I hope 2019 is great for you. Also I hope you continue to read my work, and maybe even review one of my books on Amazon or Goodreads…please, pretty please!

New Poem: The Boy who Saved Christmas

santa-claus-3806346_640Ho, ho, ho, Merry Christmas. What a treat, you get another of my really bad poems in time for Christmas. This one is dedicated to my son, and sprang into my head when we visited Santa this year. His hat fell off and my son picked it up for him, I therefore wonder if my son inadvertently saved Christmas. Anyway, you can read ‘The Boy who Saved Christmas’ below or, if you want to read any of my other poems, head over to wattpad and my poetry collection entitled ‘Bad Poetry You probably never want to read.

 

The Boy who Saved Christmas

The wild blew wild in the chilly night

To anyone else it would give a big fright

But Father Christmas had to go

High above the blanket of snow

The icy air may make bone chilled

But children’s stockings had to be filled

Suddenly a gust of wind blew fast

And grasped his hat as it went past

An image in red dropped to the ground

Spinning like a sycamore seed going round

With a whip of the reigns the sleigh plummeted down

“My hat, my hat,” Santa moaned with a frown

They landed and searched, high and low

In trees, on houses, under lamps that glow

But no matter how hard, they could not find the crown

“Without it I can’t deliver the presents to town,”

Father Christmas uttered with a tear

It would not be such a magical year

But a little way away, coming from church

Slumped a tired boy, who walked with a lurch

He saw a beacon, as bright as the sun

Towards this wonder he decided to run

It looked like a Santa hat you bought from a shop

But the pompon glowed bright, right at the top

He knew in an instance it was no ordinary hat

No second rate knock-off, no cheap piece of tat

It was Santa’s himself and he must get it back

But where was he now, how could he track?

He could use his phone, an amazing app

That would tell where Santa was on the map

But he knew that was not the Christmas way

It would not bring Santa here on his sleigh

He closed his eyes, made a Christmas wish

That Santa would come, quick, sharpish

As if he wished upon a travelling star

He heard the noise of sleigh bells afar

Coming closer, they came at amazing speed

Reindeers of the most fantastic breed

Flying on magic, with a jolly elf behind

Happiness and kindness to them was enshrined

Despite the snow, they landed not with a skid

Then Santa stood there right in front of that kid

He moved in a flash, like a great sprinter

And his glow stopped the biting cold of midwinter

“I see you have found my hat,” he said

“As a reward, tonight you can ride in my sled

Travel the world, give presents galore

Feel the spirit of Christmas and much more.”

The boy was so shocked he barely could speak

Slowly walking to the sled, a magic antique

Although hand painted and flow through the night

There was not a scratch, no sign of a fight

Santa helped him upon a cushion in front of a sack

All manner of toys were contained in that pack

Calling the names of every reindeer

They flew up in the air with a great cheer

The red and white hat now firmly on Santa’s head

They flew to places, about the boy had only read

From the plains of Kenya to the trails of Peru

From the lakes in Italy all the way to Timbuktu

He saw things he never dreamed he would

All of the wonders that currently still stood

And although the icy wind did blow

His heart was warmed by hot cocoa

And all the way round Santa made such a fuss

But then he was ‘The boy who saved Christmas’

 

Picture: Pixabay

New Poem: Cancelled

No, the new poem has not be cancelled, it’s called ‘Cancelled.’ This is a bit of an extra for you. I was on a training course the other day and rushing back to get my train home on time. When I got to the station (in time I might add!) the train had been cancelled, I wasn’t best pleased, especially as I had over an hours wait till the next train. But then, from bad things good things appear, or rather mediocre things, OK bad things, but from bad things other bad things appear did not sound as good. Anyway, this poem popped into my head. I wasn’t going to write it but the first verse kept playing over and over. I think it works quite well. I was desperately searching for something to rhyme with something train related in the last verse, I came to carriage and marriage and that gave the whole poem a slightly sadder feel so I went with it. The rest of the poem is from experience, but I have been married for many years and we did not wait over an hour for a train on our wedding day, so the last bit is artistic licence. Anyway, you can read ‘Cancelled’ in my poetry collection on wattpad, entitled ‘Bad Poetry You probably never want to read,’ by clicking here, or as you are already on the blog post you may as well just read it below…

 

Cancelled

Hurry hurry

Check the clock

Keep on running

Just can’t stop

 

Time is ticking

Double fast

Keep up the pace

It has to last

 

There’s the building

Right in sight

I will get there

Using all my might

 

Quickly looking

Find the screen

Which platform?

Have you seen?

 

Do we go

North or South?

To Edinburgh

Or Bournemouth

 

I think I have it

Yes I do

That one there

Six thirty two

 

The noise has stopped

Why the hush?

Our train’s been cancelled

Why did we rush?

 

So here we sit

With overpriced food

And a cup of tea

That’s over brewed

 

It’s not the way

To start a marriage

Waiting an hour

For a packed carriage

A new poem for National Poetry Day 2018

Today is National Poetry Day, and as usual I have created a bad poem. If you want to avoid it and skip straight to the National Poetry Day website then click here. Still with me? OK, good. The topic for this year is change. Often I find it hard to think of a poem based on the topic given, but this year it was quite easy. I will not give you a long, convoluted, explanation of how I came up with the idea, I will let you work out what the poem is about yourself. Oh OK, have a hint in the form of a picture! Right, you can read ‘Change’ below or go to my poetry collection on wattpad, suitably entitled Bad Poetry You probably never want to read

tree-99852_640

Change

You see this hard shell

So small in your hand

Nothing but a fleeting

Speck from the corner

Of your eye

Place me deep

Within the earth

Wait and watch

Feed me

Quench my thirst

For the love you give

Will imbue me with energy

Imbue me with life

Now I appear

Peeking over the parapet

A fragile child

Knocked by wind and rain

Beaks pecking away

Claws tunneling around

But I will grow

Little by little

Year by year

I shall be stronger

I shall tower over you

Be seen from miles around

And when you are gone

I will still stand here

I shall be your monument

Shall be your memory

Until I drop, for tiny hands

Another hard shell

Another packet of life

That they may place

Deep within the earth

And let the cycle begin anew

 

Photo: Giani (Pixabay)

New Poem: An Ode to the Greatest Toy

Being a teacher has its benefits, although I don’t get to see my children much during term time I am with them lots in the holidays. On many a rain or lazy day my five year old son and myself like to play with Lego. This used to be a great experience of creating things and building  new sets together. We now have so many that I have had to organise our bricks by colour in a set of different coloured draws. What has now started happening is that my son wants to rebuild some of the older models we have, most recently a helicopter. In the past we would rifle through pieces and then build together. These days my son is quite the proficient builder and follower of instructions. I, therefore, have been relegated to ‘finder of pieces.’ Now this is not too hard a job and I can build a little whilst doing it. That is until he needs a grey piece, there are SO.MANY.GREY.BRICKS! I just sift and sift through them for hours, slowly loosing my mind!

As you may know I like to write poetry, and am often after inspiration. I’ve been so busy with other projects that I have not been thinking about poems. However, after this Lego experience, one jumped into my brain. For some reason I felt like writing it from the point of view of an Elizabethan dandy. Don’t ask me why, it just felt right. So you can read my frustrations about the toy I love so much in my poem ‘An Ode to the Greatest Toy.’ It is below, or, if you want a few extra clicks (and access to more of my terrible poetry), you can look at it on wattpad in my collection ‘Bad Poetry You probably never want to read.’

 

An Ode to the Greatest Toy

Oh woe is me

I cannot find the last brick

To make my beloved helicopter

Despite sorting into different colours

All I observe is a sea of grey

A myriad of pieces

Each engineered to perfection

But I don’t want the classic four by two

That I hath screamed in pain

When standing upon

Nor do I want clips or tubes or thin rows of dots

Oh how I used to love that sound

Plastic crashing against each other

As I rifle through my treasure

Now it is only an irritant

When I turned the page

I hoped for any colour

Except this dastardly grey

Blue, yellow, green or red

I seem to possess less of those

Making for a simpler search

Yet I hath stared for many an hour

Removed bits and placed them back

But alas, no joy

Maybe I shall make my own model

It will not be as good

Not such an aerodynamic design

But the system allows me such freedom

To veer from the intended direction

To create anything from deep within

Sometimes you need to fling the book aloft

Sometimes you just need to Lego