Spent an afternoon with James Stewart
Up on the silver screen
Eldest daughter’s Christmas present
For Sal, Lee, the girls and me

‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ again
In cinematic glory
Tissues at the ready
For this heart a-warming story

The Duke of Yorks in Brighton
Perfect setting for it too
A Picture House original
For wonderment anew


The Duke of York’s Picture House in Brighton, opened in September 1910, is the oldest cinema in continuous use in the UK. Over the Christmas period this year, it’s showing Frank Capra’s 1949 classic “It’s a Wonderful Life”. Arguably James Stewart’s greatest on-screen performance.


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It didn’t feel like morning
More like the middle of the night
Bleary eyed and half asleep
I could barely see the light

The rain fell down, it always does
It seems this time of day
Made me feel quite miserable
As I plodded on my way

But the lady just in front of me
Was laughing at something
Her chuckle was infectious
And I was quickly joining in

By and by the guard appeared
To sort out the commotion
But soon he too was joining in
So infectious was the potion

The lady who had started it
Got off at the next station
But by then the mirth has settled in
Such was the situation

And on that dismal morning
As more people joined the train
Most just started laughing
And learned to smile again




I have a pair of checkered Converse
They are quite mad (I know)
But they bring a smile to faces
Wherever I may go

I have a pair of yellow Converse
They are my favourite shoes
Reminding me of summer
Something I can never lose

I have a pair of silver Converse
I used to wear when in the band
Part and parcel of my costume
They made me look quite grand

I have a pair of gingham Converse
They are my scruffiest pair
But I will wear them ’til they fall apart
‘Cos that’s their purpose there

I have six more pairs of Converse
‘That’s a lot” I hear you say
Well yes I know, I guess it is
But that is me and hey…

…I am known for wearing Converse
They are a part of who I am
So I’ll always keep on buying
‘Cos they’re there and I just can


Dawn Chorus

I cannot capture sound in words
But I really wish I could
For what I’m hearing at this time
Is sounding pretty good

It happens every morning
In most places of the world
A chorus for each brand new day
As dawn it is unfurled

The singing of the little birds
Enough, dare I to say?
To warm the coldest ever heart
And brighten up a day

I wish these words could capture
The beauty of that sound
It is a melody like no other
The sweetest song around


Tick Tock

Sat quiet in a still, small hour
“Tick tock” the silence said
My pen it scribbled frantically
My words to sentence led
No slow of time or guilt lay there
No mischievous intent
A meeting mind instead laid bare
To freedom it was lent
“Tick tock” the silence said once more
Glanced up, I saw the clock
Thought ‘must be rushing off quite soon’
(It came as quite a shock)
The time from dawn to day had sped
In the blinking of an eye
But lost to whimsy, scribbling still
It had gone swiftly by
“Tick tock” the silence shouted now
I grabbed my bag and went
Complete with new creation here
Productive, that time spent



In the clarity of morning light
When the sun is on the rise
A yellow band out to the east
Shows where its glory lies

Ice crystals crunch beneath my feet
And wrapped up nice and warm
The day has promise as the light
Spreads out in this new dawn


Memory capture

I captured a memory and took it home
And hung it on the wall
It smiled and told me stories
Which I remembered one and all

It’s concave fifties clarity
Showed me my father’s face
So I am proud to give it legacy
In a brand new hanging place


My mother recently moved to a nursing home. Of all the bits I’ve inherited from her bungalow, this mirror has the most memory for me. It was a wedding present when she was married in 1958, so it carries many, particularly from my childhood. I can vividly remember my father combing his hair in it back in the sixties; so, as he passed on in 1974, it’s a special treasure for me to have now.

Mary Rose

Warming cockles with a Costa
Down in Portsmouth, on the quay
HMS Warrior, through the window
Sally, Holly Ann and me

Not many people here today
They’re mostly shopping with a moan
Suits us three fine as we now have
The dockyards mostly for our own

Juxtaposed, the old and new
Frigates glimpsed from Victory’s bow
But here more for ancient wanderings
And the Mary Rose right now

First time I have seen her dry and
Without seawater spraying in
Reveals the glorious size of her
A warship built just for a king

A tudor rose in more than name
She is a beauty to behold
Those ancient salvaged timbers
Telling stories never told

And outside now as sun reigns down
Cold from a winter sky
I am thankful for this special day
Deep satisfaction with a sigh



Quite chuffed

Walking home through Worthing
Having had a Cornish ale
I happen chanced upon a sign
‘The Worthing library sale’

Imagine my amazement
When on the shelves I found
All this history of Brighton
Waiting for me, nicely bound

Many hours of reading
From these treasures I will find
Giving me fresh knowledge
And enlightening my mind

A bargain at a pound for six
I was rather chuffed by this
Something nice to while away
Cold winter days in bliss


Seldom sun

What is it with the winter?
Every day more of the same
Either freezing cold and icy
Or tipping down with rain

The days when it is sunny
Are seldom few it seems to me
Roll on springtime into summer
When again in shorts I’ll be


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