Brentford Ait fading

There's an abandoned tug listing to port
moored up near Brentford Ait
it's been quite a while since anyone cared
so it's in quite a terrible state

There's a wolf on the bow so there was some intent
at a time for it boldly to go
perhaps plying for trade on Old Father Thames
on the water to go with the flow

But those days are gone long time now I fear
and the listing says more than words can
that this once proud lady now slips away
from the time she proudly began


Photo – Jempics

Brentford Ait is a four and half acre uninhabited island on the river Thames.


Old Father Thames and a slow evening

Spent a while with Old Father Thames
as it meandered slow to the sea
far to the east from where I was then
down in the Thames Estuary
As here I am bathed in late evening sun
in Brentford, West London this week
May's weather sees summer returning at last
evident here as I speak

For this evening the peace by the river is fine
almost quiet in a London-like way
slow with assurance now work's day is done
to show itself to me today
In a while I will wander back to the hotel
but for now with contentment complete
I'll sit here and watch as the river rolls by
satisfied and relaxed and replete


Photo – Kew Bridge, Brentford, West London – Jempics

The sunflower is mine

I met Vincent in a painting
there was yellow everywhere
two men who loved the sunshine
for a synergy right there

Cathartic was the moment
though he's no longer here
but the colour in his painting
still brings to us good cheer

And being in that moment
with his life's work on the wall
projected light in motion
I with Vincent stood there tall


Photo – Emily Rose Croucher

[Van Gogh Alive is an interactive experience of Vincent’s life work in sound and motion which combines projected images of his paintings onto huge screens, ceilings and floors together with quotes from his letters and compatriots. There are animations and stills, extracts and full works all condensed into a 45-minute rolling programme showcasing his prolific 2,010 work repertoire created mostly during the last two years of his short 37-year life, The experience showcased in Brighton as a part of the 2023 Arts Festival].


The week that's passed, I believe will be
the penultimate week I'm away
on business for the work that I do
hip hip hip, hooray!

I know that I won't miss this thing
these business trips and travel.
One less small inconvenience
I'll not need to unravel

And yes I've seen the country
on the journeys I have known
but, truth be told, I'd rather
stay comfortable at home

So now that this penultimate
week away I can now shun
it's one more item off the list
ticked and checked and done


Photo – the inside of Kings Cross station, London – Jempics

The zest that gleamed

In the quiet a moment reconciled
as with some whimsy there I smiled
remembering my inner child
and captured it as memory filed

In the quiet before the day had started
I pondered brief what had departed
recollections I had started
some replete and some half-hearted

In the quiet as sunshine outside beamed
I knew within that what had seemed
to be a moment I had dreamed
was actually the zest that gleamed


Photo – Jempics

Tackling the jungle

Enough's enough so here we go
into the jungle at the rear
aka our back garden which
is really overdue a clear

We've rather let it go of late
and with springtime zest it's grown
into an erstwhile jungle
from the garden we have known

But armed with determination
and some shears we will reclaim
it back from something overgrown
to a garden once again


Photo – Jempics

Moving on

One day it's sunny, the next day it's not
and it's yet to get close to something that's hot
but as this is England, I guess that's our lot
so put on a smile and move on

One day the Spring looks set to get going
with colour and zest and sunshine and knowing
but the next day normality, rain and wind blowing
so put on a smile and move on

One day I'll wake to the shine of the sun
that'll warm me and keep me until the day's done
but until that time comes I'll still have my fun
so put on a smile and move on


Photo – Jempics


Sal sings the song a month before me
'cos I in my youth am still sixty-three
But today on her birthday the chorus rings true
so we'll sing it together as that's something we do

The question, rhetorical; clearly and more
'cos of course there's the need now one's sixty-four
Forty-two birthdays both shared together
but the sixty-fourth one means we can be clever

And of course there's the love and of course there's the need
now we've made it to this one (well almost indeed)
So here's to your birthday and for many more
when at last we can sing 'Now I'm sixty-four'!


Photo – Jempics

Coronation Day (aka ‘Charlie’s big hat)

It rained for the Coronation, puddles everywhere
but that didn't stop the nation with its pageantry to share
Most of us just stayed indoors to watch it on TV
a rarity in fifty-two but not in twenty-three

I heard that on Hove lawns a giant screen erected
but the precipitation meant that just a few selected
to brave out there the elements early May has gifted
though on this special day most spirits still were lifted

And it really didn't matter if you were Royalist or not
for this was history in the making and for all of us our lot
A once in almost any lifetime thing upon this day
the Coronation of a king on this the sixth of May


Photo – Charlie’s big hat – Jempics (the moment of Coronation – 6 May 2023)

Wise words at the Lion & Lobster

Met an old friend at the Lion & Lobster
he retired ages ago
but at the toss of a coin fairly soon I will join
and pensioner days I will know

But I'm not there yet at the Lion & Lobster
I'm still working you see
Though I'm still a great fan and am making a plan
and a pensioner soon I will be

Truth be told this old friend at the Lion & Lobster
is several years younger than I
But though he went too soon we all call the tune
for pensioner days by and by

So I met an old friend at the Lion & Lobster
and as I had something to hear
I listened in well to the words he did tell
as a pensioner I'll be this year


Photo – The Lion & Lobster, Sillwood Street Brighton – Jempics

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