LEADERS - not followers

Thursday, December 31, 2009


For Three Word Wednesday


HAPPY to Ambush
NEW and Hideous target.
YEAR to Meddle - win.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009





L o v e r

C o m p a n i o n

M o t i v a t o r

C o m m u n i c a t o r




Tuesday, December 29, 2009


For Carry On Tuesday


Same old, same old, sad old year
Regrets…? Perhaps a few
Another year, another chance
To start our lives anew

Half the time, I’ve half a mind
To make more time for you
The other half, on the other hand
Confusion clouds my view

Too many irons in too many fires
Too much on my plate
In truth, all lies, if truth be known
Truth is, it’s not too late

My clear intent, to clear the way
My resolution spoken
My promise that, I promise, will
Survive intact, unbroken

Sunday, December 27, 2009


For Sunday Scribblings
And Monday Poetry Train Revisited
Also posted to Poets Who Blog

DEC 25, 2009

Just another Friday night
In rural Village Isan
Same as any other night
Perhaps a little cooler

Family gathered with friends
Around a simple table
A simple meal of Somtam
Simply served with Sticky Rice

Offered by those with nothing
To those who have even less
Exchanging gifts of friendship
Is the Isan way of life

For an after dinner drink
The Milk of Human Kindness
It tastes just like happiness
Only much more delicious

Thursday, December 24, 2009


For Three Word Wednesday


Life’s rigid regime
A journey we can’t repeat
Hindered by hindsight…?

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

- W -


For ABC Wednesday


At year’s end in Village Isan
Be prepared for climate change
Arriving in casual dress
Under cool cover of darkness

A hint of winter in disguise
Moves in for the chill by morning
Twice a week throughout December
Finished by February

Neighbours unite to fuel the fires
Gloves, scarves, coats, hats, help combat cold
Gather in gangs to feel the thaw
Central heating – Isan style

Breakfast is a sombre affair
Enter the sun, and spirits rise
On shafts of steam, issued by breaths
Mimicking mists in the valley

Dare to stare at insipid sun
Take the full five second challenge
Blink away green and yellow dots
Reminders of futility

Face to the east as embers fade
Lounging like so many lizards
Rays penetrate, revitalise
Hearts and minds numbed by nature

Sun earns its keep, loungers shed skins
Returning to T-shirts and shorts
Mid-morning quest for cool beneath
The shade of a Tamarind tree

And Winter, a recurring dream
Unwelcome guest, who can’t stay long
Has business to conduct elsewhere
Much tougher terrain to torment


We Wore
We Walked Without
Watchful Wariness
Winters Were Wonderful!

Sunday, December 20, 2009


For Sunday Scribblings
And Monday Poetry Train Revisited


I’m getting around
to getting around to you.
Still…I hesitate

An obstacle course
lies between your heart and mine.
Proceed with caution

and circle the globe
to reach my destination
…next door to my home.

‘All’s well that ends well’?
‘Happily ever after’?
But where to begin…?

Courage deserts me,
delays the happy ending,
hastens my sadness.

Words always fail me.
If only I could express
my feelings for you,

I would find a way
to say just how much I love
all the things you do.

I love the way you… …
Then there’s the way you always… …
As well as how you… …

Most of all, I love
that thing you do with the thing
you go like that with.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

One More For The Road

For Totally Optional Prompts - Penultimate


Last one, I promise...
Unless I decide to have
One more for the road

Monday, September 21, 2009

Walk The Walk

For Monday Poetry Train Revisited

And NaiSaiKu challenge?

And The American Sandwich

A NaiSaiKu, an American Sandwich and finally, an American Sentence

Again you ask me
Who? What? When? Where? How? Why? Which?
Who? What? When? Where? How? Why? Which?
Don’t ask me again

I will not deny I understand the reason why you went away.
As you closed the door, I tried to speak, but there was nothing left to say.
Lifelong love was just another broken promise you made yesterday.

If you talk the talk, you have to walk the walk, or that’s the price you pay.

Thursday, September 3, 2009




Lustre of fools gold
The glare of publicity
Disguises the threat




Return, to pick up the thread
of a forgotten story.
Fibres of exposed loose end
provoke undisciplined start;
vague, indirect. Compel me
to take the long way around,
and round again, in circles;
ever decreasing circles
surrounding the hidden core.
Uncovered; plot unravelled,
I’ll know you, outside and in.
That faded exterior,
gateway to your heart; as yet
unseen, untouched…Get ready,
here it comes; the dead centre
…And it’s over…just like that.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


FOR NaiSaiKu Challenge?

All those billions!
No new players for CITY
No new players for CITY
All those billions!

School Days



Thank God for ‘Dinner Ladies’
Part-time school time lunchtime help
Taught me more than some teachers
With their helpful dining hints

‘Drink your milk; avoid rickets’
‘Fruit and veg prevent scurvy’

Friday afternoon homework
Biology teacher says
‘Assignment for this weekend
Write about these two subjects

Calcium deficiency
Shortage of Vitamin C’

Thank God for ‘Dinner Ladies’

Crazy Beautiful

FOR NaiSaiKu


From August to May
At a stadium near you
At a stadium near you
From August to May


Protest singers strum guitars, tap tambourines, while protests go unheard.
Their folk-melodies range from the sublime to the totally absurd.
From ‘Combat Global Warming, Now’ to ‘Save The American Sandwich.’

Monday, August 31, 2009

Telephone Game



‘It was a wrong number that started it.
The telephone ringing three times in the night.’
It was the right decision that ended it.
I counted to ten, and switched on the light.

I answered the phone to a foreign voice.
‘I can’t understand a word you are saying.’
I kept the line open; my language was choice.
‘It’s a … long-distance … call … … … and you are … paying!’

Sunday, August 30, 2009




A meal to die for
Uncork a bottle of wine
…A nice Chianti…?


Before Roy was an adult
His mum bought his underwear
Sunday to Saturday pants
So he’d remember which pair
To put on, and when to change.
Now, of course, he shops himself
He can choose from the whole range
Any item on the shelf
Any colour, shape or size
Violet, green, blue, indigo
Three more pairs, it’s no surprise
The colours of Roy’s rainbow


Expecting delays
Man falls asleep at airport
Wins dream holiday

ESP - Elephant Small Poetry

As well as NaiSaiKu Challenge?


Absolute truth may be contained within
Parapsychological Lucid Dreams
Or Out of Body Experiences
Journeys to the centre of one’s Self

Switch from Physical State to Astral Plane
And enter Equilibrioception
A world of Light between Heaven and Earth
Space and Time in a single dimension

Where Telepathic Communication
And Clairvoyant Psychic Abilities
Are realised through Astral Projection
Using Extrasensory Perception

Nihilists, sceptics and doubters alike
Are unable to grasp such a concept
That intuitive hunch; that gut instinct
Allows it all to make perfect Sixth Sense


Astral Projection
Mind leaves Physical Body
Joins Astral Body


Astral Projection
Makes Sixth sense to me
Makes Sixth sense to me
Astral Projection

American Sandwich

Astral Projection transports you to a world between Heaven and Earth.
A Plane where Space and Time are contained within a single dimension.
Equilibrioception; parapsychology of Lucid Dreams.

Friday, August 28, 2009




FRACTURE - A crack in the inFRAstruCTURE

NOISE - Hazel tree (Corylus);... noisette - hazelnut

VANISH - Like a van

Monday, August 24, 2009




No soaking,
Dry cleaning
No biological powders
Wash dark colours separately
Machine wash
Use no bleach

Must be washed
Inside out
Similar colours together
Re-shape the garments whilst still damp
Iron them
On reverse

Washing instructions taken from various items of clothing

Sunday, August 23, 2009

We loved with a love that was more than love

For Carry On Tuesday


WE LOVED our love to death; love stood no chance
WITH A LOVE like that, who needs romance?
THAT WAS MORE THAN any love could take
LOVE is not a game, for heaven’s sake


For Sunday Scribblings


Thirteen year old bride
Dreams of Love with another
Adulterous thought?


For Monday Poetry Train Revisited


Long time waiting for rain to stop
Glance through window for a forecast
Biting wind brings winter to May
Obstinate clouds attach to sky
Then a crack in the old man’s face
Lips of cloud part in a smile
A fleeting flash of an idea
As a steady shaft of warmth exudes

Not even the wind dare disturb it

A memory of former glory?
Or a promise of summer to come?
Just as the promise you broke last year?
Or is it a declaration?
A battle cry to win the day
And prove your personality
Is strong enough to rule the sky
Undiluted by wind and rain?

An eye appears and opens wide
Then another follows suit
The smile becomes a gaping yawn
Blows hard into the stubborn wind
Dispersing grey, revealing blue
Transforming winter into spring

One day…two personalities


For NaiSaiKu challenge?
And The American Sandwich



American Sandwich

First, be sure you have taken all accounts into consideration.
Then you must be sure to take all considerations into account.
We may find that you are neither accountable, nor considerate.

Thursday, August 20, 2009


For Three Word Wednesday


Orbital decay
Follows the riot of life
Graceful, slow descent

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


For Carry On Tuesday
And Totally Optional Prompts

Give Me - Take You

Give me
Another chance...

When a journey
Begins badly
It rarely
Ends well

Such is life…

A journey…


On arrival
At departure

Shrouded in

Arrival time
Departure time

And delays
Constant hazards

Some of us

Some of us
Plod along
Wallow in

Most of us
Are aware
Becomes clear

Out of reach

Come with me
You will see

Not wasted
I’ll die happy
If I ever

Get the chance to
Take you

Monday, August 17, 2009


For Monday Poetry Train Revisited
Also NaiSai Ku Challenge
And The American Sandwich


I tricked you into thinking you were capable of reading my mind.
What you were really reading, were the thoughts that I had written for you.
Does that make me a good leader, or a domineering demagogue?

Am I a martyr
Or Judas Iscariot?
No, I’m Spartacus
I’m no Spartacus
Nor Judas Iscariot
I’m not a martyr

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Oscar Wilde Was Right

For Sunday Scribblings
Fantasy Dinner Party & Baby News

Vindaloo's all round - my treat...usually


‘Pacey’s’ doin’ me shed in again
Said ‘e was sackin’ the blag
Next thing yer know, ‘e’s givin’ us grief
Scavvin’ ‘n’ back on the rag

‘Sharky Starkey’ grafts as a parky
Smokes sixty bifters a day
‘Undred ‘n’ twenny six quid a week
Out of his green-keepers pay…?

‘Tosser’ Tom sez “Lend us a bluey
I’ll weigh yer in when I’m straight
I’m just off up town fer a turn-on
Man, yer a star; sorted mate”

‘Bazza’s’ got forty brick in ‘is bin
Doin’ a bit fer the crack
Rakin’ it in an’ givin’ it large
Taking the piss outta ‘Mac’

‘Mac’s’ off ‘is ‘ead because of ‘is bird
‘Oo everybody’s bangin’
She’s getting’ ‘er snatch out fer the lads
‘Bazza’ sez she was ‘angin’

‘Billy The Beer Monster’s’ skint ‘e sez
An’ ‘e’s pitchin’ fer a sub
Give ‘im some shrapnel, ‘e’ll waste it well
Getting’ leathered down the pub

Football fan ‘Freddo’ knows all the jibs
Got it sussed ‘ome ‘n’ away
Under the turnstiles; over a wall
Where there’s a will there’s…’Freddo’

* * *
That’s me mad muckers; seven sound blokes
Let me explain just in case
They’ll never raise a knife ter me back
…only direct ter me face…

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Capture, Jinx, Qualify

For Three Word Wednesday


TV network broadcasts
Capture action at the links
Live satellite transmission
Covers thirteenth fairway jinx
Hex leaves me out of focus
Forces double-bogey putt
Fast forward; five straight birdies
Qualify for final cut

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Death & Shoes

For Totally Optional Prompts
Also NaiSaiKu Challenge?
And The American Sandwich

Left as well as right
Shoes for both foot types; hand-made
Hand-made shoes, for both foot types
Right as well as left

Identifying what remained of his corpse was not an easy task.
I managed, however, despite the lack of distinguishing features.
Who else, do you think, would be seen dead wearing a pair of shoes like that?

Saturday, August 8, 2009

New Visa

For Sunday Scribblings - New
And reposted for ABC Wednesday


*Thai-Lao Friendship spanning Mae Nam Khong*
Unveils course to Vientiane Capital

Sprawling, low-rise, Lao community
Waiting Room for Consular Consent
Embassy ‘extension’ exercise
Passport stamp; permission to return

Vacuum-filling Tourist lip-service
Tuk-tuk Temple Trip – Wat Sisaket

Later – Lured by ‘Love Shack’ liquid lunch
Boei Lao pitchers poured in Lao ‘Beirut’
Samlor ride for refills in…‘Samlor
Mao in Lao – Thanks so much ‘Khop Chai Deur’

Hurdles cleared…Hangover; Consul Queue
Visa granted – Mission a success
Next stop – Nongkhai; prior to pushing south
Isan ‘Welcome Home’…well worth the wait


Vignette, Vis-à-Vis Vapid Vacation:

Vital Visa Verification
Veto’s Voluntary Visit

Vagabond ‘VIP’ Van
-Voyagers Vehicle-

Vientiane; Village Vast

Veni; Vidi…;



*The Friendship Bridge, across the Mekong River, links Thailand and Laos
Vientiane is the capital of Laos
Tuk-tuk is a motorised rickshaw
Wat Sisaket is a temple in Vientiane
Love Shack is the nick-name for a jerry-built bar/restaurant in Vientiane
Boei Lao is Beer Lao
Lao ‘Beirut’ is a shanty street on the bank of the Mekong
Samlor means ‘3 wheels’ – official word for ‘Tuk-tuk’
‘Samlor’ is the name of a bar in Vientiane
Mao means ‘drunk’
Khop Chai Deur is a bar in Vientiane – its name means ‘Thank you very much’
Nongkhai is the border town on the Thai side of the Mekong
Isan is the name given to North-eastern Thailand

Friday, July 31, 2009

Darkness, Patronize, Weakness


For Three Word Wednesday

Deceit of Darkness
Patronizing promises
You are my Weakness

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


For Totally Optional Prompts


As jasmine-fragrant shadows ride the breeze
I gaze into the star filled midnight sky
As deep and dark and fathomless as time
Or any frozen ocean that exists
On any planet; any galaxy
Contained within the vastness of the night
Sound effects – nocturnal chorus chirp
In digital surround sound stereo;
A rustling; almost imperceptible
Amid the trees and unkempt undergrowth
…The only clues that I am not alone
…That other life has walked on planet Earth


If tomorrow comes
It will last but a heartbeat
The stroke of midnight

Saturday, July 25, 2009


For The American Sandwich


Well I woke up this morning
body aching
and my head in a spin.

Said I woke up this morning
shaking memories
from under my skin

Can’t take it too much longer
‘cos your mind-play
is a game I can’t win.

For NaiSaiKu Challenge?


See it and ignore
Hear it spoken and forget
Hear it spoken and forget
See it and ignore

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Google You/Swine Flu/NaiSaiKu

For NaiSaiKu Challenge?

Discover yourself
Better - go Google yourself
Find out who you are
Swine Flu bout hoo-ha
Go gargle yourself better
Recover yourself

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Cradle, Perfect, Snare


(A Song)

It starts raining - Outside
I start hurting - Inside
And although I’ve tried
To hide the tears I’ve cried/denied

You can see through - My lies
When you look in - My eyes
You’re so wise you realise
The guise I prize/despise

It’s a love/hate - on/off - yes/no - circumstance
I blow hot and cold - You admit/deny romance

Opposites attract
It’s a well-known fact
It’s a mystery why we adopt this stance

Is our freeze/thaw take
The mistake we make?
As we learn the lessons that’s how we’ll advance

It’s still raining - Outside
You’re still hurting - Inside
And although you’ve tried
To hide the tears you’ve cried/denied

I can see through - Your lies
When I look in - Your eyes
I’m so wise I realise
The guise you prize/despise

It’s a love/hate - on/off - yes/no circumstance
You blow hot and cold
I admit/deny romance

How do we compare?
But you put me in a deep hypnotic trance

Not a PERFECT match
An unlikely catch
We both know the value of a second chance

We don’t count the cost
Of a fortune lost
We just pay the price…And get on…with the dance

It stops raining - Outside
We stop hurting - Inside

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Spontaneity, Planning


And Sunday Scribblings - Where in the World.

(Snapshots from July 6 2009)

Along the road to Nonsang
Coach connection from Khon Kaen
Life-blood lining lakeside route
Sugar cane, rice, banana
Fire-house, Hospital Police
Sugar cane, rice, banana
Shopping, Commerce, Industry
Sugar cane, rice, banana
Getting used to it by now
Sugar cane, rice, banana
Cattle cluster in clearings
Gazing, grazing – Amazing!

Nonsang in ninety minutes
Road-side read-out register
Determines driving distance
Sixty six Clickety-clicks

Packs of hounds at Ubol Rat
Dominate the dam – Damn dogs?
Meanwhile, minutes march on by

Afternoon activity
Dampened by daytime downpour
We pull up to watch rain dry
‘Try not to blink – You’ll miss it!’
Ankle-deep becomes bone-dry
In the twinkling of an eye

Navigating neighbourhoods
Teased by tricky traffic lights
Fast bus flies past slowcoaches
Swerving, speeding – Soon be home
Destination – No distance
Nonsang in next to no time

Chauffeur’s shell-suit, shocking pink
Some say he’s a lady-boy
Long hair, lipstick, jewellery
Mok says ‘Just a fashion phase’

Nonsang ‘city’ limits near
All aboard are in good cheer
Gang of guys gesture greeting
Pointing-out ‘Farang’ – White Man
Shouting, waving, laughing loud
One eating ‘Farang’ - Guava
One drinks ‘Lao Khao’, smokes ‘Ya Soob’
Rice Liquor and Cigarettes
Chews ‘Mark Farang’ – Chewing Gum
While another fills his face
Munching ‘Man Farang Tort’ - Chips
Only one has been abroad
Once went to France – ‘Farang Set’
First time out of his ‘Moo Ban’
Never been anywhere since
That’s village Isan for you
Rice-farming communities
‘Don’t have time for nothing else’

Nose to tail - literally
Mad dogs hog the road – Road dogs?
Making for the market place
To scavenge scraps discarded

Makeshift market stalls offer
Tea-time treats to tempt all tastes
Fast-food fancies, Isan-style
‘Somtam’ – Papaya ‘Pok-pok’
Over there, the daily catch
Falls from flash-flood fishing nets
Over here, a group of girls
Scratching an honest living
These are the real-life ‘Spice Girls’
No time to 'Zig-a-zig aah!'
They specialise in chillies
‘Phrik Kaeng’ provides ‘Girl Power’
(Hard Chillies – Know what I mean?)
Also ‘Phrik’ – ‘Chee Far’; ‘Yoo-Ak’
And best of all ‘Phrik Khee Noo’
(Reach Up To The Sky Chillies;
Sweet Peppers – That pack a punch!
Rat-Shit Chillies; aptly named
I believe some like it hot!)

‘Long’ arrives, and loads us up
Drives us home, the final leg
Six more clicks to Ban Huakua

Through the gates and garden green
All that grows is edible
Tamarind and Mangosteen
Coconuts and Papaya
Pomegranate and Mango
Orange, Lemon, Durian
Chillies, Ginger, Lemon Grass
Banana and Pineapple

All around us; fields of Rice
Now bathed in scorching sunshine
Thirty seven, in the shade
The hot season is April!

Family reunion
Been gone from March to July
Tonight we’ll have a party
Changnoi, Diamond, Mok and I

Not History

For Monday Poetry Train Revisited


You never talk about it
Nobody knows about it
Untold pain behind the smile

When you’re asked about your past
You want to change the subject
‘It’s not important’ you lie

Everyone must be thinking
How convenient to say
‘And the rest is history’

The rest is not history

The rest, of course, lives and breathes
And dwells within heart and mind
And will remain forever
A most unwelcome squatter

So you never mention it
Because you can’t stand the pain

No, you’re not in denial
It’s for real and you know it
The only trouble is though
Once able to admit it
And face it, speak about it
Openly acknowledge it
Then you have to re-live it
Blow by agonising blow
That’s both the physical ones
As well as the mental ones

The rest is not history
Will never be history

Saturday, July 18, 2009

It's all foreign to me

For NaiSaiKu Challenge?


ผม พูด อึก ครั้ง หนึ่ง
ใน ถ้อย คำ คุณ เข้า ใจ ได้
ภาษา ต่าง ประเทศ ?
อุปสรรค ภาษา
ภาษา ต่าง ประเทศ
คำ พูด ผม เข้า ใจ ไม่ ได้
พูด อึก ครั้ง หนึ่ง ครับ

Phom phoot eek khrang nung
Nai thoi kham khun khao chai dai
Pharsar tarng pratet?
Pharsar tarng pratet
Kham phoot phom khao chai mai dai
Phoot eek khrang nung khrap

I’ll tell you again
In words you can understand
A foreign language?
A foreign language
Words I cannot understand
Please tell me again

FOR The American Sandwich


I was dreading the judge’s verdict, convinced I’d made a huge mistake.
My worst fears were confirmed as I was disqualified from the contest.
“A Chip butty is NOT a traditional American Sandwich”


For Sunday Scribblings
And Carry On Tuesday
'We think we know the ones we love'

'Plans don't always work out the way we envisage
Sometimes they get in the way of those of others.


Father had a painfully acute
Understanding of occupation
And the scope of its consequences

His home country having first of all
Been occupied by the Right wingers,
The Fascists, who entered from stage left,
And subsequently by Left Wingers,
Communists, who entered from stage right

Another time and another place?
A temporary situation?
A one-way ticket out, to the world
May have been a physical escape.

Brutal mental torture, however
Continued, sadly, ever after

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


For Three Word Wednesday


Gush – delight; Drip – sulk
Hypnotic influences
Matching mood thresholds

Tuesday, July 14, 2009



For The American Sandwich

Through the door, a pair of rimless glasses frames a smile that hides a scowl.
The stench of authority, a perfume we don’t care for, fills the air.
And that face, angled to suggest concern; condescends, patronises.



For NaiSaiKu Challenge?


Seventy seven
One hundred and fifty four
One hundred and fifty four
Seventy seven


A Durian from the garden - honestly.
Photo by Kanpirom Srisongnang.


For TOP – Random Stuff

We were eating seventeen we bought from Thom’s Place (1)
On the corner where the Princess kisses Greame (2)
We considered six or seven in the Claremont (3)
Lights out twelve catch us forty and a dream (4)

Six black mice guide a carriage through the rust storm
To ensure on-time express delivery
Blinking lights, durian sherbet; confusing thoughts
Waking up in a panic – WHERE ARE WE?

From thirty three it’s seven on the forty one (5)
You can do it in about twenty five (6)
From thirty two it’s five, but it always takes two (7)
Get two fifty, then get one-o-five
Or get one-o-three, perhaps choose one-o-nine (8)
You’ll do the job in fifteen or twenty (9)
You’ll never be stuck if you’re coming from the south
If you do it by bus there are plenty

*Metrolink* will get you to the centre of Town
Then buses south will go down Wilmslow Road
Don’t get too relaxed, you know it’s only a mile
So check out all the landmarks as you go
**Refuge Assurance clock, now the Palace Phallus
Past the Universities and MRI
Whitworth Art, The Curry Mile, then any right turn**
And the land of M14 meets your eye (10)
Cocktails are now being served. Today’s special is:


The order:

“Durian Sherbet
Agitated, not disturbed”
Best drink of the day!

The ingredients:

Puréed Durian
***Home distilled ‘Isan’ Lao Khao***
Sun-dried chilli flakes

1 - Number 17 on the menu (Chicken Chow Mein) at Thom’s Fish Bar
(an unlikely name for a Chinese take-away)
2 - The junction of Princess Road and Greame Street
(I think it should be GrAEme, but everyone says CREAM anyway)
3 - Six or Seven in the Claremont – 6 or 7 pints of Holts Bitter in the Claremont Pub.
4 – In bed by midnight, forty winks (sleep) and dream
5 – 33 (M33) is the post code for the town of Sale, 7 miles away, 41 is the bus route
7 – 32 (M32) is the post code for the town of Stretford, five miles away, but it’s a two bus journey
8 – 250, 105, 103, 109 are all bus routes
9 - Buses are frequent so the journey only takes 15 or 20 minutes
*-* - Metrolink is Manchester’s Rapid Transit System/Tram Route
**-** - The Palace hotel used to be the Refuge Assurance building, its clock tower is a huge Phallic symbol
You pass Manchester Metropolitan University (formerly Manchester Polytechnic) as well as Manchester University itself, Manchester Royal Infirmary (among other large hospitals) and Whitworth Art Gallery, before hitting The Curry Mile (rows of shops), most of which are Indian/Asian/Halal restaurants
10 – M14 is the post code for Rusholme/Moss Side, Manchester, UK

***-*** - Isan is the north-east region of Thailand - Lao Khao is Rice Liquor

Monday, July 13, 2009



For Monday Poetry Train Revisited

Do you remember bath night?
How scary was it for you?
Embarrassed at having to expose
Yourself to your giggling siblings?
Worried mum might rub shampoo
Into your delicate eyes?
Doesn’t bear thinking about
Does it?

Long before central heating
For most people anyway
When the immersion heater was
Too costly to use every week
You know…back in the sixties
Only telly was black and white
Everything else…dismal grey
And cold

Pans of water on the stove
Condensation scaling walls
Steaming up the kitchen windows
And clinging tight to the ceiling
“Use towels to carry hot pans
Not the clean ones – they’re for kids
Who must also be spotless”
Of course

Kids in two’s; mum gets busy
Using scrubbing brush and soap
Setting her controls to ‘severe’
First two boys, bright pink in seconds
Rubbing shampoo from their eyes
Clutching towels for modesty
And shivering themselves dry
Bath night

Sunday, July 12, 2009


For Sunday Scribblings


I’m lying on my favourite beach
Soaking up sun rays, breathing in scents
My three best friends are absent this year
Due to other commitments

We’d holidayed here in Ninety Six
I remember it like yesterday

Each morning we’d awake to the cry
“Surf’s up – grab your boards – let’s play!”

Never a surfer, so I’d decline
Though I’d promised to give it a go
In truth, I was scared of the ocean
And dangers that lie below

Closing my eyes, I go back in time
Reliving those moments of magic

Trespassing on happy memories
Images, dark and tragic

Suddenly, my worst fears were confirmed
From beneath the surf, Kraken rising
And twenty subterranean beasts
Intent on terrorising

Panic broke out on the crowded beach
As sunbathers scramble caused mayhem
I tried to warn my three surfing friends
Of monsters, out to slay them

My pointing and shouting were in vain
My voice wouldn’t carry that distance
Oblivious to blood-thirsty beasts
They offered no resistance

I could do nothing for those at sea
‘Natural’ disaster, so They say
Dismembered body parts washed ashore
On that fateful, fatal day

A backpacker sits down beside me
He’s travelled for years, I don’t doubt it
“If it’s your first time at this resort
I’ll tell you all about it

The beach is great, and the night-life rocks
But not as good as it used to be…
…You should have been here in Ninety Six…”

“I was…just now…you woke me”

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Gloom, Kneel, Transparent

For Three Word Wednesday

Prophets of doom and gloom
Kneel and pray to their god
Transparent hopes and fears

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


For The American Sandwich

Eggs is eggs, or so they say, but you could eat them boiled or have them fried.
You decide, from poached, scrambled, omelette, even barbecued on skewers.
Perhaps you should try six of one and half a dozen of the other.

The Other Other Half

For NaiSaiKu Challenge?

She’s not his sister
But she’s his sister’s sister
Makes her his sister's sister
But not his sister

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Love's Me Not?

Posted to Three Word Wednesday
and The Naisaiku Challenge?

Nothings whispered
Promise me the love I yearn
Loves yearned for broken promise
Whispers 'Nothing's sweet'

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Believe Me

For The American Sandwich

Two incredibly pertinent points you must understand about him.
He's a compulsive liar, therefore you can't believe a word he utters.
He'll never believe a word you say, so your secrets are safe with him.
For NaiSaiKu Challenge?

It's a filling feast
The American Sandwich
The American Sandwich
It's a filling feast

Have you played The American Sandwich?

Once Upon A Time/Happily Ever After

For The American Sandwich

When a thing has no beginning, where's the appropriate starting point?
When that same thing is without end, how is it possible to finish?
Make yourselves as comfortble as possible, this may take some time.

Writers Block

For NaiSaiKu Challenge?

P's And Q's minded

I's and T's dotted and crossed

I's and T's dotted and crossed
P's and Q's minded

Monday, May 4, 2009

More American Sandwich


A perfect transmission,uninterrupted by sinister forces.
Everyday telepathy, as practised by amateur clairvoyants.
Unique to young lovers and soulmates alike...the inexperienced.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Half Life


Which reminds me - thanks for tea Andy!!

She paces her semi-detached bedroom, rocking her head back and forth.
Half her life, rocking; she's trodden a well worn path on her bedroom floor.
It started with country lanes, in another life; another half-life.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


For Naisaiku Challenge 4

The (gift (life) brings) us
Wrapped (in (a (heart) beat); love) true
Hearts (make (love) last) long

The gift life brings us
Wrapped in a heartbeat; love true
Wrapped in a heartbeat; love true
The gift life brings us

Gift life brings
In a heartbeat; love
In a heart beat; love
Gift life brings

A heartbeat
A heartbeat


Tuesday, March 3, 2009

NaisaiKu Challenge 3

NaisaiKu Challenge
University Challenge
Which one is harder?
Which one is harder
University Challenge
NaisaiKu Challenge?

Composites are ignored
With filter from THE STONES ERA
STEERING a double ton
Two hundred INTEGERS
The Prime acknowledgement

Prime Numbers 1-200
A Prime Number has just TWO factors; ITSELF and ONE
Integer means number
Chart 1-200 as follows:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16

17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32

33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48

49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64

65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80

81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96

97 98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112

113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126 127 128

129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144

145 146 147 148 149 150 151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160

161 162 163 164 165 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 176

177 178 179 180 181 182 183 184 185 186 187 188 189 190 191 192

194 195 196 197 198 199 200

1 is not a prime number it only has ONE factor. It goes.
2 is the only EVEN Prime Number. It stays
Ignore all other EVEN Numbers (99 in total)
Sieve Composite Numbers; Numbers with more than TWO factors.
Factors of 3 = 9 15 21 27 33 39 45 51 57 63 69 75 81 87 93 99 105
111 117 123 129 135 141 147 153 159 165 171 177 183 189 195
Factors of 5 = 25 35 55 65 85 95 115 125 145 155 175 185
Factors of 7 = 49 77 91 119 133 161
Factors of 11 = 121 143 187
Factors of 13 = 169
All of these numbers go (54 in total). 3 5 7 11 and 13 stay.
We have used THE SIEVE OF ERATOSTHENES to filter out 154 Numbers
This leaves us with 46 PRIME NUMBERS between 1 and 200

2 3 5 7 11 13 17 19 23 29 31 37 41 43

47 53 59 61 67 71 73 79 83 89 97 101 103 107

109 113 127 131 137 139 149 151 157 163 167 173 179 181

191 193 197 199

Friday, February 27, 2009

Feb 26 2009


For TOP Anaphora

Don’t ask me if I like hospitals
Don’t ask me; try asking someone else
Ask me if you really want to know
About why I don’t like hospitals

Overcrowded, congested foyer
Full of theatre gown clad patients
Some are in wheelchairs, others in beds
All of them hooked up to saline drips
All exhausted, stressed and frustrated
Nurses (with clipboards) dashing about
Doctors (with stethoscopes) dressed in white
Porters follow-my-leader, pushing
Trolleys laden with medication
Public address playing pop music
Every few seconds interrupted
By hysterical-sounding voices
‘Such and such a doctor must report
To such and such a ward right away’

This must be why my head is spinning
This must be why my heart is racing
It must be time to make my exit
Atmosphere is intoxicating

Such a chaotic, surreal scene
Along with that antiseptic smell
That lingers inside all hospitals
Causes me to consider reasons
Why I’ve always hated hospitals

The underlying, subconscious fear
Of faulty surgical procedures?
The knowledge that so many people
Enter on their feet; leave in a box?

I don’t know for sure; I only think
That hospitals are nasty places
That it would be good if they were more
Like in ‘Carry On’ films…but they’re not
So no wonder nobody likes them


Feb 26 2009 - Diamond is one year old

That priceless sparkle
Is all the treasure I need
You are my Diamond
You are my Diamond
All the treasure I need is
That priceless sparkle


Monday, February 23, 2009


For NaisaiKu Challenge 2 http://naisaiku.blogspot.com/


I Googled NaisaiKu - 564 entries.

Thursday, February 19, 2009



For NaisaiKu Challenge
Sunday Scribblings - Trust


เขา ทำ รองเท้า หาย
‘อะไรวะ เขา เมา มาก’ หล่อน ถอนหายใจ
‘สวัสดี’ เขาหัวเราะ
‘อะไรวะ เขา เมา มาก’ หล่อน ถอนหายใจ
‘สวัสดี’ เขาหัวเราะ
‘อะไรวะ เขา เมา มาก’ หล่อน ถอนหายใจ
เขา ทำ รองเท้า หาย


Khao tam rongtao hai
‘Arai-wa khao mao mark’ lon thonhaijai
‘Sawasdee’ khao hua-ro
‘Sawasdee’ khao hua-ro
‘Arai-wa khao mao mark’ lon thonhaijai
Khao tam rongtao hai


๕๓๐๔๕ ๕๑๔ ๕๓๕๐๗ ๓๔
๕๔๖๑๕ ๓๔๕ ,๕๕๓๗๖๓๗ ๕๓๔ ๗๗๓๔ ๔๐,
๕๓๗๖๖๑๖ ๓๔ ,๐๗๗๓๔,
๕๔๖๑๕ ๓๔๕ ,๕๕๓๗๖๓๗ ๕๓๔ ๗๗๒๔ ๔๐,
๕๓๗๖๖๑๖ ๓๔ ,๐๗๗๓๔,
๕๔๖๑๕ ๓๔๕ ,๕๕๓๗๖๓๗ ๕๓๔ ๗๗๓๔ ๔๐,
๕๓๐๔๕ ๕๑๔ ๕๓๕๐๗ ๓๔


53045 514 53507 34
54615 345 ‘5537637 5,34 ,7734 40,
5376616 34 ‘,07734,
54615 345 ‘5537637 5,34 ,7734 40,
5376616 34 ‘,07734,
54615 345 ‘5537637 5,34 ,7734 40,
53045 514 53507 34


Monday, February 16, 2009

More Naisaiku

NaisaiKu 1-3-1 to 6-8-6

Find out how; visit - http://naisaiku.blogspot.com/

For something
Something for

That’s you
Sweet Talking Guy
Sweet Talking Guy
That’s You

Fun with words
Spoken and written
Written and spoken
Words with fun

I don’t ‘Haiku’
I ‘Playful Verse’ – and more
I ‘Naisaiku’
I ‘Naisaiku’
I ‘Playful Verse’ – and more
I don’t ‘Haiku’

If it’s worth saying
It must be worth repeating
Don’t just say it once
Don’t just say it once
It must be worth repeating
If it’s worth saying

Wendy Naisa must know
Nay Say Ku. Or Nigh Sigh Ku; which?
Nay Sigh Ku? Nigh Say Ku?
Nay Sigh Ku? Nigh Say Ku?
Nay Say Ku, or Nigh Sigh Ku; which?
Wendy Naisa Must Know

Sunday, February 15, 2009


Sow's Ear

Existing below
the poverty line,
a proud woman
gives thanks to Buddha,
observed by the monks
of Wat Sutapradid

Short of a few Baht,
Yai Phrae , as she’s known,
‘Old Mother Silk’,
scratches a living
helping to raise pigs
for a few hours a week.

Her payment, not cash;
Ears, trotters, noses
and intestines
she takes to market
in nearby Non Sang
on Wednesday afternoons.

Traded, not for cash,
but rice, or silkworms
in their cocoons.
Yai Phrae is content
with the arrangement.
She walks with head held high.

The Dak Dae – silkworms,
she eats with Khao Nieow -
glutinous rice.
She’s a survivor.
Nothing is wasted;
and nothing discarded.

Cocoons become thread,
spun on an old wheel.
Below her shack
the thread is tie-died,
and a makeshift loom
transforms thread into cloth.

Cloth becomes dresses,
jackets and trousers,
Practical magic;
sow’s ear, now silk purse.
Poorest girl now best dressed.

Twenty years later,
her shack is transformed
into a home.
No cash is involved.

There’s still work to do,
but her life is complete.

Silk Purse


The cocoons are boiled to release the fibres,
so they can be spun into thread. This process
also cooks the cocoons’ residents; silkworms,
which are edible.
When alive, the silkworm is Tua Mai, in Thai.
Once cooked, it is known as Dak Dae.
The word for ‘silk’, generally, is Mai. More
specifically, ‘silk thread’, but used in reference
to silk items.
The word Phrae, is used exclusively in reference
to a length, or lengths, of silk fabric.


For Sunday Scribblings - Sports


Kippax, Kop
Stretford End
North Bank, South Bank
Fan-base blend
Murmur – calm
Cheer – thrill
Chant – passion
Whistle - shrill
Man to man
Heart to heart
Mouth to mouth
From the start
Outside Left
To Inside Right
To Centre Forward
Goal in sight
In the box
Odds-on bet
‘Keeper dives…
Offside, yet

Half-time news
Who’s in front?
Oohs and Aahs
Comments, blunt
Lukewarm Bovril
Tommy Hall’s
Greasy Joe’s
To line the walls

Second half
Goals galore
Rovers, Rovers
What’s the score?
(Rovers, what’s the score?)
Final blow
Who’s the best?
Now we know
Four-nil win
Fans depart
Pundits probe
Inquests start
Bus-ride home
Glad we came
So much more
Than just a game

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Love and Eternity

For TOP - Aubade

man must wait

At last she comes

Claims her love will last
for ever … never fade

Dreaded vote of confidence
precedes her planned intention

Terms, conditions, warnings, threats
In place of passion – tension
accusations, denials
questionable endeavour

She leaves as dawn announces
the first day of forever

Alone again so soon
a man considers

How rapidly


distant memory

For Mad Kane's Haiku and Limerick

When Doctor Love came to town
To cure the ‘stood up’, ‘let down’
He hired a stadium
And The Palladium
Such was his world renown

The tickets were sold out; gone
No seats for the love-sick; none
Intended for only
The sad and the lonely
It turns out that’s everyone

For Monday Poetry Train Revisited

I wouldn’t want eternal life
A hundred years would do for me
I couldn’t take the stress, the strife
Of living for eternity

Loss of my hair, teeth, faculties
Would make me wish for death’s dark door
I couldn’t cope without all these
An OAP for evermore

I’d try to end it with a knife
Unless I could be shown the proof
That, given with eternal life
The promise of eternal youth

Sunday, February 8, 2009


For sunday Scribblings - Art

Cover art for my second book
'A Fetish For Frustration'.
Painted by Stan Ski.

Saturday, February 7, 2009


For details, check this link


Cost of reversal;
Revision of attitude
And failure of cause
Cause of failure and
Attitude of revision;
Reversal of cost

Thursday, February 5, 2009


For TOP - Repetition


Is it New Year again, already?
It seems like only yesterday
But, then again, perhaps it was
Time flies so fast, it’s hard to say

As one year ends, another New Year
Rides the cycle of repetition
But who can say which is New Years Day?
Each culture has its own tradition

Was New Year’s Day the first of the first
As Gregorian calendar states?
Eastern Orthodox Church year begins
The fourteenth (first, by Julian dates)

Back in Old Russia, the fifteenth day
Of the first month was Happy New Year
And one of twelve animals greets us with
‘Kung Xi Fat Choi’; you know I refer

To Chinese New Year; the year of the Ox
Lunar cycle, twenty sixth, just gone
But this could occur, depending on year
Between Jan and Feb twenty one

Then in Japan, twenty seventh of Jan
The tradition has been preserved
Yet in Tibet, New Year is set
Jan thru Mar, when Losar is observed

In case I missed you in January
I’ll repeat it for your benefit
‘Happy New Year to one and all’
But that isn’t the end of it

On the first of March, in old time Venice
They held their New Year festival
And March sees the Vernal Equinox
Some found this date more logical

Traditional springtime ceremonies
Mark the old year, over and done
Tamil Nadu, thirteenth, fourteenth March
Baha’i – Naw Ruz – day twenty one

Bengali, centrally on day fifteen
In Kashmir, the nineteenth, by the way
Thelemic New Year, moon permitting
On day twenty…give or take a day

Saka is Balinese, Javanese
On March thirty, New Year is beckoned
In Andhra Pradesh, it’s Tulugu
On March, or April the twenty second

To all you modern-day April Fools
An excuse to joke and play
But April the first, was the first of the year
To Assyrians, back in the day

Also in April, the sixth day sees
In UK, the New Tax Year begin
While on the thirteenth, the Sikhs celebrate
And their own New Year is let in

From the thirteenth to the fifteenth day
Treat the New Year with TLC
In Thailand, Laos and Cambodia
April’s three days of festivity

‘Sawasdee Pi Mai’, the greeting in Thai
As Songkhran water battles take place
Get soaking wet…or try to stay dry
If you find you can’t take the pace

New Year in French Republican times
Was the twenty second September
And Diwali repeats annually
In October or November

November thirty; St Andrew’s Day
Or the Sunday closest to this date
Is Roman Catholic Ecclesiastic
New Year for priests to celebrate

Saturday, January 31, 2009


For Sunday Scribblings - Regrets


Had those hasty words remained
And those broken promises
Been kept
How could we be sure
We’d have no regrets?
In the long term
Things may turn out for the best

Lessons learnt from past mistakes
A more disciplined approach
To words and deeds
Pre-empting cause, effect
And consequence
And avoiding
Repetition of regret

In making future plans
We should
Remember the past
And with hindsight
We may
Look back and smile
All those errors
We can
Put down to experience
So that this time
We shall
Go the extra mile

As we lay this ghost ‘Regret’
To rest
Exorcise our demons
Start afresh
Walk with confidence
While acknowledging
Credit due to past regrets
For our success

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


For TOP Intersections


I only eat one meal a day.
The timing must be exact.
Obsessive, compulsive habit?
Maybe so, but it’s a fact.

Call me eccentric, if you like,
each evening, I eat my dinner.
‘Intersections’ force me to.

One consequence of FOOD’s journey;
anagram formed by enzyme.
Useless Roy – gone; leaves the Romans
to dictate precise mealtime.

A standard diet; meat, veg, fruit,
contains a combination
and, for your information:

Once consumed, the body begins
the process of digestion.
New compounds form, all with new names.
What are they? Is the question.

Nutrient breakdown leaves us with
AMINO ACIDS to cope with;
words we may not understand.

Not easy to remember names,
without a face we know.
Abbreviations easier
to memorise, and so:

is dismissed from further thought.
As we all know, some names don’t fit,
or they’re really not our sort.

Now we’re left with only ROMANS;
Roman numerals, you see?
L C L C L M I C;
not forgetting I and D.

M; one thousand. D; five hundred.
Three C’s; add three hundred more.
L times three; one hundred fifty.
I plus I; two. What’s the score?

It all adds up; the numerals
Everything can be related,
if we really want it to.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Fourth Millennium 17


For WIJ 16 Brand New Day
Matinee Muse Power Of Imagination
Sunday scribblings Phantoms And Shadows

11 Shades Of Grey

Sleep, and its confusing, unrelated sequence of dreams, added further irritation to the persistence and torment of unanswered questions that Marc’s lengthy explanations, or suppositions, had provoked. The promise of answers; clarification, had been dangled tantalisingly before the eyes of the three friends. The bait had been cast, and the collective curiosity that had been aroused, even prior to meeting Marc, now became an obsessive requirement that could not be permitted to elude them. Marc’s indication that the details they craved, required the fulfilment of certain conditions, and would be presented to them in ‘qualifying stages’, was clearly a reference to the even greater complexity of the difficulties they would, undoubtedly encounter, once they had confirmed their already pre-determined decision to continue with their quest. Like everything else, it was a process, and had to be allowed to unfold, without artificial influences that mere desire might inspire. Analysis, logic, and dedication, would have to overshadow the compelling radiance of the trophy they sought. The ultimate goal; the priceless treasure of truth, could so easily, and so rapidly, mutate into a shallow lie, if the obsession were allowed to become dependence; addiction. The guiding light it offered could become a blinding beam of intensity, burning with the deceit of fool’s gold. It was the realisation of this depressing factor that tempered the inquisitive yearnings of the trio, and disciplined their malnourished attitudes.
Ironically, their patient, controlled approach was a direct result of the doctrines of the regime, under which they endured existence in the Nation. ‘Questions and lies; if you don’t ask, you don’t get; if you don’t want, you don’t ask’; the slogan that had been instilled into the consciousness of each inhabitant of the Nation, practically from birth. The phrase was designed and practiced, with great success, to deter the ‘unconstitutional’ concept of creative thought, and the potential storm that the possession, let alone the interpretation of concepts, could create.
One question, however, which seemed entirely pertinent to the continuity of the quest, repeatedly visited Starling’s thoughts. Although he believed he knew the only possible answer, he felt it prudent to pose it to Marc, for two basic reasons. One; he would be able to gain a clearer insight into Marc’s pattern of preparation for a task. Two; he would be able to assess the competence of his own idea.
A third, coincidental outcome, may be the introduction of the prospect of options. Alternatives, or back-up plans, may be luxuries that would be denied them because of the restraints imposed on them by the nature of the quest. At the very least, they would prove invaluable assets of increasing rarity, as progress was either granted, or thwarted by that unknown quantity, circumstance.
Starling delivered his question with a certain amount of expectancy that possibly hinted at his possession of a credible and practical solution.
“I understand the requirement for a proactive approach, from us, to certain predicaments that, tackled effectively, will determine our OWN effectiveness, but tell me please, Carp…or Marc; how do YOU envisage actually ‘escaping’ from the Nation?”
Marc’s response was predictably matter of fact, at the same time as being an invitation to Starling, to demonstrate his initiative.
“We have but one means of transport available. With or without it, the ocean is what lies between us and St. George. I propose we FIND my boat.
First and foremost, we must confirm the continued existence of my boat, then evaluate, and if necessary, restore its seaworthiness. Finally we will navigate to the ‘Ring’. There, our real trials begin.” Marc let out a sigh and continued. “Life used to be good…better at least; simpler, believe it or not, on St. George. Unrestricted travel was permitted; encouraged…AND it was safe. One would think that progress would have been made in a hundred years, but time seems to have…correction HAS, unquestionably, stood still in the Nation.
I appreciate that nobody is officially aware of the former existence of boats, ships and sailing vessels, but it is quite clear to anyone, with ANY knowledge of the properties of water and air, that certain objects are able to float, while others sink. I suppose most people attribute this to the weight of an individual item, and the forces of gravity. They are probably unable to contemplate the concept of water-based transport of objects unable to float on their own merits; their density. I also appreciate that all forms of water-based transport were abolished at the time of the ‘Purges’. I realise that this was mainly because sea-going craft were no longer relevant modes of transport, but in practical terms, it was yet another restriction, imposed on personal liberties.
YOUR initial task will be to determine by what means, if any, we are able to gain access to beyond the coastal defensive wall.”
The one-on-one conversation continued, with Nightingale and Rose content to listen, and wait for its conclusion.
“That ought not to present too much of a problem.” Starling sounded confident. “The guards here are not as efficient as the ‘Service Personnel’ in our Sector. As long as you possess official proof of your travelling permission, which is generally issued only to ‘official’ government representatives…for which I easily qualified myself…they don’t even bother to ask any questions.” He displayed his travel permission disc. “I’ve ALREADY put this to use, in order to gain access to beyond the wall. Although, officially, only Nightingale and I are included in its validity, it was simple enough to invent an excuse for taking Rose along with us. I’m sure it will serve, equally effectively, to repeat the exercise; this time with YOU in tow.” Starling presented his solution and awaited its evaluation.
“This is precisely the kind of creativity so many of the previous candidates were, sadly, lacking. You see Starling; physical abilities as well as mental agility, do not come from the tools one employs to perform an action or activity. They come from here;” Marc patted his chest, indicating his heart; “inside one’s very essence. It is possible to apply the principles, that each of us possesses; has acquired by association, to ALL things; everything we do; everything we ARE.
The revelation of your ‘disc of authority’ could speed things up exponentially.” Marc was duly impressed, allowing Starling to add further comment.
“Something I learnt from Robin was the discipline of studying reactions. I picked up the principles he taught me, very quickly, and in this short space of time, I have come to learn, and more importantly, UNDERSTAND, much about human nature, and how simple it can often be, to manipulate a given situation to your own advantage.
Robin taught me that reactions are not ALWAYS opposite and equal to the actions that cause them, and it is the difference between one reaction and another that enables us to evaluate a situation. In the case of the security staff, at the wall, I just played off their arrogance as the means to my end.” Starling believed his mentor, Robin, had taught him well.
Marc responded with his own assessment.
“By ‘arrogance’, Starling, I assume that what you REALLY mean is ‘self-confidence’, which YOU possess in spades. It is the CLASH of one person’s arrogance against another’s that determines the TRUE strength of an individual’s personality. The inevitable outcome, without exception, is that the stronger PERSONALITY emerges victorious.
In many ways, or in one way in particular, ‘arrogance’ is an indication of a highly sophisticated, organised and advanced intellect. I don’t refer to ‘bravado’ or ‘impetuosity’. If one TRULY knows one’s self, one will become aware of one’s boundless capabilities; and it is the reactions of others that influence one’s acquaintance with one’s TRUE self. This is what allows one to realise one’s true POTENTIAL.
It is MY considered opinion that REACTIONS, however they may APPEAR, are in fact opposite AND equal, just as the laws of Physics dictate. In human perception, the reactions of SOME seem POSITIVE, while those of OTHERS appear NEGATIVE. However, if we put this into PERSPECTIVE, they ACTUALLY amount to PRECISELY, ABSOLUTELY the same thing.
If one is able, capable of DRAWING from the ENERGY created by BOTH examples of PERCEIVED reaction, to one’s own ACTIONS, one will discover that BOTH will produce an IDENTICAL end –result.
Allow me to pose a brace of rhetorical questions, in order to illustrate my point.
On how many occasions have YOU been able to achieve the ‘impossible’, just because others have ‘willed’ you to do so, by their support of your cause?
By the same token, on how many occasions have you achieved a similar result, by your OWN ‘will’, in order to prove your doubters WRONG; accepting their apparently unfeasible challenge, and claiming victory?
Sometimes it is necessary to FOCUS on the ACTUAL reaction, not on what one merely PERCEIVES as the reaction. This is where most people become confused with the principle of Newton’s law. The REAL reaction, in this instance, is not that of your CHALLENGER, but your OWN.”
Marc’s deliberately excessive use of stress on particular words, or phrases, highlighted his specific interpretation of what was, essentially, an absolute. However, he emphasised correctly that it was not possible for everyone to fully understand and appreciate the principles of absolutes. His characteristic quotation mark animations, which Starling now realised Robin, and others had merely inherited, increased the dramatic effect of, as well as adding further emphasis to, his consideration.
Starling’s revised understanding was that, although Robin had, in all likelihood, misinterpreted or misunderstood the premise; the fact that his assessment of what he only PERCEIVED to be the real reactions to any given actions was what determined the eventual outcome of his analysis; it was in fact, what validated them.
He thanked Marc for his explanation, and turned to Nightingale and Rose.
“Well, it’s down to us now, let’s use today to prepare ourselves and tomorrow we’ll make our initial move. Marc, do you go along with that?”
“That’s the kind of decision making ability my previous ‘guides’ were lacking. Tomorrow it is; get everything ready you consider useful.”

Copyright © Stanislaw Skibinski

Thursday, January 22, 2009

TOP Ceremonies


Tradition dictates a ceremony
Speeches, parades and pageantry
Custom and practice; habitual
Oath of Office; a ritual

Once the theatricals, parties are through
Duty dictates a job to do
Breaking tradition; be first in all things
So all can come first; a dream fit for King
Priority issues, economy, wars
Global Green worries the World ignores
Each day a fresh page in history
So don’t ever stand on ceremony

The first hundred days will act as a gauge
Be proactive; first to engage
Rise to the challenge with dignity
Embrace each task with humility
Approach the doubts of the critical
With an attitude, analytical
Perform to your best ability
Modestly; without ceremony

First amongst equals, the first to achieve
First term in office, a change we believe
Given a second term, what irony
No need to change the ‘Change’ policy

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Sunday Scribblings Pilgrimage


If the aesthetic nature of Nongbualamphu province was pleasing enough to the eye, then Loei was more beautiful still. Set high in the northern hills, close to the border with Laos, it is surrounded by even higher mountains. The scenery is quite breathtaking and if the poverty appeared a little less evident than in the villages around Non Sang, the lifestyle was equally relaxed.
It was an emotional visit for Mok who was being re-united with her real mother for the first time in quarter of a century.
Long, as ever, had driven us the hundred or so kilometres and we arrived to a welcoming party of Mok’s mother and four children. The children, two girls in their late teens or early twenties and two boys aged six and nine, were not as intrigued by me as had been the case in Nongbualamphu, but they were just as eager to hold and cuddle our son Changnoi, and introduce him to his new surroundings.
The house, again a traditionally styled wooden construction, was quite different to the one we’d stayed in the previous week. Inside, it was partitioned off into individual rooms and the ground floor area was completely enclosed. One of the typical low-slung tables; timber framed with split bamboo forming the surface, stood under the porchway at the front of the house. Mok and I sat and joined the family, who had invited us to share the food that had already been served prior to our arrival.
We spent a relaxed week, visiting, or being visited by, relatives and friends, enjoying lakeside picnics and walks into the hills. Bangkok and the rest of the world seemed a million miles away, and I could tell by the sparkle in Mok’s eyes, as well as the sheer pleasure she took from showing me around, that Isan was where her heart really was. It had me enchanted too and I couldn’t have asked for more from a region of unspoilt natural beauty.
The people I met always seemed so genuinely pleased to see me and nothing was ever too much trouble for them. The knowledge that every single ingredient in every meal I had eaten had been grown or reared by the same hands that had prepared, cooked and served the food, added an extra dimension to the chore of eating. The children, old and young alike, especially impressed me. It was their willingness to accept their circumstances without complaint, that shamed me into realising I’d grown up abusing many of the privileges that I’d come to expect as of right. An incident, which served as a poignant example of this, occurred the day before our departure.
Next door, other members of the extended family were celebrating the return home, from working in Bangkok, of their eldest son.
The twenty five year old had made his own personal pilgrimage, for the first time in three years, bringing with him the customary collection for the temple that served the village.
The money he had collected from friends, neighbours and workmates in Bangkok was still inside the sealed envelopes, the village monks had sent to him. These envelopes had, in turn, been placed into a small bag which was now being emptied out onto one of the low bamboo-surfaced tables in front of his family home.
His mother was carefully knifing open the envelopes, most of which appeared to contain multiples of the twenty Baht minimum required donation. Much of the cash was in ten or twenty baht banknotes, but there were also several fifties and half a dozen hundreds, in the collection. A few of the envelopes only contained the bare minimum, twenty Baht, in loose coins.
Once again, a young banana plant, dressed with coconut palm leaves had been prepared for the offering. This one was bigger than the standard size, most of the other villagers would offer, due to the number of people who had donated. It was much more ornate, with jasmine petals, speared to the tips of the palms. It was mounted on a four legged support, constructed from bamboo. Further strips of split bamboo, had been arranged in tiered fans, forming a focal point, on which to display the offering. The finished structure, measured almost two metres tall.
Once all the envelopes had been opened, the family began counting up. On average, the contributions worked out at around sixty Baht per envelope, with a grand total of just under six thousand Baht.
Family, friends and neighbours, gathered to add their own collections to the total, and a quick whip-round, made the final figure, eight thousand Baht. Mok and I contributed a further one thousand Baht apiece, rounding off the sum to ten thousand.
Banknotes were arranged, from the centre, in order of value, onto the spliced bamboo strips. Our two, one thousands took centre stage, followed by the hundreds, fifties, twenties, and finally, on the extremities, tens.
The loose change, totalling one hundred and eighty four Baht, was deposited inside a silver fruit bowl, along with the empty envelopes, which bore the names of the donors. The whole display would be paraded through the village, where similar groups of collectors would join in, with their own offerings, in order to process to the Wat and make the presentations to the monks.
The carnival atmosphere, which always seemed to accompany such processions, was once again in evidence, as we made the now familiar, tour of the village, picking up more people at every turn, until it seemed the entire population was in attendance.
Three circuits of the main temple building, gaily festooned with colourful depictions of Buddha’s travels, were completed, before moving inside, to attend a service, in which all the fundraisers would receive special attention and blessings, from the saffron-clad monk, leading the ritual.
Mok had been unusually quiet throughout the day; our last day before returning to Bangkok. I could see that she obviously had things on her mind, and I already knew how much she disliked being away from her home and family. I would wait for a conveniently quiet time, before tackling her, and finding out if she was thinking the same thoughts that had begun to spark conjecture in my own mind.
We’d opted for the overnight bus journey back to Bangkok; leaving the village’s tiny bus station at seven ‘o’ clock. Estimated arrival time at Morchit was four thirty in the morning.
Although I’d have loved to stay on for a further week, the visit was over, and also it seemed, yet another phase of my life, as the bus rattled along Isan’s highways.
I turned towards Mok, who was cradling the sleeping Changnoi, staring pensively, out of the window, gazing at the stars.
I came straight out with the question that I hoped she was burning to ask of me, but dare not, for fear of disappointment from a negative response.
“When do you want me to take you home?”
She stared deep into my eyes, exploring my features for any trace of irony, but could find none. Tears welled up in her own eyes and fell, silently, caressing her cheeks with the warmth of their moisture. She swallowed hard and managed;
“Soon;” sniffing and swallowing once more, as her face brightened into an angelic smile; “very soon.”

Friday, January 16, 2009

WI Just Around The corner

Updated 15 Feb for TOP – Coin a New Word

No newly coined word from me, but an entirely new method
of communication develops in a recent post that takes the
concept of word verification to its absurd extreme


When the curtain is drawn down
On ears that refuse to hear
And voices that will not speak
Then eyes that no longer see
Can no more bear false witness
To the illusionists lies

When they do away with words
The silent minority
Have just cause to celebrate

Not one syllable stated
No debate, no argument
Muted moral victory
A quiet satisfaction

An unspoken prophecy
Fulfilled by unchecked default
Unwritten suicide note
Undelivered, unaddressed
Language’s self-destruction
Assisted by apathy

The process begins with speech
Complacently corrupted
Silent H’s, G’s and T’s
Word mispronunciations

Ignored communications
Inarticulate voices
Colloquial expressions
That nobody understands

Deaf ears, dismissed instructions
Render vocals obsolete
Illegible handwriting
Transmitted to printed words
Completes the transformation

But few will even notice
Because eyes will be tight shut

When the sun no longer shines
And eternal darkness reigns
Over disillusioned eyes
Voices will no longer speak
Because ears don’t want to hear
That the end is soon to come

Defiant in denial
A new beginning beckons
Human nature steers its course

In the place of sights and sounds
Tactile communication
Expressing thoughts in feelings
Touching hands and hearts and minds

Inspiring understanding
Subconsciously accepted
By subliminal consent
All hands are joined together
All hearts beat in unison
And all minds become as one

Future, present, history
Height, length, width; irrelevant
Thus condensing time and space
To a single dimension

Senses dulled, but sense sharpened
Witnessing without seeing
Speaking though never talking
Listening without hearing

Ambiguity banished
Controversy defeated
The blind are blind no longer
Mute voices are amplified
And the deaf, at last, can hear

Mankind – created equal –
Recreates equality

*** *** *** *** *** *** *** *** ***

Naisaiku a new word coined by Wendy Naisa.
CLKNCHK, or do I mean Click and check?
Meanwhile. Here’s something that tickled me.
I thought it was worth repeating

I heard it said on TV
‘Blasphemy’, surely?
‘Blasphemy’, surely?
I heard it said on TV

But seriously – isn’t the beauty of the
English language it’s flexibility?