LEADERS - not followers

Sunday, December 30, 2012


For The Sunday Whirl: Pop, Stars, Ice, Flame, Strewn, Deliver, Tangent, Creek, Knead, Brood, Against, Point.


even ancient pop stars
must have memories...

perhaps of
a now ice cold old flame
...or two

strewn across the remains
of brains
that fail to deliver

just shoot
off at a tangent

minds addled
...no creek to paddle

no bread to knead
no brood to feed

...then suddenly

against all odds

...point taken...

Monday, December 24, 2012


For The Sunday Whirl: Seemed, Insistent, Clench, Rapid, Burst,

Rustle, Rare, Hurl, Through, Spacious, Spasm, Enigma


Seemed insistent; 'There and Then'
Clench those fists and count to ten
Rapid burst of gaseous flare
Rustle up a steak, grilled rare
Hurl the plate through spacious hall
In a spasm, hit the wall
Stooge? Enigma? Who can say?
Don't rub him up the wrong way

Monday, December 17, 2012




By now, everyone knows that 2012 was the year when ‘impossible’ things happened.

For a start, The Stone Roses famously said that the day they’d reform, would be the day Man City won the Premier League… didn’t they…?

Well, here’s a less well known, but equally inadvertent prophecy that follows a similar vein to theirs… And just in the same way that The Stone Roses are bigger than even The Beatles, this one is more serious even than… Football…!

Yes, believe it or not, I actually said… in public… and on more than one occasion… “The day I return to Manchester will be the day The Stone Roses reform…”

And just as everyone laughed… everyone who’s a red, that is… at the thought of City winning the Premier League, so everyone laughed at the thought of me returning to Manchester… Well, you know what I mean, some people giggled… a bit…

But we all know how truth is stranger than fiction… don’t we?

And still the laughter continued… and still the die-hard believers, not only continued to survive, but also continued to believe…

And then…

2012 happened… And believe it or not… City won the Premier League…! And the Stone Roses reformed…!

And I returned to Manchester…?

Yes! Believe it… it’s all true…!

And in Manchester, the crowds lined the streets, and cheered City, and everyone said “Nice one… about time…!”

And also in Manchester, the crowds filled Heaton Park… three nights running…! And they cheered The Stone Roses, and everyone said “Nice one… about time…!”

And also in Manchester, the crowds filled the lobby in Terminal 1 at Manchester Airport… and waited patiently for their planes to take them away on well-deserved holidays… while I got off my plane… in Terminal 2… smoked the last of my Khrong Thip cigarettes, and waited… impatiently… for the 105 bus…  to Moss Side, in Manchester. And I cheered when, at last, it arrived, and I alone said “Nice one… about… time…”

So… just to re-cap… We all know that 2012 saw City win the Premier League… We all know that 2012 saw The Stone Roses reform… thus fulfilling the prophecy that the two ‘impossible’ events would occur, (almost) simultaneously… And of course, now we all know that 2012 saw me return to Manchester…

But hang on a sec… did some of us forget something…?

On May 13, did anyone actually do what I remembered to do…? (In the Claremont Pub, on Claremont Road, Moss Side, Manchester 14) What I’d so vehemently and vocally promised to do, for more than 30 years…?

Here’s what I did… I looked back… admittedly not over my shoulder, to the person sat in the stand, behind me… as the song indicates… because I wasn’t actually at the match, at the Etihad Stadium, was I…? I forgot we’d moved from Maine Road… honest… ;) so I was just sat in the pub, watching it on the telly. But did anyone, anyone at all, apart from me, actually “…look back and say ‘There’s no-one quite like John Bond, he has helped us on our way’…?”

If you didn’t… and I’m pretty sure most of you have forgotten the promise you all made, amid the euphoria of getting to the 1981 Centenary FA Cup Final… there’s no need to worry. We’re still Champions, and there’s still (at least) the whole of the rest of the season to go, in which to clear your conscience…

So, next time you’re at the match… preferably during a quiet period (if there are any), just stand up, and ‘look back’… wistfully, if you can (if you know what it means…!)… over your shoulder… to the person sat in the stand behind you… and say “There’s no-one quite like John Bond, he has helped us on our way”… Just like you always said you would… ‘one day… when we’re Champions’… And even if for no other reason, it’s well worth the funny looks you get…!