Dear Alchohol

Dear Alcohol
We have had a long and bumpy relationship, but thank you for the haze. The half-oblivion when total oblivion seemed attractive.
We’ve had trial separations before, I know. But this time it feels different…


Blow me! I’ve reached half a century
And the devil still ain’t sent for me
I wonder if this is how it’s meant to be
Just me and a skip full of memories?..


We went to pick blackberries up in the woods
With a plastic bowl each and our old welly boots
But the berries were smaller than in previous years
And you said, ”We’ll not find the best ones ‘round here…”

Kathy O’Toole

Kathy O’Toole was a painter, not the ones you hang on walls
But skirting boards and ceilings, window frames and doors
Steel-capped boots, jeans slung low, curls cut close to her head
Paint on her t-shirt, between her toes
Big Irish smile wherever she went

Kathy O’Toole came from Cavan but a-travellin’ she did go
And we met her in London in a pub on City Road
Oh we weren’t in a hurry ‘cos it was Friday night
And 5 or 6 pints later
We’d put the world to rights…

The Rag of Spring

New shirt with old jeans
Smell of Al’s coffee beans
Soft pyjamas on my skin
Sweet sound of a mandolin

Sunset over Wanstead Flats
Garden walls with grumpy cats
Bluebells bursting from the ground
In love again with this old town…