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We drove the kids North East to
our adopted hinterland
of moreish moorland, the Brontes
heath and heather hiding-place,
near peacock splendid Castle Howard.

Town kids need more stimulation,
animal animation.
A newly opened zoo park
offered flamingos in the pink,
fapping, fluttering, squarking
round a stinking muddy pool.

We splashed about, rain soaked,
licking mud spiced ice creams,
shivering, slipping, thinking
it's what you try to do for kids.
Inspired by Neil Diamond's "Morningside"
A tale of when an old man died,
Of nights spent alone, and days that I've cried,
For my children

This poem is real, this poem is me,
Far from the person each one of you see,
Depression, emptiness, a life I can't flee,
For my children.

By mistakes a plenty, my life defined,
The gift I hold, verses from what's on my mind,
A tormented soul, with the words I've signed,
For my children.

Emilia and John, years spent apart,
Thinking back each night, tearing at my heart,
To go back in time, and correct from the start,
For my children.

Isobel and Lydia, off doing their things,
Watching them flourish, the joy that it brings,
Two ladies growing, in my heart it sings,
For my children.

And obviously Ben, my Junior Sharkbait,
My final reason to smile, this tiny wee mate,
Giving me purpose, keeping life great,
For my children.

People believe as a dad I am good,
But I've let them all down far more than I should,
And I'd change it all for a chance that I could,
For my children.

As a father I know that I truly am blessed,
I've five stars that to me, are simply the best,
With their joy, love and laughter, my heart is caressed,
For my children.

But when I die, truth is sad,
Not a child will claim the gift I had,
The words I write become my epitaph,
For my children."

Cinco Espiritus Creation 2018
We are all northern people
On this northern rail train, delayed.
Going to our northern homes in our northern towns,
Where our family ensures 'a brew' is awaiting upon our arrival

A ginger tom cat sleeps on the chair,
By a northern man getting off in his Wigan town,                                                            ­                                      
Where smiling strangers stroll, and neighbours know your name.
Bleep! Bleep! The closing doors lock out the draft of our cold towns, our coal towns,    
where the Sun is forbidden yet the local paper thrives throughout our lives,
despite the charity shops, pound bakery’s and grave size *** holes that **** our cars,                                                            ­                         we are proud to call this home, proud to be northern.
Sitting waiting in the packed room,
trying not to adopt the mood,
watching bubbles rise 'What's 'er name'?
sensing movements, glancing eyes.
A few know each other,
smile hello, kids bellow.

This is not the place for show.
The bubbles silently burst.
No effort worth the candle
sadly burning, spluttering.
Sighs sour invisible clouds,
waiting for the 'Next , please' blow.
speech bubbles rising
All I could see was blue,
a barrier of confusion,
or some kind of illusion.
Unbelievable. Unreal. Untrue.

Was this my final scene?
An unfamiliar stage.
No one to help my dream.
No gentleness, just rage.
She wouldn't, couldn't give her name,
but they still took her in when she called.
I visited, adopted her,
though she must have been in her twenties.

We called her Monica. It seemed to fit.
She never spoke, sitting at her half opened window,
sampling a sliver of the fraught stree air.
I don't think she could take any more of the real world.

She stayed there safe in her dull, blue walled retreat,
an observer, lacking a ticket of entry.
And when darkness fell, and the curtains were closed,
the house lights went up on her secret, inner theatre.
Based on an Edward Hopper painting.
I saw him white haired, small bent.
There were pictures, Cheshire men,
comrades, serious, smiling, unsure.
His later trenches were for spuds.

On postcard he's crouched by a road,
grinning, rifle aimed at camera,
a shot of friendly fire from France bound home.

He didn't talk about the War,
except to say the food was good.
The youth grew into the uniform.
Gran said he came home mid blown.
 Dec 2016 Kenn Rushworth
The night sky is scarred with tattered strands of clouds
Eternal darkness interrupted only by muted moonlight
The wind whispers of winter, an inevitable return
To the beginning, the end
 Dec 2016 Kenn Rushworth
 Dec 2016 Kenn Rushworth
Silver horses crash,
elevating waves foam as
sailors drift in silence.
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