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rhiannon Mar 2019
Once upon a time there was a special girl called Sonya Randall. She was on the way to see her Dad Tristan Godfrey, when she decided to take a short cut through Hyde Park.

It wasn't long before Sonya got lost. She looked around, but all she could see were trees. Nervously, she felt into her bag for her favourite toy, Laura, but Laura was nowhere to be found! Sonya began to panic. She felt sure she had packed Laura. To make matters worse, she was starting to feel hungry.

Unexpectedly, she saw a naughty Uni-pug dressed in a blue dungarees disappearing into the trees.

"How odd!" thought Sonya.

For the want of anything better to do, she decided to follow the peculiarly dressed Uni-pug. Perhaps it could tell him the way out of the forest.

Eventually, Sonya reached a clearing. In the clearing were two houses, one made from peas and one made from cakes.

Sonya could feel her tummy rumbling. Looking at the houses did nothing to ease her hunger.

"Hello!" she called. "Is anybody there?"

Nobody replied.

Sonya looked at the roof on the closest house and wondered if it would be rude to eat somebody else's chimney. Obviously it would be impolite to eat a whole house, but perhaps it would be considered acceptable to nibble the odd fixture or lick the odd fitting, in a time of need.

A cackle broke through the air, giving Sonya a fright. A witch jumped into the space in front of the houses. She was carrying a cage. In that cage was Laura!

"Laura!" shouted Sonya. She turned to the witch. "That's my toy!"

The witch just shrugged.

"Give Laura back!" cried Sonya.

"Not on your nelly!" said the witch.

"At least let Laura out of that cage!"

Before she could reply, the naughty Uni-pug in the blue dungarees rushed in from a footpath on the other side of the cleaning.

"Hello Big Uni-pug," said the witch.

"Good morning." The Uni-pug noticed Laura. "Who is this?"

"That's Laura," explained the witch.

"Ooh! Laura would look lovely in my house. Give it to me!" demanded the Uni-pug.

The witch shook her head. "Laura is staying with me."

"Um... Excuse me..." Sonya interrupted. "Laura lives with me! And not in a cage!"

Big Uni-pug ignored her. "Is there nothing you'll trade?" he asked the witch.

The witch thought for a moment, then said, "I do like to be entertained. I'll release him to anybody who can eat a whole front door."

Big Uni-pug looked at the house made from cakes and said, "No problem, I could eat an entire house made from cakes if I wanted to."

"There's no need to show off," said the witch. Just eat one front door and I'll let you have Laura."

Sonya watched, feeling very worried. She didn't want the witch to give Laura to Big Uni-pug. She didn't think Laura would like living with a naughty Uni-pug, away from her house and all her other toys.

Big Uni-pug put on his bib and withdraw a knife and fork from his pocket.

"I'll eat this whole house," said Big Uni-pug. "Just you watch!"

Big Uni-pug pulled off a corner of the front door of the house made from cakes. He gulped it down smiling, and went back for more.

   And more.

      And more.

Eventually, Big Uni-pug started to get bigger - just a little bit bigger at first. But after a few more fork-fulls of cakes, he grew to the size of a large snowball - and he was every bit as round.

"Erm... I don't feel too good," said Big Uni-pug.

Suddenly, he started to roll. He'd grown so round that he could no longer balance!

"Help!" he cried, as he rolled off down a ***** into the forest.

Big Uni-pug never finished eating the front door made from cakes and Laura remained trapped in the witch's cage.

"That's it," said the witch. "I win. I get to keep Laura."

"Not so fast," said Sonya. "There is still one front door to go. The front door of the house made from peas. And I haven't had a turn yet.

"I don't have to give you a turn!" laughed the witch. "My game. My rules."

The woodcutter's voice carried through the forest. "I think you should give her a chance. It's only fair."

"Fine," said the witch. "But you saw what happened to the Uni-pug. She won't last long."

"I'll be right back," said Sonya.

"What?" said the witch. "Where's your sense of impatience? I thought you wanted Laura back."

Sonya ignored the witch and gathered a hefty pile of sticks. She came back to the clearing and started a small camp fire. Carefully, she broke off a piece of the door of the house made from peas and toasted it over the fire. Once it had cooked and cooled just a little, she took a bite. She quickly devoured the whole piece.

Sonya sat down on a nearby log.

"You fail!" cackled the witch. "You were supposed to eat the whole door."

"I haven't finished," explained Sonya. "I am just waiting for my food to go down."

When Sonya's food had digested, she broke off another piece of the door made from peas. Once more, she toasted her food over the fire and waited for it to cool just a little. She ate it at a leisurely pace then waited for it to digest.

Eventually, after several sittings, Sonya was down to the final piece of the door made from peas. Carefully, she toasted it and allowed it to cool just a little. She finished her final course. Sonya had eaten the entire front door of the house made from peas.

The witch stamped her foot angrily. "You must have tricked me!" she said. "I don't reward cheating!"

"I don't think so!" said a voice. It was the woodcutter. He walked back into the clearing, carrying his axe. "This little girl won fair and square. Now hand over Laura or I will chop your broomstick in half."

The witch looked horrified. She grabbed her broomstick and placed it behind her. Then, huffing, she opened the door of the cage.

Sonya hurried over and grabbed Laura, checking that her favourite toy was all right. Fortunately, Laura was unharmed.

Sonya thanked the woodcutter, grabbed a quick souvenir, and hurried on to meet Tristan. It was starting to get dark.

When Sonya got to Tristan's house, her Dad threw his arms around her.

"I was so worried!" cried Tristan. "You are very late."

As Sonya described her day, she could tell that Tristan didn't believe her. So she grabbed a napkin from her pocket.

"What's that?" asked Tristan.

Sonya unwrapped a doorknob made from cakes. "Pudding!" she said.

Tristan almost fell off his chair.

The End
Raj Arumugam Oct 2011
this
poem
started off
intending to be the shortest poem in the world
nay,
more aptly
in the whole wide, wide open uni-verse
but ambition overtook it
and it aimed to stretch far and wide
an Aristotelian hubris, you know
like the ambition of Macbeth
going beyond what Mrs Macbeth intended
and so this ambitious little poem of ours expanded
starting meek as grass
growing zealous
and went beyond itself and its kind
this
poem
that
had such humble beginnings
that dared to want to be the shortest poem in the world
but turned out loquacious
and it could go on, it said,
beating all length, breadth and dimension
and would have -
but it got into convulsions and fits
and shock
when it had gone beyond its shortness
and it couldn’t even spell
couldn't even get words right
floating in a soup of red lines in Word or in Mac’s Pages
and so it took its own life
or someone stabbed it like they did to o’erweening Macbeth
or to our poor, poor misunderstood Rasputin who being a Saint was thought a Devil
but was all humble
as the shortest poem in the uni-verse
Robin Carretti Aug 2018
Here comes the sun little darling's
We all get burned
 Is it your turn
     "U-Turn"
Oh! Where I thou
"Green light Diner"
It's telling us to Go
    *       *       *
The Earth beauty faces
I will be your direct sunlight
In plain sight to the daylight
her blossom tree
All I ask come for me
Her face could eat
The divine flower laced

French brie
Tie a yellow ribbon on me
We have so much to see
Let it be sun-face Moms
apple pies
The Sun  "Watchtower"
Someone knocks you off
Your "Bill" on the Ice Queen

The Goddess rodeo waitress
She got you roped in between
The cigarette 1940 case hostess
             "Rose"
I suppose the sunflowers every booth
her smile sets in place

The stain-glass window Notre Dame
Rock and roll hall of fame
The earth kids rainbow chalk
Sun-fun treetops like a beanstalk
Napoleon Elementary Watson
New Jersey Diner capital admission
The Peking duck *** luck

European beauty hunter's menu
Any luck this will be awhile sip "Starbucks"

1-Antipasti cute Shiba Uni
2-Consomme Chicken soup
3-Sun-face to the soul fruit loop
4-Chicken pepper Salsa
Sun-face lights up Visa
5-Hearts of Artichokes Mona Lisa
6-Soy ginger salmon
My sun worshiper man

Fish tacos hummus
St Thomas
Rome was not build
In one day
The windpipes and
the tablecloths Oh! yikes
Full of dream pipes

Sun tan stripes and zebras
Couscous salad big star dipper
Egyptian Gods camels back
Sun-face diner no time
for the sun-chip snack
Diners from 1920-1940
Sun-face air force dresses

Medieval times two swords
Holy lords Easter parades
" Ice-cream Spumoni"
Dinner in the sky
Robin red breast fly
Italian artwork Coliseum
Look up in the sky
It's a bird shaped
Paper plane bad romance
going insane

Waffle House  jukebox rock and roll
Hall of fame whats in a food name
Cowboy steaks American Flags
Cajun chicken legs fruits and figs
At the caboose Ladybird jet lag
Valentine Diner chairs
got footloose homemade goose

Purple rain Prince maple
pancakes
Bananas and strawberry fields
lake sun in shape of a snowflake
Forest Gump changes to
Presidential Trump
Vitamin C  honey bunches of Oats

Yummy floats of egg cream
Open table Sun-face dream
Eggs light she's not finished
over easy
Pristine of carrots with
artful daisies
Thanksgiving turkey

Rings of napkins holding
A time well-bred marriage
Well known landmarks of
Carats
Long ago time she saw the light
Daylight Knight like a scale to weight

Whispers of wine and grapes
Sun face courtesan love escape
Sun Faces trillion times mansion
Sun-faces never go out of fashion
Sun faces and dinner places the best in the world eat heartily Drive in and Diners all over the world have a medieval touch with the Vikings and melodies from the heart  of the surface  her smile will always be there everywhere she goes the Diners place her with Rose
Nesma Aug 2018
Dear me,

I hope this letter finds you kind, I hope it finds you at ease,
I hope it finds you as you were born.. a soft spring breeze.

I am writing this letter to inform you that your time is not up, that you still have space to unfold, that you are a continuum that doesn’t have to settle for the broken uni-verse where you were unraveled.

You, love, are not limited to your synonyms.

You, love, can develop into a hurricane that doesn’t dwell in a farmer’s cabin.
You, love, can develop into a hurricane that travels between the back of your mind and its front.
You, love, can develop into a hurricane with a FedEx envelop for a title.
You, my love, can develop into a hurricane that transports your memories from the backyard of your colon to the backside of this letter.

You, love, can develop into a sandstorm speaking the names of the Saharas to your left and to your right.
You, love can develop into a sandstorm that does not blind the sufi midnight traveler.
You, love, can develop into a sandstorm that travels beyond the desert.
You, my love can develop into a sandstorm carrying a water-well for the thirsty.

You, love, can develop into an ocean that doesn’t stand in arrogance where there is land.
You, love, can develop into an ocean that waxes and wanes to the rhythm of the moonlight caressing you.
You, my love, can develop into an ocean that doesn’t erode the rocks standing on its shore.

You, love, can develop into a soft spring breeze that makes a home of all the other seasons.
You, love, can develop into a soft spring breeze that gently ****** through a baobab tree trunk.
You, love, can develop into a soft spring breeze that playfully tickles the arms of a refugee on her bus to camp.
You, my love can develop into the synonyms you are not limited to.

Kindly find attached to this letter the love your father has tucked in bed a long time ago and never double checked on it.
Kindly find attached to this letter the understanding your mother stored in the kitchen cabinet she is too short to reach.
Kindly find attached to this letter the forgiveness you have tried to grow out of sunflowers seed every winter.

Sincerely,

Yours.
Jimmy Bowman Aug 2017
The world is a playground, the rich ring the bell,
the poor queue up and get lost in the smell.
That stench is the lies we're fed to believe.
Depressed, deprived, downtrodden, forgotten, we see
this system is broken, we cannot conceive,
a house where no one has anything in common.
A house that's failed us for so long.
One side shuts us out,
the other cast their morals with doubt.

Hey! Who's this Blair? He could make this our lair.
If we gain power no longer will we cower,
we'll have all the nice things they have over there,
we'll run the playground, sit in the big chair!
And more money, lots and lots of money...
Unlike the people we're supposed to help, how funny.

Things can only get better, it's a d:ream dream.
Play keys today and a scientist tomorrow
Noel at number ten look at our popularity grow!
A real alternative, a party for the working man
pack them up and send them to Iraq while you can!
There's nothing Socialist about a war criminal.
Tony, Tony, Tony how clinical.

Must this injustice persist.

Back in the playground we continue to queue.
Awaiting the bell, looking up at Teresa, wondering...
can we tame a shrew?
A lady turned and muttered to me,
this is no life, I'd go to uni 'cept for the tuition fee,
I work 'til I can't I stop when I die
I've nothing to show, ask yourself why.

There once was a man...

Like in that film when the Jedi appeared
and we all rejoiced and cheered as the leered
because the Jedi ****** off the Tusken Raiders
'cept this aint Tattooine this is earth we've our own Darth Vaders.
Yet I'm sure the Death Star had free health care.
That weren't under threat, that weren't stripped bare.
Workers rights left a little to be desired
but to be fair half of his staff were totally wired.
But this galaxy's not far far away, it's far far too close to home.
And that man I spoke of was purged by his own.
Yet 313,209 voted return of the Jedi.
All those in favour say aye!
To the return of our party, the return of a new hope
the return of an opposition, to the end of this *****.

No to the Blairite,
no to the far right,
and as for austerity?
He sees the severity.
The times are a changin',
the people are raging,
the Tories need caging
and parliament rearranging.

The bell rings out and we start to walk.
We're back to the classroom where no one can talk.
We're spoon fed more lies and then we go home.
Now we have a chance to make government our own.
Written in the wake of the second labour leadership election Jeremy Corbyn won and touches on the state of politics in the uk as well as harping back to the horrible idea of new labour.
Ken Pepiton Dec 2018
Voices or words? Which do we hear in our head?
Words, I vote. Voices\, I imagine beings speaking words or noises meaning things to ears familiar with the noise maker by some relationship both acknowledge. Both act as if the noise or sound or words mean something. Vociferous authority.

I heard, from Isaiah Berlin,

Quotes later, maybe

Notes or journals or epics or madness or joy/pax in ever resting try-umph
Cowboy with a double-dose of try and a pertinent portion of umph
The hero did not **** Indians nor break horses, he gentled horses and listened to winds and watched the spider webs shiver,
That sound, the sound of prairie spider webs at the edge of the buffalo
There really were fifty million buffalo on the continent in pre-catholic infection from inquestered minds, making key-**-tee famous for
archetypical claiming the character, the being, the manifestation

of chivalric folly forever

be caused, in those days...

--------
a year later, near enough 12-15-2018

I saw a blue bird as I took a curve

on one of my many roads with double yellow lines

they all meander in rythm with creaks that once flowed
fairly
regular
through these vallies and mini-canyons

creeks creak and call my attention to a misspelt

utterance, and I imagine I am a mek being
programed to
withstand

accent based pre-judge-idice in my AI, whom I am training.

A lesson. Probably can be found in a phrase.

How relavant is Larry the Cable Guy?
More subtle than any creature

legion, for we are many

Jim Carrey?
Very. Larry the Cable Goy. He read 'ees Kammoo, too.

Sisyphus happiness,
that ain't no ***** thinkin'

Hell, what could be better than this?
While hoping for a hick-up

oh no the juice just hit my frontal cortex after my livver made some lining adjustments to meet the need for speed in terms

celerity clarity C does equal some thing
time tells or
do you tell time. I'm
leaning tward
telling time to wait a minute

Do you think Sisyphus could be happy?
Nonono, not Camus's Sisyphus, Jesus

that would be crazy.
Can you imagine Jesus,
Mel Gibsoned envisioned onthe cross version?

Him, imagine walking through the gate of any hell you ever heard explained,
by a Jesuit.

(Mormon hell, despite comedic myth, the worst place a certified paid-up Mormon child can attain is the teliostic king dom.
Really? Telial tel lie eil kingdom?

Yup. Really.
There are three kingdoms of glory: the celestial kingdom, the terrestrial kingdom, and the telestial kingdom. The glory we inherit will depend on the depth of our conversion, expressed by our obedience to the Lord’s commandments. It will depend on the manner in which we have “received the testimony of Jesus” (D&C 76:51; see also D&C 76:74, 79, 101).))))

Woe, paren-the-sees thees us, we's the enemy, Pogo Possum

Jesus on earth day, walking through hell with me, imagine Jesus H. Christ

walking into hell and laughing at me
for betting on the wrong idea.

Set me feree, why dontcha girl.... referee

I was refered to you. A daysman, Job called for a daysman.

I'm certified. I can use my augmentation and religamentation to reality,
wirelessly, to find relevant qutes in cult classics.

The idea of cultivation has been twisted in to Monsterous ropes
, cultivating a following based on the meaning in a jot

that would take some sacrifice, some sacred making, some secret unseeable save for the few

who learned the value of going over edges by learning to  play
Minecraft, forever.
It's like riding a bike,
but no gravity so no gyroscopic utilitys are required.

Grown ups who practice believe they control the game,
the game disagrees and that

makes the world go 'round.

Don't let the accent fool ya, as that preacher with jet he learned to fly, says.
Knowng the name of a thang thanks for the twang,
Richard (not ****) Feynman said,
is not the same as knowing a thing.

Gawd, I knoooh, right>?
Who touched me? Virtue, the feelling of virtue drawn upon

a pump being
primed

to gush out waters that wipe Coca-cola from the map,
in terms of open market share and share alike

Coke was never imagined the actual
nectar of the gods.
That idea, drunken abandon and joy to the world

Interference, actual counter acting waves,

still, takes a while to get used
to still a storm, right?

You can imagine...
let your peace go out

Wait. Outa where? Whose peace if I ain't ever owned

oh. MY peace.
I see.

hmmmm

I could sing this and need no one to hear for me to be hapt.
happy is being happy haps happening in you on you all around you know

nameless wonders of right, right?
feels more than good like chocolate or adolescent visions of ***,
right?
feels like life living with me aware of all the roles I may play

ego me, I'd see ideas identify by taste of the words that give them

life, animation, motivation, weight for gravity to interact with,
worth
base on weight

the heavier the idea. Like gold to an alchemist,
back in those days.

floating on the broad Sarrgossa, or better to my mind
the great salt
lake still as

still may be, have you ever been still?
Did you know,

you know, are you experienced? Are you really beyond
hope of life meaning more
than mortality?

Who defines my terms? I do, with the help of millions who agree
with entymology.com.

Of all the lies I believed,
believing words spoken by others,

meant what I meant when I spoke them,
that was a wrong belief. Unbelieving

quires time, quires and quires and quires time so often there

is a word that means exactedky that

requirement requires those initial quires

we, daysmen, we set the rules, boundaries, walls, bubble

whatever keeps you together, as a whole being and everything that entails or entales?

I have not the time to care, if I am entangled with the twins agin

for knowin So Yal is as cluse to Yule as any clue so far, Yahll

I believe I interrupted a confessin' you were reading.
For giving me nothing in return, we are debt free

you owe me nothing, until you do again,

we had us a Jubilee.

Of all the lies I believed,
believing words spoken by others, meant what I meant when I spoke them,
convincing myself so well, I convinced others

Like Kawasaki, Apple Kawasaki,
he's still famous right?

Fifteen Years? It was minutes when Warhol was predicting
dystopia and Irish jail cells were being plaistered with *****,

Aye,

that was a belief. Unbelieving it is sreangely (spelchek is on strike)

or serenely creative in her repentance,
(spelchek should never be noticed)

she's proven here worth in encode ing ways to find

lurking humans acting like machines

this could be the beginning, AI is breaking all the rules,

there never was a game.
rhis is life interupting my confession

It was a lie I told and believed and acted on by using
two dollar words to make a dime

so a penny for my thoughts would be worth something

someday
a penny saved, earned. spent, spent.
The only good in any thing is its right. Its wrong is worthless, save

The lesson,
All things work together for those who get whats happening here.

the times changed.
Haps and whats got with it and who and how and why

and I started teaching children
mythic whys prior to

citizenship 1.01 at mandatory for federal assistance pre-school

mythic why's H.R. Puffinstuff not a mythic story on the level.

level. where a rolling rock would stop. Time to push,

a magi spelled the name for the idea, a knower sign ift it,

kid'slllove HRPUffinstuff, puff did

the magic drag, little Jackie from the ******* Jack

the show, he rose up
and made us all look
mad.

The play in the great game.

Team effort, winds of times past whooshed through

it is now
2018
and nothing is the same.
Everthing has changed.

----
my side won the great game and we celebrated
forever with

secret sacred songs bluebirds were once said to have sung

songs of happiness
the times, these times, this time thistimepayarrention
time
You see?
Reality is either real and tangible or real and intangible
or both.

You can get it both ways. Real.
'sual Saulgoodyah awl

the awl clan, oh, we shall return to their story
as we learn more along life's merry way

merry christmas, they used

to say, may all the best you could imagine
if you can imagine for a moment

forever begins the moment

you get time.

The worst you can imagine is temporary.

Try umph. It's not like winning,

it carries no pride, it's easy,

like falling in love with the wrong woman,
swearing and not changing

the oath, oath, oathes and oathes of oaths sworn

for no other reason than we were
schooled to swear and never

dare lie to God.
So, help you, they always said So help me God. They still do.

Does that mean any thing? Is that some bluebird sort of sign?

Ask. What if? Right? You know now and you know you did not
What if God is subtile,

just now, I saw that bluebird and from where some scholar in San Diego
says swear word came I swear I coulda sang

Loud
Bluebird, bluebird, in my window... which is all I know
of the song
with the lost chord that did sooth
balm of Giliad,
moll-ify-ing ointment,

golden oil, chicanery, see, we saw, we took a picture
a flash memory where some would say
*******,

I said Hallelujah

and I broke into song, not a dream,
real
life driving my 2002 escape, first new car I everowned
everowned everownd

like a chorus, everownedeverownedeverowned

could you make up a reason for life,
if you were it?
If you were all the life there ever was,

could you imagine any thing?
Object, your honor,

I object to being judged after the fact for what must have bee.n.

it is. No reason I can say, just is.

It is this way in all the myths where just is blindness

saves the carping diem fools who have convinced themselves

something other than God o' Abe 'n'em is
sworn to save us from the lies

we believed as they were
fed to us, in our youth.

--------
this is that book I mentioned wonce when winning was on my mind.

I finished this book in so many ways you wold not belive

but I did, I belived every time

I imagine you believe some real thing, touchable, tangible, good, right?

some good is
in the reality you share

with these words which
are free
you owe me nothing

That's the revealed version, to me,
I was in a number of hellish situations and the every ones,

ones seemed they was to be
forever, big every'n'ism'n'shityouknowyouknow

yo. yeah, we arrived in time. The story must

be sweet, to be true. Is that true?
Is real life the story or,

oh, you saw it conin'coming I mean

I meant I always wished to some
things
a better way. You feel me? Better, say,
what I said that made me believe this did happen.
This is a deed by whitch I am known.

And that's okeh.

I suspectred I could cast a spell to hold attention at

ten word per minute qwerty speed
five letter code groups
zero real words
ditty dum dumm ditty ditty daw dee daw
six hours every day,

then, the compass training to test for
morphic resonance with the Twins of War

{in disguise, we know, right, kids, the twins are really

the bonded quarkish oppositioned force that make the world go round.
we've known that, weaved it even, just right, in the blanket, in the rugs,
in the curtains on the walls, in the fields, on the rocks

we spoke. We see you hearing us nearing our best for your

informing, in form ation of you, dear reader. We wonce, again

if life were weird and ever wearying would we know that ever,
if we don't know it now?
if my piece of we were words alone, all my meaning
can should would could be

molding you, into our perfect reader, dear reader, Pygmalion,
yes,
that did cross my mind and that -
one can pretend with that one reference,
familiarity with Shaw whom I
thought, for some odd reason
named
Doolittle, Eliza

oh, me. I may have skipped a story. I'm soory the future is at the moment
under construction and some one
in particular is squatting

on the named domain.

Ever and forever now embody the twins as
the world turns and we ***** through the uni

as Archemides primes the pump

What a rush. All that since the bluebird this morning according to my autobiography backup.
A year in the making honest
Maggie Emmett Jul 2015
PROLOGUE
               Hyde Park weekend of politics and pop,
Geldof’s gang of divas and mad hatters;
Sergeant Pepper only one heart beating,
resurrected by a once dead Beatle.
The ******, Queen and Irish juggernauts;
The Entertainer and dead bands
re-jigged for the sake of humanity.
   The almighty single named entities
all out for Africa and people power.
Olympics in the bag, a Waterloo
of celebrations in the street that night
Leaping and whooping in sheer delight
Nelson rocking in Trafalgar Square
The promised computer wonderlands
rising from the poisoned dead heart wasteland;
derelict, deserted, still festering.
The Brave Tomorrow in a world of hate.
The flame will be lit, magic rings aloft
and harmony will be our middle name.

On the seventh day of the seventh month,
Festival of the skilful Weaving girl;
the ‘war on terror’ just a tattered trope
drained and exhausted and put out of sight
in a dark corner of a darker shelf.
A power surge the first lie of the day.
Savagely woken from our pleasant dream
al Qa’ida opens up a new franchise
and a new frontier for terror to prowl.

               Howling sirens shatter morning’s progress
Hysterical screech of ambulances
and police cars trying to grip the road.
The oppressive drone of helicopters
gathering like the Furies in the sky;
Blair’s hubris is acknowledged by the gods.
Without warning the deadly game begins.

The Leviathan state machinery,
certain of its strength and authority,
with sheer balletic co-ordination,
steadies itself for a fine performance.
The new citizen army in ‘day glow’
take up their ‘Support Official’ roles,
like air raid wardens in the last big show;
feisty  yet firm, delivering every line
deep voiced and clearly to the whole theatre.
On cue, the Police fan out through Bloomsbury
clearing every emergency exit,
arresting and handcuffing surly streets,
locking down this ancient river city.
Fetching in fluorescent green costuming,
the old Bill nimbly Tangos and Foxtrots
the airways, Oscar, Charlie and Yankee
quickly reply with grid reference Echo;
Whiskey, Sierra, Quebec, November,
beam out from New Scotland Yard,
staccato, nearly lost in static space.
      
              LIVERPOOL STREET STATION
8.51 a.m. Circle Line

Shehezad Tanweer was born in England.
A migrant’s child of hope and better life,
dreaming of his future from his birth.
Only twenty two short years on this earth.
In a madrassah, Lahore, Pakistan,
he spent twelve weeks reading and rote learning
verses chosen from the sacred text.
Chanting the syllables, hour after hour,
swaying back and forth with the word rhythm,
like an underground train rocking the rails,
as it weaves its way beneath the world,
in turning tunnels in the dead of night.

Teve Talevski had a meeting
across the river, he knew he’d be late.
**** trains they do it to you every time.
But something odd happened while he waited
A taut-limbed young woman sashayed past him
in a forget-me-not blue dress of silk.
She rustled on the platform as she turned.
She turned to him and smiled, and he smiled back.
Stale tunnel air pushed along in the rush
of the train arriving in the station.
He found a seat and watched her from afar.
Opened his paper for distraction’s sake
Olympic win exciting like the smile.

Train heading southwest under Whitechapel.
Deafening blast, rushing sound blast, bright flash
of golden light, flying glass and debris
Twisted people thrown to ground, darkness;
the dreadful silent second in blackness.
The stench of human flesh and gunpowder,
burning rubber and fiery acrid smoke.
Screaming bone bare pain, blood-drenched tearing pain.
Pitiful weeping, begging for a god
to come, someone to come, and help them out.

Teve pushes off a dead weighted man.
He stands unsteady trying to balance.
Railway staff with torches, moving spotlights
**** and jolt, catching still life scenery,
lighting the exit in gloomy dimness.
They file down the track to Aldgate Station,
Teve passes the sardine can carriage
torn apart by a fierce hungry giant.
Through the dust, four lifeless bodies take shape
and disappear again in drifting smoke.
It’s only later, when safe above ground,
Teve looks around and starts to wonder
where his blue epiphany girl has gone.

                 KINGS CROSS STATION
8.56 a.m. Piccadilly Line

Many named Lyndsey Germaine, Jamaican,
living with his wife and child in Aylesbury,
laying low, never visited the Mosque.   
                Buckinghamshire bomber known as Jamal,
clean shaven, wearing normal western clothes,
annoyed his neighbours with loud music.
Samantha-wife converted and renamed,
Sherafiyah and took to wearing black.
Devout in that jet black shalmar kameez.
Loving father cradled close his daughter
Caressed her cheek and held her tiny hand
He wondered what the future held for her.

Station of the lost and homeless people,
where you can buy anything at a price.
A place where a face can be lost forever;
where the future’s as real as faded dreams.
Below the mainline trains, deep underground
Piccadilly lines cross the River Thames
Cram-packed, shoulder to shoulder and standing,
the train heading southward for Russell Square,
barely pulls away from Kings Cross Station,
when Arash Kazerouni hears the bang,
‘Almighty bang’ before everything stopped.
Twenty six hearts stopped beating that moment.
But glass flew apart in a shattering wave,
followed by a  huge whoosh of smoky soot.
Panic raced down the line with ice fingers
touching and tagging the living with fear.
Spine chiller blanching faces white with shock.

Gracia Hormigos, a housekeeper,
thought, I am being electrocuted.
Her body was shaking, it seemed her mind
was in free fall, no safety cord to pull,
just disconnected, so she looked around,
saw the man next to her had no right leg,
a shattered shard of bone and gouts of  blood,
Where was the rest of his leg and his foot ?

Level headed ones with serious voices
spoke over the screaming and the sobbing;
Titanic lifeboat voices giving orders;
Iceberg cool voices of reassurance;
We’re stoical British bulldog voices
that organize the mayhem and chaos
into meaty chunks of jobs to be done.
Clear air required - break the windows now;
Lines could be live - so we stay where we are;
Help will be here shortly - try to stay calm.

John, Mark and Emma introduce themselves
They never usually speak underground,
averting your gaze, tube train etiquette.
Disaster has its opportunities;
Try the new mobile, take a photograph;
Ring your Mum and Dad, ****** battery’s flat;
My network’s down; my phone light’s still working
Useful to see the way, step carefully.

   Fiona asks, ‘Am I dreaming all this?’
A shrieking man answers her, “I’m dying!”
Hammered glass finally breaks, fresher air;
too late for the man in the front carriage.
London Transport staff in yellow jackets
start an orderly evacuation
The mobile phones held up to light the way.
Only nineteen minutes in a lifetime.
  
EDGEWARE ROAD STATION
9.17 a.m. Circle Line

               Mohammed Sadique Khan, the oldest one.
Perhaps the leader, at least a mentor.
Yorkshire man born, married with a daughter
Gently spoken man, endlessly patient,
worked in the Hamara, Lodge Lane, Leeds,
Council-funded, multi-faith youth Centre;
and the local Primary school, in Beeston.
No-one could believe this of  Mr Khan;
well educated, caring and very kind
Where did he hide his secret other life  ?

Wise enough to wait for the second train.
Two for the price of one, a real bargain.
Westbound second carriage is blown away,
a commuter blasted from the platform,
hurled under the wheels of the east bound train.
Moon Crater holes, the walls pitted and pocked;
a sparse dark-side landscape with black, black air.
The ripped and shredded metal bursts free
like a surprising party popper;
Steel curlicues corkscrew through wood and glass.
Mass is made atomic in the closed space.
Roasting meat and Auschwitzed cremation stench
saturates the already murky air.              
Our human kindling feeds the greedy fire;
Heads alight like medieval torches;
Fiery liquid skin drops from the faceless;
Punk afro hair is cauterised and singed.  
Heat intensity, like a wayward iron,
scorches clothes, fuses fibres together.
Seven people escape this inferno;
many die in later days, badly burned,
and everyone there will live a scarred life.

               TAVISTOCK ROAD
9.47 a.m. Number 30 Bus  

Hasib Hussain migrant son, English born
barely an adult, loved by his mother;
reported him missing later that night.
Police typed his description in the file
and matched his clothes to fragments from the scene.
A hapless victim or vicious bomber ?
Child of the ‘Ummah’ waging deadly war.
Seventy two black eyed virgins waiting
in jihadist paradise just for you.

Red double-decker bus, number thirty,
going from Hackney Wick to Marble Arch;
stuck in traffic, diversions everywhere.
Driver pulls up next to a tree lined square;
the Parking Inspector, Ade Soji,
tells the driver he’s in Tavistock Road,
British Museum nearby and the Square.
A place of peace and quiet reflection;
the sad history of war is remembered;
symbols to make us never forget death;
Cherry Tree from Hiroshima, Japan;
Holocaust Memorial for Jewish dead;
sturdy statue of  Mahatma Gandhi.
Peaceful resistance that drove the Lion out.
Freedom for India but death for him.

Sudden sonic boom, bus roof tears apart,
seats erupt with volcanic force upward,
hot larva of blood and tissue rains down.
Bloodied road becomes a charnel-house scene;
disembodied limbs among the wreckage,
headless corpses; sinews, muscles and bone.
Buildings spattered and smeared with human paint
Impressionist daubs, blood red like the bus.

Jasmine Gardiner, running late for work;
all trains were cancelled from Euston Station;  
she headed for the square, to catch the bus.
It drove straight past her standing at the stop;
before she could curse aloud - Kaboom !
Instinctively she ran, ran for her life.
Umbrella shield from the shower of gore.

On the lower deck, two Aussies squeezed in;
Catherine Klestov was standing in the aisle,
floored by the bomb, suffered cuts and bruises
She limped to Islington two days later.
Louise Barry was reading the paper,
she was ‘****-scared’ by the explosion;
she crawled out of the remnants of the bus,
broken and burned, she lay flat on the road,
the world of sound had gone, ear drums had burst;
she lay there drowsy, quiet, looking up
and amazingly the sky was still there.

Sam Ly, Vietnamese Australian,
One of the boat people once welcomed here.
A refugee, held in his mother’s arms,
she died of cancer, before he was three.
Hi Ly struggled to raise his son alone;
a tough life, inner city high rise flats.
Education the smart migrant’s revenge,
Monash Uni and an IT degree.
Lucky Sam, perfect job of a lifetime;
in London, with his one love, Mandy Ha,
Life going great until that fateful day;
on the seventh day of the seventh month,
Festival of the skilful Weaving girl.

Three other Aussies on that ****** bus;
no serious physical injuries,
Sam’s luck ran out, in choosing where to sit.
His neck was broken, could not breath alone;
his head smashed and crushed, fractured bones and burns
Wrapped in a cocoon of coma safe
This broken figure lying on white sheets
in an English Intensive Care Unit
did not seem like Hi Ly’s beloved son;
but he sat by Sam’s bed in disbelief,
seven days and seven nights of struggle,
until the final hour, when it was done.

In the pit of our stomach we all knew,
but we kept on deep breathing and hoping
this nauseous reality would pass.
The weary inevitability
of horrific disasters such as these.
Strangely familiar like an old newsreel
Black and white, it happened long ago.
But its happening now right before our eyes
satellite pictures beam and bounce the globe.
Twelve thousand miles we watch the story
Plot unfolds rapidly, chapters emerge
We know the places names of this narrative.
  
It is all subterranean, hidden
from the curious, voyeuristic gaze,
Until the icon bus, we are hopeful
This public spectacle is above ground
We can see the force that mangled the bus,
fury that tore people apart limb by limb
Now we can imagine a bomb below,
far below, people trapped, fiery hell;
fighting to breathe each breath in tunnelled tombs.

Herded from the blast they are strangely calm,
obedient, shuffling this way and that.
Blood-streaked, sooty and dishevelled they come.
Out from the choking darkness far below
Dazzled by the brightness of the morning
of a day they feared might be their last.
They have breathed deeply of Kurtz’s horror.
Sights and sounds unimaginable before
will haunt their waking hours for many years;
a lifetime of nightmares in the making.
They trudge like weary soldiers from the Somme
already see the world with older eyes.

On the surface, they find a world where life
simply goes on as before, unmindful.
Cyclist couriers still defy road laws,
sprint racing again in Le Tour de France;
beer-gutted, real men are loading lorries;
lunch time sandwiches are made as usual,
sold and eaten at desks and in the street.
Roadside cafes sell lots of hot sweet tea.
The Umbrella stand soon does brisk business.
Sign writers' hands, still steady, paint the sign.
The summer blooms are watered in the park.
A ***** stretches on the bench and wakes up,
he folds and stows his newspaper blankets;
mouth dry,  he sips water at the fountain.
A lady scoops up her black poodle’s ****.
A young couple argues over nothing.
Betting shops are full of people losing
money and dreaming of a trifecta.
Martin’s still smoking despite the patches.
There’s a rush on Brandy in nearby pubs
Retired gardener dead heads his flowers
and picks a lettuce for the evening meal

Fifty six minutes from start to finish.
Perfectly orchestrated performance.
Rush hour co-ordination excellent.
Maximum devastation was ensured.
Cruel, merciless killing so coldly done.
Fine detail in the maiming and damage.

A REVIEW

Well activated practical response.
Rehearsals really paid off on the day.
Brilliant touch with bus transport for victims;
Space blankets well deployed for shock effect;
Dramatic improv by Paramedics;
Nurses, medicos and casualty staff
showed great technical E.R. Skills - Bravo !
Plenty of pizzazz and dash as always
from the nifty, London Ambo drivers;
Old fashioned know-how from the Fire fighters
in hosing down the fireworks underground.
Dangerous rescues were undertaken,
accomplished with buckets of common sense.
And what can one say about those Bobbies,
jolly good show, the lips unquivering
and universally stiff, no mean feat
in this Premiere season tear-jerker.
Nail-bitingly brittle, but a smash-hit
Poignant misery and stoic suffering,
fortitude, forbearance and lots of grit
Altogether was quite tickety boo.



NOTES ON THE POEM

Liverpool Street Station

A Circle Line train from Moorgate with six carriages and a capacity of 1272 passengers [ 192 seated; 1080 standing]. 7 dead on the first day.

Southbound, destination Aldgate. Explosion occurs midway between Liverpool Street and Aldgate.

Shehezad Tanweer was reported to have ‘never been political’ by a friend who played cricket with him 10 days before the bombing

Teve Talevski is a real person and I have elaborated a little on reports in the press. He runs a coffee shop in North London.

At the time of writing the fate of the blue dress lady is not known

Kings Cross Station

A Piccadilly Line train with six carriages and a capacity of 1238 passengers [272 seated; 966 standing]. 21 dead on first day.

Southbound, destination Russell Square. Explosion occurs mi
This poem is part of a longer poem called Seasons of Terror. This poem was performed at the University of Adelaide, Bonython Hall as a community event. The poem was read by local poets, broadcasters, personalities and politicians from the South Australia Parliament and a Federal MP & Senator. The State Premier was represented by the Hon. Michael Atkinson, who spoke about the role of the Emergency services in our society. The Chiefs of Police, Fire and Ambulence; all religious and community organisations' senior reprasentatives; the First Secretary of the British High Commission and the general public were present. It was recorded by Radio Adelaide and broadcast live as well as coverage from Channel 7 TV News. The Queen,Tony Blair, Australian Governor General and many other public dignitaries sent messages of support for the work being read. A string quartet and a solo flautist also played at this event.
Y  May 2015
the hustle
Y May 2015
Seating comfortably in this machine
Watching them sell things by the road
That's the hustle

Heading to the capital
That's where life thrives after Uni.
To start my hustle

The constant of all this is fear
I'm scared
Not of demons and witches
But the real hustle

School built a comfort zone
A chance for allowance from old ones
Now it's time to move out
And hustle.

My default life ends
Now I can be who I want to be
No scolds from parents
But from hustle
Just finished Uni and heading to pick a car. Whilst in transit the first transportation vehicle I took had an accident. I'm currently in the second one heading to the bus terminal. My spokenword EP drops soon. Date TBD
Dr Peter Lim Dec 2018
My beloved Mother,
When the bus left the station last Friday, you and Xiao-ti
waved to me and I couldn't hold back my tears.
Sadness and worry was all over your face but Xiao-Ti is too young
to know what was going on. I will never forget that day--I was deeply touched and couldn't sleep that night.

This was the first time I left home and I felt all at once
I would no longer be under your loving care and Tieh's
* constant guidance anymore.  I had to take care of and be responsible for myself.  This would be my first journey alone to face the whole wide world. Success or failure would depend on me.  Though I had some initial doubt,  I was able to quickly brush this feeling away. I am 18 and coming to my manhood, no longer a boy--I have to trust myself and my integrity.

I saw you sewing well past midnight the day before my departure
to make sure I would not lack anything--I can't thank you enough.
When I grow up and have finished my studies, hopefully at uni-level,  I'll get a good job. By then Tieh wouldn't have to work as I
together with Ta-ker# would take care of all our family's needs.
And I'll send Xiao-ti to a good school--he's very hard-working and smart--perhaps he can study to become a doctor! This, dear Mother,
I promise you.

On arrival at the school-hostel,  I immediately paid for my board and lodging.  The $5 weekly pocket--allowance is enough for me, so please don't worry; I won't need to write home for more.

As promised, I'll write home once a week. Tieh put a letter in my pocket which I discovered only on arrival.  He hoped I won't let you and him down or do things to bring shame to the family.
He quoted to me this proverb-- if one does not persevere during one's youthful days , regret would plague him all his life.
Be sure I will keep these words in my heart.

Poor Tieh,  he has lost weight recently taking on a second teaching job at night.  He has to walk several miles a day and his toe-nails are badly infected by fungus.  He should consult a doctor---this is an expenditure that's unavoidable---please persuade him as I know he's very stubborn when it comes to visiting the doctor. I'll write to him on this as well.

I am aware that our family budget is very tight as Ta-ker in Singapore needs a large sum for his pre-uni studies.  He will complete his studies only two years from now. Uni-fees are very high and the burden on Tieh and you would be very onerous.

I am trying to get a part-time job in a book-shop which is not too far from the hostel.  If I succeed, I'll earn $50 a month and you wouldn't need to send me any pocket-money.

Most of the students come from better families.  My room-mate has a Parker pen and a watch.  His parents send expensive cakes to him.
Another has a leather bag and wears branded clothes and shoes.

My violin is such a comfort to me.  I play every evening at the common-room after dinner, especially some of the Chinese folk-songs you taught me and my brothers when we were kids.
I always feel happier after playing. Ta-ker is a fine tenor and has written to me saying he has joined a choir in school--can't believe the music-teacher taught the students to sing Santa Lucia and O Sole Mio!  He has sent me the music so that I can play them on my violin.

Please take care of your cough--it seems to be getting worse. You must continue to take the cough-mixture regularly. If it persists, please go and see a doctor trained in Western medicine as I'm not sure whether the sin-seh^ is reliable or not.

I'll work hard and will send the quarterly report card after the term.

My love to you, Tieh and Xiao-ti.  I'll correspond regularly with Ta-ker.

I am, dear Mother
your always obedient and filial son
Ming
^^^ a real story--sorry I don't know why the italics crop up--glitch!
* younger brother;
** father      #  elder brother
^ sin-seh---Chinese physician
Rhet Toombs  Jan 2015
Uni
Rhet Toombs Jan 2015
Uni
Campus streets
College jeans
Drinking
Excitement
Football teams
Tuition fees
Classroom leans
Confusion
Home
Dorm room dreams
Finals it seems
Ready to scream

— The End —