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Terry Collett Nov 2019
Juliet laughs
and I have to laugh too
because her laughter
is so infectious

we lie in the field
of tall grass
holding hands
gazing at the blue sky
birds flying overhead
butterflies fluttering past

Where did hear that joke?
she asks still laughing

It's an old Max Miller joke
I reply

But it's rude
she says
gazing at me

It's little more
than a seaside postcard
kind of pun
I say

How do you mean?
she says

Well it can be both
innocent and not
depending how
it is interpreted
I say

But it sounds rude
she says

Only if you read it so
I say

she looks at me intently
Are you saying
I have a ***** mind?
she says

No of course not
I say
I assume
you read it wrong
I say

she smiles
and begins
to laugh again
and so do I
both gazing at the skies
with tears in our eyes.
Terry Collett Jul 2019
Yiska said
she'd take me home
with her lunchtime.

Her mother had said
it was all right
as she would be there.

I couldn't wait
for the boring lessons
that morning in school
to end.

I won't be able
to take you to my room,
she said,

I had met her old lady
a month or so before;
she suffered
from depression,
so Yiska said.

I doubted she'd get
to show me
her room again.

She did once,
but then her mother
came back
from shopping early,
and we went downstairs
just as her old lady
entered the kitchen.

When the last lesson
of maths ended,
I made my way
to the gate
and waited for her.

I wondered what sort
of sandwiches her old lady
had prepared for lunch.

Last time
it was crab paste
with lettuce.

She'd cut them up
in small neat triangles.

I hoped it wasn't
crab paste again.

As Yiska came
towards me,
it began to rain.
Terry Collett Sep 2018
She sees the moon
in the corner
of her window
like a ghostly galleon
(as Tennyson said
she recalls)
riding slow by
dark clouds
of the night.

She wishes Benny
was there
to see the sight.

There beside her
on her bed
her pillow to share
with his head.

His hand holding hers
beneath the covers
no rampant lovers.

His lips to kiss
her cheek
and lips and hand
never to kiss
on her never-never land.

To embrace
to be close
gazing face to face.

But he is at home
a mile away
sleeping in his own bed
or watching the moon
like her
from his window

She sighs
and closes the curtains
on the ghostly galleon
as Tennyson said
and kisses
and embraces Benny
inside her head.
Terry Collett Jul 2018
John is on the playing field
with other boys,
says Sheila,
I am too shy
to talk to him now;
I watch him
from a distance
by the wire fence,
my nerves on edge
wanting him alone.

Other girls pass me by
on to the field;
they giggle and laugh
loudly on their way.

I watch him
as he sits and talks,
take in his gesturing
hands and laughter.

I saw him that time
in the playground
when it rained
and the sun shone
and he said about
a monkey's wedding.

I think of him often
in the day: from early dawn
until bed at night.

He is alone now,
the other boys
have gone,
I hesitate to walk
to where he sits;
my nerves are taut
and still I wait;
he rises
and walks away:
too late.
Terry Collett Jun 2018
Can I bring him
home for lunch?
Yiska asked.

When? I need notice;
can't have you
bringing him home
without I know.

Her mother was at
the kitchen sink.

Yiska ate her breakfast,
studying her mother's back.


She paused eating.

As long as you
don't make a habit of it.

Her mother turned
and stared at her.

Don't see why
you need to bring
the boy home for lunch;
can't he get lunch
at the school?

Yiska stared
at her mother.

Just so you
can meet him.

Her mother
raised an eyebrow.

Why do I need
to meet him?
You're too young
for boys.

Her mother turned
away again;
busied herself
at the sink.

He's only one boy,
not boys.

Yiska ate again.

The ashtray was full
of cigarette ends;
some with lipstick
on the tips.

Just this once;
no funny business.

Yiska gazed
at her mother's hair
tied in a bun
at the back.

Funny business?
What do you mean
funny business?

Her mother's
shoulders tensed.

You know
what I mean.

Yiska sipped
the luke-warm tea.


Her mother nodded
her head
and switched on
the radio.

Music oozed out.

Yiska mused on Benny
and tomorrow for lunch.

Shame her mother
would be there.

She sipped the last
of the tea
and left the kitchen
to get ready for school.

Just the once:
her mother called out;
a half whisper,
half shout.
Terry Collett Jun 2018
I liked the way you sat
on the grass; the way
your feet where hidden
beneath your dress;
the way you looked at me
as I approached.

I liked how
your small bulbs
pushed out firm
against your blouse;
how your lips moved
to bring me words;
how your eyes lit up
when I sat down
and kissed your cheek.

I liked how you took
my hand in yours; how
you placed it on your thigh;
how you sighed
when I touched you where.

I liked the youth of us
back then; liked how
tomorrow was put aside;
how no matter
how I tried I never got
to be inside.

I liked to remember
you as you were;
how time seemed
not to move before out eyes;
how I kissed you
and spoke
a hundred lies.
Terry Collett May 2018
The church is still there
at the end
of the narrow road,
the high hedgerows
and the vicarage
remain pretty much
the same,
but you are not,
for you lie
in another place
of rest than this,
although I don't
know where.

The inside is as it was,
the choir stalls
where we sang
all those years ago,
are as they were
although seeming smaller,
the ***** is silent now,
but still where it was
when the semi-deaf
organist played back then.

I look around me
as I stand;
the same smell
old churches have,
coloured light
through the windows,
the lectern
where the vicar spoke
(sometimes too long),
and the wooden pews
where the aging
congregation sat
and listened
or fell asleep.

I walk around
the church outside
and pass old tombstones
aged by time,
cross the small
wooden bridge
where we once stood
and watched the water
pass below or kissed
in moonlight after choir
before the ride home.

I stand alone now
and you elsewhere,
cancer's hold took you down
your brother said,
that time he met me
in the town,
sometime after.

I hear birdsong
and wind in trees,
but not your laughter.
Terry Collett May 2018
You're sitting
at the front
of the class.

I watch you
from the back
of the class
your dark hair
shiny smooth
your pale skin
fine features
and those eyes
that wash me.

I wish I
sat next to
you elbow
to elbow
sensing you
next to me
your slim thigh
there beneath
the school desk.

The teacher
rattles on
about maths
or such things.

I see your
fine profile
as you turn
your head round
the teacher
as he walks
at the front.

I drink you
like a drug
like nectar
of some rare
open bloom.

I see your
slim figure
obscured by
the plump girl
behind you
just enough
to move eyes
to your waist.

I sit here
dumbly numb
watching you
from the rear
wishing that
I was there
beside you
my dream dear.
Terry Collett May 2018
She stared
at the falling rain.

It seemed endless
from sky to earth.

Out in the playground
nothing stirred.

Behind her
in the assembly hall
other kids were bored
as she was
and walked in pairs
or groups or sat
on the stage
and played cards
or make believe

Benny saw her
and placed hands
over her eyes
from behind.

"Guess who?"
He said.

"Elvis Presley"
she said
turning round
and taking his hands
in hers.

"He couldn't make it
so sent me instead"
Benny said.

"Look at it"
she said
"hasn't stopped
all morning."

He stood beside her
looking out.

"No place to go
to be alone"
he said.

"I know a room
we could hide in"
she said.

He looked at her.
"Not the gym
it's crowded"
he said.

She took his hand
and semi-dragged him
across the hall
and out
into the busy corridor.

He followed her
as she made her way
through the crowds of kids.

She turned right
and down stairs
that led to store rooms
and an unused classroom.

He followed her in
and she closed the door.

"Just right"
she said.

He looked around
the empty classroom.

There were old desks
and chairs
and a cupboard
over in a corner.

"How did you find
this place?"
He said.

"By Chance"
she said
"saw old Piper
come in here once
a few months back."

The room was dim
but warm.

She pulled him to her
and they kissed.

She put her arms
about him
and placed a hand
at the back of his head
and held him close

He sensed her body
against his.

His right hand
touched her thigh
and his left touched
the outline of her bra.

The bell sounded
about them
but sounding not near
but far away
thus ending
the kissing
for the day.
Terry Collett May 2018
On the way
to the science room
for biology

with Rolland by my side
passing other pupils
going the opposite way

I saw you
by the tuck shop doorway
and you beckoned me over

and so told Rolland
to go on.
It was a small nook

and semi-dark.
If we're seen
we're for it

I said.
You drew me
into the nook

and quickly kissed
and held me close.
I sensed your body

firm against mine
with your soft fruits
and curves and bits.

Needed that
you said
and after kissing

once again
we parted you
to double maths

and me to biology
and moths and butterflies
and their evolution

and that *****
but I would
rather learn

biology and such
with you at night.
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