Documentary Making #4 (and a poem)

It has been exactly that. I’m in Manchester at the moment, staying with my in-laws. I went into town to get the last of my Christmas shopping. I didn’t do a very good job. I mean, I got everything, but I don’t feel like any of my choices were very inspired. I’ve been fairly uninspired all day. I haven’t managed to get the next poem written, which I feel guilty about because Zara was out filming today, so I know she’ll have had a mental time of it.

I did, however, get a poem written for the next Aisle16 show. We’re doing a 50 minute show at The Athens Book Fair for the British Council. It’s got to be family friendly so we’re having to write all new stuff. This poem is a phoenix from the ashes of the poem I attempted for Peggy and James (the couple in their 90s). There may be a line or two that ended up in the finished draft, but most of this wasn’t used so I recycled it and added a few more verses. I’m fairly pleased with it. What do you think?

Our Love

Some loves are ballet shoes
they walk on tip-toes, sit in rows
sow their names onto their clothes
paint their entire houses beige
some loves are scared to loose
some loves will always act their age

some loves sit at the back
and nod their heads or tap their feet
live their whole lives on the same street
arrange their books in alphabetical order
some loves get lazy and fat
some loves leave lists for each other

Some loves are country walks
games of cricket on village greens
Monday lunchtimes in school canteens
Saturday morning crossword puzzles
some loves cross off the noughts
some loves are no trouble

some loves obey the law
wear Gortex and use direct debit
are happy to sit for hours in traffic
perch on stools at the end of the bar
and nervously watch the door
some loves never go too far


not ours, our love is loud
like the last night of the proms
motorways and atomic bombs
a tuba, a teenage drummer
our love is straight backed and proud
our love is a beach in summer

our love is electric guitars
it’s a fat man getting fit
a bull in a orchestra pit
a giant’s sneeze, tourette’s disease
our love is formula one cars
and it makes cats fall out of trees

our love inspires rock stars
to smash up their dressing rooms
it’s in tequila and exhaust fumes
it ricochets off satellites
it’s in the capsule we sent to Mars
and the radios on buildings sites

our love is screamed in car parks
by drunken lads out on the town
squeezed from novelty flowers by clowns
our love is scrawled under desks
it’s kissed for luck by card sharks
our love always resists arrest

our love is a belly laugh
in a church, new years in New York
a class that refuses to be taught
it tells inappropriate jokes on dates
it pulls faces for photographs
and it loves to exaggerate.

Tomorrow I will get the teenagers’ poem finished. And I’m gonna make some vanilla fudge too.

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