South West-ish Tour

I’m writing this en route from Bournemouth to London, from there I’m back to Diss to drive back to Bungay. I’ve been on the road since Wednesday lunchtime, it’s now Sunday morning. I’ve done three tour gigs and one schools performance. I’ve eaten like a pig (lots of late night cheese) and even managed to watch Django UnChained (yes yes yes!).

A good life, eh? It’s not bad. I miss my wife and my sons though. A day on trains mooching is a much needed relief but more than that and you start to feel tired and a bit lost. The thing that I love is being on stage. Doing a well received 90 minute show is the dog’s bollocks. I love it. All the shows have been good. Frome on Friday was perhaps my favourite. The audience was smaller than I hoped (about 40) but they were brilliant and we had a real laugh together.

Thursday night at The Square & Compass with Elvis McGonagall and Martin Figura was special too. Two of my best pals on the bill is always going to be special. I did a real pop set – all short, funny ones, with just my Weekday Dad poem slowing it down a bit. It’s good to know I can do 45 mins of all poppy stuff now, good to have that option. The Square is also a brilliant pub. Up on a windy hill overlooking the sea (although I have always been up there at night so I’ve never seen the view). It serves good flat, strong scrumpy and perry. It was the scene of one my favourite gigs ever back in 2010. Not that Thursday was any worse. In fact, it was just a buzzy and fun, I think I just have better gigs these days, which is nice to know.

Last night in Poole was harder work because we had a very small audience (about 20 people). It’s frustrating and usually happens a couple of times on tour. But in some times it is good to be reminded how precarious the life of a touring poet can be. And I can also come away from that gig proud of my performance. It’s not easy sustaining laughs for 90 mins with a small group in a cold room (most of them had to keep their coats on).

So all in all not a bad few days work. I even managed a new poem. I am well aware this is not my greatest work, a bit of topical fun about disgraced Lib Dem Lord Rennard. Thanks to the brash style of The Mirror for the title/hook.

Lord Grope

Lock up your activists, gag the press
here comes his Royal Fondleness
he’s out to squeeze his pound of flesh
Who’s that then? No, let me guess …
Yes! Lord Grope!

Twenty stone and on a mission
man boobs jiggle, forehead glistens
girls say no, he don’t listen
“I want to form a coalition.”
Sexual frisson Lord Grope!

The lazy peer with busy hands
the ladies just don’t understand
the flames of scandal neatly fanned
by a one track mind and swollen gland
Randy Lord Grope!

Watch him sweat and wheeze and beg
his breath of blend of beer and egg
his sausage fingers on your leg
“It’s alright love, I know Nick Clegg”
it’s the dregs, Lord Grope

And even as their lot unravel
his lib dem pals won’t bang the gavel
“harmless really, only dabbled
not as if he’s jimmy saville”
No, he’s Lord Grope!

He’s Benny Hill in a gold rosette
a master of the heavy pet
just another Clegg regret
is this poem poem finished yet?
yep, Lord Grope!

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