Speech, After Therapy


The return walk, hobbled together,
From the speech therapist’s advice,
Should encourage me to avoid The Alma,
And other throat-burn-delights.

A short climb up Framfield Road,
Past Old Ale’s 4% call;
My dignity would still remain,
If I had just the one pint pulled ?

Breathing the roadside fumes,
Will surely do for me before a pint?
Or am I pouring distractions,
from the assure of medical advice ?

I am reduced by Austerity’s ardour,
Having lent a fiver to the wife;
There is no cash-point en-route,
So I will forgo that poisonous pint.


then add lightness”*,
a code we could
all adopt,
when bringing up
our kids,
now their innocence
is lost:

swiped tablets,
by smart-fix,
these children,
this generation,

[*Colin Chapman:  Anthony Colin Bruce Chapman CBE (19 May 1928– 16 December 1982) was an influential English design engineer, inventor, and builder in the automotive industry, and founder of Lotus Cars.
Full Wikipedia here ]

Target Practice

The gun’s stock, lifted, too long,
Putting the cold trigger beyond;
Still, he adjusted, feet, hands, gait;
Finding the gun’s balanced weight.

Targets – a propped-tile in white,
Two tossed bottles, and a down pipe;
Easily in range, he shot, low-missed;
Long-sight dropped by trigger-pull twist.


February’s dull flatness, a planing-wind,
Lifted my past, and Dad, again;
Reluctant to share lone-hunt-time away,
With a cold-chattered boy, as I did today.

I lifted Dad’s shotgun, with safety flicked,
To my shoulder’s larger, better fit:
Over-under, aimed at the silent-drey;
I, too, missed my target that day.


Now? I have no need for sleep!
I kid myself: struggling to reap
Sunlight’s low-wan humour;
avoiding then, dark room suture.

You asked me to stop reading (in bed):
‘Monologue’ would be better said;
The subject, not my voice, too trying:
So to myself, in well-spoken silence.

Twelve hours lain, three of sleep,
My long standby, a low power cheat;
I wake to re-design, across my life,
You may struggle to be the same wife.

Manchester, Central Europe.

Seamus and Stefan,
Britons braced to run,
10k for me,
and Parkinson’s:

A lesson in Brexit’s
failed embrace:
Brits are found
in more than one race.

Seamus Murphy & Stefan Aleksandrowicz are #fundraising for @cureparkinsonsT.
Donate to Seamus Murphy &’s @JustGiving page 


Today, it finally hit me as I headed home, ache-lagged.
But, as a child I was called ‘Bell-fast’:
A short-lived nickname on the long walk to school,
because my stride got me there in record time:
One ‘The Guinness Book of..’ never cared about.

There was a hedge-thatched ditch,
a slow shallow run of ore-orange silt,
along part of that route to and from school,
(‘before the motorway was built’)
I would not get sucked in, I was walking too fast.

Except one day, rare-slowed, I pulled a fossil from the stream:
A heavy stone, shaped as if a pear, but halved, sliced clean,
stamped with an ancient leaf, it seemed.
Lifted from that school-route ditch,
I wondered then, ‘why me’, with that find;
as I shuffle now, I wonder ‘why me’, again.

After Talking

My disease-tease game of sorts,
I muster, as written-down thoughts,

Composed crude lines,
Re-versed at night,

Sometimes cry, truly, in delight.
Such stretched out, screen-tapped,

Half-laugh, rhymes,
Knocked off, quick-crossed,

(De)composing lines:
I can do piss-poor-poetry,

I also scan badly:
as you can see.

Brand Boris

Boris exists
as far as the south;
His voice is old-posh,
ruling real work out.

Bumbling, Chuchillian,
or chilling-distract,
his politics opportunistic,

Seeking the leadership,
of a euro-kicked dog,
the raisin d’etre
of Johnson’s fog.

He will sit ready
to lead vacuum-bores;
No longer a mayor
or bankers’ whore.

Let go of London,
Boris will bike,
the Right will whinny,
Lifting Tory-knives.

By The Indian Ganges Side

A week gone, with only texts
to connect with you:
Floating wishes
along the Indian Ganges.
I chose your shampoo,
lathered before your arrival;
shower-boxed, you returned,
in my touch:
Foam-smell, brought you back,
on my fingers, off that longed-trip,
I was no longer alone.


Fat expats recline
on Spain’s sunny coast,
oiled up on olives,
pre-paid for Dignitas:

White-carcass, Lycra-clad,
shell suits half-zipped,
these aren’t the Brits
who will force ‘Brexit’:

They never left Blighty,
EC rules on Spain’s shores,
with their exported, off-shored,
Brit-branded flaws:

Marmited, chipped,
fatty food glad,
their life sun-stroked,
now a leathery blag,

every beached gran,
toasting to a darkened hide,
soon to be repatriated,
in Brexit’s genocide.

Dolphin, Fish.. F*ck It

Facebook, overnight, post-bagged snarl:
She, swimsuit-sat, on dolphin, ‘so cruel’:

Held it from water, until it drowned;
we sucked-dry its soul, re-tweeted around.

More concerned cries, over the death of a thing:
As kids ‘cross la Manche, wait, suffocating.

Jungle slow-cleared, raked-over soil,
lost, infected youth, truth’s grey voile.

Les enfants want lives, to make it across,
but may drown in the camps, more un-figured loss.

When war-blown minors are once given hope,
they too will suck life, from freedom’s throat.

This day: not one child will be dragged from hell,
instead we will shame ‘the fish-riding girl’.

Now, No Place to Hide

Once sleep, mitigated,
lowed-sickness extremes,
under lax-lain flow,
relief in night-noosed dreams;

where no fixed stiffness,
or crumbling fatigue:
Dreams, what vagary,
my succoured-relief.

Last night, more vivid,
I filmed delusion’s play,
but, for the first time,
that being, slept away;

Ill-drugged and screams,
now robbed dreams-eased,
with slumber’s infection,
twilight, day-tripped, diseased:

In my sleep, inanimate,
free-frame falsely engaged:
Now in dreams, shuffled,
nightly caged.


Why return, look back,
At that Gulag hut?
Where my sixth form time
was mock-dragged:
On the clock’s face, hands-free, writ:
‘Time is a bourgeois concept’.

The sneer-reduced tutor,
*Name redacted*
With his flat-footed red boots:
An intellectual bully,
Who brought nothing – to us,
‘The Brains Trust’:

His sarcastic, re-parried, thrusts.
My parents asked him:
‘What’s the use of politics,
as a subject choice?’
He joked (unread): ‘Michael could be
a trade unionist, or Labour MP’:

He took them in: so for that act,
this, my decades-reply to
For his staff-room laugh, at simple folk,
Stabbing my parents, slipped cruel joke,
Brief writ now, in my late bourgeois-times,
Look-back, exhale, my knifed-rhyme.


A town in Sussex,
has marched up its arse:
It appears to’ve become
an inverted farce:

Newcomers slagged-off
(by forum-fouled tyrants),
In-breds will need ’em –
more DFL* migrants.

They buy the ‘Good Life’
with string-shopped lattes,
But soon bonfire-‘bittered,
and lives less-hearty:

Expletive bleating,
from the rookie-tossers,
Aimed at the ‘fresh’ people,
whose aim is more honest.

The torches’ll be lit bright
in other Sussex towns,
Whilst the burning hatred
could tear this one down.

[*DFL – Down From London, local term of abuse for any person moving ‘in’ from ‘outside’]


Disintegration developed
on common estates,
Funded by corporal,
spatial, distastes.

To relieve us, mere-public,
of rights of way,
To put in place sponsored,

No slight-reference
to old share of lands,
A Digger would bury
his face in his hands.

Return me the right
to wander across,
The Fields of London,
without a toss.


Binner – wheeled to departure gates –
an offensive act booking those flights –
Hug-locked – brow-racked – scorching fears –
final-flighted and drops of scare-fared tears –
One-way ticketed for one of the few
to meet the Swiss doctor who will do

Binner reduced – when failing to hang –
takes assurance when death’s bell rang –
Last supped-meal – over pressed white cloth –
as closest friends quit the disciplined voice –
swallowed wine sipped over swallowed tears –
Binner consumes all their fears

The clinic – managed – comfortable – slow –
would allow him – on the last turn a no –
laws – even there – need proof of intent –
a questioning to reckon if death is meant –
Our last lain bed is not often chosen –
its use – not usually the thing we know –

Binner to Debbie – in planned dub-voice –
clarity in this – one last act – one choice


Gone from the clinic – pushed solid-boxed –
Remnants of his self – rolled coroner-locked

What we leave behind never remains –
What we seek to leave is minimal pain –
Difficulty in death is not for the dying –
That awkward state is for those left crying –
Should we leave wakes of tear-run floods
for those we lived with by spilling our blood?

Bravery is found in the judgement of others –
a strained heart broke by his out-living mother
Autumn pulls Binner down with its fall –
he pre-supposed well cheating winter’s hard call

How to Die: Simon’s Choice: www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b070jm26 via @bbciplayer

“thank you @MikeBellWrites for a beautiful poem about the remarkable Simon Binner https://t.co/xPHhP8ybuK@Minnow_Films#simonschoice “

— Rowan Deacon (@RowanDeacon) February 13, 2016


The Value of Knowing

Here – simple logic:
‘Scarcity ramps up value’,
Bloated fact-fed silos
have indexed everything:

Codified swiped-access
to quick-loaded menus,
Thus placed in our loose grip,
now, almost, anything.

A ‘Great Crash’ will delete,
no [Search] to tell us:
Then corrupted hard drives,
fast forward to ignorance;

Provide typefaced book-truth,
for all your young children:
Command they read well,
Reduce Ctrl-c and cursors.

Pint Pot

A brief beize, over-slated, evening,
Of eight ball pool, but none sinking:
‘My eyes not in,’ a lame excuse;
So the next pint is put to use:

I need that ale-tippled judgement,
To relieve me from re-worked rent:
Traces of the paid-day’s designs,
In CAD-fagged furrows, sunk brow-lines.

Five decades worth of quick-inked pens,
Aligned to re-drafted dull drawings;
To delete my damn commissions,
I pot daily-versed-admissions.

Young Americans

Our neighbours’ kids, aged about three,
Both hit a high ball, ‘Pitch it!’ (Yankees).
We used to bowl spinners, on the same grass;
‘Home runs’, their small aim, a swipe so hard.
I prefer to time my boycotted sessions,
To take me to tea, with no umpires questioned:
‘Parkinson’s Rule’ never allows a fair draw:
Let’s aim for a long game, so I can bat on some more;
In a few good summers, ten at least,
I’ll have taught those kids to pitch on the crease.


Tommy F*cking Robinson

Tommy Robinson,
what a ‘pure’ knob:
Racism fisted-him;
a nice hard cock.

ENL suffered,
Pegida’s scream,
his last-vote’s-breath:
A shallow-beached dream.

I sat with a gay man,
And argued politic,
But his defense,
was pure cock-lick.

There is little hope,
For any one vote,
If none of us manage,
To embrace last-hopes.

My decision is minimal,
With where I live,
But my vote is the one thing,
I can ever re-give.

My grandfather a ‘conchie’,
But I would not, too;
Instead an infantryman,
Whose headstone was due.


A three-pinted stagger home,
Drunk (slightly), diseased (mainly);

Fish dinner, paper-wrapped,
Bottled comfort, polythene-stretched.

Back to the new place, still on loan.
Red wine, braced, a chink-reminder

To book our hangover, in advance.
Sodium glow on the twitten ahead,

Re-introduced trip hazards:
My evening bagged with bellied-bounty.

Breakfast of Champions

I cannot explain this
shuffled-off impasse
I fail to define it:
A sloth’s-worth grind,
down-town route,
and then, breakfasted,
but slow-up, finished off (again).

Still only fifty-one (I think),
here’s the rub:
I struggle more uphill,
Racked, wake-tired,
this foot-journeyed track;
Give me inner strength,
please, to make it back.

The Seventh Lord Lucan

Lord Lucan, legally, ‘presumed dead’,
Is what the bookies will have read:
Rip-up old long-suspended bets,
Odds-off these shores, without regret.

Bingham, Lucan’s sniffy son,
Could claim a house-sat Lordly sum:
Was it worth his killing-off,
To gain a seat with fellow toffs?

The Seventh’s bloody final-foray,
A stained rumour, via, grey Calais?
Deck-stood, stiff moustache-lipped Lord,
Ferried by friends to his last abroad?

Uckfield, his final Sussex embrace,
Then drove out to headlines of disgrace:
Was he honourable, on Newhaven’s quay,
Or was she, regretfully, ‘just a nanny’?

Can I speak?

Can I speak, now, for England?
(With the mild-righteous-bigots).
I offer my shaking hand,
Will my words make you drop it?

The Daily Mail, font-large-loudly,
Upper-cased, Albion-proudly;
My senses report old fears,
That one day no one will hear.

Middle class, Middle Europe,
We are all re-washed ashore:
We bled before, war-tore lives,
Fail with fresh jingo-writ lies.

Another 49

Forty-nine dead on the southern coast,
Washed up on the beach, at a high cost;

After paying a man, masked in lies.
As the boat shifts, so the hull divides:

A wave-cracked craft cannot hold them all;
Life’s last voice is a mother’s screamed call.

In Turkey, child labour weaves your coats,
(Syrian kids who survived the boats):

They ‘come to invade’ your whitewashed life,
Your back is cloaked by a lost child’s strife.

Westerners live, without compromise,
Easterners will die, for our whitened lies.