Chet drops by the jazz café Alto

surprise guest at the Alto café Amsterdam 88 early May a halo of blue gingham tables loaded with Amstel and Grolsch pincers the stage glasses chink, there’s chattering, ashtrays overflow with roaches dissolving smoke rings melt into fug my shirt is peppered with pin-prick scorches  a latecomer asks, ‘is this seat taken?’   I shrug, she sits she’s okay to look

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Name

Name ‘No! Please don’t put my name on the list… What? Okay, if you insist’. Smiles the humble face, ‘you know this, I guess if it’s for everyone’s benefit, so be it, but I never ever want the credit’. ‘No! I never suggested this I want to be out of this mess so many layoffs? It’s your baby, I don’t

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A Year in North Hackney

  Brauer and Spitzer was the shop above which our hours were filled and our patience was drained by a shower that trickled like a chinchilla’s penis, towers of china chores, a backfiring toilet and cowering mice behind the toaster. Outside lay a hive whose bees all wore black. With fuzzy boxes on their heads they buzzed between baker and

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for Juliette

for Juliette the love I felt for you waned as my lust waned looking at you standing naked at the sunlight window throwing baguette crumbs to feed the pigeons (sometimes that squirrel) I want to tell you it’s all gone stale but you are singing a soft song from your home in the Auvergne walking to the bed coquettish like

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Tips for Getting Published

  Feed the masses on their leather sofas juicy murders, shrewd detectives, blood, feisty women sleeping with their chauffeurs, spotty kids with magic wands, a flood of swoon-inducing swanking Casanovas, dialogue packed with “guys” and “dude” and “bud”. Unless you want to die a penniless nobody, whatever you do, for Christ’s sake, don’t write poetry.   But if you can’t

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Caught in camera

A black bird and a red bird were pecking on the same fruit hanging on the topmost branch of a tree. Seeing this poets wrote poetry on scarcity, fiction writers paged power play, playwrights added colours of discrimination, a painter’s doodle sensed courtship beyond imagination, reporters staged a cold war, an ornithologist was simply amazed at their ability to share,

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