featured in the poetry forum July 31, 2021  :: 0 comments

I turn on the night as I
Turn out the light as the
Glow of my laptop is all
I need to fill this place with
Light. It shines a light to
Illuminate my ashtray and
The ubiquitous glass from
Which I pour these words
On this, a Friday night
Deep in the heart of the
Most dreaded sequel our
Time has known; Lockdown 2
Is here and the powers that
Be want everyone locked
Away safe in the confines
Of their mortgaged homes.

I sit here, obedient at last,
As I turn the clock back to
Those wasted years of me,
Sat with my wireless on, the
Glass pouring its inspiration
All over this page and the
Smoke that just keeps giving
And giving, pouring itself
Over my wasted mind that
Now can’t wait for half-time.

editors note:

Round 2 Remembering When a Wasted Mind Was Fine Blues. – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum April 1, 2021  :: 0 comments

All I can think of recently is
Wonder; wondering on the idea of a lay
Something that ain’t happened in a fairly long time, or
The idea of a move, maybe
Out of this town and onto a new adventure
As this place runs dry of fun, of continued inspiration.

Now whenever I venture out on the streets nothing
Surprises me anymore, so blasé have I become
About all the weird sights tourists actually come
Here to gawp at. They come, sit, eating or drinking
Pointing at all the wonderful, yet now dull to me,
Colourful characters that promenade around
This town.

The idea of a woman reached a peak just last week
As I ran home, drunk as hell, from the pub leaving
Friends drinking, as, salivating, my horniness grew too
Much! I needed a release and it soon came on down,
If you’ll pardon the pun,
With the thought of a red-head beauty running through
My mind; it’s the closest I’ve been in months.

Sitting here now I feel oddly bored but happier
Than I’ve felt in a long old time but this boredom of
Routine has suggested it’s maybe time to move on,
Find a less expensive town where I may have
The time to write, drink, smoke, and, who knows,
Maybe get that lay and work maybe just a couple of
Days a week giving me the much-needed chance
To just waste some goddamn time.

editors note:

There it is! We’re all looking for a place for a good waste of time. – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum December 17, 2020  :: 0 comments

This morning i’ll go into town, have a walk
Around. I’ll visit my sanctuary, the library so
Full of computers, and then if the sun continues
To shine maybe i’ll go smoke one down on the
Beach for today feels like one of those days.

A day to lose myself in these here words and this
Here glorious day off. I may even visit the bar
Down the road at some point this afternoon but
I won’t let it get to me and hopefully i’ll stay cool
Drink a few and then maybe come home.

If that is the case tonight might well be lost in
The depths of film; a lot to catch-up on and some
Bound to bring a little bit of joy. This life needs
A fair bit of that right now as the daily slog is
Growing harder every single day.

editors note:

Amen, Brother! – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum September 21, 2020  :: 0 comments

There’s some damn rich type
Undertaking some home improvements
In the mews house behind
The terrace on which i live
And every damn morning of late
He’s been waking earlier and
Earlier. That damn drill comes
Alive waking every person
Nearby as he begins, sometimes
As early as 6am. Now he’s
Drilling and someone else is
Hammering and yet it’s
Saturday morning and, like me,
Others will be feeling the pain
From a heroic Friday night.

What would happen, i ponder,
If i just went round there
And told him the stark bold
Truth, you are nothing but a
Self-obsessed arsehole. If
That don’t work maybe i’ll
Get that drill and go bonkers
Splatter-core him just like in
Driller Killer. I think of
His neighbours and how they
Must be reacting, how maybe
One of them is dreaming of
Doing something similar to
My scheming little plan.

The last few weeks there’s
Been a kid screaming her
Heart out, dreaming of being
Just like Adele, every evening
Driving me to the clutches
Of the pub or some horror
Flick just to drown it out, and
Now i wonder if she’s the
Daughter of that bastard the
Home improvement guy? If
So, can i recommend now a
Plan for getting rid of all of them?

editors note:

Someone dis-placing their shelter while you try to shelter in place? Homicidal plans in play? Resist, Friends! – mh clay

I’M NOT SURE HOW MUCH MORE I CAN TAKE (minimum-wage hero)

featured in the poetry forum July 11, 2020  :: 0 comments

Another week done and i’m just about
Done, done with all this nonsense of a
So-called lock-down that means people
Can come to my shop not just the one
Time but two times for all their bottles
Of wine, their bottles of gin and hell
In one case today a guy who stole a hell
Of a night self-isolating. Two
Four-packs of cold beer, a pizza and
Some dead animal meat and all paid
For with a spit right onto my, own
Supplied, protective face-mask the
Boss had told me i couldn’t wear at
The start of my shift.

‘No way,’ i said to him, ‘there is no
Way i’m going on those check-outs
Today without one,’ and with that
There was nothing he could do or say
And all i can say is thank fuck i did
Stand my ground as i really don’t
Fancy getting infected by something
That can ultimately kill this poor
Minimum-wage hero. I hear that
A lot at the moment, ‘oh,’ they say
‘you’re doing such a great job’
‘what would we do without you great guys?’
To which i think, well it’s simple
You’d all die of starvation or just
Order online or shop someplace

I so wish they would as just two
Weeks in and talk now of this going
Six months longer and all i can
Dream of is writing imaginary
Letters of resignation again as chaos
Beckons out there as soon as they
Realise their plan ain’t working and
Even more drastic measures need to
Be taken. Come that day this town
Will surely go insane as limits are
Imposed on everything from bottles
Of wine bought to minutes spent
Outside in any one day and you
Know what goes down then will
Surely only conclude in chaos
Madness and the always threatened
Street violence.

editors note:

As they push the limits, gotta find your own. Keep peace, if you can. (Read another mad missive from Bradford on his page; an alternate approach to distance.) – mh clay

SOCIAL DISTANCING (a unique take on keeping everyone away)

July 11, 2020  :: 0 comments

During this so-called time of lock-down i’ve
Devised a cunning ploy to distance myself
From the maddening crowd of everyone else
Out there who stalk the streets of the soon to
Be dead. I ain’t washed or changed my clothes
For five long days now, slept in most of it
Too, and surely now with the added aid of
Using no deodorant for all that time too no one
Will want to come near me, not even a beggar
Asking me ‘spare some change?’

editors note:

Can’t spare it if you haven’t done it. – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum March 7, 2020  :: 0 comments

Hey J, hope you’re good and doing
Well and happy, at last, to see a response
To your question about the contemporary
Poetry scene. You said you have some
Words you’d like to see out there and so
I thought I’d outline the stars of the lit
Underground as I know it. These are
Poets who don’t like regular big-time
Writing houses and almost all are true
Rebels, punks and outsiders. Perverts,
Drunks, you know my kind of people,
They are all here and if you’re ready
Well here’s some to get you started.

If you’re feeling bold, feeling confident
Thinking this poetry lark is an easy
Deal cos there are so damn few of us,
Think again when you send some words
To Modern Drunkard or Neon my friend.
Both have high standards and publish
Only a few but, as I said, if you feel
Good, then why the hell not start out
Shooting for those stars.

If those 2 fail, don’t despair, all of these
Have even published my words, so the
Chance for selection is obviously just
A little bit higher. These guys operate
Underground but if they do give you a
Go you’ll get one of their great contributor
Copies. So, look around at these greats
And take a giant step towards immortality;
Paper & Ink ran by young Martin out of
Hastings, England, is a corker and usually
Themed. Alien Buddha is a madman
Who always seems to pull together the
Right people to make every issue so so
Cool. Concrete Meat is Adrian Manning,
A legend, a hero of this here UK underground.
Into Mudhoney and Tad and a damn fine
Poet he’ll certainly read your stuff if he wants
To. HST was born outside Melbourne,
Australia but now comes out of Salt Lake
City and is headed by the degenerate pervert
Arthur Graham. I say all of this with a
Love for his words and his downright lust
For life. Razur Cuts is Derek, an old
Punk from Falkirk, and he’s done 7 issues
Now and everyone is brutal, dark and just
Really great. The Chiron Review is a
Thing of legend, published Quentin Crisp
And Charles Bukowski in the past, and if
They want to publish you, hell yeah, I got
Drunk for a week after they accepted 1 of

Then there are those who act like a loud
Speaker allowing you to get your words
Out to the world. These are all great great
People and have published some of the
Best around; Rusty Truck, Empty Mirror,
Ramingo’s Porch, Bareknuckle Poets, Rye
Whiskey Review, Dope Fiend Daily, the
Beatnik Cowboy, the mighty Record ran by
The wonderfully friendly Godfrey from
Downtown Chicago and then finally the
Home of the crazies and the first to get my
Words out there, the glorious madness of
Dallas’ Mad Swirl where I still dream of
Reading at their open mic.

editors note:

A call to rebels, punks and outsiders. Thanks, Bradford! Come read with us… – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum December 2, 2019  :: 0 comments

I’ve been in love a million
Times; sometimes, rarely, for
A while but often times it’s
Been that brief magnificent
Glimpse of hope. Take this
Last Saturday night, there
I was sat at my usual spot.
Until 2 people i know walk in.

We sit around chat for a bit
And still i remain mostly
Bored as they talk of vegan
Food and the end of the
World. After a while they
Start in on me,
Do you want to leave?
Maybe we can go to yours?
They ask but not right
Now as god sake i need
Something to feast my eyes
On and drink until that
Moment when i know i
Will have had enough.

This night though they seem
Adamant, they don’t like
It here and as soon as one of
Them says we should leave
I stand and grab my drink,
Draining it swiftly just as
She walks in. A stunning
Beauty i’d waited a whole
Damn lifetime for but soon
They were dragging at
My arm, saying
‘Come on, lets go!’

editors note:

Phantasia interruptus. Oh, but, she could have been… – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum September 20, 2019  :: 0 comments

It was Monday night and I was out on the town
Reading some poems to the enthralled masses
As the magic takes hold, the weed tonight is strong
Leaving me just drinking beer as anything else
Would surely send me insane, unable to read
And no one wanted that, not tonight.

The show grooved on down with talk of old times
From one of the greatest old voices I can ever
Remember; Princess Margaret, Spike Milligan and
Dizzy Gillespie have never all featured in one piece
Before and I riffed along with Salt Peanuts as she
Sat reading her piece my mind delirious with the jazz.

When I got up to read I saw a few old faces dotted in
The crowd and so I began reading one from the first
Book after a London introduction to a New York bar
For a Brighton crowd and finally four poems later I
Was done and returned to the bar to carry on
Drinking, thankful that people seemed to like it.

At the end of the night I got waylaid and eventually
Found myself at the home of another poet, we talked
Shop, we talked football, the return of Timmy Cahill
And about our plans all whilst drinking and chain-
Smoking this insanity. I remember at one point
Shortly after arriving I managed to roll four one
After another and we passed them back and forth
Whilst drinking our high-strength lager before I
Nearly died of laughter, five whole minutes of out
Of control wailing, laughing at something I really
Can’t remember right now confirming to all that
The edge had now finally arrived and beyond,
Well who knows? Will it mean that my mind is well,
How can one say it, fucked?

editors note:

F’d, indeed. It’s enough to be it, let alone, say it. – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum July 3, 2019  :: 0 comments

We had a camp outside our shop
A camp for the great unwashed, those made homeless
By our crazy rental prices
They’ve got problems that’s for sure
As rumours circulate about some very bad stuff being done
Because heroin and vodka is never a good mix

Then one day last week I was stood on the check-out
When in walked one of them with a fresh crisp brand new
Five pound note in his hand
He walked right up and ordered a scratch card
All his money was going to go on what generally works out
To be nothing but a waste of money

But this time he won, only his money back but to put it mildly
I was happy as I couldn’t understand why anyone would spend their last penny on such things
He then shocked me to my core as he ordered another one
Before again disappearing outside
As he scratched away a cheer went up and he walked back in

The most recent card returned almost a week’s pay for me
And at the end of my shift as I walked on out
It was clear what it had been spent on
A gaggle of homeless asleep, nodding out whilst all around chaos screamed through
Sirens wailed as they got strung-out, resting at last

editors note:

A desperate double-down derives delightful delirium. – mh clay