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Some People

Some people
Sometimes,
Just sometimes,
They just get to you.
Some people,
They just have
A bad attitude,
A wrong way of being,
A way that winds you up
And some of them know it.
Why are they like that?
What does someone get
From making someone else
Unhappy angry mad?
They just suck the life out of you,
These people,
Leave you feeling like it’s you,
It’s something you’ve done.
But it isn’t.
You’re not like that.
You’re better than that.
You’re better than them.

To See Yourself

It is really difficult to see yourself,

To really see yourself. All the good stuff,

All the bad bits,

All the degrees between.

To see yourself

As others see you: Friends and family,

Enemies, strangers,

Other eyes.

You have to put yourself

In their place,

See what you do

Through their eyes.

This hurts.

You see the things

That you don’t want to see.

You hear yourself,

You understand how you appear

To others.

You become self-aware.

You see wrinkles.

You see all the warts.

You hear arrogance,

Hear it speak with your voice.

Selfishness and sarcasm

Spills from your own lips.

You see yourself

Pass by on the other side.

The occasional kindness,

Politeness, seems lightweight

And trite in comparison

To the burden of your faults.

Perhaps these flaws

Are magnified by proximity,

But they are visible,

They can be seen

If you look for them.

And we do look for them,

Every time we see a good thing done

By another, other self.

Introspection,

The inspection of the self,

May give us greater understanding,

But no greater liking,

For the subject under scrutiny.

On reflection, the mirror never lies.

And so I choose

My main defence.

I simply close my eyes.

The Gloriously Mundane

Not everything in life
Has urgency.
It isn’t all about
Now now now.
Not everything is important.
The daily crisis
Just isn’t.
There is no big red button
Tempting us
Scaring us.
Most of us
Don’t have that burden
Very few of us
Would want it.
No.
There’s just us
And where we are right now
Right here.
A cup of tea
A spit of milk
Last, not first,
Not too hot,
Not too cold,
In a china cup,
One that dings.
That matters.
A small white flower
Blooming bright
A scent so sweet
You just have to find out
The name of the plant.
Jasminum officinale.
That matters.
Sunshine
In a clear blue sky
Warming, easing
Eyes closing
Relaxing.
That matters too.
Loving
Knowing that you are loved.
That matters.
Perhaps that matters the most.
I’m not sure.
But the little things
The gloriously mundane
They also matter
They matter a lot.
Clothes that fit
Conversation with friends
The taste of peaches
The art of Egon Schiele
Solitude
The writing of Ernest Hemingway
Kissing
Children laughing.
In these small things
Lies the greatest of life’s
Little joys.

In My Head

In my head
Is where I live
An open minded place
Where every little
Thought of mine
Just tends to fascinate.
How big is now?
What’s after death?
And can I bake a cake?
It makes me laugh
To see the way
That others need another
I need myself
That’s all I need
I need no other mother
We’re all we have
The single I
To start, and at the end
There’s none before
And after, less
So get you while you can
Stay in your head
Investigate it
And in there you will find
The truth of life
Your holy place
Your open golden mind
I stay in there
Perhaps too much
I’m often called aloof
But I don’t care
I really don’t
And here’s the simple truth
I’m safe in there
No one to hurt
And no one there hurts me
Apart from me
There’s always that
And that will always be.

I am Unpainted, Picture Me

I am unpainted, picture me
And colour me with funny
Limn me with a happy laugh
Outline me in music
Etch for me my steely heart
Draw me in and sketch me out
Wash me and my cares away
Brush me in essential oils
Make me bright, not grey
Set me in a crimson lake
Show my gesso bones
Pen me in a mortal frame
Let them see my horns
I am a work in progress
And so I’m sure are you
Our lives are art unfinished yet
Our portraits often blue
Our hearts are all a bloody red
Our still life many hued
I see me so overdrawn
By my ham-fisted hand
Coloured beige, a feeble fawn
Just an image of a man

I Am A Man

In many ways
I am a man
Made up by many others:
By father, brother,
Sister, mother,
Grandparents and cousins.
I am a man,
Like any man,
Who’s formed by other people.
By friends and foes,
And those that know
My many lovely evils.
I made it work,
I played at work,
And then I made it out.
And now I’m free
To just be me.
That’s what it’s all about.
A man, they say,
Is born one way,
And some may say that’s true.
But I was born
To be myself
And not at all like you.
For not all men
Are made the same,
And I am quite unique.
I know it’s true.
I’m telling you.
There’s only one of me.
I am a man,
That’s all I am,
That’s all I want to be.
A man alone,
All on his own,
Unshackled now, and free.
And so I draw,
And paint and write,
And think on what I want.
And what I want
Is what I am.
I am a man, I am.