the czars paid full price .. . 

the czars

. ..

Catapults and carnage
the winter solstice it is done
Michaelangelo performing
at the Duomo the dying swan

Auntie Edie hangs her washing
on her taught, rope-twine line
hides her knickers under jumpers
her chalk-line spies are out in force

peeping through net curtains
while making gossip notes
old men scratch their scrotums
young men spoil their votes

see yellow primroses on the hill
cousin Judy on her pony approaching
her semblance of disorder
has always been the same

they wrapped your vanilla ice-cream
with newsprint in a cardboard sleeve
grandma does not say much at all
rinses curly cabbage through a sieve

copper-headed, she is a blithe snake
collecting dripping under muslin
imagining it a classy dressing
especially spread on doorsteps

not so good for hearts or livers
those tasty wartime snacks
fat to stay alive and waiting
for the revolution to arrive

and when it came in earnest
women threw away good bras
men we all wore rubber johnnies
they often split, which was shit!

one million little tadpoles loose
in Blackburn, Lancashire
we slept on Sandown benches
there where we really learned a lot

waiting for the band to begin
we waited so long to hear them sing
when cousin Marvin learned their song
he’ll sing along, those words of love

days of freedom became a curse
rodents swimming to the shore
get on board acceptable vessels
capitalism wins, socialism dying bleeds

Arthur Scargill, Lech Welesa, Michael Foot
Tony Benn, JFK, all men who tried
to understand Marx as a philosopher
not a religion, not a schoolmaster

negative appraisal sets you back
to the struggle up the union ladder
if you don’t have an uncle who’s a printer
nor a working class hero, an inverted snob

I remember the days when Lennon was shot
and JFK, I cried that day for the first time
and the last time over politics
never again its never mind the bollocks

we grew up loving marijuana
claimed vehemently it didn’t harm ya’
but yes it did it opens you to coercion
then to addiction, it is a horse that’s trojan

we travelled once around the moon
and once the sun just like Yuri Gagarin
suddenly his name is not worth squat
he was born in the same country as the Russian

sanction Abramovich, sanction Solzhenitsyn
Nuryev, Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev and Yeltsin
Anton Chekov, Michael Bloomberg sanction
the history of Russia for the sake of one mad Putin

this is the social drama we join at birth
the eloquence of reason for living on this earth
find your place, stake your claim on this Galapagos
of peoples, extinct and struggling in the chaos




‘I do not demand recognition, rather I assume it, as a basic human right, like the right to pee in a bucket’           ~  edenbray

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Running Towards Sadness


In the dark wood there are no sounds
above, the light of the headland shines

lay down moribund, lay down little starling
your white-light stars will never leave you

wear your iridescent cloke to ward off evil
live to belong with no catch nor malevolence

leaf litter soft as hot coals, as carpet, as grass
in utterance of your contradiction with the night

running toward sadness whatever lies beneath
magnetised by failure, drawn on by thy compass

executing, sorting, removing, merging into light
suffocation, warnings deny claustrophobic solution

suddenly anthemic sounds warm forgotten ears
rolling back shutters O’ consequence of bitter fear

eyes shut tight see red light white noise dancing
a golden dear in twilight her nose black, shining

she leads the way of delicacy, touch and feeling
she, who stirs the loins at human-kinds desertion

running toward sadness whoever runs beside
mother, sister, lover of us all in the deadwood dying


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Insincere Intentions .. 

my addictions

I wrestle with my anxiety
who calls her Joanie
everyday there is someone new
something new
knocking at my door
demanding my attention
who tries to bring me to the floor
the cold, hard floor
we who wrestle on the floor
where I find all my best solutions
I miss my bottle, my jug of juice
my desire to get off my head
on alcohol
and miss the strife
do you miss me
as much as I miss you
I’m damaged, I have a fault
it runs right through me
like a seam of granite rock
a marbled steak
a root the size of Gibraltar
I’m Johnny Depp
she’s Amber Heard
cutest anxieties in the world
my desire is to be rid of you
till you are a bottle floating on the sea
a message written within
inscribed in lead
who calls her graffiti
who calls her graffite
a worthy message
that will maybe sink
or will it float
the rushing, salty sea rising
maybe dash my hopes
of rising to the top



In the case of Johny Depp and Amber Heard there is a bottle and the case rests alone on the spin of that bottle – if it is true then Depp is indeed a monster and if it is a lie then Heard is worse than a curse ~ edenbray29.05.2022

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Schoolday windows .. .


boots 6


Jam on it…

Old boots drawn on a blackboard wall
  no creativity in the assembly hall
kids line up for their detentions
  who came late to the roundabout

when we were students in the forum
  ruled by slipper, cane and ghosts
we joked about it as we stood in line
  forget your p.e. kit – pay the fine

rule of law says don’t talk back
  boys turned men at initiation ceremony
press-ganged onto the ‘operating table’
  wartime values becoming unstable

like dynamite, the kids were not alright
  maleness corked, bottled, so uptight
fights after school not tolerated
  boys at back of class masturbated
next door the girls wore black tights
  while schoolboys debated their teats
learning the best adolescent behaviour
  ’till secondary schools eventually merger
sadists in tweed jackets, brillcream-cuts
  leather elbows n’cuffs no idea about children
junior teachers who constantly bungled
  stepping through the blackboard jungle

sash windows, grubby nine-inch panes
  tell tales of misery by classroom stains
a trashed chemistry lab, corridor fights
  keep you looking over your shoulder

the awesomeness of art still calling
  Mr Morgan not caning our asses
was now in the art-room drawing
  the most beautiful boots I ever saw

then came the old school reunion
  Dianne Seizer whose tits were huge
had died while swimming we discovered
  Richard and Susie now bedroom lovers


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by Thom Yorke

Goddamn machinery
Why don’t you speak to me?
One day I am gonna take an axe to it
The pitter patter
What does it matter?
Where’s that love
You’d promised me?
I’m pierced by long nails
By coloured windmills
The soft sustain

I thought we had a deal
I thought we had a deal
I thought we had a deal
I thought we had a deal
I thought we had a deal
I thought we had a deal

You bastards speak to me
Have you no pity?
Give me a goddamn good reason
Not to jack it all in
You would’ve sold you
I’m daring you to turn yourself off
I thought we had a deal

(Could’ve loved me)
(I’ve had my fill)
(I’ve had my fill of hurt)
(Had had my fill of hurt)





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This dream was the first .. .



This dream was the first
  it woke me alarmed and
covered in damp persuasion
  of believing myself 
a gangster on the run
  born to play Machieveli

I, who held my own,
  alone in downstate Illinois
put things out with guys
  from town who boasted
their family had worked
  the numbers for Capone

I rolled-over on my side
  to dream a dream so real
I might have borrowed long
  archived in black and white
a spool of Pathé-news
  a Time-Life story centrefold.

A technicolour epic-plot
  enter centre-stage right
a vision of a golden age
  when streets of Hollywood
became the focal point
  Cecile B.DeMille was sage

My dreams all now coloured
  who says they never are
from Maine, Chicago and Nebraska
  drawn together two by two
I rob a bank, I wander free
  movie-screenplays all i see

I became a full-time dreamer
  who has a skill of sorts
imagined myself a schemer
  I can cope with all retorts
yet now the sun is dipping fast
  this dream is nearly over

John Wayne leans against
  a door that’s open, Cagney
singing, dances off the set
  Gregory and Jean may settle
down in happy valley, Burl’s
  performance we forget
I wake to find it was a dream
  things bad as they could be
maniacal monsters, sharks
  still roam the earth and sea
Godzilla’s wearing afterbirth
  sick tyrants still walk free


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Your boughs of plenty .. .

Oak tree b&w

Your boughs of plenty
  laden down
your arms of joy
  greedy green of goblin’s gold

your eyes hidden
    blinkered, sightless
        neath your eye-line shadow
            golden eyes with lashes
                cold scars on your knotty spine

burrs on your umber skin
  you are incapable of sin
      your branches cannot lie
          ’til that morbid day you laydown
              I long since departed

under your nature’s robes
  visits as a minor bird 
your fine clothes green n’ gold
  your off-the-shoulder gown

your locks untrained, lascivious
  your shape bent tantalising
the way you stand just out of reach
  oft painter’s-brush horizon

Marrietta, corn is waving in our field
  scenery afore tomorrow’s growing
      your flowing dress of aqua – maize
        supports the motion of our ways
            trees always do outlive our days


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ingrates and catholics .. .

The world is full of them
the people who don’t care
and people who care too much
you meet both all over
both can drive you to despair
it’s why I started drinking
and then when I gave it up
I met them everywhere
ingrates and catholics
some are never thankful
or appreciate what you do
they take it all for granted
take enough for two
selfish ornery bastards
wind you up
and round their finger
the one that’s sticking up
others always feel guilty
they’ve never done enough
or do much of anything
so filled with condemnation
they circle round the earth
never say anything much
scared of what they do
cannot get excited
their purpose is subdued
always feel unworthy and kind of dirty
till they’ve bowed to mother Mary
told her that what they do
they are so goddam sinful
tell it to the fairies
your life is far too short
once your through with your confession
it does not need retelling
just get on with your life
look out for your brother
always love your mother
respect a faithful wife
my maxim for today
whistle while you pray



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All I see is hatred .. .




(echoes of Masters of War)

I look at your stony face
and all I see is your hatred
the hatred you have unleashed
upon this sad, worried world
not curbed by the reason
some of your people show
which you decry as treason
as you drop another bomb
destroy another hospital
you are cold as morbid death
there’s metal in your eyes
they never must have cried
the hatred you have unleashed
will grow across our planet
your countrymen, your women
will forever more be hated
that same hatred unabated which
poisons cultures everywhere
more cruelty will arise as you
have justified these actions
steel. you give to all tyrants
near and far by your stance
your mind held as in a trance
you have allowed to blind you
  and I hope that you die
  and your death will come soon
  I would follow your casket
  on a pale afternoon
  watch while you are lowered
  down to your deathbed
  and stand over your grave
  until I am sure that you are dead
  there is one thing that I know
  I am just older than you and
  even Jesus himself would not
  forgive what you do




author’s notes

I read things that aren’t nice .. . it is my contention that Putin has stirred a vipers nest of hatred that will only breed yet more hatred throughout the world – weak-minded and vengeful people will enjoy the atrocities being conducted and in turn it will encourage only the savage side of human nature – modern warfare is an evil we can well do without!

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Black and White and Glossy .. .



.  .  .

Black and white
your photograph so sensual
I love the grainy feel
statuesque I want to touch
yet it bids me just imagine
being together as once we were
when we touched and
loved each other everywhere
I watched you lay
beside me naked on the heath
you clothed your eyes
your fantasy disguise
that made me want you more



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