Friday, 30 September 2016

poem 2016 / 104

Chasing Angels from my Daughter

they mean well, I suppose
or at least in a fashion
these creatures of light;
these creatures of passion
(passion in the archaic meaning
being the suffering of a martyr)
and now also it seems
the pain of my daughter
I wonder what it could be –
what of the girl that they see
what they know that I don't
but reveal it they won't.
Her tortured expression,
heading up from depression
the trembling hands and the tear-ridden cheeks
and the outbreak of hives;
the disconfident streaks
what in her future
could be worse than these years?
Is the terror of age
an investment of fears?
Oil and blood,
a pentangle of wax
a crudly-shaped figure of cardboard and tacks
I'll keep them away if the last thing I see
is taking a knife and delivering me.

short forms 30th September 2016

too late
to change her mind
a promise has been made
can she duck out of having sex?

© Rachel Green 2016

hairy caterpillar
displays its orange fur
sycamore moth

© Rachel Green 2016

turning season
a definite twist in the air
falling chestnuts

© Rachel Green 2016

self defence lesson
attacked with a chair
block and hip-throw

the postman walks across the grass
after being asked not too
argues the toss

Don't pick a fight with an instructor

© Rachel Green 2016

allergies ease off. Insect bites heal.

© Rachel Green 2016

Thursday, 29 September 2016

short forms 29th September 2016

He wants
the Star Wars theme
for his great reveal
She plays The Imperial March

© Rachel Green 2016

chestnut shine
inside a spiky shell
metaphor for life

© Rachel Green 2016

doc's appointment
for the teenager
I sit on the phone
The hard part I leave to her:
waking the behemoth

© Rachel Green 2016

spiral steps
inside Gaudi's masterpiece
under-rail lighting

breathtaking views
of Barcelona's streets
from the Apostles' towers


© Rachel Green 2016

full wall mirror. She's so fat.

© Rachel Green 2016

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

short forms 28th September 2016

dad's house
architect's joy
but remains unfinished
his death effectively ended
the work

© Rachel Green 2016

burnt Gruyere
backlit by sunshine
no trace of blue

© Rachel Green 2016

window cleaner
always arrives when I have
money shortages
I ask him to do the front only
for sixty percent of the fee

© Rachel Green 2016

body weals
may be allergies
or parasites

the concept of bedbugs
raised but disproved by Helen
dog fleas, maybe?

or a latex allergy?

© Rachel Green 2016

fresh sheets. The itching eases off.

© Rachel Green 2016

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

short forms 27th September 2016

she avoids them
because of her clothing.
Red tights are so not uniform

© Rachel Green 2016

high wind
horizontal rain
fallen sycamore

© Rachel Green 2016

the rain
in Spain
falls mainly on my washing
bit of a pisser
I needed those pants

© Rachel Green 2016

no reply
from the exhibition lady
no worries

I'll change the order of painting
as soon as I can afford paint
and canvas

will still paint Keeler, though

© Rachel Green 2016

goodreads. So many books to rate.

© Rachel Green 2016

Monday, 26 September 2016

short forms 26th September 2016

her mom
is transgender
she tries to remember
to alter pronouns in her head.
*kicks self*

© Rachel Green 2016

morning rain
nasturtium leaves yellowing
wet dog

© Rachel Green 2016

post holiday blues
arrive with the rain
everyone back to work
an end to smiling

© Rachel Green 2016

all across my body
large welts

across my arms, legs
insect bites


© Rachel Green 2016

She scratches. The agony of allergies.

© Rachel Green 2016

Sunday, 25 September 2016

short forms 25th September 2016

are rarely seen
except when not wanted
criticising everything
she does

© Rachel Green 2016

falling leaves
on the car bonnet
a magpie

© Rachel Green 2016

a dust-filled house
inches of plaster
Lu's allergies playing up
suffering mortality

© Rachel Green 2016

rebuilt computer
running like a dog
needs drivers

so new
the graphics card
won't take my old monitor

runs like a one-legged dog

© Rachel Green 2016

She scratches. Allergies or insect bites?

© Rachel Green 2016

Saturday, 24 September 2016

short forms 24th September 2016

in the darkness
a lad two years older
who smells of fish and chips, cider
and Lynx

© Rachel Green 2016

a hundred apples
on the damp grass
a thousand slugs

© Rachel Green 2016

art projects
starting to pile up
Christine Keeler and
Stephanie Wright

© Rachel Green 2016

seems an age ago
warm sun

An English autumn
encourages jumpers
and wistful longing

flushing paper

© Rachel Green 2016

rebuilt computer. She misses her apps

© Rachel Green 2016

Friday, 23 September 2016

short forms 23rd September 2016

no need
for old regrets
wishing away the past
can bring completely new regrets

© Rachel Green 2016

nasturtium flowers
overtake the garden
weeping willow

© Rachel Green 2016

a week away
the garden overgrown
a fairy tale
All I need is a prince
to cut the hedges

© Rachel Green 2016

still alive
though we've been gone a week
happy to see us
follows us around the house
asking for fuss

other dogs, jealous

© Rachel Green 2016

short flight. a dehydration headache, pounding

© Rachel Green 2016

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

short forms 14th September 2016

computer games
her online opponent
turns out to be the bookshop bloke
(he won)

© Rachel Green 2016

lavender flowers
blowing on a light breeze
chip wrappers

© Rachel Green 2016

shaved arms
I'm a hairy woman
I have to face shaving legs
my beautiful fur!

© Rachel Green 2016

suitcase plans
a week in Barcelona
from tomorrow

I compile a list
from the internet
everyone says 'comfy shoes'

sewage warning

© Rachel Green 2016

Going on holiday tomorrow. minor panic.

© Rachel Green 2016

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

short forms 13th September 2016

dead cat
haunts her passage
trips her down the staircase
who put the umbrella there?
point up?

© Rachel Green 2016

on the bathroom wall
lazy fly

© Rachel Green 2016

jobs to do
postage, clothing for holiday
all on no money
this is why I generally avoid town
because it makes me depressed.

© Rachel Green 2016

the acrid smell
of morning urine
night sweats

after a gym trip
concentrated urea

I should pee in the compost

© Rachel Green 2016

trip of a lifetime. Rising anxiety.

© Rachel Green 2016

Monday, 12 September 2016

short forms 12th September 2016

her shrink
tries to tell her
her brother's a figment
of vivid imagination.
She laughs.

© Rachel Green 2016

autumnal chill
celebrate the last of the sun
garden borders

© Rachel Green 2016

no desire
to have the cat
sit on my keyboard.
Her attempts at poetry
make no sense in English.

© Rachel Green 2016

new computer
requires software
"advanced diary"

despite buying it once
the new version
does not accept my details

copy across old version

© Rachel Green 2016

stressful day. Her panic over holidays.

© Rachel Green 2016

Sunday, 11 September 2016

short forms 11th September 2016

thinks she's loony
to defy the head teacher
hacking the school database means

© Rachel Green 2016

red apples
falling from the tree
drunken wasps

© Rachel Green 2016

my American partner
sheds a tear
The world on the verge
of a new cold war

© Rachel Green 2016

pleasant afternoon
on our respective computers
background music

I postulate
my enjoyment of sixties songs
is based on nostalgia

or is it just good?

© Rachel Green 2016

day 11. Her press-ups improve.

© Rachel Green 2016

Saturday, 10 September 2016

short forms 10th September 2016

still talks to her
he's been dead for three years
but still ages like a normal
teen boy

© Rachel Green 2016

on hydrophobic leaves
tiny worlds

© Rachel Green 2016

long chat
with a new friend
Terrible stories
about war-torn lands

© Rachel Green 2016

dog walking
when it starts to pour
wet paws

I stop in the woods
my daily 22 press up video
in the mud

confused Jack

© Rachel Green 2016

Terrible dreams. Left to carry gear.

© Rachel Green 2016

Friday, 9 September 2016

Poetry 2016 / 102

Better Not Get Old

I used to love streetlights.
They were the corners of civilisation,
the safehouse of Oller Boller
and Aki-one-two-three
where I can still here Linda Lovelace
shouting a triumphant “home!”
They were the point in the darkness
where I was safe from the demons in the woods,
the shadowed figures,
the child cutters.
They were the signpost that said
“nearly home... nearly home...”
after the darkness of a canal towpath
and the cracking twigs just out of sight;
the signal of residential streets
after the twisting cold of a night-dark motorbike.
Now they're the bright lights of progress
dividing the world ellipses by ellipses
cutting away the dark places where my dreams hide
depriving me of the moon, the stars
and my sense of wonder
at the vastness of a Godless universe.


lucida [loo-si-duh] noun, plural lucidae [loo-si-dee]
1. the brightest star in a constellation.

Alpheratz, Sirrah;
the binary lucidae
of Andromeda

short forms 9th September 2016

her mum
left the household
transitions to a man
meanwhile her dad suicides

© Rachel Green 2016

high wind
bends the garden birch tree
skittering rubbish

© Rachel Green 2016

7:30 AM
kids walking to school
chattering loudly
I wonder what their parents do
school doesn't open 'til nine

© Rachel Green 2016

jiu-jitsu style
elbows and knees

I practice Upa escape,
mounted triangle
recumbent arm bar

talks about domestic violence

© Rachel Green 2016

Good night. She doesn't remember dreaming.

© Rachel Green 2016

Thursday, 8 September 2016

short forms 8th September 2016

school year
begins with pain
three bullies are waiting
She loses her lunch money and
her pride

© Rachel Green 2016

new school year
brings crisp new uniforms
police cadet

© Rachel Green 2016

jiu-jitsu demonstration
I am the supposed attacker
demanding money
Sensei's self defence move
cracks open my nose

© Rachel Green 2016

new PC
causes headaches
no Windows 10

Alas, the free upgrade
is no longer available
and costs $200

I'll stick to 7, then.

© Rachel Green 2016

Full length mirror. She's so fat.

© Rachel Green 2016

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

poetry 2016 / 101

Stone Man

Morning wakefulness
before the alarm –
turned off now to avoid
waking other sleepers.
My sheets soaked
the outpouring of nightmares
a broken house
letters for a departed flatmate.
I can't recall his name.
Tom something.
Ton... something Irish
but not a Mc or an O'
( I had another flatmate from Tralee
and a brief affair with his cousin
but nothing that ever lasted.)
I google what I can remember:
Tom. Stone carver. Wolverhampton.
But the search comes up blank
and facebook has no hits either.
He might be dead, I suppose,
he was my age after all – or
he might be computer phobic.
Last time I saw him was in '88
Ranahan, I remember hours later,
in conversation with someone
so they think I have Tourette's.

short forms 7th September 2016

an old lady
leads to a discussion
on the value of religion.
God's mom.

© Rachel Green 2016

morning crow
electing to find breakfast
petulant magpie

© Rachel Green 2016

greenhouse painting
the brownian motion of slugs
through a portrait
Sections of wet paint
distorted by gastropods

© Rachel Green 2016

show lack of strength
lack of fitness

I should be able to do these
without any problem
basic fitness

maybe next year...

© Rachel Green 2016

night terrors. Her sweat-soaked waking.

© Rachel Green 2016

Tuesday, 6 September 2016

poetry 2016 / 100

Last Hurrah

remember the party in '85
when we'd finished our foundation course
and had mixed drinks in the palisade
of the college atrium?
A quiet affair more suited
to the sticklers of authority
kowtowing to bureaucratic bosses
more concerned with how many than how well?
Where multi-hued canvasses
graced free-standing display boards
rough pine frames against sugar-paper walls
and your record player, spindle up for repeat,
playing Adagio over and over.
Bored and nowhere near drunk
we drove to Woodfield, where the textiles girl –
was her name Nikki? – rented studios
and we partied until dawn
when your lips still held a trace of vodka
and my stockings fluttered;
the legs of a ghost on the pre-dawn breeze
yellow-jacketed from the sodium-vapour lamps
of a deserted flyover

© Rachel Green 2016

short forms 6th September 2016

school dance
RE Teacher
can bust serious moves
sets a few girls' hearts fluttering.

© Rachel Green 2016

honey bee
examining a lavender spike
next door's cat

© Rachel Green 2016

phone call
from the doctor
"We found your heart"
results show it's still beating
albeit cold and lonely

© Rachel Green 2016

a box
to fill with books
Mari Kondo style

The only physicals I've read
since last year's clean-out
have been poetry

Sell my signed copies?

© Rachel Green 2016

She doesn't own her own books.

© Rachel Green 2016

Monday, 5 September 2016

poetry 2016 / 099


I don't do them well, these press-ups.
It's as much as I can manage to lower
myself a couple of inches
then rise back up like a smoker for a ciggie
phlegm rising like the bilge in a sinking barge.
I try to vary the videos –
today I'm in the cemetery,
on a bit of dry path beneath a willow;
the dog leads clutched in my off-camera hand.
Amos is excited, a near miss with death
(barking at and chasing cars) left him
with a lust for life, though he's miffed the cat
in the window of one-twelve remained unmoved
by his bark and threatened chase.
I haven't the heart to tell him it was a statue.
Bugger. I've lost count. Was that twenty-two?
Best I do a couple more. Shut up
barking, idiot. It's a policeman.

Day 5 of 22 push-ups a day for 22 days to raise awareness for combat veterans.

There are 22 vets a day that are committing suicide, and this is a small way to raise awareness for that issue.

Once you are nominated your 22 days start the following day. Every day you record yourself doing 22 push-ups. Try your best to reach 22. If that means doing assisted (from your knees) push-ups or that you have to stop and take a break that's fine but try to get them all done in one video.

Every day you SHOULD nominate a different person. Try to choose people you think will want to do this and/or have the ability to do it

And finally, have fun with this. This is a simple and fun way to get the word out about a matter that more people need to be aware about. These brave men and women put their lives on the line to protect our freedoms and its sad that so many veterans feel that suicide is the only way out.

If anyone watching this video would like to make a donation to Combat Stress which is a Uk based charity helping vets suffering from PTSD text 'PTSD22' to 70004 to donate £5 *


Tail to Mouth

Rarely late, but striving not to be early, Chloe arrived to find the party already in full swing. Relieved not to be the first (the awkward silence between host and first guest had terrified her since the first time in happened, at a mermaid party for a neighbour's fourth birthday) and also slightly miffed to have missed so much already, (what if someone had already copped off with Stevie Fields?) she bypassed the front door and nipped round the back, where she could slip into the kitchen unnoticed.

“Wotcha.” Lindsay gave her an upward nod, the cigarette in her mouth glowing brighter as she inhaled. “How long you been here?”

Chloe could hardly claim 'ages' when she still had her coat on, could she? “Ages.” She held up a four-pack of Bulmer's cherry cider. “Had to nip back out for some bevvies.”

“Cool.” Lindsay stubbed out the cigarette. “Gi's one.”

“Here.” Chloe tore a bottle from the cardboard covering and she peered through the kitchen door. “Who's the guy in the devil mask?”

“Dunno. He looks a bit old for this crowd. Maybe someone's brother?”

“Maybe.” Chloe took the bottle opener Lindsay handed her and popped open a cider. She leaned against the oven and studied the boy. He was muscled like a dancer and moved like an angel, his skin glistening as if oiled. If she stared at him enough, he might notice her and come over.

“You should dance with him.”

“Nah.” Chloe watched the way candlelight flowed over his pecs. “Not my type.”

short forms 5th September 2016

at Mary's house
she expected hymnals
but finds jazz and rock on the shelves

© Rachel Green 2016

morning rain
beads on nasturtium leaves
visiting bee

© Rachel Green 2016

from overwork
yesterday's gardening
an awful lot done
in a single day

© Rachel Green 2016

early bedtime
forced Lu to rise again
and go downstairs

it's not me (she says)
but that the dogs come with me
and Jack licks his paws

and is deaf to pleas

© Rachel Green 2016

her new painting gives small satisfaction

© Rachel Green 2016

Sunday, 4 September 2016

exercise. 1st Person POV

“There wasn't any homework."

“None?” I look at Lauren but she's scrolling through her phone and doesn't look up. “Not even English?” Mrs Maguire is notorious among the fifth year for giving more homework than it's actually possible to do without giving up telly altogether.

“Nah. She was away today. We had a relief teacher in. Miss Roony. She let us watch this old black and white film 'cause it was based on The Tempest.

“Really?” I wouldn't put it past Lauren to tell me there was no homework just to get me in shit but the whole thing about the student teacher making them watch Forbidden Planet was a bit past her ability to make up. “Would have been worth staying for that.”

“Nah. It was really boring.” She held up her phone. “Have you seen this vid of a kid trying to pull-start a vacuum cleaner?”

God! She's such an idiot sometimes. “Who moved your rock? That's years old.”

She huffed. “Well I hadn't seen it.”

short forms 4th September 2016

lives in squalor
hoarding all her rubbish
a whole room of pictures of her
as white

© Rachel Green 2016

zipping by on high winds

© Rachel Green 2016

sunday workday
a friend asks for help
money offered
Yes, please
my overdraft thanks you

© Rachel Green 2016

a new wave
crippling depression
makes me tearful

a few minutes care
makes me feel better

perishing kids

© Rachel Green 2016

she feels overwhelmingly overweight and old

© Rachel Green 2016

Saturday, 3 September 2016

Poetry 2016 / 098

September Rain

Woodland path
a chance to let the dogs run free
between here and there
though I have to keep sight of them,
watch where they do their business
and follow with a plastic bag.

The rain is calmer here
a susurrus of voices on the tops of birch
and sycamore, though enough
passes through to make the ground
muddy underfoot
and treacherous with the dropping
of the bastard with the rottweilers in number two
who never cleans up after them.

At the end of the path
they're leashed once more
just in time to avoid a confrontation
with the ancient chap from 85
and his equally ancient dog Lana.
Trickster hates Lana.
Barking ensues but the rain patters
on umbrellas and Jack
is too tired an wet to care.

© Rachel Green 2016

Elderly Neighbour

Chloe leaned across the table to give Mary her shopping and change.

“Good Heaven. You're not wearing a bra.”

“Dude. Chill. It's just a boob.”

“Just a boob to you, young lady, but to the entirety of Christianhood it's a temptation of the devil.”

“Why?” Chloe frowned. “I've seen pictures of you with your boobs out.”

“Only to nourish the young messiah. Nourishment is always acceptable.”

“Except in one pub in Hull, where they banned someone for breastfeeding because it distracted the punters from the strippers.”

“That's disgusting.” The Mother of God pulled a cigarette from the packer. “And less of the 'dude,' if you please.”

short forms 3rd September 2016

seven wishes
a demon's best offer
from a nineteen sixty-seven

© Rachel Green 2016

dark clouds
against the neighbour's chimney
crow chicks

© Rachel Green 2016

Lu's birthday
I leave her in peace
for a lie-in
The dog woofs at the front door
locked out on a bin run

© Rachel Green 2016

may be too costly
to countenance

lashing out at a parent
can be too much of a safe place
unbounded love

even galaxies have borders

© Rachel Green 2016

morning run Out of meds again.

© Rachel Green 2016

Friday, 2 September 2016

poetry 2016 / 097

Women's Classes

I read an article today
concerning women's self defence
(something I advocate
as saving lives and gaining confidence)
but it postulated self-defence
is only good for 1 in 4 attacks...
punched in the street, held up,
threatened, a scuffle in the pub...
where all the rest are crimes
perpetrated by someone
the victim knows, or loves.
All the training in the world
won't help you break your son's arm
or prevent that husband's fist
pushing your cheek through your molars
(been there, trust me)
or will it?

Lets not get into the argument
by a shortsighted commenter (male)
who claimed domestic abuse
was all the fault of the victim
(“she should have left, shouldn't she?”)
or the one about blocking punches
becomes instinctive with practice.
My sensei reckons it doesn't apply
to the style we train in
where blocks are muscle memory.
We had a long discussion
by text (long for me, anyway)
and while I acknowledge he may be right
I doubt he's had his face turned inside out
by someone he thought he could trust.

Chloe's Extra Wish

Damaged Goods

“I've wasted them all. I've wasted all my wishes.” Chloe sat on the edge of her bed and cried, her stomach so roiled by unspent emotion she was feeling physically sick. “Why didn't you warn me about thinking them through?”

“I did.” The demon squatted on his haunches, bringing his head down to her level. He took one of her hands in his own, the dark skin stretched taut over his four finger joints. He stroked the back of her hand with his thumb. “Remember when you wished for Baxter alive again? I asked you if you were quite sure but you were adamant. And look what happened?”

“You knew I didn't mean half-decomposed with worms in his brain.”

“It's well documented demons take things literally.” Jasfoup patted her hand and stood, his tail flicking like an agitated cat.”

“What about the ice cream? You didn't even tell me that was one of my seven. You tricked me.”

“Again, well documented. We even watched Bedazzled together.”

“That old black and white film? I fell asleep.”

“Okay. I'll tell you what I'll do.” He took out his Bloodberry and scrolled through several screens. “I've got Mrs. Peterson's account here. She had the seven wish deal thirty years ago and only used five of them. I'll give you one of hers. She'll never know.”

“Won't she?”

“Nah. She's only got a couple of weeks left to live. I doubt she'll need them.”

“I can have one more? Make everything better?”

“If you like. Remember to word it properly this time.”

“Okay.” Chloe screwed her eyes shut and concentrated on what she really wanted. “I want everything how it used to be when Davey was still alive and Mum and Dad were happy together and we lived in the house in Manchester with Baxter and I didn't even believe in demons.”

“And Snowy?”

“Oh yes.” Chloe had forgotten about the cat. It had been hit by a transvestite on a motor scooter and died on the spot. “Yes please.”

“Are you quite sure?”

“Yes. That's what I want.”

“Okay.” The demon winked and Chloe had a really bad feeling in her stomach.

short forms 2nd September 2016

His house:
electric lights
from a generator
powered entirely by two
small imps

© Rachel Green 2016

ripe fruit
on the victoria plum
slugs feasting

© Rachel Green 2016

brings an hour
of passing guard
I learn a few tips
genuinely improve

© Rachel Green 2016

lawn mowing
the tall grass
of the front garden

weeding the borders
two dead conifers removed
a dozen teasels

wind-blown nasturtiams

© Rachel Green 2016

her growing ball of stomach terror

© Rachel Green 2016

Thursday, 1 September 2016

short forms 1st September 2016

become real
her dog back from the dead
and her dad too familiar
for words

© Rachel Green 2016

telephone wires
a spiderweb across the blue
catching calls

© Rachel Green 2016

she cries
saccharine tears
basic needs
fast food and drink
and a new plushie

© Rachel Green 2016

evening jiu-jitsu
training with the boss' girlfriend
first class

he texts later
to move my morning lesson
to the afternoon

loved-up teacher

© Rachel Green 2016

somewhat stiff from overworked muscle groups

© Rachel Green 2016