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ISBN: 9781483519258

Out of my mind

Contents

Foreword by the author

A Writer’s Lamentation

Alliteration Alleluia

At any given moment

Confessions of a porcine male

Conversations with my cat

Cosmic

Daughter

Depressed

Don’t call me, I’ll call you

Edible

Everyone Anonymous

Exercise without movement

Fatty Gue

Frivolous nonsense

Gomorrah

Grey Sky Thinking

Harold and Maude revisited

His mind was a padded cell

If my life were a kingdom

I’ll have what he’s having

In praise of Emily

Jaundiced

Lost and found

Lulu

Messy

Miss Lovely Legs

My literary garden

My three friends

No weddings, just a funeral

Not more (bleep) dishes

On the train of thought

One Pink Sock

One, Two and Three

Parenthood

Prehistoric Perspective

Satan’s Temptress

Schizo scherzo

Self-Destruction

Still waiting

Such a beautiful face

The Benefits of Ageing

The colours of my mixed emotions

The James Joyce Experiment

The Knowing

The Last Garden on Earth

The Passing Parade

The personal war on terror

The Suitcase

Things I loved

Thoughts on passing

Time capsules

Voice in the wilderness

Walkies

Welcome to Ward 17

Who the f**k am I?

Wordsworth need not worry

X Rated

Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

You can’t handle the truth

Z to A

Summaries

Foreword by the author

You may have heard of ‘The year my voice broke’ or ‘The year of living dangerously’, but for me 2009 has proved to be ‘The year of writing poetry’. Of the 60 pieces presented here, 46 were written since the beginning of 2009. I recall having expected to start work on a novel or produce a collection of short stories, but poetry came to dominate and ideas filled my head.

The collection presented here is something of a mixed bag. Although there are several pieces on the recurring theme of ‘the mind’, these are interspersed with moments of total frivolity and earnest contemplation on unrelated subjects. I believe this is a good thing as I really don’t like to take things too seriously.

In terms of process I virtually had to wait for inspiration and enthusiasm before anything happened. I am the first to admit that I am not a disciplined writer. If I had to work to a deadline I would be in real strife. Despite the suggestion in the very first item (A Writer’s lamentation) I did not experience much in the way of writer’s block. Nor did

I spend long, torturous hours agonising over whether I had the right words or if I had achieved creative perfection. In most cases the embryo of an idea came to me at random in a very quiet moment and later formed on the page almost before my eyes. The truth of the matter is that I felt more like a conduit than a craftsman.

The title of this collection is a perfect example of how I think. Double meanings are a favourite thing of mine, so it is appropriate the title should be one. This is not to say I am actually ‘out of my mind’, although there have been many occasions over the years where I have felt this way. Those around me may argue I behaved as if this was the case - some of the pieces contained in this book may suggest it is a fair assessment. I am happy to let the reader make any judgement they wish.

The other meaning in the title is one I see as a given. These are all original works straight out of my head. I would never contemplate plagiarising anybody else’s work, so a similarity between what is contained here and anything written by anyone else ever is purely coincidental. There may be some clichés and concepts previously imagined, but it is all literally out of my mind.

For the benefit of the reader I have included a personal summary of every work. I felt obliged to do this as some of the pieces are obscure in their origins and it can be good to know what the author was thinking when pen was put to paper. They are only very brief summaries and may not provide the whole story. Some things are better left unsaid and it then becomes the reader’s prerogative to make conclusions about meaning and the mind of the writer. In addition I have noted the date on which each piece was written.

I did toss up whether to present these poetic forms in alphabetic or date order. I don’t know that it would make a skerrick of difference. Viewing the works in date order only highlights the concentration of output of 2009. ‘Such a beautiful face’ was written over 10 years ago, but would not be out of place if I had penned it yesterday.

In this collection I have sought to entertain, bemuse, disturb and provoke thought. If I succeed in conjuring any emotion from the reader at all I will feel that I have accomplished something. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoyed writing them.

The Steve

4 November 2009

A Writer’s Lamentation

Does anyone know where my head is at?

It was last seen on the 825 bus

destination ‘Somewhere in the clouds’

You should recognise it

orange-shaped

red faced

tears spilling from the corners of each eye

like pineapple juice

If you find it take a scalpel and cut it open

Inside are infinite ideas

whirling in a mindspace maelstrom

some which, like a diamond, sparkle

in favourable light

Some are more serious

inspired by fear

yet strangely sublime

Then there are others which simply don’t work

They are as unwanted as a used nappy

How did it come to this?

No plan existed which could have led me

to travel this path

like a ghost, rarely seen

lost in limbo land

All around me the prosperous go about their business

as I hit my stumbling writer’s block

“Author! Author!” the maddening crowd cries as one

but in truth, would this have been the outcome

had I been born a painter?

Alliteration Alleluia

Alleluia, Alleluia, Alliteration Alleluia

Buoyant boys bellow boo-yeah

Cheeky cheerleaders chanting

Dainty dandelions dancing

Elephant’s elegant entrance

Fancy fantasy fandance

Gentleman’s gentility

Hillary’s hilarity

Idiotic idiosyncrasies

Jolly jester’s jealousies

Kindly king’s kinship

Lively lovers lock lips

Many money-making mums

Naughty nubile naked nuns

Opal opulence

Papal populist

Quality quartz

Raucous rorts

Seasonal stormy seas

Teen’s tarty tease

Ukuleles useful, Ulysses useless

Vicar’s vengeful, Venus villainous

Wrapped writer’s wrist

X-otic X-men X-ist

Yay! Yellow yaks yield

Zany zebra’s zippy zeal

Alleluia, Alleluia

and Amen

At any given moment

In my computer-centric microcosm

consisting of a desk, a chair, a screen and a keyboard

Staring out a window on the world

vertical blinds afford a blinkered view

Just like watching a reality TV show

A mixture of wonders and horrors

are occurring in places all around me

at any given moment

A teenage boy is daydreaming about having sex with a pretty girl

Lightning is striking physically and figuratively

A typical male is seeking to dominate everyone as per his elevated testosterone level

A wife is complaining vociferously about her husband’s infidelity

A master is subjecting a minion to a cruel and unusual punishment

Partners are struggling with the words ‘I love you’

A psychopath is hungering for their next victim

A gay man has been alienated for declaring his sexuality

A black man has been racially vilified by a stupid white man

The loved and unloved are going missing, never to be seen again

A speeding car is going out of control leading to death, maiming and disfigurement

A heart that had been pumping beat for the very last time

A sensitive individual is experiencing extreme vulnerability

The defenceless are being set upon by those who would deem themselves superior

A ruthless person is using intimidation and bullying tactics to gain advantage

A devious type is lying through their teeth to fool the naive

An overgrown garden is finally being attended to by a caring nature-lover

A woman has been sexually assaulted by a complete stranger

A child has been sexually abused by someone they knew

People who had made false assumptions are being caught out by them

A psychiatrist has just concluded a patient’s session by prescribing unnecessary pills

An angry youth is trying to solve his problems using his fists

Winners are enjoying an endorphin rush that comes from the euphoria of victory

Losers are picking through their performance at a post-match post-mortem

A so-called man of God is misusing his religion in a way that is harmful

A person who wants to avoid responsibility is slowly drinking themselves to death

Cancer has claimed yet another life

A fragile mind is about to snap