Gaga for Dada


Until last week, I’d never encountered Dadaist poetry. It’s seriously good fun! At a creative writing course, I was handed an envelope containing a chopped up copy of Sylvia Plath’s Blackberrying. The task: choose and reassemble the words that speak to you to create something new. 

The Perfumery

Alert to the brush of the bell in the door,
Young Andrew is with you in seconds.
You ask him to help you to buy a perfume,
And, “come with me, darling,” he beckons.

He leads you away to the heart of the shop,
Where scent bottles fan out around you.
He talks you through citrus then floral then musk
And his stories delight and astound you.

You’re carefully studied with well-practised eyes;
Your custom absorbs his attention.
As you, tentative, pick up a bottle nearby,
He says, “Madam, might I just mention …

That this perfume speaks of the opera box,
The murderous innamorata;
Imagine the shot and the swish of her gown,
As she tucks the gun back her garter.

What about this scent? The one with the bow?
It’s light and it’s fun and it’s fruity,
So suited to ladies with your joie de vivre,
Your playfulness, candour and beauty.

Or maybe it’s this one that you would prefer?
It’s vanilla with top notes of cherry.
It’s very Star Baker, so sweet and intense,
And who doesn’t love Mary Berry …!

“It’s a little bit ‘frilly’ for me,” you declare
And nods as he ‘yarps’ understanding.
He muses a moment whilst thumbing his tweeds,
Chin raised, looking thoughtful, commanding.

Try this,” Andrew says, with a flick of his quiff –
It flutters on top like a feather –
He leads you to more of a masculine scent
With notes of tobacco and leather.

Your eyes start to water as you spot the price,
You cry, “Goodness me! That’s expensive!”
And Andrew, who smells like he bathes in the stuff,
Starts to fidget, becoming defensive.

But madam,” he sneers, in his smart London drawl,
(So smooth you can scarcely believe it …)
This perfume’s beloved of the Hollywood stars!”
You say, “thank you mate, but I’ll leave it.”

As you leave with a wince it’s the look down his nose –
So disdainful! You can’t help but say it:
“If you try to sell perfume at the cost of a car,
I’ll tell you where you can go spray it.”

At the Jukebox

My empty hands return the touch,
Of a long lost love, departed.
The knowing looks, the flirting smile
Before the dancing started.
Mesmeric swish of ghostly skirts,
Her head upon my shoulder,
The gentle kiss upon my cheek
That made me so much bolder.
The hairspray smell on my lapel,
The memory of her laughter,
Returning with the juke box jive,
And with me ever after.


I’m reliably informed that today is National Jukebox Day! To me, jukeboxes conjour feelings of nostalgia and longing; each one seems to have a tale to tell and memories tied up in its music. 

To Grace the Name

An anchor name that must be earned
Without the tools of gifted genes,
The cruellest offering to a child
Who does not Grace the name.
She lives a life inadequate,
Struggling for Grace; searching for a girl
Who was lost from the start
And, unknowing, finds Grace within.


Written for the girl who was given a nickname because she was ‘not beautiful enough’ to be called Grace. Written for the inspiring woman she became; a woman who radiates grace from every pore. 

Poetry Contest: Congratulations to . . .

For anyone looking for some super poetry … check out the winners of Kayla Ann’s poetry contest. Cracking entries! Well done, y’all! Xxx


Buuuuuuuuuuut, before I announce the winners, I would just like to say “Thank You” to every single participant.

There were 100+ submissions! 

You guys made this contest an amazing experience and surpassed all my expectations! It was SO difficult to pick the winners as so many poems were of equally amazing caliber. Therefore, even if I do not post your poem today in my Top 3, I will be posting my “Top 25” poems later on through four separate blog posts.

Thank you for your wonderful submissions!

While I initially thought I would only announce the winner, I decided it was necessary to announce my Top Three Favorites.

So, without further ado . . .

*Drum roll please*

Image result for gif drum roll please

Our THIRD PLACE winner goes to . .

Related imageClaire Yang’s “After Halloween”

“The Pumpkin King sits and watches

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He waits, outside in…

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A Nun’s Blessing

She murmurs blessings over me,
And I am, faithless, moved.
She rests her hands upon my head.
I feel loss as they’re removed.

She asks no questions of my faith
And does not seek to know
The inner workings of my mind,
Her blessings to bestow.

Her prayers are calm and comforting.
They’re given with a smile
And, even though I know no god,
I feel them every mile.

I join the hearty choruses;
Hallelujahs now resound,
For as I seek to find myself,
It’s here that I am found.

Whilst I remain agnostic,
I cannot but concede
That compassion’s simple sanctity
Will forever be my creed.


Whilst walking the Camino de Santiago, I was fortunate enough to stay at the convent of Santa Maria in Carrion de los Condes. The care of the nuns was unconditional; they gave their blessing to any and all who stepped through the door. I don’t think I’ll ever be a person of faith but being a recipient of their care was a truly spiritual experience. 

Thoughts and Prayers

Sending thoughts and prayers,
In times of pain and terror,
Helps no one, I fear.


This haiku is a result of my conflicted thoughts on the outpouring of emotion in the wake of cataclysmic world events. On the one hand, I find it reassuring that the world reacts with love and compassion when disaster strikes; on the other, are words really enough? Is it enough just to update the Facebook profile photo? Is it enough to retweet a good news story about a cat rescued from the aftermath of a hurricane? What can we possibly do, often from the other side of the world, to lend our support?

Letting people know that my thoughts are with them might be a good start … but actions speak louder than words.