Thoughts on finding an old till receipt by Bill Allen

CUPPA SOUP
EMERY BOARDS
NIVEA
MINI MUFFINS
BISCUITS 400 GRAMS
SUGAR
CHOCOLATE CAKE
You were fat, Sam.
VALUE SHAVING CREAM
RAZORS
I miss the mess.
PAN SCOURERS
LOW CALORIE SOUP
OLIVE OIL
TUNA CHUNKS
BROCCOLI 0.335KG
Oh, Sam,
you should have eaten your greens.
LEEKS LOOSE
RED PEPPER 2 @ £0.78
CONDENSED MILK
You were so naughty,
Sam!
MAYONNAISE
No more little white
mountains on plates.
FULL FAT MILK
McCAIN CHIPS
BURGER ROLLS
BUTTER
FLORA LIGHT
RED WINE
ORANGE JUICE
APPLES
LETTUCE
ON VINE TOMS
YOGHURT
HALF FAT MILK
TESCO SAUCY
STRAWBERRY LUBRICATION 75ML
Oh, Sam! I miss you.

Bill Allen lives in West London and writes in retirement. Worldly wise, a wicked sense of humour, he often observes the darker aspects of life as well as the curiously funny. Likes old films, modern plays, wine mixed with a pinch of conversation. Bill has published a few poems and short stories.

 

The Lost Property Locker by Robert Nisbet

Dai the roadman takes stock after the town carnival

Two fivers, par, also the eight pound coins.
Small change, considerable. The credit cards
we can return, likewise two of the three
pensioner’s bus passes, but it’s tough luck
on Archie McPhee of Ross and Cromarty.
Five T-shirts this year: Hard Rock Café,
Gorseinon Rugby Club, U of Glam, Jesus Saves
and Little Red Riding Hood Kicks Ass.
With the smoking ban in pubs, we’re down
to just the one ashtray, a Watney’s Pale.
We have a cuckoo clock, a Nuneaton Borough
library card, a flour bag marked Bowker’s Mill
and a toilet roll. The knickers we could have
predicted, just one pair this year, pale blue,
medium to large. Two scraps from letters,
one from “Billy”, who sends condolences
upon his auntie’s flatulence, and one
from “Jazza”, who loves her Kev to bits.
Three photographs (two boring, Auntie-Gertie-
on-the-prom-at-Margate stuff), one though,
a very candid one, Katie, the Mayor’s wife,
taken surely thirty years ago. And wasn’t her
skin so soft and silky then? Wasn’t it just?
My oath.

(Previously published in the Prolebooks pamphlet Merlin’s Lane, 2011)

Robert Nisbet is a Welsh poet with over 200 publications in Britain, as well as a number of appearances in the USA, in magazines like San Pedro River Review, Constellations, Illya’s Honey and Clementine Unbound.

 

What’s the John Dory? by Susan Evans

Message in a bottle; excuse my Squid ink scroll.
To my darling John Dory, my fellow tortured Sole.

You’re in another Plaice, but I just want you to know,
I don’t think you a Pollock; I love our ebb & flow.

Monsieur Mussel, you put the Rainbow in my Trout;
I’m like Wild Salmon when we dive & splash about.

& when I’m feeling Crabby you don’t try to suck me in;
you’re gentle & protective fending off those Crayfish twins.

The world’s our Lobster in my aqua fantasy;
you & I go deep, making under water alchemy.

Playing all of your top Tuna, on your favourite Sea Bass,
I swim, you sing: ‘I see you baby (shakin’ that ass)’.

Alas, I cannot be your Mermaid ‘plenty more fish’ says head;
you’ve a Dover Sole mate; shan’t put my Roe in one seabed.

I can be a Tiger Prawn but you can see that I’m no Snapper.
Okay, I find you dishy & your swim suit’s very dapper.

But be more Monk fish; your Sole mate’s down at Eel.
I’m just a red Herring & I’ve no wish to steal.

Without you, I’ll feel gutted; be like losing a fin.
But you’re caught; could be worse, could be Sardines in a tin.

Susan Evans is widely published; online & in print; appearing in: The High Window, Ink, Sweat & Tears, The Journal, Message in a Bottle, Nutshells and Nuggets, Obsessed With Pipework, and Snakeskin, among numerous others. A Brighton-based Performance poet, Susan was nominated Best Spoken Word Performer in the Saboteur Awards, 2016.

website

 

Moulding by Susan Jordan

Yes, that’s right, fibreglass. Wonderful stuff.
You can make anything out of it. It’s been
my passion ever since my dad taught me
how to work it. I made boats then – simple.
Now I’ve moved on to furniture, shelving,
cupboards, you name it. Whole house full
of my creations. You paint it up, see – no end
of colours and ideas. You’d love the retro
psychedelic swirls, not to mention the faux
gilt chasings and the pink elephant settee.
I made the bed, the heart-shaped headboard
with the dralon inset – I do upholstery too –
and the clawed feet invisibly strengthened
with bits of old hoover pipe. And you’d die
for the bathroom, the bath I did in the shape
of a sardine-tin, open of course, complete
with key, and fishes painted on the bottom.
Pity the grinning octopus on the other wall
is a tentacle short – still, the eyeballs swivel
when you pull the cord and the oyster
loo seat plays three different tunes. It’s like
this stuff expands to fill the time; it hardens
into a shell that hides the space inside.
There wasn’t so much of it while she was alive.

Susan Jordan has always written prose but until recently wrote poetry only from time to time. Inspired by 52, Jo Bell’s wonderful online group, she started writing a lot more poems. Her poems have appeared in print and online magazines including Prole, Obsessed with Pipework, Snakeskin and Ink, Sweat & Tears.