I’m lying in bed
eating my forth ice cream,
when I get a text from an acquaintance
I haven’t seen for ages.

Having completed her 4th degree
in medically related sciences,
she has been spending the last year
seriously training as an Olympic Athelete.

She, and her fantastically attractive husband
will be flying out to Africa to volunteer on a
high powered, seriously important
UN governed project. She will be swimming

10 miles at my local gym –
the one across the road from me, that I never go in –
would I like to sponsor her?
I drop ice cream on the bed.


I’m going through bank statements
when my father rings to tell me
he’s invested all his money (my inheritance)
in a high class, can’t go wrong, fail safe

Angora Rabbit Breeding Facility. Unfortunately
the facility, has been very badly hit
by an unprecedented outbreak of
Mxamitosis. He and my mother

are now destitute, and urgently needing
somewhere else to live. Could they come and
kip on the floor of my council bedsit?
no pressure for the bed, he’s sure

my mother’s arthritis – will only hurt a bit.
He’s not sure how long they’ll need to stay
but is certain we’ll all get along swimmingly.
The taxis’ waiting. He’s got Angora Jumper for me.

Bank Holiday Monday

May 5, 2008

I like Bank Holiday Mondays in bookshops
drinking coffee and reading library books.

I’ve never understood the way they sell sunglasses,
or The Daily Mail – but I like that they keep

a small grand piano with varnished lid.

I like watching men in suits buy guides to Italy
from attendants with butterfly painted faces.

I like the pensioners on three for two
and the kids colliding in biographies.

I like the cycle home,
summer heat hitting shoulders.

I like Bank Holiday Mondays.
more than Tuesdays.

Worst Case Sceanarios

May 5, 2008

One afternoon, in the middle of delivering
a poetry workshop, my mother appears
and without even knocking (as usual,
of course) shoulders her way in.

She stands, Marks and Spencers coated,
sensibly shoed and commanding
the full attention of the entire group,
announces quite simply: “Lydia.

Your father and I are getting divorced”.
Nobody says anything. My mother
pulls up a chair and makes herself
comfortable, arms folded over lap,

2 huge, bulging bags placed like sphinxs
round a throne – the room’s paused.
My mother says: “I can wait-
or you can just give me the keys.”


My boyfriend is a terrorist.
We’ve been together 6 years
but one day, when we’re in the sky
flying over Tokyo, he stands up

and tells everyone that
despite all this time
appearing to work in
Literature Development

having a degree in Media Studies
an MA in narrative theory – and no interest
whatsoever in any kind of religion
he’s actually been a member of the Mujahadeen.

He’s got 12 pounds of semtex
hidden in his trousers –
when our Ikea sofa comes
he won’t be taking delivery.


I’ve just finished taking a relaxing bath
when I get out and being alone in the flat
walk naked into the hallway.

My landlord has removed the front door there
and sold tickets for people to come and watch
People are asking what size bra
and if lap dancing

costs extra.
In a fit of post
post feminist, avenging angel
I high kick the punter leering at my navel

and, having speedily reattached the towel
jab squarely in the groin, my landlords,
lying, cheating, Peter Stringfellow.
The next day I go looking for a new flat.