Election Fever by Andrew Bell

It’s half past nine on a Sunday morning.
Sitting on the steps beneath The Old
Market Cross, I’m waiting for you.
Little platoons of cars advance onto the
Pay and Display, squatting on the bleached
tarmac that was once a busy market square.

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Friend by Barrie Purnell

FRIEND

Your leaving left a scar across
The landscape of my life,
When you changed from someone I know
Into someone that I once knew.

When I lost you I didn’t just lose a friend,
I lost a part of my identity,
I didn’t just lose a person,
I lost part of my history.

We lived through each-other’s hopes and fears
With love and anger in equal measure.
A million shared experiences,
Now I have no one to share them with.

You liked me despite knowing all my secrets,
And told me things I wouldn’t tell myself.
We knew too much about each-other
To ever consider betrayal.

Your world’s a lonelier place
When an old friend goes away.
They can’t be replaced by someone new,
You cannot replace time.

I go whistling past the graveyard
To drown the echo of your voice.
Your memory sits gently on my heart
And leaks out of my eyes in my tears.

You have left a scar that will not heal
It’s inside of me so no one else can see.
We promised that we wouldn’t grieve,
I couldn’t keep my part of that deal.

      

The Scar by Kevin Murphy

The Scar

Sitting in our autumn holiday cottage, I said to my grandson, ‘Look at the light on that hillside, Isaac. It’s strange and misty, but there is no mist.’

It was a tiny window in the converted seventeenth century barn. We were warm and cosy, but outside, days of rain drenched the countryside but not our spirits. The sun had come up at the other side of the escarpment, but slight haze caused the light to skim across the very heavy dew – the grass was grey.

Suddenly all changed. Had a cloud moved away? The hillside was a gleaming emerald in a golden frame of storm tossed leaves.

‘Look at that tree, Grandpops, it’s got two trunks.

We leant into the frame for a better look. The row of trees running to the horizon did look as if it was tipped with the mature skeleton of a doubled-trunked oak, fully exposed, all its leaves already stripped.

It was a good observation by the lad. It had me bemused for a minute. ‘Ah, I see now. That’s a pair of trees, Isaac, standing beside each other, but from here they are almost in line, one behind the other.’

Later, after embalming ourselves with a swim in the heated pool, we took a walk out along Brackendale Lane towards Carsington in the hope of catching the early sunset over that great expanse of water. The lane is supposed to follow Brackendale Brook, but today we couldn’t tell which was which. Isaac had the wellies on so could ford the many streams the lane passed through – so he did.

Towards the top end of the lane, the land on both sides levelled out in a plateau. I reflected how that skinny brook was today doing what it had patiently been doing for perhaps millions of years – scratching the deep scar out of the plateau, carrying silt down towards the river Dove and onwards to the oceans.

The scar it has left, like a beauty spot, is what has attracted Isaac and all my family to gaze upon – this weather changing face of Derbyshire.

A Chat with my Lord, by Pete Brammer

May I tell you God, what happened to me?
For I swear, it is the truth,
about some of your followers,
who to me were so, uncouth.

Whilst sitting beside a gravestone,
rolling a cigarette,
I decided to talk, with you my Lord,
a day I won’t forget.

Relaxing there, outside the church,
one had the urge, to go inside,
in order to make my peace with you,
yes, just in case I died.

Now I’ve never been, a religious man,
it never was my need,
each day I’ve lived, hand to mouth,
you see, I have no time for greed.
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Scratch – by Michael Healy

I bought a new car, of which I was most proud
A long wheelbase XJ Jaguar which stood out from the crowd
To be fair it was quite a big car and needed caution around town
Otherwise, if pushing past, it would make some motorists’ frown
I kept it very clean and polished, its black paint did gleam
And even the wheels did glisten and shine
So, when I put a mark on it, I really did pine

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Brexitch! – by Chris South

I have this itch I need to scratch
But don’t know if I should?
For if I pull the scab off
We might all be bathed in blood!
Yet if I don’t I’ll be annoyed
Until my dying day
It aggravates and irritates
And will not go away.
But sometimes such dilemmas
Are best just left alone
For when we start to pick at them
We dig down to the bone.
Then soon we find that ‘niggle’
Is a chasm deep and wide
A fundamental problem
With division on each side!
So what now can we do to heal,
What remedy, what ease?
Is there salve enough to soothe
Or balm that will appease?
Have we scratched until this wound
Became a cancerous sore?
Rotten now, decaying
And infected to our core?