A basic sponge mix
Equal parts Irish butter
Sugar, flour and eggs

On comparing notebook contents with Ben Colley,
the barman at the Rose and Crown, Larkhall


The Balearic Scapegoat

Admiral John Byng
Went to Minorca for a fling.
Ended up losing what he oughtn'a
Pour encourager les autres.

or do you prefer

Admiral John Byng
Would've preferred even Sing Sing
To encouraging more assertion
By being shot for duty desertion.


Here's The Big Un

Kim Jong Un
Is no Kim Rong Un.
What else is a lowly poet to scribble?
A mad man with boosted fission bombs brooks no quibble.



Grant Shapps
Is one of those unsavory Tory chaps,
But Michael Green
Has no better reason to preen.

Shapps                    Green


Total Eclipse of the Dumb

President Donald J. Trump
Will look a science-denying chump,
If Fox News prompts him to tweet
"Sad. The Sun's been eaten by a yuge parakeet."


Royalty Loyalty

Salmon Rushdie
Found it decidedly fishy
That they'd not accept, his pals,
He'd made nowt from Midnight's Children residuals.

© Jonathan Cape


Born To Pun

Clarence Clemons
Avoided sucking lemons.
They caused the Big Man's lips to bloat,
Imparting a bitter citrus note.


Alternative Fads

Follow the Yellow Brick Road,
Exhorts the Myriad Media Toad,
As if thought of the Red Brick Road's a sin.
Oh, Jeremy Corbyn!

credit: Independent


For Every Well-Off Household

Etiquette demands
Special fish forks and fish knives.
And for bean-burgers?

Or does this work better?

Etiquette requires
Special fish knives and fish forks.
But veggie sausages?


The Puck Stops Here

Dame Margot Fonteyn,
For only one sport felt no disdain.
She admired the charm, grace and poise
Of those professional ice hockey boys.

or do you prefer

Dame Margot Fonteyn
Was a great fan of the quatrain,
Which makes it deuced hard to
Compose for her a Clerihew.


Twinkle Toes

Rudolf Nureyev
Knew better than Our Kev.
A Russian High Lift does not deploy
Ballet lovers to the gods at the Bolshoi.

or do you like

Rudolf Nureyev
Made a mean Chicken Kiev.
Slow-baked, we heard;
It wasn't the Firebird.

credit: BBC



Childhood Memories II

John Noakes
Was just one of them blokes
With no fear of heights
Or any Blue Peter pet what bites.

credit: BBC

or do you prefer

John Noakes
Astonished the young folks
From the cross-trees of HMS Ganges
To ironing Valerie's singlet, hun' (and dungarees).

credit: BBC

or perhaps

John Noakes
Would have loved it, folks!
The chance to interview Johnny Depp;
He'd have huzzahed "Get down, Shep!"

R.I.P. John Noakes (6 March 1934 – 28 May 2017)


Childhood Memories I

Valerie Singleton
Could have endless fun
Making gifts from loo rolls
And broken old washing up bowls.

and there's

Valerie Singleton,
In 1971,
Made so much from empty detergent bottles,
Loo rolls, glue and Tiger Moth throttles.

credit: BBC


Artistic Differences

Richard Burton
Was notably curt on
Whether Philip of Macedon's fate
Was to be upstaged by his Alexander the Ingrate.

Credit: United Artists


Barren Yarns

Hieronymus Karl Friedrich, Freiherr von Münchhausen,
Gehört einer Kette Brünchhausen.
Zwar war das Deutsch hoch, doch,
Aber gerochen haben die Fische ziemlich höher noch.


or do you prefer

Baron Munchausen
Told tall tales ten to the dozen
Of djinns, houris and caliphs,
But never of bankers and bailiffs.

Gustave Doré


Doctor, No?

Roger Moore,
The Beeb claimed, felt it a bore
To attempt the Bond sex scenes aged 58.
Roger No More was to be his fate.

RIP, Sir Roger


The Ingenious Mechanick

John Joseph Merlin,
With figurative moustachios atwirling
And mechanical gaming machinations,
Aroused in Georgians disturbing sensations.

Gainsborough, 1792




Increased Propensity to Flag-Waving

Sunny 9th of May
Humming Europe Day's anthem
It's all Owed To Joy

or do you prefer

Feeling high pressure
Strumming Europe Day's anthem
Owed to Beethoven

© Banksy



May the Running Commence

Doctor Who
As a companion never took a Shih Tzu.
He thought its paws
Too tiny for running down corridors.

credit: Melanie Dullinger

or might you prefer

Doctor Who
In his TARDIS had room for a zoo.
But felt morally conflicted
If not temporally afflicted.

credit: BBC

or perhaps even

Doctor Who
To a Dalek said "Noooo;
Me you cannae exterminate
For a wee new Who will germinate."

credit: BBC


And All The People Cried "Re-joist"

Zadok the priest
Told a blue joke at the feast,
Bringing the roof down, and revealing
To Nathan "the profit is in the re-ceiling."

or should it be

Zadok the priest
Told a blue joke at the coronation feast,
Bringing the roof down, and revealing
To Nathan "the profit is in the re-sealing."


White Man's Burden

Got heartily sick of of those brothers
Murmuring "too damned quiet, what?"
Before it all got way too hot.

credit: Paramount

Or perhaps

Got thoroughly sick of those others
Who "it's too damned quiet" would confess
Just as the natives grew restless.

credit: Paramoun

Or might you prefer

Was decidely sick of those mothers
And the occasional chinless toff
Mouthing "too damned quiet" before it all kicked off.

credit: Rank


Brexit Day

Searching the wardrobe
What to wear when brexiting?
Article Fifty?

or, perhaps,

Queen Theresa the First,
For unconstrained power had a thirst.
One Union she called her "Precious";
Of t'other she refused to make a fuss.

or, mayhap,

Pride unwarranted
Sticking to a timetable
To shoot your own foot

or, indeed,

Her Mayesty
What sayest thee?
When the Madness of Queen Theresa
Infects the average geezer.