POETRY ARCHIVE

Reflective Light pattern
Alaska. Southeast. Gentle motion of water reflects sunlight into the sandy bottom.

THREE SECRETS

The first tremor:

July 1974.

It’s been 3 months.

Sat on granite breakwater,

Peering out to the horizon.

Sun sallow

Ripped from the sky.

Gloom.

Sea Sniggers

in whispers…

Seen it all before,

but this is the first…

And now is

Not then…

Then was a fear,

Knowledge a gasp!

Nothing will come

of this age.

The second tremor:

July 1982.

one month away.

The tree is gone.

Just a stump.

I’m close to the edge…

A headlong fall through time!

Stolen years :

Thirty, count them,

lost by mistake,

a space-walk,

untethered…

and fall towards

the brutal sun.

No escape

Just waiting, watching…

The promise is

worth the waiting!

The third tremor:

April 2010.

A party surrounds.

It comes out of the blue,

out of context,

in amongst family…

She loves me!

I have always Loved her.

It takes a toll.

Months of hidden hopes

and stolen kisses.

So long the wait

so deep the need,

And the tremors…

Foretold in the first

denied in the second

and the third affirmed.

Thanks be on high!
Copyright Dale Beck 2018


IMG_0521AT MY MOST BEAUTIFUL

I am only beautiful in your eyes,

You take the ugly out of my psyche

Your grace gives me a sense of purity

A sense of the eternal godliness

Which exists just beyond understanding.

My only blissful moments are all yours

There can never be another because

You fill my heart to the brim beloved

My soul is salved by your proximity…

So this is faith, so this is believing

My world begins and centres in your eyes

There is no end because we are now one…

this is not a flower but a prayer

Because God only presents through your Grace.

Love, the only way to live, in your grace…

You are my cipher to the heavenly…

You are my love and one love til the end.

Copyright Dale beck 2018


maxresdefaultBITTER TEARS

How many bitter tears must fall

Into the stream of your life?

How often must the deluge flood

The meadow lands of content ?

Such is nature…

Bitter in blood, tooth and claw

Harsh is the sirocco blown

By jealous continents.

This is the Lore of society…

With each kind deed

An equally harsh.

The alternative is

an isolate.

We dream of perfection, but as God only knows…

This is not a perfect place…

We live on an incline,

but the top has long gone…

We are careering down

And hoping vehemently,

Someone will catch us.

Who’s got a net?

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


invertBLEACHED

Washed out wrung out

dried to a crisp

crumbling in texture

crumbling in fact.

Towering intellect

reflecting

refracting

obsidian mirror

pathways lost to the ocean,

forcing all colour

to drain.

Cracked like an old master

drawn out like an extruded wire…

Taut and over taught

And the thought is not of polemic

but expedience

Of making a small step

from room to room

in my fathers mansion,

calling his name…

but no answer comes

that I can hear.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018.


IMG_0427BLESSINGS

Bless my forever girls…

Bless the lady of the lump, my only daughter

Bless the lump and the world which she will become

Bless my beloved and give me grace to give her my soul

Bless my mother, constant and forever, my stalwart friend

Bless my surrogate babies, Freya and Ellie

Bless you all for what you give to me.

Bless my boys so clever and sharp

Bless my brother for all he has done

Bless my father for he is an older version…

Bless the friends old and new,

May your God or Icon give you blessings too.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


IMG_0265ABOUT THE BOY

The poet is the boy inside,

Bright with naivety and brash,

He wills a perfect world.

He knows nothing…

But Dreams.

The writer is the old man,

He writes of decadence

Of loss and sorrows

So many sorrows

He could float a boat.

The artist is a girl,

Plays with form to find

Beauty and hope

Colours flow and ferment

A lethe tincture of love.

The musician is a dwarf

Unable to form from the formless

He tries, bless him.

He conjures with sounds

But no symphony comes.

The actor is the youth,

thrusting and audacious

In control he holds

The audience Rapt.

Such artifice.

The sculptor is them all,

Finding the character within,

Happy hands mold clay to dimension

With tactile dexterity.

Until the joints creak…

Copyright dale beck 2018.



IMG_1265CHASING CLOUDS

Blue remembered days

navy shorts and grey socks long

rolled down over black pumps…

A brisk but honey time

Clouds rushing headlong

Up the street,

Like a drunk racing for the bar

At opening time.

But Then drunks didn’t enter the lexicon!

Then I would chase the cloud shadow up the street,

Headstrong and headlong…

One slip a toe trip

To a scuffed bleeding knee

Oh to have such problems

Oh to have such worries…

Nothing to keep you from sleep…

Nothing but the hedonistic chase

For no reason other than fun.

Fun?

Natural fun.

Pause.

I like that.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


CREEPCREEP & CRAWL

What is this thrall?

The unseen peering into the inner space…

He stands in darkness

or is he crouching low?

Maybe he is in a window

opposite…

His space in darkness

His eyes saucers

Dilated like a junkie…

Is this his Junk?

This watching…

This waiting…

This wanting?

Is it a want or need…

Is it a sexual desire?

Or is it a power?

Knowing what should not be known?

Stealing the safety of interior space?

When breached there is no further groin for the sands

Of your solitary existence

The viewer just by watching has violated

the inviolate.

copyright Dale beck 2018


DAY

To relive just one day,

Just one cycle of

Twenty-four hours.

What would you choose?

Would it be a magical day?

A day when you made love

And it was like the first time?

Or maybe it was the first time.

A day of pride validictory?

A culmination of all your hard work?

A day in gown and cap?

Aglow with that dayglow pride.

A day of unbounded joy?

When your child was born?

Perfect in miniature,

Cherished from inception?

A miraculous wonder.

And all of these would be fine,

Days to hang in a line

But in your heart you know…

There is only one day.

The day your brother died,

And you fought just before…

And all was lost when

There came that knock on the door.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


TAOIST ROCK

Your face the rock of ages,

Beauty unchained

Prometheus bound

against the surge of ages.

Like a gilded gelding you pranced

linnet caged in stardust

robed in satin and tat

clownish saviour machine.

You spoke of the outside

beyond the real

siren to the lost

your lament froze time.

Our bedrooms your altar,

you altered time

stopped clocks

for another grinning soul.

Creationist in theory,

you opened gates

to worlds serene

and the firmament flayed.

The tidal wave was spurned

As you surfed

the tempest wild

and sang to the stars.

A universe you gave,

cold and warm

hot and frozen

but the shimmer has gone.

A lad in vain,sane,

but sadly missing,

and aching hole,

The black star vacated.

COPYRIGHT DALE BECK 2018


DISSOLUTION OF TRUST

I used to envy the young

oh the future that they would have

you see this was the promise they gave:

toppermost of the poppermost

every day would be better than the last…

I would look at the young

and think… oh to have their future!

IT WAS A LIE!

The future they promised shimmered

like the emerald city

like the mole’s crystal castles

before he got glasses…

But we all got glasses…

the illusion of a glowing future

became ashes snowing down

across the Big Apple sun drenched sky.

I look at children with pity now…

pity poor tom…

the future hangs like a black cloud

over the blameless young,

the biscuit on the tongue

stale and inedible,

and every day as it gets worse,

they will sing hallelujah!

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


DISTANT SOBS

You caught me sobbing,

Deep heaving, heart tugging

Sobs from the solar plexus!

Soul draining tears…

“For a dog on the t.v.?”

You asked incredulously,

“The dog… yes the dog…

but no not just the dog…

The girl tugged at her hair…

Just like you used to

When you were a girl…

The girl you were before…

Before the interminable wait,

before the thirty three years went missing,

And… And I could hold you then

as I hold you now…

I sob for what I missed,

A yearning nostalgia

For the ages in between!”

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


HEAVEN – A RECONSTRUCTION

It was an afterthought, a confection…

A promise of a perfect place,

But it was a bugger to build.

The castles in the air,

Ephemeral and ethereal,

Would just disappear.

A turn of the head would

Shift the focus and blur the edges.

He needed help.

His son tried a different approach,

Make the earth a heaven

Its corporeal reality,

Would hold fast.

And for a while it seemed to work,

but the son was lost

And the Father despaired,

for no matter how hard he tried

To offer the man heaven,

Too soon, the elders would crush it!

“We don’t want perfection,

Imperfection allows us a space,

To exploit our differences.

copyright Dale Beck 2018



IMAGINE

imagine this:

Not still a boy

but a man:

Taken from home

Taken from work

Dressed in Khaki

Given a rifle and boots.

Turned back into:

A child,

scolded and scorned.

Screamed at an inch

distance.

YOU ARE A DISGRACE!

Hold your rifle right…

Left right left right…

And you, a man

Treated as a man

since you were fourteen…

Working as a man from that age.

And now your back to the remove.

And you have signed up for this,

by free will you are sectioned…

In a long cold hut,

with a row of cold cots

and clown cuts…

Barbered by butchery.

Prepared for butchery.

And you with a baby at home.

The reason you signed on.

To save the world from

Savagery and cant.

No neither can I.

Imagination only takes you so far…

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


THIS LETTER

As I write this letter,

send my love to you,

my blood runs from my veins,

silken threads of crimson

I feel no pain, but heart-ache

You have left me adrift…

In this inverse boat…

The blood quickened by the heat

Of the water, and the wine…

Is just for light relief.

I cannot go back to the half-life,

The tick tock of seconds

Turning into hours.

I’m not that brave,

Can’t take the stage again.

Its not your fault,

I would like to say,

But it is… I am your unbidden burden,

You never sought to be my Judge

Or jury.

The truth is I tried myself,

I’m guilty of over-investing,

In a sure thing,

But nobody is ever a sure thing…

I know that now.

I tried , you tried and now you have gone…

Don’t worry baby, I’m on my way.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


POST-MODERN SLEAZE

And there is no alternative.

The well of imagination

is dry…

no not dry,

but fetid with the decadent detritus

of a thousand layers.

Images used and re-used,

laminating synonyms

of the original thought.

The knowing and unknowing

fracture of image,sound and word

post Duchamp ready-mades,

already shards

style without content,

visceral but meaningless

artifice without art.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


LOVER’S TALE

Now in this moment,

Which is all time,

The essence of being.

A chemical bonding,

Alchemical touchstone,

Minds into mind.

Of one skin,

A cauldron mix,

Bewitched and beloved

Spell-bound and ionised

Body becomes lionised…

Held as a godhead,

In this moment

Are all moments.

Fused and confused,

It’s like life?

It’s like all life.

It is All life.

It is alchemy.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


MONEY

You talk about money as if it was real…

It is not.

It is an abstract realisation of work.

like tokens?

It is no more real than an old barter stick

or i.o.u.

It’s the way of stealing labour by the Man.

Suckling Pigs!

They wave paper in your face, a magic wand,

and you bow.

Do you not feel this a mighty injustice?

Travesty?

Marx would recoil in horror at this torpor,

Lethargy.

The fact is we are too tired to create a fuss…

They have won.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018.


IN THE SHADOW OF THE MOUNTAIN

Tomorrow I arrive at the base of the mountain.

I don’t know what to expect…

Something or nothing.

Either way I shall look to the peak of that particular mountain,

face the summit and say I will climb over it.

Which ever way it lies, I shall fly.

I’m tired. So very tired.

Given the choice … I would sleep.

A perfect blissful sleep.

A rebirth.

A body reborn. A Phoenix.

Born of the ashes.

Born out of pain into light.

Let the mountain fed waterfall

Wash the aches away.

Refreshed and renewed.

God Willing.

God willing.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018.


ORANGE SUN

The sun brushed blood orange

In a dry parchment sky…

A scroll carrying a wanton wish,

A whisper for the desert’s kiss.

Come play across my auburn heights,

And toe tip your rays in the windswept sands.

Come speak of Atlas and Heracles’ chores…

Cool your flame on the mediterranean shores.

Sahara offers her ferocious kiss

Smarting eyes and chapping lips…

Such ardour takes away his breath,

And tears his chromosphere to death.

We watched aghast the lover’s tryst…

as Sun and Sand merged from the mist,

We do not flower in yellow veils,

Nor in Vein-tracked chem-trails,

Which billows out across the vast and

leaden skies, loaded with laudinum,

And Lord know’s what…

And the soothsayer’s still call:

We Are The Dead!

Dale Beck copyright 2018


WHEN PANDORA’S BOX IS OPENED

It’s not so bad… You face change.

And it’s liberating. Nothing stops.

And it’s good. So good… You fear how good,

because acknowledging how good could hex it.

You stop cynically stepping on cracks

like a godless goon biologist…

No fairies must be risked!

I’m in a space, a self-inflated reality,

which a pin might pop.

Creation is so arduous…

Concentrating on one fixed point…

Whereas reactionism is easy.

And so banal!

I hold her box tight shut,

and maintain Hope for all.

copyright Dale Beck 2018.


PEELING THE ONION

The fake is faked.

A double negative

Lain like slabs

of prior knowledge…

denying, the denier

becomes victim

or aggressor

or both

or neither…

so truth is

beholden

tied down with gaffer tape.

Where is the hurt?

Where is the crime?

Obfuscated?

By sleight of hand

or word

or deed?

Who can say?

The screams are real!

The pain is sucked

the drama reels…

and the confusion is a bitter balm to wear.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


POST-TRAUMATIC SLEAZE

And there is no alternative.

The well of imagination

is dry…

no not dry,

but fetid with the decadent detritus

of a thousand layers.

Images used and re-used,

laminating synonyms

of the original thought.

The knowing and unknowing

fracture of image,sound and word

post-Duchamp ready-mades,

already shards…

style without content,

visceral but meaningless

artifice without art.

Switch to sample, horns from Spector,

Bass a stolen discordant throb,

Etched from a reverb, no verb

Adjectively speaking to nothing…

Is original a print? A Fingerprint?

Multiformed in stark white light

Eyes bleached to the uniformity

don’t walk into the light!

Sing Hosannah… Sing!

Dale Beck copyright 2018


PULL THE TAPESTRY

And of this fabrication

Silks sown and woven tight,

Each loving line picked,

Carefully worked into

The fabrication of your life.

The tapestry is the lie

Heroic as Sir Gawain:

And as deeply fanciful…

Weft and warp,

Weft and warp,

Each memory

Becomes reality,

But only in your

tapestry…

Woven like a film script,

Spoken like a soliloquy…

Until a thread is pulled…

The stitches unravel

The knots fray …

And the tapestry of your life

Is tattered like an military standard,

All Battles and victories

Ring hollow…

Gashed by the scythe of time

C’est vraiment vrai…

Is a lost language?

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


RAINBOW

Rainbow swoops across the sky like a proscenium

Ordering the flash and bang of the front

yelling at your eyes a sodium swipe

grandiose like a grand duke of greenery

Belligerent and beautiful, a sky smile

Intemperate and loquacious as April

Vestal and virginal … ephemeral and awesome.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


RELIC

With these bones and stones

And wood from the cross

And the truth and the or is it?

We pollute the now.

The now is the city we live in.

So why the relics?

We go back and forth

on the time-line…

As if it is real.

But what is real?

Reality is just a word now…

The ins and outs of the now,

The ins and outs of this time.

So why the relics?

The sphinx sits as a reminder…

And Easter Island heads walk

Down the hill to the plain.

To denote Times winged arrow

Flying back and forth.

A projection.

An abstract.

Time.

Now.

Then?

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


SHARD – JIGSAW PIECE

Suddenly, she said,”But I Don’t know any Russian poets!”

Yet there sat Pushkin, twirling his mustache to a point…

Quoting ‘I loved You’ with a rheumy tear in his bloodshot eye.

She pointed with a cigarette holder to a quiet shadow…

“You Boy, What is your last word”? He, the immortal He,

Ran blood-spattered fingers through his oil-black seal-backed hair…

An ode for the other He, Salvadore Dali…
“A rose in the high garden you desire.
A wheel in the pure syntax of steel.”

The Author cried. So sad the song he sang.

Lorca, You breathe forever with your words and deeds…

And they all circle round, and around, and around…

Ghosts in the machine, a routine of search and display,

This is the Tower of Babel.

Stevie Smith smiled or thought to smile but,

She was much further out than you thought
And not waving but drowning.

Sassoon arrived to say his piece,

Everyone suddenly burst out singing;. And I was filled with such delight.

And with this the most joyous point, poignant as it is

As a remembrance of the millions Dead…

I leave the the last to Rabindranath Tagore:

But I know a nicer game than that, mother.
I shall be the cloud and you the moon.

What nicer game can there be than to be a cloud

as a satellite to the mirror sun.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


THE ART OF SILENCE

She can sit and stare at the nothing for hours

She needs no sounds to delve the depths

She needs no rosary to commune with her Godhead

She carries it all inside her head.

This is what she has taught me.

Me of the loud crashing bangs

Of The bluster and bravado

Of the effervescent effusiveness

Of the trinity, three things going at once…

Just to hold the silence at bay,

Because in the silence is all the pain.

And the pain is ignoble, it pulls no punches…

And I am a crybaby.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


SILVER SHIMMER

What alchemy this? What kindling touch the torch?

A silver shimmer, a slight phase discrepancy…

You.

Deja vu?

Nothing of the old world equated to this reality,

unprepared for the polar shift…

I played dead-pan.

I had no tools,

equipped to see the monochrome screen,

my eyes scorched in the technicolour of

Ave Maria!

Ave Maria?

So cool yet blazing, burnished from ice and fire,

You are the air, I’m the water

Quench your thirst my angel.

dale beck copyright 2018


SPREAD ACROSS THE UNIVERSE

It begins with the words:

The words are love, peace, and care.

Love is the most powerful;

Its effects are contagion

Spread by deed and hope

There are no barriers which can contain it.

It is the most virulent antidote

To war, bombs and hate.

Peace is less effective and more fragile,

It needs careful nourishment,

One false move can destroy it

Peace has to be cherished

Like a new-born child…

Care is easy,

It requires only an open heart,

An empathic sense of other’s hurts…

With care we can breed gentle peace

and love will spread across the universe.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


STILL LIFE

Her bare shoulders are sheathed in a glow of sweat…

Night has yet to steal the latent heat from the day.

So still she sits intent only on the unbolted door,

Cigarette decorously dangling from slender fingers,

The grey pall of smoke curling into the twilight

The only movement the scene can take…

Does her crossed leg allow her foot to bob?

The slight edge reflected by this childish tick…

How long as she waited for the handle to turn?

How long the memory of his rugged jaw…

Of his thin harsh lips brusque against her own?

Of his cruel pale blue eyes pinning her…

Like a butterfly?

Does she think of escape?

Or does she still feel his hot breath against her neck?

What is this moment of stillness…

A paralysis of fear?

Like a rabbit held in headlights,

Or is it a desire?

A poignant wish to feel his strong arms around her…

His dark heart throbbing against her bird in a cage ?

Moment of stillness,

Dripping a longing

But what longing?

Desire or dread?

He becomes the isolated idol,

His absence builds his part.

And the threat of him is greater than the reality.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


STOP THE WORLD

So many irrefutable truths are moot.

Great swathes of truth planed away

The big blue ball is flat…

shaving 500 years

Of progress

away

to

?

I

am

dumb

in this world

My truth has no currency

I can’t believe in mediocrity

Can’t hold on to two planes of reality

Where up is up and down simultaneously.

I don’t blame schrodinger but His cat

Live and Death is now a moot point.

And God is a cloud-faced Jesus…

Are we being played by the Elite?

Are we lost in a deliberated maze?

Will it all come good?

I don’t know what I know…

I don’t proclaim answers.

I just scratch my head,

and my arse.

copyright Dale Beck 2018


SWEVEN

The land between,

we fly

Like Dragons

We curl : ourobouros

Devouring ourselves

Inch by inch.

This land between,

we swim

like dolphins

We dive : Leviathan

Deep down deep.

This land between,

we love

like godheads

we trip : Dionysus

low down lust.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


TAKE IT ALL

Take this blood from my veins,

Let It sustain you.

Take My breath for I breathe

Only by your Grace.

Take these words that crowd my head,

For without you I’m Mute.

Take my flesh in golden mounds

For You have my Soul!

Take all that I am And all

And all… I become.

Take me Into your body

and Of your body.

Take all you need… Because

All I Need is you.

copyright Dale Beck 2018


TEARS

The purple pelt of sadness soaked

In the statuesque solitude of sorrow.

Staring at the ceiling unseen

Through the veil.

Shouting: I will not do! I will not do…

An answer to Plath… Of Sorts.

We wear our feelings on the outside,

Like a hair-shirt

An Open display of dismay.

Flagellating our sores

In penitence…

Some will turn away in disgust,

But most will have to look

Having read the book.

We are the keepers of all

Sorrow, of all tears.

The emotional equivalence of the jester…

When none can wear callow

Despair…

Ours become legend.

I am legend,

I cry for all.

copyright Dale Beck 2018


THE TYRANNY OF OPHELIA

Ophelia slipped waif – like between the waves,

Clutching her garland of windswept leaves,

Her tell-tale tears become a torrent

A Maelstrom, spinning northwards,

Darkening with the loss of land…

Emboldened by the sea’s warm embrace.

Lost in grief, her wailing winds are heard across the ocean,

Like a siren call to the suckling seals of Ramsey,

Who looked out across the horizon… helpless and hopeless!

Maybe their mothers called to them to follow their lead,

Tempting them beneath the wash of waves…

But too soon came the call , too young the offspring,

And the powdery white pups became further froth…

Fizzing through the awesome waves to crash, at last, on land.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


TO THE FOREST

Bleak November, just the two of us…

Wednesday afternoon, sport and no resorts,

A charade of scrabble. Pick a letter…

S is for sin, and it is a sin,

R is redolent of reefer, smoke serene,

D is the drab thought of dinner or drink.

It was always going to be sin.

It had to be found out, what might have been?


S it was… did we linger?

Did we pause to recourse?

No we jumped up, minds set, set long ago, just to know…

You know. I laughed like a tickled choir-boy,

To the forest, maid Marion, to the forest green.

Hands held like Hansel and Gretel, we ran

Dr.Marten’s cloying and caulked in mud,

And the lake washed its hands of us…

Up against a tree, with back to me…

Jeans around knees. Leaning back hard.

And snowflakes fell, great big flakes of foolishness.

We felt foolish. But we knew, and we had to know.

You always have to know. Was this the one?


February. A brief relief from the overwhelming bleak winter.

A birthday surprise. I smoked a fat one. A treat. A bitch of a skunk.

Top-loaded and I was on thirty frames a second.

A spastic in time. Seconds stretched to millennia.

Space totally replaced from one moment to the next.

And you took me by the hand, led me back to the place,

the very tree. On this tree, we became an altar…

She told me that her other-half had been told, and retold.

It was nothing, we had to know, and now we knew.

He could not accept the verdict.

He ordered a pyre to our love,

And all your clothes… All your clothes were taken

To this spot. This very spot. Lost in the forest.

And with paraffin, came la fin, the end.

The curls of smoke, enraptured by the moment of

When we had to know.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


TRY HARDER TRY BETTER

I was a boy when I met you,

You were a sophist…

Perfectly drawn, temptress!

So tall, so willow-whipped.

Gypsy heart and ten paces ahead.

You wanted me. I followed.

You took the boy, broke him, and

Made this man. Alchemist.

I came with baggage,

You came with a need,

Dark and sultry

Tamarind dusk…

With all-knowing, all unknown

I was not worthy of the opening,

But sought your soul to remake my own.

And when I was tempted, or feigned temptation,

You took another route

And left with all the light.

darkest dawn. I was resurrected as a shadow.

The shadow played across the landscape

The longest time lost in wilderness.

Latching on to suckling breeds,

Nurtured by nurturing others.

Soul-strained and spirit soaked.

Suddenly, it came back

The light rekindled.

You broke me and awoke me.

I am all new.

I love you

As no other.

As no other,

Retrained to savour each moment

Hand-fasted and entwined

This is the truth

I only ever sought truth…

You are my lexicon of truth

My lexicon of love.

My only one

My only one.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


SPREAD ACROSS THE UNIVERSE

It begins with the words

Softly spoken – Maybe an accent

A soft Dublin brogue…

Perhaps.

The words are love, peace, and care.

Love is the most powerful;

Its effects are contagion

Spread by deed and hope

There are no barriers which can contain it.

It is the most virulent antidote

To war, bombs and hate.

Peace is less effective and more fragile,

It needs careful nourishment,

One false move can destroy it

Peace has to be cherished

Like a new-born child…

Care is easy,

It requires only an open heart,

An empathic sense of other’s hurts…

With care we can breed gentle peace

and love will spread across the universe.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


YOUNG IDIOT

The boy is an idiot, two-tone black and tan,

Drunk on the need to live fast as a cheetah…

Hard-on life, thrust into it all and all…

Take no prisoners or passengers

Just the drink and the draw, speed and soar

and a one-night stand becomes four…

On all fours from the floor to ceiling

And it’s all so good and so right,

Until you wake in the middle of the night

Catching your breath in a brown paper bag

And your cheeks are sallow and sag

And the blackness sits in rings around your eyes

And even the party people look at you and sigh

I knew him once, when he was good and fun

Now he hides in shadows and stays out of the sun.

Youth dies before you do, ain’t that the truth.

And your candles flutters and splutters

And no matter how hard you try,

You falter and die… By degree, by design.

Copyright Dale Beck 2018


QUEUE HERE

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BUSY NIGHT

I’m used to having a full bed… Two dogs, a lady and my extra large belly, all struggle to fit the space every morning for breakfast… Dogs love toast! What can you do?

So the queue awaiting an audience last night was not the first time my bed had been in demand. This time however, the throng was somewhat extortionate. The veil between the real world and the next must have been very thin last night because there was at least four or five entities all wanting an audience. As I tried to sleep, one was actually sat on my back! I couldn’t shift her! One was whispering in my ear, another was within my body… Janet heard one get out of bed and follow me into the bathroom. She is not used to being surrounded by spirits and It proper freaked her out.

To me the spirit world is as confusing as this one. I hear them, feel them and sense them… but nothing makes sense! You would think this connection could be harnessed and used for good, but because I denied it for so long, deliberately ignored it for forty years, I don’t have the skills to control it or understand it. Instead of honing this ability, my fear as a teenager left me with an aversion of the spirits… Imagine having to know of disasters before they happen? I didn’t want to know.

So I’m trying to accept this ability, but please people… Form an orderly queue, and don’t sit on my back!

DALE’M’

BOY’S NAMES PLAYLIST

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BOY’S NAMES PLAYLIST

  1. YOU CAN CALL ME AL – PAUL SIMON
  2. BENNY AND THE JETS – ELTON JOHN
  3. COLIN ZEAL – BLUR
  4. DAVID COURTNEY – RANCID
  5. ELVIS – LONGPIGS
  6. FRANKIE TEARDROP – SUICIDE
  7. WALTZ FOR GEORGE – PUBLIC SERVICE BROADCASTING
  8. HURRY UP HARRY – SHAM 69
  9. IAN FISH UK HEIR – DAVID BOWIE
  10. JOHN I’M ONLY DANCING – DAVID BOWIE
  11. KEVIN’S – SHARON VAN ETTEN
  12. LARRY LIZARD – THE TWANG
  13. MARKS TO PROVE IT – THE MACCABEES
  14. NICK THE STRIPPER – THE BIRTHDAY PARTY
  15. OLIVER’S ARMY – ELVIS COSTELLO
  16. FOR PETE’S SAKE – THE MONKEES
  17. MIGHTY QUINN – MANFRED MANN
  18. ROBIN HOOD – JAMIE T
  19. STEVE MCQUEEN – M83
  20. TOMMY GUN – THE CLASH
  21. LADY IN BLACK – URIAH HEEP
  22. VINCE THE LOVEABLE STONER – THE FRATELLIS
  23. WILLIAM CHALKER’S TIME MACHINE – LEMON TREE
  24. XERXES – WILLIAM ORBIT
  25. YURI – G – PJ HARVEY
  26. ZIGGY STARDUST – DAVID BOWIE

BIT MORE OBSCURE THAN THE GIRL’S NAMES.

DALE ‘M’

 

GIRLS NAMES PLAYLIST

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GIRL’S NAME PLAYLIST

  1. ANGIE BABY – HELEN REDDY
  2. BARBARA ANN – BEACH BOYS
  3. CAROLYN’S FINGERS – COCTEAU TWINS
  4. DIANE YOUNG – VAMPIRE WEEKEND
  5. COME ON EILEEN – DEXY’S MIDNICHT
  6. FAITH – THE CURE
  7. GOODNIGHT GEORGIE – CLINIC
  8. HENRIETTA – THE FRATELLIS
  9. IRENE – BEACH HOUSE
  10. JENNIFER – THE EURYTHMICS
  11. KAREN – SILVER SWANS
  12. LOUISE – HUMAN LEAGUE
  13. SO LONG MARIANNE – LEONARD COHEN
  14. NANCY BOY – PLACEBO
  15. OONA – PIXIES
  16. PENNY LANE – THE BEATLES
  17. 50FT QUEENIE – PJ HARVEY
  18. SAVE ROSEMARY IN TIME – THE COURTEENERS
  19. SNEAKIN SALLY THROUGH THE ALLEY – ROBERT PALMER
  20. TRACY JACKS – BLUR
  21. UNA PALOMA BLANCA – GEORGE BAKER SELECTION
  22. VIOLET DELIVERY – BLANK REALM
  23. WILLOW – JOAN ARMATRADING
  24. XENA THEME TUNE – DASHINA
  25. DEAR YOKO – JOHN LENNON
  26. ZOEL, FACE DANCER – GRIMES

THESE COMPLICATED LISTS GIVE ME AN ENORMOUS AMOUNT OF PLEASURE, OBSCURIST THAT I AM.

DALE’M’

 

 

CATNIP OR ALWAYS IN THE BEDROOM AT PARTIES (FULL STORY)

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FALSE START

It was a Friday night 1977, maybe June or July, I had an invite to a party in Sutton Coldfield, for a girl called Delney, who worked in the office at work. I was with my mate, the drummer, drinking at the George IV pub. Our usual Friday Fayre, drinking beer and him drumming the metal tables with the pair of drumsticks he carried everywhere. I smoked my cigarettes, sang along to the jukebox, and dreamed of fame and fortune. I told the drummer that we had a party to go to, and he was happy as a pig in shit.

Problem with drinking in the backwaters of Lichfield, there were very few women on show. Would-be Rock stars need an audience and we, as half of a band, recently  disbanded, found the lack of an audience, dispiriting. We had sat there in the pub for months, licking our wounds, whilst the two guitarists moved on to pastures new… Namely Cannock, and long-haired heavy metal stardom awaited them. Good riddance! We, the drummer and me, would not stoop so low! We were punks. Two things stopped our mega rise to stardom, the fact that my singing was fucking awful, and secondly, the drummer’s drums had been repossessed by the Hire Purchase company. A singer without a voice and a drummer without drums, were not in high demand… with anyone!

At 8 o’clock, having drunk a half gallon of Ansell’s Bitter, we made the momentous decision to head off to the party. We stopped at the off-Licence on the way to the railway station, and spent a small fortune on a bottle of Vodka and a Watney’s Red Barrel party seven.

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(This was the ubiquitous carry out of the seventies, a barrel that contained 7 pints of beer.)

When bringing a bottle to a party, it was important to bring a cheap option, which could be jettisoned into the kitchen for the general party-goers,whilst  your good stuff you kept to you to yourself.(A less scrupulous party-goer would buy a cheap bottle and swap it for a better one, I have just been informed, this however, would not enter my mind) So we sat fully prepared for a big night out, on the cross-city train, full of the whats and wherefore’s we would enjoy at this select soiree.

The train trundled sedately into the train station at Sutton Coldfield, and with the quick and sure footed gait of youth, walked the mile to the allotted site. The house was dark and quiet, when we rang the bell. Delney and Pete, a work mate, came blearily to the door.

“Ok, mate, the party’s here!” I shouted excitedly.

“What?” He said.

“The party…” I blinked at his dumb look.

“Sorry mate. the party is next week, not today.”

I looked at the drummer, he looked at me. We both looked at the booze we carried.

“Don’t suppose you’ve got an opener for this?” I pointed at the party seven of Double Diamond.

Pete looked at the little barrel, and went inside. He came back with a posi-drive screw driver.

“Try this.” The drummer set the barrel on the floor. He took the proffered screw driver, and gouged out to make-do openings in the barrel. It frothed dangerously, and deposited a lion- share of its contents on the tarmac. He passed the screw driver back to Pete, like a doctor passing a scalpel back to the nurse.

“Thanks.”

“No problem.” Pete shut the door.

“We better get this drunk. Can’t exactly walk along the street with it open.”

I shrugged. What a wash-out. We found a wall to sit on and took turns swigging beer from the ridiculous barrel. Having worked our way solidly through the contents, most of which ended up on our fronts, we trudged wearily back to the station… Another wasted Friday night!

During the hour long slow sojourn back to the station, having dispatched the Watney’s Red Barrel into the nearest hedge, we took turns in sipping, then slugging, the bottle of Vodka. So that when we actually arrived back at the Train Station we were both happily steaming.(DRUNK)

The station was empty. There was but one train left to arrive at the desolate platform, the 11.30 from New St. Birmingham. Of course, the curse of drink on young men is legend, better men than I have been brought down by its perils. Having clambered on top of the bus shelter type plastic contraption on the platform, the drummer was beating away happy little timpani riffs on the edges of plastic and aluminium and I was down on the tracks lying prostate like a girl from the silent era, shouting Heeelllp, Heeeellp! The drummer shouted loudly at my prostate form, that someone was coming! I jumped up, more afraid of someone seeing me acting stupid, than I was of the threat of a train dissecting me. A middle-aged blonde lady, clip-clopped her high-heeled way down the slope from the station. By the time she arrived I was sat demurely in the bus shelter, as if butter wouldn’t melt! She smiled wanly as she passed and I realised I knew her…

She was the daughter of Meg Richardson. Not literally of course, I don’t think Noele Gordon actually had a daughter… But she was the screen daughter of the TV character Meg Richardson, both characters from the now defunct soap opera, CROSSROADS. Thankfully, I had not made an arse of myself. However, as the drummer still remained drumming on the top of the shelter, the same could not be said for him. When he saw who it was, he silently slid down off the roof and sheepishly sat down beside me.

As we left the train station, we looked at each other and laughed.

“Well that was a waste of fucking time wasn’t it?” The drummer said.

“A bit of the washout, but just think… We’ve got a party to go to next week!”


Ok, so we missed the party the first week. The next Friday, segue into the last week. The usual suspects sit drinking in the George IV. After two pints, the hero says to the drummer,

“What about going to that party?”

“Are you sure its on?”

“Yeah.”

“Oh you sure, you are sure?”

“Yeah, Delney, said it’s gonna be crammed with her mates…”

“Fanny?”

“Most definitely.” The drummer looked around the sparsity  of the clientele of the pub, and said,

“Well, my old china, there’s fuck all going on here.”

Reprise the scenes from the previous week, we left for the off-licence. This time we went sans the Watney’s red barrel, as the party seven was difficult to drink without a bottle opener. We settled for two half bottles of vodka each, as the bottles were easier to conceal about your person. The palliative offered to the kitchen table, this time was a tasty little Mateus Rose wine. We would not be drinking it. It was a token offering for the ladies.

So, we went on the train to Sutton Coldfield. The mile to the house was not covered with such alacrity as the week before. Once bitten twice embrocated.  We were not expecting miracles.  We arrived at the address. This time it was awash with lights, We did not need to knock the door. It was wide open. Beats from the front room escaped like magical madrigals across the road. My drummer gave a little skip, like a boy from the playground.

“Sounds more like it!” He ran into the house, like a man on a mission. I looked around the gathering throng for the birthday girl. She was deeply en-tongued with Pete in the lounge, which had been cleared of its furnishings. I tapped him on his shoulder, and he gave me sheepish grin…

“Alright mate, made it then, on the right day?” The joke being, he had ribbed me all week about being a premature ejaculator. Such is the jocular hilarity of banter in the midlands.

“Fuck off mate, I’ve never been too quick in my bleeding life!”  A hasty rejoinder.

We circulated. My drummer, clockwise, me anti-clockwise. He winked at me as we crossed paths…

“Plenty of crumpet!” his hasty appraisal of the situation. Mine was less encompassing. I focused upon two likely characters. A very striking dark-haired girl and a her mate, who was perfect in her demi-perm and white dress.

“I’m in here mate” I said to the drummer, nodding my head towards the two girls.

He looked incredulous, as the two girls in question, were unmistakably the best in show.

“Come on then.” He said.

“No. Let them be, let’s away to the kitchen.” I grabbed his eager arse and pulled him away to the kitchen. Here we found glasses and soft drinks to make our vodka last longer. We ditched the bottle of Mateus Rose, and found orange juice and glasses.

“Here.” I said, as I passed him a glass.

“Don’t get too pissed!” I said..

“We don’t want any trouble. OK?!”

“Okay, I hear you, no smashing things up.”


INTERMISSION

A couple of weeks before, we had been arrested by the local constabulary. How had this come about?

Like this.

We had been at the local disco at the rugby club. We had partaken of a few beverages and been outside sharing a few joints. We had been in conversation with our two long-haired guitarists about forming a band. They were all for it at the time, not when we got to rehearsing, either the drummers drumming or my singing… made them cool on the idea of a band. Anyway, long story short, I’d left the disco on my drummer’s back, after a short altercation with the local constabulary. We had escaped without prosecution, but our high spirits, ie the fact I was riding him piggy back, had evoked the ire of one of the local ruffians, who on seeing our high spirits had taken exception, and punched me in the face. Unable to protect myself, as both hands were occupied reining in my horsey, I received a massive black eye. The ruffian had rounded on me as I dismounted, and called me all the names under the sun.

“You fucking idiots are gonna get us arrested.” He exclaimed. I rubbed my eye. I looked harshly at him, and then noticed he had a beer mug in the other hand. My alert brain, always on the look out for danger, said, probably best not smack him one back.

So, the drummer and I made our way home without any further ado. Half way home, we decided between us, home was not the place to go… Given that my eye was out on stilts… And that I would probably face interrogation from my parents. This was something I didn’t fancy at the time, as I was still stoned from the Cannabis and liable to incriminate myself. So we stopped off at a half built building and sat beside the fireplace.

“What we need here, little drummer boy, is a fire to fill this fireplace.” Given that the house was on a building site and building materials were ever present, we found plenty of bits of wood and paper, and soon built an impressive fire. It must have been impressive, because the flames alerted the neighbours and shortly, we were once again visited by the boys in blue.

There was a notorious Sergeant at the local police Station. Jock Mackay. A bastard to all who sailed with him.

“Alright boys? Your fucking nicked my beauties.” I put my hands up, The drummer ran. Big mistake. He was caught in the back yard, with a swift left hook. He fell gasping like a carp to the ground. Jock took my hands and put them behind my back and then handcuffed them. Him and his driver led me up the garden path to the awaiting panda car. The Driver opened the back door, and Jock, ever helpful, smacked my head against the roof.

So, its 4 a.m. and I’m brought into the interview room. I’m still underage, which the dear beloved sergeant already knew.

“Listen, just tell me it was your mate’s idea to set the building alight and you’ll get off!”

I knew the dreaded Jock’s M.O., and could see he was trying to set up my drummer boy for the fall, as he was in fact over 18.

“It wasn’t his idea, we both thought it at the same time.”

“Oh dear son, looks like I’m going to have to tell your mum.”

“You can tell my mum, she already knows about you.” My mum was a youth worker, and already knew the dreaded Jock’s way of working. he liked to fit up youths for jobs, just to get convictions. He knew who my mum was. He knew fitting me up or my mate, would lead to loads of hassle. Seeing that I’d seen through his plan to fit the drummer up  for the charge, he had no alternative but to let us go, but not without some fun for his leary mates. We were eventually shown the stairs, and thrown down them.

We crashed in a heap at the bottom of the stairs.

I shouted back up.

“OI, we were only half a mile away from home… You Gonna give us a lift back?”

Jock’s face turned puce.

“Fuck off you little twat! You better stay clean otherwise I’m gonna fucking have you!”

I turned to the drummer, picked him up, then turned back to Jock and said,

“Thanks for your help!”

 


The picture accompanying these series is of Kylie Minogue. It was chosen because the hair perfectly matches the girl who will shortly become the heroine of this piece. She was not my first choice. My first choice on that fated night had been her best friend. She had short cropped dark hair ( a pixie cut, I’m reliably informed by my editor) and was striking rather than beautiful. She looked like a younger version of Julie Covington.

 

Always drawn to the extremes, I took my little drummer boy by the ear.

“Ok sunshine, lets go and dance. Don’t say anything. Just dance and stay cool.”

“Gotcha.”

I grabbed his shoulder.

“Listen! I mean it. Don’t say anything. Do not under any circumstances ask them if they Fuck.”

“IT WAS A JOKE!”

“It was no bleeding joke mate, we got run out fucking town by a lynch mob of angry hens… Just because it was a hen night, didn’t mean that you could take liberties!”

“I found out what I needed to know… They didn’t.”

“You think?  Anyway, this time leave it to me. ”

Someone had slipped the Album SOLID SOUL GOLD on to the turntable, whilst we had been out in the kitchen, laying plans for mice and men, and the girls were doing that shuffling two-step dance which evokes handbags on the floor and long drinks with fruit in, most likely Cinzano and Lemonade. I inwardly groaned as I tried to make our move into the centre of the throng, look cool. A hard act to pull off when your entrance to the fray is accompanied by “I’m Your Puppet” by James & Bobby Purify. A slow dull song at the best of times, it was not the sort of tune you make an impression with. The drummer could. He did a forward roll, whilst holding his drink and bounced up like a veritable rubber ball. He waved his drink in front of Julie, her of the pixie cut,

“Do you want some?” He shouted across to her. I slapped my forehead hard with my hand…here we go again. She flounced off in the direction of the kitchen, and the drummer followed closely behind. I took the beat of the tune and began to mirror the dance of the other girl, the demi-wave blonde, who smiled at me. The Puppet song faded out and was followed by “Hold on I’m coming” by Sam & Dave, which had a better beat and I schmoozed closer with a little bit of syncopation, an extra flick of the hip added to the two step shuffle. The Demi-wave swished as she tried to mirror my new move… She was still smiling at me. I relaxed. She moved her mouth to my ear.

“I love your shoes.” She said. Bingo!


Okay, another little digression. The shoes were a major investment. I’d recently been to see Saturday Night Fever, and had been rather taken with the shoes John Travolta had hankered after.

Image result for burgundy winklepickers

Like these, but with a bigger cuban heel and less shiny. They looked amazing, and when I found a pair they had cost a bloody fortune. Never much of a fashionista, these were the only shoes that I have ever felt the bees knees in.


I felt fully vindicated in my travails to find the blessed shoes. The girl loved my shoes.

“Thanks.” I shouted in her ear. When “Working in a coal mine” came on I gestured that we should perhaps sit this one out. I led her out to the kitchen and gathered another glass and more orange Juice.

“Shall we go outside into the garden, get a bit of air?”

She looked around anxiously to find out where her mate, Julie was. Julie was nowhere to be seen. I saw the drummer. He has slid down the wall behind the fridge, shaking his head slowly in remorse, and held a sausage to his eye. The sausage was raw.

“Alright mate? Why have you got a raw sausage held to your eye?”

“Bleeding obvious innit? They don’t appear to have any steak in the fridge!”

Head slap number two.

“Why do you need steak?” He moved the sausage and revealed a shiner.

“What did you do?” I asked redundantly… I knew what he’d done. He’d done what he always did. He’d fucked up!

“Well, you know her mate, the dark-haired one… I sort of inadvertently stroked her arse as we walked into the kitchen… I’d meant it as a friendly gesture, however she took exception and clouted me with her handbag.” He looked across at Jane, the demi-wave’s name I later found out.

“What the fuck is in her handbag?” He asked.

“Probably a £5 bag of 2p’s.”

“What? Why… Why would she carry that much loose change?”

“She works for her Dad. Tomorrow being Saturday and the banks being closed, he asked her to fetch a bag of copper from the bank on her way home. As we have not made it home yet, she probably still has it in her handbag.” Of course these days banks are open on a Saturday, so such a mishap would never happen. In those dark times however, such situations were common place. I looked down at the drummer and shook my head,

“Mate, I don’t think the sausage is working for you.”

“No you’re probably right.” He looked at the sausage ruefully, and then ate it. Jane looked away. I grabbed her hand and led her into the back garden. We sat at the far end of the garden on a rustic bench in silence, and swigged our drinks. I’d given her a slug of vodka in her orange juice, the strength of which had taken her breath away.

“Jesus, that’s strong, you trying to get me pissed?”

“I don’t know… Do you need to be pissed?”

She shook her head.

“Is he always like that?” She asked, gesturing back towards the house.

“Oh no,” I said, “This is him on best behaviour, he’s usually much worse!”

“Why do you hang around with him?”

“Well when my band broke up, he was my part of the divorce settlement. The two guitarists went of with the guitars and talent, and I was left with the drummer and his disappearing drums!”

“Disappearing why… how so?”

“They disappeared when he stopped paying the Hire purchase agreement. Two large bailiff’s came around to his flat with a summons and left with his drum kit and  a rousing round of applause from the neighbours.”

She laughed. She laughed a lot. I liked it when she laughed a lot. I liked her. I looked into her eyes and kissed her. My normally gauche affectation left me. It felt smooth. It felt natural, I told my brain to shut the fuck up and enjoy the moment. So I did. Thoroughly.

Jane seemed to enjoy the moment too, and showed no sign of stopping the pressure on my lips. We grew more ardent, more exploring. Then she pushed me away.

“Wait. Where’s Julie?”

“What. Who? oh.”

We walked back inside the house. We found the drummer. He was sat on a chair next to the drinks table, and was steadily working his way through it.

“Mate, where did Julie go?”

“Who’s Julie?”

“The girl who whacked you.”

“Oh Her. She left. She said tell Jane I’ll see her sometime. And thanks for bringing me to another wonder-fucking-ful party!”

“Is that all?” I asked, wondering, as I looked at Jane, what my chances were now.

“Yes I think so, no wait she said something else. Yes, she said to me, I hope you get the pox you slimy fucking arsehole, and that your dick falls off with gangrene.”

“She has a quaint turn of phrase your pal Julie, doesn’t she?” I said to Jane. Jane shrugged her pretty shoulders.

” She has a very low threshold when it comes to dickheads. Sorry mate.” She looked down on the drummer boy as he drummed his fingers.

He got up. He tapped me on the shoulder as a parting gift, and walked out of the house

“Well that’s him gone then.” I said. ” What shall we do now?”

“You wait there.” She said and went off into the lounge. I saw her talking to Delney, the party girl and when she returned, she took me by the hand and led me up the stairs to a bedroom. It was a very small boxroom, with a very small single bed occupying most of the floor space.

“Shall we?” She asked pointing to the bed.

“Wait.” I said, “Stay there, I’ll be right back.”

I ran back down the stairs, and Delney gave me a thumb’s up sign. I smiled back at her as I made it back into the kitchen. I looked at what was left of the booze bar and found the bottle of Mateus Rose. I picked it up and a couple of glasses and ran back up the stairs to the bedroom. Brilliant work… James Bond would be proud of me. Only one problem. How to get the cork out. I ran back down the stairs. There was no corkscrew on the table. I searched the drawers. Nothing. As a last resort, I went back to Delney, and poring Pete… Hands everywhere… And shouted in her ear,

“Where’s the corkscrew?” Delney laughed.

“In my bedroom probably.” The next question, where was her bedroom. she gave me instructions as to where I might find the utensil, and made me promise to put it back, as she would need it later.

I took the bottle into her bedroom, and took the cork out. I ran back to the room which we had been allotted. Jane had stripped down to her bra and panties. She looked very cute, with her demi -wave spread across the pillow. Her snores did not sound quite as sweet.

Shit. I set the bottle and two glasses on the bedside table and slowly inched under the sheets. I got one buttock on to the mattress, and Jane turned sharply in her sleep, her flailing arm reaching out and slapping me across the cheek. The noise woke her up and she was momentarily unaware of who I was and where she was. She looked at me quizzically. Then she relaxed. She remembered me. I gave her a kiss on the forehead. I quickly stripped off, with only my Y-fronts to hide my modesty, and tried to get into the bed without smothering her. She edged closer to the wall, and as long as we sat sideways we could both just about occupy the bed, without fear of falling out. We drank the wine, we made love… more than once, in more than one position. We were very imaginative with the space and still young enough to find each other’s bodies enthralling.

We slept, eventually, we awoke… We did it some more. In and out of sleep and awakenings. We stayed in that room until Sunday afternoon. Eventually, Delney, knocked on the door and told us sheepishly that we would have to go, as her flatmate would be back that afternoon, and would probably need her bedroom.

Reluctantly, we left. She went her way and I went into Sutton in the hope of finding a bus to Lichfield. Sunday rail services did not occur in the Seventies. Sunday was still a day of rest then, no shops were open… There was bugger all to do, except go to church and repent your sins. I was rather busy trying to find some sins to enact first!

A lost weekend, but what happened next?


Firstly, the drummer boy, I don’t think I ever saw him again… I would hope that he saw the error of his ways, and became a decent human being… but I very much doubt it.

Julie, likewise I never saw again and could not find out anything about her from Delney. Julie was Jane’s friend not hers, she had tersely said. She may have been hinting at something, but I will leave that alone for now. Delney, eventually finished with shifty Pete, when he’d been found out cheating with some other girl in the office. Pete was not long for this world, I think he died of Liver failure… Aah the vagaries of the demon drink!

And me? and Jane?

Well, on the strength of that lost weekend, I decided to move into the house with Delney and the other flatmates, with the prospect of the delightful Jane being close at hand. When I range her up on the Friday I moved in, Jane finished with me. She did not want a proper relationship…

So I moved back home. Tail between my legs.

You live and learn.

DALE ‘M’

 

 

CATNIP (part three)

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CATNIP –  ALWAYS  IN THE BEDROOM AT PARTIES (part three)

 

The picture accompanying these series is of Kylie Minogue. It was chosen because the hair perfectly matches the girl who will shortly become the heroine of this piece. She was not my first choice. My first choice on that fated night had been her best friend. She had short cropped dark hair ( a pixie cut, I’m reliably informed by my editor) and was striking rather than beautiful. She looked like a younger version of Julie Covington.

 

Always drawn to the extremes, I took my little drummer boy by the ear.

“Ok sunshine, lets go and dance. Don’t say anything. Just dance and stay cool.”

“Gotcha.”

I grabbed his shoulder.

“Listen! I mean it. Don’t say anything. Do not under any circumstances ask them if they Fuck.”

“IT WAS A JOKE!”

“It was no bleeding joke mate, we got run out fucking town by a lynch mob of angry hens… Just because it was a hen night, didn’t mean that you could take liberties!”

“I found out what I needed to know… They didn’t.”

“You think?  Anyway, this time leave it to me. ”

Someone had slipped the Album SOLID SOUL GOLD on to the turntable, whilst we had been out in the kitchen, laying plans for mice and men, and the girls were doing that shuffling two-step dance which evokes handbags on the floor and long drinks with fruit in, most likely Cinzano and Lemonade. I inwardly groaned as I tried to make our move into the centre of the throng, look cool. A hard act to pull off when your entrance to the fray is accompanied by “I’m Your Puppet” by James & Bobby Purify. A slow dull song at the best of times, it was not the sort of tune you make an impression with. The drummer could. He did a forward roll, whilst holding his drink and bounced up like a veritable rubber ball. He waved his drink in front of Julie, her of the pixie cut,

“Do you want some?” He shouted across to her. I slapped my forehead hard with my hand…here we go again. She flounced off in the direction of the kitchen, and the drummer followed closely behind. I took the beat of the tune and began to mirror the dance of the other girl, the demi-wave blonde, who smiled at me. The Puppet song faded out and was followed by “Hold on I’m coming” by Sam & Dave, which had a better beat and I schmoozed closer with a little bit of syncopation, an extra flick of the hip added to the two step shuffle. The Demi-wave swished as she tried to mirror my new move… She was still smiling at me. I relaxed. She moved her mouth to my ear.

“I love your shoes.” She said. Bingo!


Okay, another little digression. The shoes were a major investment. I’d recently been to see Saturday Night Fever, and had been rather taken with the shoes John Travolta had hankered after.

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Like these, but with a bigger cuban heel and less shiny. They looked amazing, and when I found a pair they had cost a bloody fortune. Never much of a fashionista, these were the only shoes that I have ever felt the bees knees in.


I felt fully vindicated in my travails to find the blessed shoes. The girl loved my shoes.

“Thanks.” I shouted in her ear. When “Working in a coal mine” came on I gestured that we should perhaps sit this one out. I led her out to the kitchen and gathered another glass and more orange Juice.

“Shall we go outside into the garden, get a bit of air?”

She looked around anxiously to find out where her mate, Julie was. Julie was nowhere to be seen. I saw the drummer. He has slid down the wall behind the fridge, shaking his head slowly in remorse, and held a sausage to his eye. The sausage was raw.

“Alright mate? Why have you got a raw sausage held to your eye?”

“Bleeding obvious innit? They don’t appear to have any steak in the fridge!”

Head slap number two.

“Why do you need steak?” He moved the sausage and revealed a shiner.

“What did you do?” I asked redundantly… I knew what he’d done. He’d done what he always did. He’d fucked up!

“Well, you know her mate, the dark-haired one… I sort of inadvertently stroked her arse as we walked into the kitchen… I’d meant it as a friendly gesture, however she took exception and clouted me with her handbag.” He looked across at Jane, the demi-wave’s name I later found out.

“What the fuck is in her handbag?” He asked.

“Probably a £5 bag of 2p’s.”

“What? Why… Why would she carry that much loose change?”

“She works for her Dad. Tomorrow being Saturday and the banks being closed, he asked her to fetch a bag of copper from the bank on her way home. As we have not made it home yet, she probably still has it in her handbag.” Of course these days banks are open on a Saturday, so such a mishap would never happen. In those dark times however, such situations were common place. I looked down at the drummer and shook my head,

“Mate, I don’t think the sausage is working for you.”

“No you’re probably right.” He looked at the sausage ruefully, and then ate it. Jane looked away. I grabbed her hand and led her into the back garden. We sat at the far end of the garden on a rustic bench in silence, and swigged our drinks. I’d given her a slug of vodka in her orange juice, the strength of which had taken her breath away.

“Jesus, that’s strong, you trying to get me pissed?”

“I don’t know… Do you need to be pissed?”

She shook her head.

“Is he always like that?” She asked, gesturing back towards the house.

“Oh no,” I said, “This is him on best behaviour, he’s usually much worse!”

“Why do you hang around with him?”

“Well when my band broke up, he was my part of the divorce settlement. The two guitarists went of with the guitars and talent, and I was left with the drummer and his disappearing drums!”

“Disappearing why… how so?”

“They disappeared when he stopped paying the Hire purchase agreement. Two large bailiff’s came around to his flat with a summons and left with his drum kit and  a rousing round of applause from the neighbours.”

She laughed. She laughed a lot. I liked it when she laughed a lot. I liked her. I looked into her eyes and kissed her. My normally gauche affectation left me. It felt smooth. It felt natural, I told my brain to shut the fuck up and enjoy the moment. So I did. Thoroughly.

Jane seemed to enjoy the moment too, and showed no sign of stopping the pressure on my lips. We grew more ardent, more exploring. Then she pushed me away.

“Wait. Where’s Julie?”

“What. Who? oh.”

We walked back inside the house. We found the drummer. He was sat on a chair next to the drinks table, and was steadily working his way through it.

“Mate, where did Julie go?”

“Who’s Julie?”

“The girl who whacked you.”

“Oh Her. She left. She said tell Jane I’ll see her sometime. And thanks for bringing me to another wonder-fucking-ful party!”

“Is that all?” I asked, wondering, as I looked at Jane, what my chances were now.

“Yes I think so, no wait she said something else. Yes, she said to me, I hope you get the pox you slimy fucking arsehole, and that your dick falls off with gangrene.”

“She has a quaint turn of phrase your pal Julie, doesn’t she?” I said to Jane. Jane shrugged her pretty shoulders.

” She has a very low threshold when it comes to dickheads. Sorry mate.” She looked down on the drummer boy as he drummed his fingers.

He got up. He tapped me on the shoulder as a parting gift, and walked out of the house

“Well that’s him gone then.” I said. ” What shall we do now?”

“You wait there.” She said and went off into the lounge. I saw her talking to Delney, the party girl and when she returned, she took me by the hand and led me up the stairs to a bedroom. It was a very small boxroom, with a very small single bed occupying most of the floor space.

“Shall we?” She asked pointing to the bed.

“Wait.” I said, “Stay there, I’ll be right back.”

I ran back down the stairs, and Delney gave me a thumb’s up sign. I smiled back at her as I made it back into the kitchen. I looked at what was left of the booze bar and found the bottle of Mateus Rose. I picked it up and a couple of glasses and ran back up the stairs to the bedroom. Brilliant work… James Bond would be proud of me. Only one problem. How to get the cork out. I ran back down the stairs. There was no corkscrew on the table. I searched the drawers. Nothing. As a last resort, I went back to Delney, and poring Pete… Hands everywhere… And shouted in her ear,

“Where’s the corkscrew?” Delney laughed.

“In my bedroom probably.” The next question, where was her bedroom. she gave me instructions as to where I might find the utensil, and made me promise to put it back, as she would need it later.

I took the bottle into her bedroom, and took the cork out. I ran back to the room which we had been allotted. Jane had stripped down to her bra and panties. She looked very cute, with her demi -wave spread across the pillow. Her snores did not sound quite as sweet.

Shit. I set the bottle and two glasses on the bedside table and slowly inched under the sheets. I got one buttock on to the mattress, and Jane turned sharply in her sleep, her flailing arm reaching out and slapping me across the cheek. The noise woke her up and she was momentarily unaware of who I was and where she was. She looked at me quizzically. Then she relaxed. She remembered me. I gave her a kiss on the forehead. I quickly stripped off, with only my Y-fronts to hide my modesty, and tried to get into the bed without smothering her. She edged closer to the wall, and as long as we sat sideways we could both just about occupy the bed, without fear of falling out. We drank the wine, we made love… more than once, in more than one position. We were very imaginative with the space and still young enough to find each other’s bodies enthralling.

We slept, eventually, we awoke… We did it some more. In and out of sleep and awakenings. We stayed in that room until Sunday afternoon. Eventually, Delney, knocked on the door and told us sheepishly that we would have to go, as her flatmate would be back that afternoon, and would probably need her bedroom.

Reluctantly, we left. She went her way and I went into Sutton in the hope of finding a bus to Lichfield. Sunday rail services did not occur in the Seventies. Sunday was still a day of rest then, no shops were open… There was bugger all to do, except go to church and repent your sins. I was rather busy trying to find some sins to enact first!

A lost weekend, but what happened next?


Firstly, the drummer boy, I don’t think I ever saw him again… I would hope that he saw the error of his ways, and became a decent human being… but I very much doubt it.

Julie, likewise I never saw again and could not find out anything about her from Delney. Julie was Jane’s friend not hers, she had tersely said. She may have been hinting at something, but I will leave that alone for now. Delney, eventually finished with shifty Pete, when he’d been found out cheating with some other girl in the office. Pete was not long for this world, I think he died of Liver failure… Aah the vagaries of the demon drink!

And me? and Jane?

Well, on the strength of that lost weekend, I decided to move into the house with Delney and the other flatmates, with the prospect of the delightful Jane being close at hand. When I range her up on the Friday I moved in, Jane finished with me. She did not want a proper relationship…

So I moved back home. Tail between my legs.

You live and learn.

DALE ‘M’

 

 

JUST PLAYLIST

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JUST PLAYLIST

  1. JUST FRIENDS – AMY WINEHOUSE
  2. IT’S JUST A GAME  – ANJA GARBAREK
  3. I’M HAPPY JUST TO DANCE WITH YOU – THE BEATLES
  4. JUST GO AWAY – BLONDIE
  5. JUST LUST – BUZZCOCKS
  6. JUST FASCINATION – CABARET VOLTAIRE
  7. GIVE ME JUST A LITTLE MORE TIME – CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD
  8. JUST LIKE HEAVEN – THE CURE
  9. GIRLS JUST WANNA HAVE FUN – CYNDI LAUPER
  10. JUST CAN’T GET ENOUGH – DEPECHE MODE
  11. WAS IT JUST ANOTHER LOVE AFFAIR – EURYTHMICS
  12. JUST FOR TONIGHT – GROOVE ARMADA
  13. JUST KEEP WALKING – INXS
  14. JUST LIKE A WOMAN – JEFF BUCKLEY
  15. SLICED TOMATOES – JUST BROTHERS
  16. LET’S ROLL JUST LIKE WE USED TO – KASABIAN
  17. JUST MAKE IT STOP – LOW
  18. JUST LIKE THE RAIN – THE MACCABEES
  19. JUST DRIFTING – PENETRATION
  20. JUST LIKE YOU – ROXY MUSIC

JUST CARRY ON.

DALE ‘M’

CATNIP part two

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ALWAYS IN THE BEDROOMS AT PARTIES

Ok, so we missed the party the first week. The next Friday, segue into the last week. The usual suspects sit drinking in the George IV. After two pints, the hero says to the drummer,

“What about going to that party?”

“Are you sure its on?”

“Yeah.”

“Oh you sure, you are sure?”

“Yeah, Delney, said it’s gonna be crammed with her mates…”

“Fanny?”

“Most definitely.” The drummer looked around the sparsity  of the clientele of the pub, and said,

“Well, my old china, there’s fuck all going on here.”

Reprise the scenes from the previous week, we left for the off-licence. This time we went sans the Watney’s red barrel, as the party seven was difficult to drink without a bottle opener. We settled for two half bottles of vodka each, as the bottles were easier to conceal about your person. The palliative offered to the kitchen table, this time was a tasty little Mateus Rose wine. We would not be drinking it. It was a token offering for the ladies.

So, we went on the train to Sutton Coldfield. The mile to the house was not covered with such alacrity as the week before. Once bitten twice embrocated.  We were not expecting miracles.  We arrived at the address. This time it was awash with lights, We did not need to knock the door. It was wide open. Beats from the front room escaped like magical madrigals across the road. My drummer gave a little skip, like a boy from the playground.

“Sounds more like it!” He ran into the house, like a man on a mission. I looked around the gathering throng for the birthday girl. She was deeply en-tongued with Pete in the lounge, which had been cleared of its furnishings. I tapped him on his shoulder, and he gave me sheepish grin…

“Alright mate, made it then, on the right day?” The joke being, he had ribbed me all week about being a premature ejaculator. Such is the jocular hilarity of banter in the midlands.

“Fuck off mate, I’ve never been too quick in my bleeding life!”  A hasty rejoinder.

We circulated. My drummer, clockwise, me anti-clockwise. He winked at me as we crossed paths…

“Plenty of crumpet!” his hasty appraisal of the situation. Mine was less encompassing. I focused upon two likely characters. A very striking dark-haired girl and a her mate, who was perfect in her demi-perm and white dress.

“I’m in here mate” I said to the drummer, nodding my head towards the two girls.

He looked incredulous, as the two girls in question, were unmistakably the best in show.

“Come on then.” He said.

“No. Let them be, let’s away to the kitchen.” I grabbed his eager arse and pulled him away to the kitchen. Here we found glasses and soft drinks to make our vodka last longer. We ditched the bottle of Mateus Rose, and found orange juice and glasses.

“Here.” I said, as I passed him a glass.

“Don’t get too pissed!” I said..

“We don’t want any trouble. OK?!”

“Okay, I hear you, no smashing things up.”


INTERMISSION

A couple of weeks before, we had been arrested by the local constabulary. How had this come about?

Like this.

We had been at the local disco at the rugby club. We had partaken of a few beverages and been outside sharing a few joints. We had been in conversation with our two long-haired guitarists about forming a band. They were all for it at the time, not when we got to rehearsing, either the drummers drumming or my singing… made them cool on the idea of a band. Anyway, long story short, I’d left the disco on my drummer’s back, after a short altercation with the local constabulary. We had escaped without prosecution, but our high spirits, ie the fact I was riding him piggy back, had evoked the ire of one of the local ruffians, who on seeing our high spirits had taken exception, and punched me in the face. Unable to protect myself, as both hands were occupied reining in my horsey, I received a massive black eye. The ruffian had rounded on me as I dismounted, and called me all the names under the sun.

“You fucking idiots are gonna get us arrested.” He exclaimed. I rubbed my eye. I looked harshly at him, and then noticed he had a beer mug in the other hand. My alert brain, always on the look out for danger, said, probably best not smack him one back.

So, the drummer and I made our way home without any further ado. Half way home, we decided between us, home was not the place to go… Given that my eye was out on stilts… And that I would probably face interrogation from my parents. This was something I didn’t fancy at the time, as I was still stoned from the Cannabis and liable to incriminate myself. So we stopped off at a half built building and sat beside the fireplace.

“What we need here, little drummer boy, is a fire to fill this fireplace.” Given that the house was on a building site and building materials were ever present, we found plenty of bits of wood and paper, and soon built an impressive fire. It must have been impressive, because the flames alerted the neighbours and shortly, we were once again visited by the boys in blue.

There was a notorious Sergeant at the local police Station. Jock Mackay. A bastard to all who sailed with him.

“Alright boys? Your fucking nicked my beauties.” I put my hands up, The drummer ran. Big mistake. He was caught in the back yard, with a swift left hook. He fell gasping like a carp to the ground. Jock took my hands and put them behind my back and then handcuffed them. Him and his driver led me up the garden path to the awaiting panda car. The Driver opened the back door, and Jock, ever helpful, smacked my head against the roof.

So, its 4 a.m. and I’m brought into the interview room. I’m still underage, which the dear beloved sergeant already knew.

“Listen, just tell me it was your mate’s idea to set the building alight and you’ll get off!”

I knew the dreaded Jock’s M.O., and could see he was trying to set up my drummer boy for the fall, as he was in fact over 18.

“It wasn’t his idea, we both thought it at the same time.”

“Oh dear son, looks like I’m going to have to tell your mum.”

“You can tell my mum, she already knows about you.” My mum was a youth worker, and already knew the dreaded Jock’s way of working. he liked to fit up youths for jobs, just to get convictions. He knew who my mum was. He knew fitting me up or my mate, would lead to loads of hassle. Seeing that I’d seen through his plan to fit the drummer up  for the charge, he had no alternative but to let us go, but not without some fun for his leary mates. We were eventually shown the stairs, and thrown down them.

We crashed in a heap at the bottom of the stairs.

I shouted back up.

“OI, we were only half a mile away from home… You Gonna give us a lift back?”

Jock’s face turned puce.

“Fuck off you little twat! You better stay clean otherwise I’m gonna fucking have you!”

I turned to the drummer, picked him up, then turned back to Jock and said,

“Thanks for your help!”

 


 

Back to the party next time.

DALE ‘M’

CATNIP ( ALWAYS IN THE BEDROOM AT PARTIES) part one

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CATNIP

FALSE START

It was a Friday night 1977, maybe June or July, I had an invite to a party in Sutton Coldfield, for a girl called Delney, who worked in the office at work. I was with my mate, the drummer, drinking at the George IV pub. Our usual Friday Fayre, drinking beer and him drumming the metal tables with the pair of drumsticks he carried everywhere. I smoked my cigarettes, sang along to the jukebox, and dreamed of fame and fortune. I told the drummer that we had a party to go to, and he was happy as a pig in shit.

Problem with drinking in the backwaters of Lichfield, there were very few women on show. Would-be Rock stars need an audience and we, as half of a band, recently  disbanded, found the lack of an audience, dispiriting. We had sat there in the pub for months, licking our wounds, whilst the two guitarists moved on to pastures new… Namely Cannock, and long-haired heavy metal stardom awaited them. Good riddance! We, the drummer and me, would not stoop so low! We were punks. Two things stopped our mega rise to stardom, the fact that my singing was fucking awful, and secondly, the drummer’s drums had been repossessed by the Hire Purchase company. A singer without a voice and a drummer without drums, were not in high demand… with anyone!

At 8 o’clock, having drunk a half gallon of Ansell’s Bitter, we made the momentous decision to head off to the party. We stopped at the off-Licence on the way to the railway station, and spent a small fortune on a bottle of Vodka and a Watney’s Red Barrel party seven.

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(This was the ubiquitous carry out of the seventies, a barrel that contained 7 pints of beer.)

When bringing a bottle to a party, it was important to bring a cheap option, which could be jettisoned into the kitchen for the general party-goers,whilst  your good stuff you kept to you to yourself.(A less scrupulous party-goer would buy a cheap bottle and swap it for a better one, I have just been informed, this however, would not enter my mind) So we sat fully prepared for a big night out, on the cross-city train, full of the whats and wherefore’s we would enjoy at this select soiree.

The train trundled sedately into the train station at Sutton Coldfield, and with the quick and sure footed gait of youth, walked the mile to the allotted site. The house was dark and quiet, when we rang the bell. Delney and Pete, a work mate, came blearily to the door.

“Ok, mate, the party’s here!” I shouted excitedly.

“What?” He said.

“The party…” I blinked at his dumb look.

“Sorry mate. the party is next week, not today.”

I looked at the drummer, he looked at me. We both looked at the booze we carried.

“Don’t suppose you’ve got an opener for this?” I pointed at the party seven of Double Diamond.

Pete looked at the little barrel, and went inside. He came back with a posi-drive screw driver.

“Try this.” The drummer set the barrel on the floor. He took the proffered screw driver, and gouged out to make-do openings in the barrel. It frothed dangerously, and deposited a lion- share of its contents on the tarmac. He passed the screw driver back to Pete, like a doctor passing a scalpel back to the nurse.

“Thanks.”

“No problem.” Pete shut the door.

“We better get this drunk. Can’t exactly walk along the street with it open.”

I shrugged. What a wash-out. We found a wall to sit on and took turns swigging beer from the ridiculous barrel. Having worked our way solidly through the contents, most of which ended up on our fronts, we trudged wearily back to the station… Another wasted Friday night!

During the hour long slow sojourn back to the station, having dispatched the Watney’s Red Barrel into the nearest hedge, we took turns in sipping, then slugging, the bottle of Vodka. So that when we actually arrived back at the Train Station we were both happily steaming.(DRUNK)

The station was empty. There was but one train left to arrive at the desolate platform, the 11.30 from New St. Birmingham. Of course, the curse of drink on young men is legend, better men than I have been brought down by its perils. Having clambered on top of the bus shelter type plastic contraption on the platform, the drummer was beating away happy little timpani riffs on the edges of plastic and aluminium and I was down on the tracks lying prostate like a girl from the silent era, shouting Heeelllp, Heeeellp! The drummer shouted loudly at my prostate form, that someone was coming! I jumped up, more afraid of someone seeing me acting stupid, than I was of the threat of a train dissecting me. A middle-aged blonde lady, clip-clopped her high-heeled way down the slope from the station. By the time she arrived I was sat demurely in the bus shelter, as if butter wouldn’t melt! She smiled wanly as she passed and I realised I knew her…

She was the daughter of Meg Richardson. Not literally of course, I don’t think Noele Gordon actually had a daughter… But she was the screen daughter of the TV character Meg Richardson, both characters from the now defunct soap opera, CROSSROADS. Thankfully, I had not made an arse of myself. However, as the drummer still remained drumming on the top of the shelter, the same could not be said for him. When he saw who it was, he silently slid down off the roof and sheepishly sat down beside me.

As we left the train station, we looked at each other and laughed.

“Well that was a waste of fucking time wasn’t it?” The drummer said.

“A bit of the washout, but just think… We’ve got a party to go to next week!”


 

This is a true account, a party that never was. Find out what happened at the actual party in the next instalment.

Dale ‘M’

 

NUTCRACKER BALLET BIRMINGHAM HIPPODROME

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Went to the ballet last night. Absolutely beautiful production, amazing set changes, orchestra perfect, and the dancing excellent. Two and a half hours is about an hour too long… but that’s down to Tchaikovsky. Modern life requires less rather than more. I would recommend everyone to see at least one ballet in your lifetime. This is my third.

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Dale ‘M’

OUR LAST GIG TOGETHER… ONE YEAR AGO THIS WEEK.

ZOO PLAYLIST

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ZOO PLAYLIST

  1. ZOO STATION – U2
  2. SPACEMAN – BABYLON ZOO
  3. JOE THE LION – DAVID BOWIE
  4. THROW THEM TO LIONS – SIOUXSIE & THE BANSHEES
  5. TIGER FEET – MUD
  6. TIGER THE LION – TRAGICALLY HIP
  7. CLINT EASTWOOD – GORILLAZ
  8. EVERYONE’S GOT SOMETHING TO HIDE – THE BEATLES
  9. MARDY BUM – ARCTIC MONKEYS
  10. MONKEY GONE TO HEAVEN – PIXIES
  11. EATING THE BEAR – JOAN ARMATRADING
  12. NO MANS LAND – PANDA BEER
  13. ELEPHANTS – WARPAINT
  14. RHINOCEROS – SMASHING PUMPKINS
  15. THIS HERE GIRAFFE – FLAMING LIPS
  16. LOW BETWEEN ZEBRAS – UNDERWORLD
  17. SEAL CLUBBING – HALF MAN HALF BISCUIT
  18. I AM THE WALRUS – THE BEATLES
  19. MEDITATION OF THE SNAKE – STEVE HILLAGE
  20. ORANGUTAN – CLINIC
  21. LES CROCODILES – CHARLOTTE GAINSBURG
  22. ALLIGATOR WINE – JEFF BUCKLEY
  23. LEOPARD AND LAMB – JOHN GRANT
  24. LUNAR CAMEL – SIOUXSIE & THE BANSHEES
  25. BLIND AS A BAT – GHOST POET
  26. PRETTY FLAMINGO – MANFRED MANN
  27. HEAVENLY CREATURES – WOLF ALICE
  28. BORN TO BE WILD – STEPPENWOLF
  29. THE WHALE – ELO
  30. DOLPHIN’S SMILE – THE BYRDS

JUST HAD TO DO THIS TWICE BECAUSE WORDPRESS FAILED…

DOES THIS HAPPEN TO YOU?

DALE ‘M’