Video of Absent by Bernard Young

Just received a link today to this video we made a few years ago at a poets retreat. It was fun to make. I’d forgotten all about it.  Absent has been one of my most popular poems.

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Trying to get in to the mind of a cat

Cat sniffing a hand

Nose and Finger

Does the odour
of last night’s
fish supper linger?

Have you got an itch?
The human touch?
Is that what you long for?

What can you smell?
Who are you singing
your purring song for?

3 More Poems for NaPoWriMo – All About Cats

Image of poem text included below

Birds of a Feather

My cat
is old. All she
wants is food, warmth and a
comfy knee. My cat’s a home bird.
Like me.

Appeared on a poster a very long time ago.

The Boat’s Cat

I’m with the man in the hat.
I’m his lucky black cat.
He’d be sunk without me.

He was lonely on his long boat
though wouldn’t admit it.
He drank rum and slept in his coat
most nights. Woke
with a headache and stiff
neck most mornings.

I reckon he’d been deserted
way back
and sailed alone for a century.

I could see he was all at sea
and falling apart.

I decided to adopt him.

He’s a changed man now,
making a new start,
and I’m the key
that’s unlocked
his padlocked heart.

Originally appeared on blipfoto.com.

My Other Cat Was A Pig

I think he’s trying to ignore me
but unfriendly and moody he ain’t.

He likes his fuss does this puss.

Obviously he’s no saint
but one of the great things about him
is that he settles anywhere
I choose to take him
and will travel miles in the car
without complaint.

He can be a bit of a pest
when I’m reading or typing.
He walks all over the keys
and pjkhoijvlldijvllvhjviljjnb b ;hnd khgligijj.m

Originally appeared blipfoto.com.

Please note!
If you want to use these poems, they are copyright to me.
If you want to use these poems, there’ll be a modest fee.
If you want to use these poems, it’ll make me very happy.
If you want to use these poems, please Contact Me.

Bernard copyright1

Valentine’s Day is coming: quotes, thoughts and poetry about LOVE

It’s that time of year when a poet is called to write about Love.

“Now no discourse, except it be of Love”
– Shakespeare, Two Gentlemen of Verona

“Love’s language starts, stops starts;
the right words flowing or clotting in the heart.”
– from Syntax by Carol Ann Duffy

“All You Need Is Love”
– The Beatles

“My room, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last for ever:
I was wrong”
– from Funeral Blues by W.H. Auden

Ooh! I Think You’re Wonderful by Bernard Young

You’re the wings on my aeroplane
You’re the strings on my guitar
You’re the star in my night-sky
You’re the garage for my car

You’re the answer to my question
You’re the pen that writes my line
You’re the spring in my onion
You’re the tingle down my spine

You’re the zipper on my jacket
You’re the ketchup on my chips
You’re the method in my madness
You’re the promise on my lips

You’re the headline in my paper
You’re all my favourite smells
You’re the last piece in my jigsaw
Oops! Sorry, I thought you were someone else

What did you get for Christmas? I didn’t get a bike

Poem and pictures from the book Brilliant by Bernard Young

Copyright Bernard Young

This poem is from my book ‘Brilliant’.

Extract:

I got a massive box of chocolates
but I didn’t get a bike

I got some extra-special roller-skates
but I didn’t get a bike

I got a mind-blowing computer game
but I didn’t get a bike.

What happens when Santa spends Christmas at his in-laws?

Cuddly toys in snow Santa and raindeer

Image copyright Bernard Young

Santa’s Christmas

(i)

This year,
though not by choice,
Santa Claus is spending Christmas
with his in-laws.

Ask him why
and he’ll just sigh
and say
‘Because…’

(ii)

Indoors

grim as a blizzard
prickly as holly
charming as a burst pipe

Mrs Santa…claws!

(iii)

Outdoors

the reindeer have downed sleigh
and are moaning
about the increased work-load
and the frozen pay.

Led by hard-nosed Rudolf the Red
(who, contrary to popular belief, is not nice)
they are imposing a work to rule
– a no slide rule on the ice
– a go slow on the snow.

Most folk, thinks Santa, just don’t realise,
being the boss is not all mince pies
and Ho! Ho! Ho!

(iv)

After much negotiation
and hard snowballing
Santa and the reindeer
have reached an agreement.

The Christmas delivery is safe.

Unlike Santa, who,
hurrying to and fro,
slips on the fast freezing snow.

Oh! Oh! Ow!

(v)

Christmas Day.
Work done.

Santa watches his mother-in-law
(a tough old bird)
wrestling with the turkey.

Boxing Day!
The fight goes on.

Two falls and a submission.
It’s over.

The turkey’s won.

(vi)

Sometimes
(don’t you know, know, know)
Santa, too, wrestles;
has a bout with self-doubt,
and loses.

At times
(don’t you know, know, know)
he even finds it hard
to believe in himself
himself.

This year,
to get him through this crisis,
to save him from distress,
I’m conducting a little survey
to discover, more or less,
who still believes in Father Christmas.

So if you do, shout YES!

Image of santa with words 'Yes? ? No?'

Image copyright Bernard Young

Bernard Young is an experienced performance poet who is available for workshops in schools, particularly primary age (KS1/KS2). He’s based in Manchester, but happy to travel further afield. Over the years he’s also worked successfully in partnership with Road Safety officers combining the road safety message with creative writing. To book Bernard for a workshop in your school, see Contact page.

Santa Claus ain’t coming, Junior has taken over

Poem and image

Copyright Bernard Young and Tod Leedale 2000


This Poem is from “Brilliant” and is available as a card from Redbubble: http://www.redbubble.com/people/youngpoet/works/9459104-santa-claus-aint-coming

A poem to get you in the Christmas mood, with mistletoe

A face in the snow

Image copyright Bernard Young

I hope everyone out there is looking forward to Christmas and hoping it will be a white one. Some folk have already seen the first snow fall. When I think of Christmas, I think of mistletoe.

Snow and Mistletoe

My heart is beating
fast, not slow,
as I stand beneath
the mistletoe.

My face is red.
My ears aglow.
I’ve just been snogged
by Rachel Snow*.

It was GREAT!
Not so-so.
She’s a terrific kisser.
Now you know.

* This is made up. Miss Snow is no-one I know.

Bernard Young is an experienced performance poet who is available for workshops, in schools particularly primary age. He’s based in Manchester, but happy to travel further afield. Over the years he’s also worked successfully in partnership with Road Safety officers combining the road safety message with creative writing. To book Bernard for a workshop in your school, see Contact page.

A Watery Poem for National Poetry Day (3 October 2013)

In preparation for National Poetry Day, my friend, Karen, has recorded me reading one of my poems, Puddles in the Playground from Double Talk, and turned it into a video, and here it is.

National Poetry Day 3 October 2013

National Poetry Day is an annual event.  This year the theme is Water.

If you’re a teacher, there are resources available to help you think about what you could be doing with your class or school here: http://www.forwardartsfoundation.org/national-poetry-day/resources/lesson-plans/

Also information on the Poetry Society’s website here: http://www.poetrysociety.org.uk/content/info/npd/

Of course the way to really bring your lessons alive is to book a poet for the day.

Here’s a rondel from my book Wanted Alive, also available with a picture on blipfoto.com.

Something To Look Forward To

Someday the sun will shine.
We’ll step out and not get wet.
One day, but not just yet,
the weather will be fine.

That day will be yours and mine.
We’ll sunbathe. Joyfully sweat.
Someday the sun will shine.
We’ll step out and not get wet.

So don’t grumble. Don’t whine.
Don’t lose hope. Don’t fret.
Things will get better. You bet.

Look for an omen. A sign.
Someday the sun will shine.
We’ll step out and not get wet.