Poetry - July 2018

Quarter Final Of Happiness

The first weekend of July
A hot Saturday in Doncaster
Me, my friends and many others
To see if England could go further
The bar was busy with good beer
The atmosphere was rocking
We just wanted England to win
So the semi finals came knocking
We're all cheering the anthem
And wait for the teams to play
Just nervous but excited too
And hoping for a good set play
Sure enough we get a corner
The ball is swung towards the box
It meets the head of Harry Maguire
And, back of the net, the place rocks
We can't believe how easy it seems
As England control the game
Sweden don't seem to be with our tempo
And at half time, we'll have more of the same
The Swedish come out to battle
And Jordan Pickford does a good save or two
But then we build up after a corner
The ball is coming in too
The far post is almost reached
But the header is met by Dele Alli
It's 2-0 to Eng-er-land
And the place just goes doolally
The final whistle goes later on
And it's a well deserved win
We all sing Three Lions together
And later on World In Motion
To share that with some good friends
The best the men have done since 1990
It was just a pleasure all round
To have for once not agony but ecstasy.

(Such a good performance and seeing that with three good friends down the pub was just the right thing all round - so glad we got that all together now.)

The Forgotten Record Shops of Manchester

Back in the day Manchester had lots of record shops
Where you'd be able to buy your music easily
Whether it was something old and back catalogue
Or your latest favourite indie band on CD
I remember walking round the back of the old Rotters
And down the side street and down the stairs
To where Power Cuts, formerly Yanks was based
With plenty of import and new indie musical wares
Their sale in October was rather legendary
Some people would stay rocking in Rockworld all night
Then exit the queue to go to Power Cuts opposite
So their Saturday morning bargains would take flight
I miss that place a lot of course, but also
There was a place in the Arndale Centre called Compact
It mainly had CDs but often had indie artists
And their knowledge of Factory Records was fact
I was able to get lots of those CD singles
Including Durutti Column and New Order on CDV
Plus the occasional promo CD that was good
One of them by New Order I still own with glee
I missed the friendly staff in both shops
Who were keen music fans as well as me
Which meant lots of finding out about music
As well as purchasing obscure acts a plenty.

(I so miss both Power Cuts and Compact in Manchester, and to a lesser degree, the old Piccadilly Records when it actually was in Piccadilly - the new one on Oldham Street is still excellent of course...)

Humid Heatwave

The sun beats down in the afternoon
With just no air at all to breathe
You just feel the moisture of sweat
And an intenseness you can't believe
The temperature is in the thirties
But the humidity is off the scale
There's no point going down the pub
To have a nice pint of ale
You'll just sweat it out at the bar
And not really enjoy your drink
Instead you'll be working out a route
Which air conditioned trains home, you think
It's just been a case of a sleepless night
As the moisture just draws you in
Another day of high temperatures
And one where you can't really stay in.

(The last few weeks' worth of hot weather has been mental to be honest...)

Playing on the Plus/4

So back in 1985 at Christmas
We got a Commodore Plus/4
Of course what it would have been good to have
Was the trusty Commodore 64
But nonetheless I have fond memories
Of playing on the grey little machine
Where the games were often cut down
As they had to be compatible with the C16
Nonetheless plenty of good games were made
Showing what the machine could do
From Bandits At Zero to Kikstart
And Big Mac with its sequel Mr Puniverse too
One favourite was Plus/4 only
And that was the fab Icicle Works
Where the tight time limit and penguins
Drove you to addiction - and beserk
Best of all the games loaded quickly
So you could easily have one more go
It didn't last the longest ever
But a fair few good games it did show
I played on one I now own the other night
And it was pretty clear to see
That although the games were just as good
It's something that stays in my memory.

(Ah, the childhood memories of the Plus/4 - playing on that system with my brother the other night showed just how much good fun it was...)

Summery Haiku

Having a cold drink
As the temperature is hot
The sun is burning.

(True I know..)