Hi All

As I’m writing this on Mother’s Day, this month’s challenge is Mother or Grandmother.  You can write about your beloved children or your own mums or do what I did and write about yourself from your child’s point of view.  Here’s what I mean:


My Gran boasts almost constantly

That I’m her little lamb

So gorgeous and intelligent

But let me tell you of my Gran                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    

My Gran has said a hundred times

How good as gold I am

But what chance have I otherwise

Imprisoned in this pram?

Gran likes to boast I’m very bright

She’s tells ‘most everyone

My reading age is 13 months

Although I’m weeks off one

Gran tells me when I’m all grown up

A doctor I will be

And as I don’t know what it is

It’s hard to disagree

Gran says that I have got her nose

Her mouth, her ears, her eyes

But as they’re still stuck on her face

She’s telling porky pies

She loves to sing me lullabies

About Baa Baa Black Sheep

Her voice is flat and so off-key

I cannot get to sleep

Gran loves to give my cheeks a pinch

She threatens that she’ll eat me

But as like me she’s got no teeth

How she will, defeats me

My Gran is smiley all the time

She wears a constant grin

At least I think that’s what it is

And not another chin

Gran’s face is very colourful

Pink lips and bright red cheeks

One day’s supply of perfume would

Keep Boots stocked-up for weeks

My Gran is always dieting

But when she gives me tea

She eats the biscuits that I leave

And thinks that I don’t see

When Gran first gave me chocolate

She said “What a disgrace”

She spat twice on her handkerchief

And quickly wiped my face

My Gran is lovely really

By far the very best

The bestest place in all the world

Is snuggled in her chest

In spite of all my joshing

I really love my Gran

I know she loves me twice as much

As any person can

She says that I’m perfection

That seems so very strange

Because she said I smell as though

Right now I need to change

Yes, I know it’s more than the twenty lines I am allowed to give you, but I welcome reading full versions as well as an abridged one for the competition.

It’s been a while since I wrote and hope you’re enjoying what looks like the beginning of spring.

Talking about spring, last month’s subject was Spring Cleaning and winning poet Howard Lambe in Harrow wrote:


Spring Cleaning by Howard Lambe - HARROW

Noise erupts around my ears

Bringing on my annual fears

It's once again that time of year

So she's getting out the cleaning gear


Mops and buckets dusters and brushes

Are laid out ready for use

I try to ignore them but it is no good

As wild horses won't stop her when she's in this mood


Room to room hall to landing

Sweeping and dusting everything shining

Floods of wax reviving the wood

Careful dear mind the food!


We are in the bathroom scrubbing the floor

Polishing the taps, the bath and more

Making sure nothing is missed

Pride's involved so I can't resist


Gradually we are getting there

What I need is a comfortable chair

Who on earth invented this intolerable task?

But thank goodness Spring Cleaning is finished at last!


Winning poet Margaret Reilly in Barnet wrote:

SPRING CLEANING by Margaret Reilly


Spring is here at last and the sun is shining!

But my how it shows the dust and yes I admit the odd cobweb or two

Time to get out the cleaning stuff

A bucket full of dusters, sprays and cloths

And of course those dreaded rubber gloves!

I roll up my sleeves and begin to mutter

About all this mess and clutter

Why is all the work left to me?

Its always the same year after year!

Finally I stand proudly in a nice clean room

Sniffing the scent of polish and windolene

I've done enough and it's been tough

Now I'll take my book and a nice glass of wine

Out Into that glorious sunshine!


Rose Wilson wrote this charming poem:

The Spinster by Rose Wilson

Hoover unleashed, dusters unsheathed, elbow grease liberally applied. 

Curtains washed, clothes moths squashed, windows thrown open wide.

Miss Muffett’s in her pinny, with cleaning tools encumbered.

My days of sitting pretty in her parlour may be numbered.

My host has over-wintered cocooned on her settee.

Stirring now and then to put the kettle on for tea.

When spring arrived at last and sunshine crept through grimy panes,

She declared apocalyptic war on household dirt and stains.

The old girl found new purpose.  She began to mop and wring.

Bought daffodils to fill the ugly vase she calls her ‘Ming’.

Alerted to a movement inside the sooty grate,

Her eyes aIight upon me.  I hold my breath and wait.

I possess skills of entrapment no human could surpass.

Yet the spinster has dislodged me, imprisoned ME in glass.

I crumple at the knees and freeze.  Life hanging by a thread. 

I’m conveyed down the garden then expelled beside the shed.

Where sweet fresh air clears cobwebs from recesses of my mind.

Memories are returning of a life I left behind.

Tonight I’ll dine al fresco and lovingly create

A home where I shall sit and wait cross-legged for a mate.



Jeffery A Edmunds wrote Spring Cleaning

Ah! The wind blows the daffodils

The fresh rain washes through the garden

Drives the winter doldrums away

We are motivated, with yawns and stretches

Morning tea invigorates

Out with the yellow duster, the Hoover, the

spray. The ammonia gel does for tired, old

limescale drear

Why didn’t we do this before?

Throw open the windows, spray the air..

Now spring is really here

Let the sheets billow on the line. On the bed,

fill the new quilt cover, with flowers on

instead of dark designs

Discover shine anew as you wipe away dust lines

Now’s the time to throw out your junk and

unwanted things with the grime

Feed the garden birds with your dated scraps

Take time to polish and renew

It’s springtime, wipe away those winter blues

Kusum Hars took me back to my own childhood with her poem:


Spring cleaning reminds me of the time

When my dad was old but living fine

In a house which needed cleaning and a shine.

On my visits I would spend some time, giving

A spring clean to the areas not used now for living.

After thoroughly cleaning and dusting the rooms

My favourite was dusting the old bookcase with a broom.

Old books most of them with yellow pages and in tatters

but still dear to me, losing their bindings  did not matter.

As I wiped each one of them and put them back in their place

Fond memories came back of a childhood spent in that space.

Reading each and every one of those books, Lots of Perry Masons,

I loved the court arguments and the thrill of solving murder cases.

But my favourite were two books, that had touched me from the start

'A Well Of Loneliness' about a lonely woman who felt like a man in heart

And' Viva France ', a romance between a gypsy girl and a soldier,

And the hard life marching together during the war. The end did not bring them together.

Cleaning forgotten I would spend time reading parts of it again

Reliving the emotions until time would remind me of the task in main

I would then put the books away but to forget the characters went in vain.

Spring Cleaning by Ian Herne

I love the green, bending shoots, the slightly crumpled, bootstrap harbinger

of hope. Licorice is sometimes this colour when children look for something

new. Not blue, today,  for them, but a lissom rope opening the best time of the

year when plans are hatching just as the eggs are catching our imagination.

For homes must be pristine and clear of winter dross and a lifetime loss of

possessions. We all value our faux-Sistine life when the snows have melted

and strived to clean the soil and the incessant rain has dulled the brain. It is

time to look forward or to spring forward as clocks are programmed. 

The hoover, the brush inside our palaces and tenements are ready for the

rush.  While outside the crocuses have departed. They had outgrown their

brief usefulness to be replaced by snowdrops, violets, the wild narcissus, all

trumpet and some would say showy, announcing in swaying, silent serenade

their own spring cleaning parade.  It is beauty in the garden for all that would

gaze upon its meaning.  In the house arguments ensue as the giant cleaning

regime has arrived. Sinews are at breaking point. The charity shop bags are full.

Spring is waking, nearly tall. The time for goodness, Primavera, rebirth for us all.

Patricia J Tausz wrote this poem:

Thousands of sheets of typescript found in countless files

Spread out they would stretch for miles and miles

The refuse sacks are filling fast

Now the die is cast

Past interests alas now redundant are ready for the recycling plant to be taken

All these memories will have to be forsaken

Some files will be kept in storage perhaps for years

Some memories have to be discarded for they bring tears

Poems and short stories written over the years I need to keep

Throwing them away could make me weep

Mementoes of my parents  recall my family's story

Within these four walls are countless sections of our family history

So care needs to be taken when weeding through endless files

Initially perhaps place them in smaller piles

Go through them not just once or twice or even three times

To lose some of the most precious would be far worse than committing heinous crimes

So care and thoroughness I am forced to take

For there will be no second chance to recreate these memories - I'm doing it for my family's sake.



Behind the red door of the Chips' Comic office,
Elsa the boss, and Inky her colleague,open the store room.
There are baskets stuffed in chaotic bliss,
Crumpled pages from ten years ago loom.
Empty cases of tape inlay cards,
Comics like Buttons and Playhour,
Stacks of glossy unread magazines, large and small,
Sixty and more unread brand new books tower
Over the thick dusted covered carpeted floor and on the fading yellow walls.

Inky chucks all the magazines into the green bin.
Along with stacks of precious A4 paper, from years before,
Never to be found again,
Until the whole hoarded lot is finally removed from the floor .
Elsa carries a grey bucket and Stardrops
As Inky scrubs the windows again.
The soaking dirty mop
Is a satisfaction that Elsa has gained.

She stirs her strong Typhoo tea
And sits at the Chips computer,
Printing out the feature on how to stop hoarding for us to see,
Hoping to keep the office in future
In this fragrant gleaming state
Printing off the pages in full colour.
Rover barely able to carry the Indian takeaway falls - its too late!
It falls on the newly hoovered floor.
"Oh Rover!!!!" scolds Elsa banging her cup.
As Rover says how sorry he is.
Inky helps clean up, he's such a whizz .

After they all eat their chicken vindaloo and rogan josh,
They admire the comic's take on their Spring clean,
And their new office looks so posh,
Cleaner looking than its ever been.


I hope you enjoyed just a few of last month’s entries and perhaps you will feature in next month’s Poetry Corner.

Best wishes