Category Archives: poetry

The Bigamist Physicist

For many years I’ve lead a double life,

Secretly, and illegally, supporting more than just one wife.

In England I have Sheila, she’s dependable and mild

But in Switzerland I’ve Lola, who’s exciting, young and wild.

I work at CERN, a scientist on the Large Hadron Collider.

But, I do my best to make each feel there’s nothing that’s denied her.

 

Like a helium atom, I’ve two electrons spinning ‘round my nucleus,

In life I think the Standard Model is something rather dubious.

The moral objection seems purely theoretical,

It may be a crime, but I don’t think it’s so heretical.

I love them both, in different ways, and I’m sure that they’re not harmed,

Like a quark, I can be up, down, bottom, top and definitely charmed.

 

My relationships don’t conform to Newtonian Mechanics,

What should be interpersonal, is more fun with group dynamics.

Sheila’s my Magnetic Monopole, predictable and stable,

Maintaining domesticity, she’s dull but competently able.

But Lola gets my particles accelerating, she’s mysterious Dark Matter,

I was drawn to her Graviton and Electromagnetism chatter.

 

Living with Sheila is a warm cosy fire, whereas Lola’s reaction is fission,

Keeping them happy, but always apart is increasingly my life’s main mission.

For if they were to meet and combine in some way,

The result would be combustive it’s easy to say.

Forget Einstein’s predictions on energy release,

This bang would be bigger, I might lose all my teeth.

 

For I can predict Nature’s cycles and rhythms and turns,

I can explain the sun’s workings and how hydrogen burns.

I can calculate geometry and planetary alignment,

I’m just not so sure what that look in her eyes meant.

I can theorise formulae, and particle phenomenology,

But I can’t tell the right time, to make an apology.

 

I’m not scared of black holes or other dimensions,

It’s Sheila and Lola that give me apprehensions.

Perhaps now’s the time to rethink my experiment,

I predict a bad ending to this ongoing merriment.

Maybe a new job, painter, mechanic or pianist,

It’s far too tricky, I’ve found, being a bigamist physicist.

 

 Chris Hughes

From Rusholme with Love

 

My life is like a Bond film, except for the violence, the glamour or vice,

But I do work with a guy, with one gammy eye, like the one in You Only Live Twice.

I have had some odd jobs to pay the occasional bill,

Though I had a license to drive a fork-lift, and never a License To Kill.

 

My car went off a jetty once, like that lotus in the Spy Who Loved Me,

But my sleek machine was no submarine, it just stayed there and voided its warranty.

My mate Dave’s a baker, at Easter he tries to be fun,

He’s no killer assassin, Scaramanga or Jaws, he’s the Man with the Hot Cross Bun.

 

I’m no super spy, living life on the edge, I tend to just go with the flow,

With my asthma, I asked should I live to the max, answer, wife yes, Dr No.

In Thunderball they scuba dived, in Greece I once went for a snorkel,

I lost my left flipper, two minutes in, and just swam round in one great big circle.

 

I have had a sty in my right Goldeneye, dislocated my left index Goldfinger,

Had a nasty Skyfall off a small garden wall, the Spectre of which does still linger.

I play bingo at Mecca, not Casino Royale, you could say it’s For Your Eyes Down Only,

It’s Live and Let Die when you’re one off a row, this life that I lead can be lonely.

 

I suppose I do have one thing 007 does not, the love of my life, my Octopussy,

She’s my Quantum of Solace, my Pussy Galore, I’m just lucky she isn’t that fussy.

For my Tomorrow Never Dies, when she serves up a shepherd’s pie, and I’d Die Another Day if I betrayed her,

‘Cos she’d kick my Living Daylights to the Moonraker and back, and leave me sorely in the need of a first aider.

 

The World is Not Enough to tempt me into James Bond’s life, but the Diamonds Are Forever I’ve been told,

On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, I might have a thrilling time, but for recruitment now I’m surely far too old.

I don’t want a View To A Kill, I prefer a view of a hill, to be honest it all sounds a dreadful pain,

I’m happy with it all just the way it is, but then they do say, Never Say Never Again.

 

Chris Hughes 2016

The Ballad of Daisy Dickinson

Little Daisy Dickinson was a pretty, happy, child,

Her temperament quite normal, her manner rather mild.

She loved her little dollies and she loved her Mum and Dad,

And if they didn’t love her back it made her feel quite sad.

 

They told her she was pretty and they dressed her up in lace,

They wrapped her in designer togs and painted makeup on her face.

She was special and she knew it, she could see their proud expressions,

Their smiles enhanced by whitening and years of tanning sessions.

 

Then in her teens she realised the importance of good looks,

It was only boring loners that were interested in books.

Daisy wore high heels and lipstick, and she padded out her bra,

And chose her boyfriend carefully, on the value of his car.

 

She scanned all social media for trends and new pretensions,

Had collagen, and spray tan, and nail and hair extensions.

Her makeup was a work of art, foundation, concealer and shimmer,

With expert use of shadows she could make the thick bits thinner.

 

All body hair was waxed away to keep her silky smooth,

And dental braces hammered in to straighten every tooth.

Daisy dieted and exercised, was pummelled, stretched and hoovered,

There was no portion of her body that she hadn’t had manoeuvred.

 

She took selfies in her bathroom mirror and posted them online,

Pouting like a starving duck, with a glass of chilled white wine.

Her role models, celebrities, she studied every move,

Judging their choices, critiquing their lives, deciding which ones to approve.

 

She polished, plucked and painted, every contour, every inch,

Her body was tight, no flab and no fat, there was nothing your fingers could pinch.

And yet, something was missing, a hole in her soul, a feeling of loss and despair,

Something that couldn’t be answered by simply recolouring her hair.

 

It was fame she was craving, adoration and money,

But Daisy wasn’t clever, couldn’t sing, act or be funny.

She pondered the problem and it came in a flash,

A sex tape was how she could get hold of the cash.

 

She hung out in nightclubs, and searched out her prey,

A premier-league footballer would show her the way.

The bigger the scandal, the bigger the splash,

So she hunted the married ones, out on the lash.

 

She flirted and fluttered and swivelled her hips,

She spoke like a baby and moistened her lips.

And when it was done, she uploaded the media,

And added some details to make it sound seedier.

 

She posed for the papers, and cashed in the story,

She appeared in lad’s mags as she basked in the glory.

She had fame, for a moment, it came and it went,

And the money was brilliant, until it was spent.

 

But then, back to the shadows, out of the light,

Back where survival’s a terrible fight.

Her legacy in tatters and her reputation gone,

She refused to learn her lesson, she still did not catch on.

 

For beauty fades and glory’s fleeting,

It’s a battle you can fight but it will always be defeating.

For there’s only so much slap that you can plaster on the cracks,

And in the end, each of us, has to face up to the facts.

 

It’s not what’s on the outside that should make us good or great,

It’s who we are and what we do, that’s the measure of our fate.

For Daisy, like a Christmas tree, with tinsel around it tied,

Had a bright and shiny outer, but was empty and dead, on the inside.

 

Chris Hughes 2016

Referendum Requiem

We’ve won the vote hip, hip, hooray, the English people have had their say,

It’s goodbye to Johnny foreigner while we keep the immigrants at bay.

A brave new world emerging, a return to the red, white and blue,

With spitfires over the white cliffs of Dover, cricket and Union Jacks too.

We’re going back to the values we cherish, we’re taking our Great Britain back,

Who cares if the economy falters, in Brexit we’re too old to sack.

 

We’re closing the gates to the country, stopping the flood of unwashed,

The lazy, corrupt and unwanted, their asylum requests all now are quashed.

We only want shiny white faces, with English as their native tongue,

Our towns will be quaint little villages, a land where Jerusalem’s sung.

We don’t know which ones are the trouble, so let’s give them all the big E,

Goodbye to the migrant, good riddance free movement, find somewhere else refugee.

 

Brick up the Chunnel, man all fences and we’ll keep the terrorists out,

Monitor movement, regard with suspicion, that’s what our freedom’s about.

But wait, they’re still coming, I see them, jetting in on an EasyJet flight,

Let’s scan them and watch them and track them, we must keep security tight.

How can we stop them from coming, I still see them walking around,

The politicians will need to do something, we won’t rest until they’re all found.

 

Deportation, surveillance and visas, strip searches, tagging and tests,

Stop every dark face and frisk them, check them for suicide vests.

And when they’re all gone,

And the good work is done,

We will walk through our streets free from fear,

And then we can shift all our focus, and deal with the ones who are queer.

 

Yes, the commies, the lefties, do-gooders, the wierdos, the godless and bent,

We’ll root them all out from the shadows, on their sordid ways we’ll now vent.

We’re cleaning the streets for the children, whether they want it or not,

We’re building a vision of heaven by smashing the great melting pot.

And then we’ll get rid of the homeless, they’re dirty, untidy and rough,

I’m sick of them littering the pavement, I think we’ve all now had enough.

 

We’re on a crusade for the Christians, we’re fixing the country for us,

Cream teas for all, on this sceptred isle, and a ride on a red London bus.

Equality for all, but especially me,

Doing what we say, is our kind of free.

Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité are gone, enough of their cheap foreign muck,

Supervision, Suspicion, Division, our new motto, now can be struck.

 

Farewell to England’s dreaming, farewell to welcome, warm hearth,

The people have spoken, we’re harrying the country, implementing our own self-scorched earth.

The brave and heroic of olden, Chaucer, Churchill and Jenner,

Will bury their heads and turn in their beds, as we cave in to fear and false terror.

Once great as a beacon of freedom, renown for our manners and hope,

Let’s sell off our cultural silver for bunting, banners, and old rope.

Chris Hughes 2016