Tag Archives: Windsor

Have You Known The Sea?

Dad pic










On the Sussex Coast mid-point last century

Lapping waves of single purpose

Beckoned a boy to Dartmouth and to the taste of salt.

Sub-marine the knots to learn,

Emerging as the loyal servant of a silent capsule fish.

Such tales and whales- the Dolphin Mess!

The toasts, the boasts, the wit so sharp and dry,

Its ocean provenance a mystery.


Then Mobe at home his girls he’d join

For runs ashore on Bognor beach,

In dinky boats the windmill-ed Broads to roam.

Or to the Lock-jewelled Thames

The mooring and exploring to commence,

While Windsor’s picnic cruises

In wooden pleasure craft

Were but a twinkle in the captain’s dewy eye.


The years they rolled on with the tides

As on its truest path does water flow.

The sky-high view of Worthing’s Avenue

Affording daily reassurance

That still She rages, plays and rests on the horizon;

Powerful and constant,

Never other than Herself,

An unapologetic force of nature.


Yes, you have known the sea implicitly,

And now the sea knows you.




Filed under Mumbo Life, Mumbo poems

Swan Couples Counselling


Therapist: So you’ve been having some problems.

Norma says you don’t talk to her.

Cyril: That’s because I’m a mute swan.

Norma: Mute, my arse. You’ve got plenty to say in mating season.

Cyril: Just as well, Dear, if you care to keep breeding like a rabbit.

Norma: Oh, you’ve noticed we’ve got cygnets, have you?

Didn’t think there were just a bunch of ugly ducklings hanging around?

Cyril: Let me see…

I defend our patch from intruders.

I don’t bugger off to avoid my tail-feather freezing in the crappy weather.

I incubate our eggs, like a blithering stay-at-home Dad.

But I’m still not sticking my beak in enough?

Therapist: You seem to be feeling under a lot of pressure, Cyril.

Cyril: Damn straight. I’m up to my neck in domesticity. And that’s a lot of domesticity, if you can see what I’m saying?

One minute I’m cruising the lake, ruffling a few feathers, checking out the birds.

Next thing, I’m perpetually building nests, like a riverside property developer.

Then, day in day out, during tourist season, that’s all you ever hear: ‘Aren’t they beautiful? They mate for life, you know?…’

Flaming well feels like it too.

Norma: Why don’t you just sod off, if that’s how you feel?

Go and shack up with a mallard- see if I care.

Cyril: Yes, you’d like that, wouldn’t you? Leave you to the Russian?

Norma: What Russian?

Cyril: That effeminate goose you were after during migrating season.

Norma: Pinkfoot was Icelandic.

I liked his high-pitched honking call, that’s all.

Cyril: Yeah? Well, wrap yourself around a 747 and pay him a visit.

You can offer yourself to Bjork as a party frock, while you’re there.

Therapist: Let’s take a deep breath, for a moment.

Cyril, can you tell me how life would look in an ideal world?

Cyril: I’d like to go all the way on, ‘Who Wants To Win A Lifetime’s Supply Of Aquatic Plants?’, that’s what I’d like.

Or maybe do some work in films or the opera.

Norma: They’re ballerinas in costumes, you pillock.

Therapist: Norma, these are valid comments.

How would you like your life to look?

Norma: Much like it is, really.

More ‘me’ time. A trip to Teddington Lock.

I’d like to lose some weight.

Therapist: Tell me more about that.

Norma: Well, we moved to Windsor last year for a change of scene.

Cyril got a taste for the glamour and I got a taste for the bread.

I’m eating like a foie gras. If the Queen has a state banquet I’ll be first picked.

Cyril: Don’t say that, Norm. You’re still got what you had when we first met.

Therapist: And what was that?

Cyril: She was just different from the others even though she looked exactly the same.

She had this lovely long neck, for instance.

And feathers white as snow.

Therapist: And Cyril?

Norma: He was clumsy as hell. And rubbish at swimming. And he looked a bit dirty- I thought he was gorgeous.

I still do.

Therapist: That’s a great note to end on today.

Before you go, can you think of anything you would you like to say to each other?

Cyril: It may look to you like I’m floating, Love, but my feet are going like the clappers underneath.

Norma: I know, Ducky.

And I may look ready to sink but I’ve still got my head above water.


Filed under Conversations, Uncategorized