A tax on sin or on grammar

I started writing “conversations” and similar writing  a few years ago.Sometimes a word keeps coming into my mind,like “syntax” which rhymes with sin tax”I usually make them humorous.But I never know what I am going to come up with.Sometimes I use “play on words”,sometimes I use an approach based on my emotions or feelings about past experience such as a 7 year old child being prepared for their first Confession…. something which can be agony for the sensitive.Another use could be to discuss something painful with yourself…Humour is the way I tend to travel.Try it.Take a walk with yourself.And enjoy it for me…I am listening to you.


She said she never knew what syntax was until she met me.

Well,you do look worn out by your sins.
How do you know they were sins?
Well,you went to Confession twice a week all your life
That was my scruples.Sometimes I went twice a day…
It sounds like having an upset stomach.
In my case it was an upset soul.The soul emptied out and hung out on the Maginot line
Eventually I realized virtue is not attainable by Will Power alone
How is it attained… won’t power?
I knew you’d say that!
Anyway to get back to syntax,it’s about structure.
Like council tax?
Words fail me
That’s good.I meant tax on a building
You seem very rude today
It’s not just today,I’m like this all the time.
I never noticed before
You only met me tonight
That’s almost true..now syntax is a very important topic.
Are we on a date or are you giving grammar lessons free?
No,I have Wasperger’s Syndrome.It’s as if I have Asperger’s but I sting too.
When do you sting
When people say sharp things to me.
Go on,you’re just needling me..
Truly I think you’ll love syntax and spelling rude words.
Well,we’ve had santax for years.Women pay VAT of 20 per cent on Tampax
It’s enough to make me throw up
No,throw out!Throw out the Coalition Government
Do you think Labour will remove Santax?
I don’t know but at least you’ll learn how to do percentages with them
I will?
Thank you so much.I am delighted to hear that.We are engaged.Here is a ring.
That’s beautiful.Was it your mother’s?
It still is my mother’s.
How can I wear it when she might see it?
I’ll tell her I liked hers so much I got one the same.She’s got poor vision so don’t worry.After the Wedding I’ll give it back
How mean.
I never knew you liked statistics.What about deviance?
Well,some I like,some I don’t… you catch my drift?
Well,babe,I’ll explain everything when we lie together.
That makes us sound like the government.
How come?
They all lie together.
Do they really.That explains a lot.Do they come together often?
I guess they have a rota.
You can’t come by will power.
That’s good.I want to come in a a horse and carriage.
It might frighten the horses.
I mean to our Wedding ceremony
Do you want four horses?
I am not that heavy!
No,I want you to have it all.
Suppose it’s not enough.
We’ll have to play it by ear..
Is that the organ?
Well,it’s a kind of organ.
A harmonium?
Maybe..I’ll ask the priest.
Does he play?
No,he just hears confessions and says Mass.
It’s a pity confession secret.He could write a long novel.
I daresay some have…. with pseudonyms.
I use a wordprocessor… should I get a pseudonym too?
You are crazy but I love you with all my heart.
And is it big?
Big enough for two.
Thank you,God.


From the New Yorker


LONDON (The Borowitz Report)—The theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking angered supporters of Donald J. Trump on Monday by responding to a question about the billionaire with a baffling array of long words.

Speaking to a television interviewer in London, Hawking called Trump “a demagogue who seems to appeal to the lowest common denominator,” a statement that many Trump supporters believed was intentionally designed to confuse them.

Moments after Hawking made the remark, Google reported a sharp increase in searches for the terms “demagogue,” “denominator,” and “Stephen Hawking.”

“For a so-called genius, this was an epic fail,” Trump’s campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, said. “If Professor Hawking wants to do some damage, maybe he should try talking in English next time.”

Later in the day, Hawking attempted to clarify his remark about the presumptive Republican Presidential nominee, telling a reporter, “Trump bad man. Real bad man.”

The old phone: Mary hears a shriek


Western fashion


Mary heard a  very strange sound as she came down the polished stairs of her bijou  detached home with its soft  blue  cosy furniture and deep  navy blue  thick pile wool  carpets.It was a loud two part shriek that was intermittent and so more irritating to a delicate lady’s ear
I wonder if that’s the new answering machine, she thought  to herself as she went to put the kettle on to make a few pints of tea.She heard it again,but it was not continuous
Well, it’s not the carbon monoxide detector either,she told Emile who was eating a sardine.Then she remembered hearing it before.
It’s the old phone handset with a flat battery,she murmured as she suddenly began to  wash her hair in the kitchen sink with some Persil Silk and Wool detergent.
Annie came to the door
What’s that strangely disturbing  beep ?she cried.And why are you washing your hair here,not in the bathroom?
See if you can spot the phone.I can’t find it,Mary told her.I wash my hair sometimes just to clear my brain besides my hair is so limp it needs it especially when we get a truly hot summer
Well,why not keep some shampoo here or that new wash and condition in one  bottle Oh,gosh,I have found the phone.It was  in the waste paper basket!But you can’t put it in the  ordinary rubbish bin,can you?
Well I could but it’s illegal.I will have to pay £20 for a cab to the recycling centre,Mary said philosophically.
I’d better not leave it “by accident” on a bench  in the Mall given the current climate of fear and Brexit hatred
Well if we remove the batteries it won’t shriek anymore,Annie told her kindly.
How is the new phone doing .Is it good? she rambled on  guilelessly
OK.It has a special button  on the front so you can block someone after you have picked it up.There is some much fear now about WITHELD NUMBERS.At one time we only knew after we picked it up.If I use my phablet my sister hates it..Mary disclosed.She refused to have more than 2 numbers for me so it comes up as UNKNOWN
What is a phablet? Annie enquired sardonically,her little soft  eyes crinkling with laughter which showed off  her turquoise and orange  eye shadow which is actually    made from  pastel sticks from her art box!
It’s just a small tablet but you can make phone calls with it.An if it gets lost you can phobe it!!
I didn’t know you had one of those!
Neither did Stan,Mary said with a touch of sadness.I only wish we could phone heaven from earth.
Wow,said Annie.Maybe it would spoil
How true, her friend responded
.Let’s hope they have some attitude that   makes them  have a different point of view from us. Now,I’ll dry my hair and you can tell me why you came.
Oh,dear,said Annie.Let me drink some tea.I can’t remember except that  your wisteria has climbed up my rowan tree.
Was it shopping? Was it Dave?Let’s ring 999 and see what he has to say.
We’re all gay here,no fuss
We’ll all go play with puss,Emile!!

For sale

Archimedes’ pocket calculator in working order
Cleopatra’s nightie [washed and ironed]
Aristotle’s chair with footstool and TV remote
Abraham’s bra [unworn]
Isaac’s laughter [  CD]
My kindle book on   spelling
Euclid’s ruler [plastic]
Zeno’s hair [combed]
Ten  live Greek tortoises with name tags.
Book of Numbers [ In Hebrew]
My poetry  course [ Teach yourself]


Spelling – Poem by Margaret Atwood

My daughter plays on the floor

with plastic letters,
red, blue & hard yellow,
learning how to spell,
how to make spells.

I wonder how many women
denied themselves daughters,
closed themselves in rooms,
drew the curtains
so they could mainline words.

A child is not a poem,
a poem is not a child.
there is no either/or.

I return to the story
of the woman caught in the war
& in labour, her thighs tied
together by the enemy
so she could not give birth.

Ancestress: the burning witch,
her mouth covered by leather
to strangle words.

A word after a word
after a word is power.

At the point where language falls away
from the hot bones, at the point
where the rock breaks open and darkness
flows out of it like blood, at
the melting point of granite
when the bones know
they are hollow & the word
splits & doubles & speaks
the truth & the body
itself becomes a mouth.

This is a metaphor.

How do you learn to spell?
Blood, sky & the sun,
your own name first,
your first naming, your first name,
your first word.

A sad child by Margaret Atwood

You’re sad because you’re sad.
It’s psychic. It’s the age. It’s chemical.
Go see a shrink or take a pill,
or hug your sadness like an eyeless doll
you need to sleep.

Well, all children are sad
but some get over it.
Count your blessings. Better than that,
buy a hat. Buy a coat or pet.
Take up dancing to forget.

Forget what?
Your sadness, your shadow,
whatever it was that was done to you
the day of the lawn party
when you came inside flushed with the sun,
your mouth sulky with sugar,
in your new dress with the ribbon
and the ice-cream smear,
and said to yourself in the bathroom,
I am not the favorite child.

My darling, when it comes
right down to it
and the light fails and the fog rolls in
and you’re trapped in your overturned body
under a blanket or burning car,

and the red flame is seeping out of you
and igniting the tarmac beside your head
or else the floor, or else the pillow,
none of us is;
or else we all are.

Unmistakable and real

In the beginning
Matthew Arnold’s Dover Beach
Not God’s word but ours.

Unmistakable and real
Enter into minds

Can we live without
Worshipping something other
Than denim and gold?

I suspect we can’t
Collective melancholy
Becomes paranoid.

Neither can we stop
Until the  nuclear fault
Brings hell to the earth.

Who thinks of heaven?
We seek to project our hate
Can we not hold it?

No-one wants to share
We don’t understand others
Are very like us.

%d bloggers like this: