Sunday, 3 October 2010

Happiness with a twist




So the Poetry Bus is a bit off-road this week. The original driver (Watercats) seems to be lost on the mountain somewhere (are you OK, Cats...come in Cats...). I suggested we have a week off (tired, emotional, lazy) but instead super NanU has stepped into the seat (can you do that...step into a seat.. anyway...). Her post with links to all travellers is here.

NanU suggested we write about happiness but this was not good timing for me. I did write two new poems on Friday but Friday was that day in the menstrual cycle when I always write doom, gloom and misery (can't help it... always happens...I'm fine again now). This means I do have a poem for you but I'm not really sure it's about happiness (well, unless you like your happiness in a kind of...very roundabout way). This poem is so miserable it's almost funny, I think. And I make no apology for mention of menstrual cycles... as Ben Elton once observed if men had them we might well hear a lot more about them...

Also, because I was talking about liking the sound of poems more than the look of them in the last post, there's an audio file right here (if you want it).


Rank and file


We have no medals
Or fancy prizes
Some of us, to be honest
Don't even have uniforms
Not any more

We stand, slump, doze
With nothing remotely grand on show
Not even our wounds impress
Pathetic scabs
Sad stories all

We are quite the army
Of Could-Have-Been
A quiet country
Our battles weak
Sometimes from nothing

And still we have worn ourselves
Into the ground
The markers show
Our fallen ways
A bugle plays



RF 2010


Of course the fastest route to happiness, as we all know, is ballroom dancing. Well, this guy looked pretty happy on 'Strictly Come Dancing' the other night. Keeeeep Dancing!


x

p.s. The photo above is the cliffs at St Cyrus, Aberdeenshire (taken on dog walk yesterday about lunchtime).

33 comments:

Totalfeckineejit said...

Glad you didn't have a week off, but understand why you might have liked one!
This is good, I likes it, mucho!

Rachel Fox said...

Aye well, you're a Smiths fan, aren't you?
x

The Weaver of Grass said...

Sounds fairly happy to me.

hope said...

There are degrees of happy and I think you've captured one of them quite well. :)

Geez, I thought the contestant WAS the professional at first!

Rachel Fox said...

Really Weaver? Really?

I know, Hope, isn't he amazing? And in week 1! Can he keep it up til xmas... that's the question.

x

Helen said...

Your 'misery' is shining brilliantly today!

Rachel Fox said...

Thanks Helen. Much appreciated.
x

Emerging Writer said...

Rachel - we're on the same cycle...wrote mine today though. The sun's shining on and off too.

Terrific reading, might I say too

Jo said...

You have a wonderful way with words. Your words are your paint brush.

You live in Aberdeenshire? My best friend lived there, in a place called Laurencekirk. I visited her, and that is gorgeous country...!

Rachel Fox said...

Funny old business, isn't it, EW, and not much has changed... we still feel, on the whole, that it needs to be a secret! The shame of womanhood, the shame!

Hi Jo
We're not far from Laurencekirk at all... just a few miles.. though we live just over the county border in Angus.

x

Crafty Green Poet said...

I like the rhythm to this one, and the mood

Rachel Fox said...

Thanks CGP...don't think I'll read it on Friday though. A host can't be too grim...
x

Karen said...

Think I'm in the ranks with you, Rachel.

Titus said...

I will come back about the poem later, but I made the mistake of going straight to the Strictly. What! Week 1! What the hell does old snake-hips Matt do in his real celebrity day job? You've made me want to watch it now, and I swore I never would once Arlene went...

Gwei Mui said...

This is very reflective and rather sad - but I do like it, it just reminds me of the Monday morning bus queues

NanU said...

Everybody needs a week or two off now and then.
Happiness can be remarkable for its absence, and often makes for great poems like this one. Happy Monday to ya!

Rachel Fox said...

Titus - info on Matt Baker here. It seems he has danced a bit before which may mean the public don't take to him long-term...this is often seen as cheating in Strictlyland. Personally if he keeps up that level of feel-good we might give him a chance!

Thanks all for poem reading. And yes, quiet there in the queue and stop pushing!

x

Rachel Fox said...

Plus Arlene-Shmarlene...she was a pain half the time anyway.
x

Titus said...

Aha! The Blue Peter route. Quite successful in the past. Not such a good career move with Crufts though...

Poem is class. I'd read it.

Rachel Fox said...

Yes, and I realise, rather late, that this post should have been called 'happiness with a twist (or a cha cha cha)'!
x

Niamh B said...

hard to say whether it's a more happy or mournful kind of poem - if the prompt wasn't happiness I would have definitely said the latter and blindly missed the former. But I can see the former in it when I look close enough.

Rachel Fox said...

By Jove, you might be right!
x

The Bug said...

I'm always blind-sided by the monthlies (what the heck - not YOU again!). I'm not big on keeping track, apparently.

I like the poem. And I wonder, is it better to fall into sloth, or to have something worth fighting for?

Rachel Fox said...

Sometimes, even if you have that something, you can run out of fight. Maybe.
x

The Solitary Walker said...

Rachel, I've just had an awful thought you might have misunderstood my comment on Bonnie's blog just now. I'm sorry if I might have caused any offence. What I was really trying to say was that your blog was a fantastic mixture of everything. Sorry if I expressed myself so badly.

Rachel Fox said...

No, no...I liked it - it was totally fair. Plus you said I was (and I quote) a 'really good writer'... and that makes everything OK in my, as it were, book.
x

Jinksy said...

Even the MENTION of 'Strictly Come Dancing' is enough to make me happy! :)

The Solitary Walker said...

I must say, in my opinion and in all honesty, that you are one of the best writers I've found in blogworld. You have a gift for communicating, and for making things accessible and interesting - which a lot of bloggers could really learn from.

Stafford Ray said...

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for this. Rarely does anyone celebrate all the people who bust theri hearts trying, who get oh so close but are not chosen to pop up and receive ecognition! So clearly and eloquently spoken!

Peter Goulding said...

A lovely, lovely wallow in misery. There should be more poems celebrating the downtrodden.

Rachel Fox said...

Yes, Jinksy...there are lots of reasons Strictly is so popular! I know some people hate it but it's been a big thing in our family...kept generations entertained.

SW - thank-you so much. Maybe I should do blogger training courses and workshops (KIDDING!).

Stafford and Peter - thank-you. It's good that sometimes failure has its upside...

x

Enchanted Oak said...

Thank you for not faking anything, Rachel. Tired, emotional, lazy, you call yourself, and I think our bodies speak to us through such messages. Myself, I need to listen more, and to rest sometimes without worrying about it being forever. I "stand, slump, doze" a bit more since grief became my companion. Sometimes I think we just need to listen to the bugle play.

Rachel Fox said...

Yes, sometimes just listening is good.
x