Do the Aussie Mashed Potato

my daughter’s in Oz
and she’s pissed off
because they don’t
do mashed potato in Oz.

so antipodeans
listen up and
before I turn into
a frog in a sock,
mash some spuds
and give my daughter
some mashed potato love.

fair dinkum cobber.


Waiting for another bomb.

huddled up in winter.
squished into a summer seat,
vacuous eyes looking down Rainey Street,
watching cars go round and round
the rain soaked diamond roundabout.
just a typical Saturday night
in Magherafelt.

I was sixteen or seventeen.
in platform shoes, still tied to home,
mucking about, empty brained and sad,
a typical, melancholy small town lad,
getting his confused head together
in a bombed out backwater.

there wasn’t a lot to take in.
not a lot to do. not a lot to see.
i didn’t care, i was a teenager,
i just wanted to be alone
with my angst and self pity
as the small town people
went about their dreary business,
talked about the weather
and in huddled whispers
mumbled seriously about the bombs.

Johnny Rotten
was as far away as Saturn.
a distant twinkle in my universe.
even Belfast was slow to take him up,
in a city lost in barricades
and security alerts
punk was just too new
for all but a chosen few.

we stopped in.
or sat by roundabouts,
well into the night, parkas pulled up tight
watching aimless cars go aimlessly by
waiting for the screech of tyres,
the brits,
the thud of boots,
the shouts
and another bomb to watch going off.