Monkey Fingers

A request! This one’s from my lovely sister Ana Bush (yes, there is a family resemblance, but no, that’s not her in the picture).

Ana was trying to send me a request for another poem (coming soon!) but unfortunately, queen of the touchscreen that she is, ended up requesting…… “a period”. Brings a whole new meaning to “lovin’ your flow” doesn’t it?!

So, Ana, you ham-fisted lovely, I present….. your period.

Monkey Fingers

Ooh! Ooh! Monkey-Fingers!
Stabby, jabby, chunky fingers,
Pawing at my touchscreen like a primate in a zoo,
Hit, miss, proddy, pokey,
Stupid smartphones just provoke me,
How can I hit ONE key with a finger made for two?

Smug little kiddywinkies,
Typing with their dinky pinkies,
Flying round their phones, like fairies frisking through the flowers,
Tippy, tappy, flutter, flitter,
WhatsApp, Snapchat, Tinder, Twitter –
Meanwhile, Monkey sends a text. This may take Monkey hours.

Ooh! Ooh! Scary Monkey,
Stroppy, sulky, sweary Monkey,
Scowling at my smartphone like it threw a monkey poo!
Still, while all the techno-kiddies,
Scroll and scroll until they’re giddy,
Monkey here is busy… with the FUN things monkeys do!

 

©️Nina Parmenter 2018

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Pampered Pussy

Depending on your way of thinking, you may be pleased or disappointed to hear that this isn’t a vajazzle poem (although what a terrific topic for a later date!) – it’s about an actual cat.

My beloved childhood cat Sidney was a soft old bugger. But sometimes he’d come over all “call of the wild” and be seized by the need to climb a tree. This was Not A Good Idea. The sight of him, splayed on top of a tree, the tree bending under his weight (he was massive), and him wondering what on EARTH just happened – that will stay with me forever.

God love him. Somewhere beneath that cute, cuddly exterior was a petulant, prowling prairie cat and sometimes, that petulant, prowling prairie cat just had to come out.

Pampered Pussy

They call me pampered pussy,
“Such a PRETTY pet!” they purr,
All they see’s a funny feline,
Just a friend with fluffy fur.

Hear me humans! I AM HUNTER!
I am leopard, lynx and lion,
I am panther, I am puma,
I will eyeball you with iron!
I’m machine. A mighty muscle,
I am sleek and sinewed steel,
Engineered by evolution,
You are nothing! You should kneel!
Shhh now. I will show you.
See the tremble in that tree?
It’s a beast and I will best it!
Stand aside now, scum, and see.

I creep.
I crouch.
I climb!
Curled
claws
clutching
confidently,
cleverly
crafted
curves
completely
coordinated,
I coast
coolly,
competently,
courageously,
to the crown.
THE CREATURE
IS CONQUERED!!
Now – cower,
clumsy
cretins!
For
I
am
CAT
!!!!!!

(Quick question.
How DO I get down?!)

 

©️Nina Parmenter 2018

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Toddler Tantrum

Here’s the latest in a long line of “parenting stuff I worked out a bit too late”.

It has taken until my second child reaches three-and-a-half to work out that a child having a tantrum (a proper one, not a fake one) is NOT generally a child that can be reasoned with. No, a child having a tantrum is a bewildered trainee human, confused and overstimulated by a overloaded, malfunctioning lizard brain.

You wanna reason with that? You go ahead, supermum. For now, I’ll just stick to giving him space and cuddles.

Toddler Tantrum

Your brother pushed the button at the crossing,
The bowl you want is blue; you got the red,
The world dissolves. And suddenly you’re lost in
A cruel new place, uncharted in your head.

This world is wrong; it threatens your survival,
Raw panic meets bewilderment and rage,
These primal feelings brawl and churn and spiral –
It’s all too huge to process at your age.

Your skin turns red, you scream, emotions wheeling,
Your chubby hands curl tightly into claws,
You hit the ground, you pummel out those feelings,
That seem too big and scary to be yours.

I meet the stares from passers-by with shrugs.
I’ll give you space, brave boy, then give you hugs.

 

©️Nina Parmenter 2018

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The Water Droplet

Out with for a walk with the boys yesterday, all three of us took utter delight in spotting icicles. (The boys also took utter delight in snapping them off and using them as weapons, but we’ll edit that bit out.)

So yesterday evening, the funniest thing happened. I came over all airy-fairy. Fear not – I made a full recovery – but not before I penned this little flight of fancy. So get your whimsical wigs on and enjoy.

The Water Droplet

Cut loose from the rigid regime
of a snowflake, I join with a stream,
flowing free – oh! just like those sweet dreams
that I dreamed when I dwelt in a swamp.
Down
I
romp,
with my soulmates bound close to my side,
What a ride! Til we joyfully slide,
with a whoop and a cry from the roof,
and
then…
Ooph.
I collide with an icicle. Please,
no, don’t freeze! I cry out – but I freeze….

I sulk. I await my release.

But then, as I hang, it occurs
to my brooding mind – things could be worse.
I’m with friends. I look good. There’s a view,
I’ve got nothing important to do,
except join in the winter display
as a sideshow to snow. And one day,
when I’m caged in an aquifer’s pore*,
or in polar ice – man, what a bore –
for millennia, possibly more…

I’ll think this was the best day of all –
When I hung from the roof looking cool.

 

*See – whimsy and A Level Geography can  be happy bedfellows…

©️Nina Parmenter 2018

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Gotta Get Out The House

Ah… quality time at home with the children.

I’m sorry, what?! There is quality time with the children. And there is time at home with the children. And, for our family, the two are pretty much mutually exclusive. Home is about mess, fights, funny smells, nagging, exasperation, and a lot of arguments involving the word “screen”. The good stuff happens outside the house. IF ONLY WE CAN GET THEM OUT….

Gotta Get Out The House

Gotta get out the house, gotta leave,
My sanity needs some reprieve,
That two little boys,
Could make so much noise –
You’d have to be here to believe!

Before, I’d no concept at all,
Of the phrase “We are climbing the walls” ,
But now it appears,
We are wall mountaineers,
Trying to flee from the mess and the brawls.

We’ve tried castles, museums, a wood,
Hit the park way more times than we should,
Our purses are thickets,
Of passes and tickets,
Cos not being home is soooo good.

Our bank account’s screams are dramatic:
“No more lunch! No more fuel! I can’t hack it!”
“No more bribes!” (Yes – they’re wrong –
But they move things along –
And we call it “being pragmatic”!)

So into the car and away!
The safari park’s waiting today!
To the monkey house! Yes,
It might look quite a mess –
But OUR house will look worse if we stay!

 

©️Nina Parmenter 2018

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Two Tall Tales

Sometimes life is stranger than fiction. But usually — let’s face it — it’s not. In fact, sorry to say, it’s often quite dull.

Although most of the poems I post on here are autobiographical (with a little poetic licence), sometimes it’s fun to indulge in a bit of nonsense.

So here are two silly tales that are pure, silly, fiction (and if ANYONE recognizes themselves, it’s utter co-incidence!)

 

The Story of Sophie Smith

Sophie Smith came home from school, her blue eyes shining bright,
Her mum saw what was in her hand, and turned completely white.
“Look Mummy!” she cried happily, “I’ve got a violin!”
And she bounced up to her room, so her rehearsal could begin.

For hour after hour, Sophie scraped that violin,
She heard some shrieks from down the stairs, said “Great! They’re joining in!”
But when she heard the front door slam, she thought “What’s going on?”
So finally she left her room… and everyone had gone.

There were teeth marks in the table, there were gouges in the grout,
The cat lay cowering on the chair, its hair all fallen out,
There were claw marks in the curtains, lacerations in the floor,
There were signs of frantic packing, and a note upon the door.

“We love you, Sophie Smith,” it said, “but hate that vile din –
So sorry, but you have to choose – us or the violin!”
Sophie shrugged. She phoned her friends. Yelled “Party is at mine!”
“My friend,” she told her violin, “I think we’ll get on fine!”

 

My Dear Mr Morris

“My dear Mr Morris, I’ll hope you’ll consider
Me wedding your daughter. I heard you forbid her
To marry a suitor without your consent –
My intentions are pure, sir. I’m truly a gent!”

“So how will you treat her?” “I’ll spoil her of course!
You see, handling a woman’s like riding a horse –
The more fillies you tame, then the greater your skill,
Believe ME, Mr Morris, I’ve sure had my fill!”

“And what do you earn?” “Oh I earn to the max!
See, I’m building our future, so don’t pay much tax,
As I always take cash! Now, what was it you do?
Oh! You work for the Fraud Squad! Well hey, good for you!”

“And do you want children?” “Oh yes sir! A dozen!
I remember, my mum said she married her cousin
To strengthen our family’s excellent genes –
Which I’m keen to pass on, if you know what I mean!”

“Well Mr Morris, I think you’ll agree,
That she won’t find a husband who’s better than me!
Oh, we’re going outside? Ok! Let’s get some air!
Oh no, don’t close the door!
Hello???
Anyone there???”

 

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The smell of the weekend (a tale from my childhood)

It is said that smell is the very best sense for evoking memories. But can words evoke the smell?

I picked a very favourite smell from my childhood – the smell of custard bubbling in the pan – to try to find out. For me, custard is intertwined with happiness, family, and that wonderful “happy belly feeling”. Maybe it might take you back to Sunday puddings too.

The Smell of the Weekend

A tale from my childhood

Weekends. A lie in. Some morning TV,
A trip to the library, a dash to the shop,
Some football to watch or some good friends to see,
And a hot, milky pan that would bubble and pop,
Cos weekends meant pudding – with custard on top.

The anticipation was always a killer!
I’d trawl through my homework, my nose ever twitching,
Awaiting the blanket-soft scent of vanilla,
Velvet-cream thoughts so distracting, bewitching.
And then – yes! – a sweet, silky smell from the kitchen.

So I’d chomp through my meat and potatoes and veg,
(Or whatever our prelude to pudding that day),
The waft from the stove setting senses on edge,
Til finally! Pudding! And all was OK…
I’d open my mouth and slide sweetly away.

 

©️Nina Parmenter 2018

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Perplexing Child

We know that part of the reason for our success as a race is our diversity. And yet, we still sometimes don’t know how to cope with difference. Especially amongst our children.

Faced with sensitive children, artistic children, gifted children, ADHD children, autistic children – we’re tempted to try to homogenise them, make them conform, quash what makes them brilliant. Because, as much as we desperately love them, what makes them brilliant can also make them a huge, perplexing challenge.

Perplexing Child 

My brave, perplexing child – you are unique,
You do not touch the world like others do.
The words we say, our rules, the things we seek,

They’re all a strange cacophony to you.

What does life feel like, there behind your eyes,
Your mouth, your nose, your fingertips, your ears?
If I could breathe your breath, what fresh surprise

would hide within your thoughts, your dreams, your fears?

You challenge life. You rail against the norm,
Within this world that needs us all compliant,
You’ll blossom, though, while they rush to conform,

You’ll grow in your own skin, become a giant.

One day you’ll burn magnificently bright,

Until then, there’s a world we have to fight.

 

©️ Nina Parmenter 2018

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Dinner with the girls

Last Saturday I went out for dinner with some fabulous friends, and it struck me how very similar it was to dinners-with-friends 20 years ago – but yet how very different. Different place, different friends, slightly different topics of conversation – yet the laughter, the bonding and the sheer joy of time spent with my ladies remained the same.

And, obviously, my face hasn’t changed a bit.

Dinner with the girls

1 – THEN (1998)

Dinner with the girls today,
So little time, so much to say!
We’ve spent the whole week studying,
So let the gossiping begin!
The sales today were just THE BEST –
I got this tiny glittery vest,
Which works for me, cos when I’m out,
I hoik em up; there’s boys about!
Let’s get into the crux of it:
Do you all wax your lady bits?
And when you’re naked with a man,
Do you do EVERYTHING you can?
For pudding? Ice cream! Make it 2!
My friend will have a Malibu.
Then let’s go clubbing, drink some more,
But try to get to bed in four –
Tomorrow, MUST be up by two,
I’ve got an essay still to do.

I hate it when the evening ends
Cos nothing beats good times with friends.

2 – NOW (2018)

Dinner with the girls today,
So little time, so much to say!
We’ve spent the whole week parenting,
So let the gossiping begin!
The sales today were just THE BEST –
I got myself this thermal vest,
Which works for me, cos when I’m out,
I layer up; there’s flu about!
Let’s get into the crux of it:
Do you all wax your husbands’ bits?
And when you’re naked with your man,
Do you keep socks on if you can?
For pudding? Crumble. Gluten free.
My friend will have a cup of tea.
My goodness!! Is it half past ten?
I must be getting home again –
Tomorrow, MUST be up by
eight,
I’ve got the hall to decorate.

I hate it when the evening ends
Cos nothing beats good times with friends.

 

©️ Nina Parmenter 2018

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