I Am a Woodlouse

I am a woodlouse.

Sometimes people ask me:

‘Got wood?’

or if I am feeling lousy.

I find neither question

particularly amusing,

but then we woodlouse

are not known

for our wonderful sense of humour.

We are actually known

for our ability to roll into a ball

but only the genus armadillidium

of our species can in fact do that…

so there.



I am a Parrot

I am a parrot.

(I am a parrot! I am a parrot!)

This is apparent.

(This is apparent! This is apparent!)

I like repetition in poems.

(Repetition in poems! Repetition in poems!)

Did you know sick as a parrot,

(Sick as a parrot! Sick as a parrot!)

is an irrelevant saying,

(An irrelevant saying! Irrelevant saying!)

because I am fit as a fiddle.

(Fit as a fiddle! Fit as a fiddle!)

Now get lost

(Get lost! Get lost!)

And get parrot a cracker.

(Parrot want a cracker! Parrot want a cracker!)



(Get me a cracker, Jack! Get me a cracker Jack!)

and I’ll get you the gold.

(Get you the gold! Get you the gold!)

We parrots can read maps,

(We can read maps! We can read maps!)

didn’t you know?

(Didn’t you know? Didn’t you know?)


You didn’t know

(You didn’t know! Didn’t know!)

but it is fact.

(It is fact! It is fact!)

Parrot want a cracker.

Parrot want a cracker, Jack.


I am a Baby Pigeon.

I am a baby pigeon.

My proud parents made our nested home known

with a black and white Pollock painting


I am a baby pigeon.

Born into a destiny of destinations,

the orange letters lit our faces

as though we were a family sitting by a camp fire.

The words illuminated

and removed us;

a spotlight and a rock

and I was gone.

I am a baby pigeon.

Train tracks led both ways

and both ways led to death.

The R.S.P.C.A have no R.E.S.P.E.C.T

for me, my family or what we have been through.

This refugee is nothing new.

If my feathers were orange,


or even blue

I would be loved by you.

I am a baby pigeon.

London grey is my colour,

and London indifference is my right.

It matters not that Cher Ami

was a war hero, or that I am a biblical creature

who can recognise my reflection

and could send messages in the time before texts.

I am a baby pigeon.

I wonder if when R.E.M sang “Everybody hurts”

if Michael Stipe was  including little birds.

I am a baby pigeon.

Now fuck off

because I’m only vermin to you anyway.