Losing It

He staggered round his living room in stunning disbelief
As for the very umpteenth time, he’d gone and lost his teeth.
He cried, “They’re in here somewhere, I must search and search” but then
He couldn’t find his spectacles so he had to think again.

He sat down on the sofa and he heaved a hearty sigh
“I need assistance urgently, or maybe I will die.
It’s cold and very dark outside and I am all alone”
He tried to call his neighbour, but he couldn’t find his phone

He thought he’d get a signal out by other means instead
By fetching in some rotten logs he kept behind the shed.
“I’ll light a fire and send up smoke that somebody must see,”
But he couldn’t get outside because he’d gone and lost his keys

And so he climbed up on the roof and on the ridge did park.
The skylight slammed behind him as he sat there in the dark.
He knew that he must cry for help, of that he had no choice,
But when he opened up his mouth, he found he’d lost his voice.

And that is where they found him as they pulled him from the ridge.
The Fire Department found his keys whilst looking in the fridge.
His phone was in the cookie jar, his glasses on his head,
His dentures turned up later in a loaf of home-made bread.

This tale is universal, as I think you will agree
That everyone starts losing things, it’s part of life you see.
So try to keep a steady grip, or folk will stand and stare
And wonder if you’re due a spell in residential care.

 

 

Masks

It maybe today
Or it may be tomorrow,
We’ll strap on our masks
And we’ll walk ‘round like Zorro,
Avoiding the dangers
From all of those strangers
We’ll cry, “Hi Ho Silver
Here comes the Lone Ranger,”

And then we’ll give thanks
We can start robbing banks.
Our faces concealed
With no features revealed,
We’ll stuff all the swag
In a brown, paper bag.
The cop’s non-existence
All keeping their distance.

We’re searching for heroes,
Those Robert De Niros,
The guys who look cute
In a Spiderman suit;
It’s this man, it’s that man
It’s Robin and Batman
But if anyone asks,
“Why the bright rainbow mask?”
It’s for those who give all
Standing ever so tall
Always there to impress
It’s our brave NHS.

 

 

Murmurations

They come from near and far away,
Around the ending of the day
To gather high above the town
Just as the sun is dipping down.

Filling up the dusky sky,
They twist and twirl and multiply,
Oblivious of those down there,
With open mouths, who stand and stare.

With arrows darting left and right,
It truly is a splendid sight,
An aerial display so sweet,
The finest fireworks can’t compete.

The hungry owl denied a chance,
Among this swirling dervish dance,
And falcons sit, a sorry sight,
No supper here for them tonight.

But all at once the sky is dark,
As silence settles on the park.
Their leader calls, and down they go,
To bunk-up in the trees below.

A splendid ending of the day,
And so, I make my homeward way,
To toil away beneath the stars,
And scrape the guano from my car.

 

 

Jeff Eardley lives in the heart of England near to the Peak District National Park and is a local musician playing guitar, mandolin and piano steeped in the music of America, including the likes of Ry Cooder, Paul Simon and particularly Hank Williams.


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13 Responses

  1. Peter Hartley

    Funnier than Les Dawson and John Cleese put together, with only one or two tiny metric infringements that don’t obtrude (and weren’t worth mentioning). The murmurations over Manchester in the early dusk are phenomenal. Never have I seen so many creatures of the same species in one place.

    Reply
  2. Jeff Eardley

    Peter, as someone who is in awe of all your entries, thank you for the kind words. I have always been a massive Les Dawson fan. You have reminded me of my favourite Les joke. “I’ve just been over Ireland to see the wife’s mother. She doesn’t live there, she just looks better from over there.” Best wishes.

    Reply
  3. Susan Jarvis Bryant

    Jeff, what a delightful trio of poetic treats to wake up to on a Saturday morning! “Losing It” (I love the title) is a laugh out loud depiction of that stage in life when those grey cells start to fade and misfire. I’m at the lost-spectacles-on-head stage with a pinch of lost-cell-phone-in-hand creeping in. “Masks” is a much-needed fun take on this dire Covid situation, and “Murmurations” is magnificent. The imagery you conjure is magical and the closing couplet is a back-down-to-earth wink after the heavenly journey through the marvels of nature. Thank you!

    What a treat to be reminded of the late, great Les Dawson. I’m sure the majority of his material is not PC, but I adore his mother-in-law jokes… Les always knew when his mother-in-law was arriving – the mice threw themselves into the traps! 🙂

    Reply
    • Jeff Eardley

      Susan, there was the other Les joke about his mother-in-law getting a new occupation swimming up and down Loch Ness. Thank you so much for your kind words on my humble scribblings, and as you do so well, I love a good punchline. I hope Nancy has commented on your recent masterpiece, and your “Spyder” is spreading its web of wonder amongst all my friends over here. Thanks for so much inspiration.

      Reply
  4. Rod Walford

    Oh these are hilarious Jeff – I can’t decide which I like the most although, having already put one or two things in our fridge that don’t live there, “Losing it” made me wonder how much longer it’ll be before I’m at that stage!
    Thanks for the laughs and the reminders of dear old England.

    Reply
    • Jeff Eardley

      Thanks Rod. Your words are much appreciated. By the way, there is not much laughter here in England at the moment, although we did get through the “Last Night of the Proms” unscathed.

      Reply
      • Rod Walford

        Thanks Jeff ….yes I’m in regular contact with a friend in Devon and I hear everything is very depressing. I heard that efforts were made to torpedo the Last night of the Proms but fortunately they were unsuccessful. NZ is not a bad place to be right now!

  5. Margaret Coats

    Not having seen a murmuration, I looked them up, and while watching an impressive one, there popped up an ad for starling masks. These were not bird masks, but all kinds of masks with slogans designed to annoy authority. Never would have seen them without paying attention to Jeff’s humor–or should I say humour? Anyway, Jeff, thanks for the whimsy!

    Reply
    • Jeff Eardley

      Margaret, thank you for your kind comments and interesting remarks regarding starling masks which seems to link two of the poems. I imagine the purveyor of Nancy Pelosi masks is now making a killing outside hairdressers. Over here, we have the eternal Guido Fawkes version, often the preferred disguise for looters.

      Reply
  6. David Watt

    Thanks Jeff for the delightful humour, and also for your detailed description of a murmuration. I’ve seen starlings in their hundreds on occasions, but never anything on the scale you describe.

    Reply
  7. Jeff Eardley

    David, thanks for the kind words which are very much appreciated. The bit about the guano was so true. About a dozen cars were plastered white with the stuff as the murmuration seemed to be tens of thousands of starlings.

    Reply
  8. E. V. Wyler

    All 3 of these are great. My favorite was the 1st, “Losing It”, which has both universal and timeless appeal (in addition to being hilarious). Keep writing (and sharing) these humorous poems.

    Reply
  9. Jeff Eardley

    Thank you for those kind words. Yes, I will persevere with the humour, although there is not much to laugh about at the moment. We can all live in hope.

    Reply

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