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Part One

The Ego

The Manager

Those Who Win

Seven Billion

Why Does God Allow Suffering

Local Countryside

New Year

Part Two



You’re Not Allowed

Social Housing

Christmas Day

The Entrepreneur

Part Three

A Week In The Life

The Conversation

Fairground Day


World War 2 Pilot

Resident Patient

Part Four

The Garden

Winter Walk


Inner Conflict



Part One

The Ego


You can’t see it
Neither can you touch it
Some claim it doesn’t exist
Let’s admit it though
Its power is hard to resist

It wants to be your master
Let it and stack up disaster
It likes to be in charge
To shoulder barge

It wants to save face
So you give in and compose lies
They're so hard to disguise
Lies, which are bold
Because you refuse to be told

Chiefly it seeks fame
Secretly, it wants the rest to be lame
It listens to tales of others success
And goes quiet

It likes to disagree

And it’s easily offended
But hard to get mended
Egos take great skill to manage

To unravel - be aware

Of your ego, how it ticks
Don’t let it play its dirty tricks
Make the ego work for good
As ultimately, it should

The Manager

Making up a statement
For workers we just don’t rate
Colluding with the others
But don’t tell my mother

Everything runs by the book today
Until the seniors go back away
You wheeled out the charm
To hide the certain harm

Cutting back the staff
Whilst having a little laugh
Trimming the pay packets
Don’t tell me, I know it’s a racket

I won’t ever get caught
In my world everyone can be bought
Workers off with stress
We will have to make do with less

Area says the books are looking great
So how dare you all berate
What I’m doing can’t be fraud

Because business is fantastic

Those who win


How do people win?
In the world around us
The winners do what’s right

And run away from wrong

They do well and get rich
Yet are generous with it
Keeping on top of pride
They subdue and master anger

And refuse to give in to fear
Unjust guilt doesn't hurt them
Jealousy is forbidden to taunt
They don’t laze through time

Nor gorge beyond being full
Or want no end and more
Those in pursuit of victory 
Are reaching for all of this

They're productive people
Making sure they rest too
What they build is worthwhile
They’re gaining great things

And they've grasped this life
The mixture of good and bad
They didn't choose what's easy
But they chose what’s true

They forgive their enemies
Yet justice is dear to them
Their lives are blessed now
And going to be even better 

Seven Billion

Out there is a sea of faceless people
Swelled up to seven billion they say 
Do I especially want to or need to 
Affect and impact a difference?

Seven million poets just on one site
That’s just part of the Web’s might
People gathering and huddling for reviews
Quietly desperate not to lose

Spilling into the doctors surgery
Doubtless seventy seven people a day
The doctors gab curt and tired
Wishing your three minutes away

Seven tree surgeons in your town
You love the job but the competition
So insipid, it forces you down
No alternative, it’s what you know
So you keep to the mission

This face dazzles in the crowd
He’s a genius, I just can’t keep up
Is it even worth attempting?
You search here and there
For scraps of comfort and morale

Your life and work has so much value
Whether you have one talent or ten
We’re all so worthwhile, be you 
The first or the seventh billionth

Why does God allow suffering


Why does God allow suffering?
Principally is what people ask
What kind of god, would sit back
And allow these bombs to blast

My family got unfairly robbed
The innocent get horribly mobbed
It’s just not at all damn right
That God just seems to sit tight

There’s no absolute answer
We will have to wait and see
Why God set things up in a way
That we don’t always agree

Why do people become ill? 
Isn’t life supposed to be amazing?
Why is this so destabilising?

What can you or I really advise

Except to note some positive things
Are forged from suffering 
Great discipline and compassion
Strength and sincere character
Knowledge and opened minds

Natural disasters, the earthquakes?
Is it death Gods trying to make?
Earthly systems briefly work in mortal motion
As the animals, fragile human flesh ebbs and flows
But unique to the human is an eternal soul
Gods perspective, our souls the priceless goal

It’s worth suggesting some thoughts
Instead of closing our minds
And refusing to even consider 
That our God could be kind

Humans were given absolute choice
They can help or hurt with their voice
Choice whether to rescue the poor
Or barricade behind your door

If God intervened to stop every sin
Project humanity would lose its value
Created machines would have been fake
Rather He reasons let the good and the evil 
Briefly decide which choices they make

But rest assured the flesh life is short
And the eternal life is long
And hasn’t God made us promises
That He will mend all that’s broken

So maybe it's just conceivable 
God does not allow suffering at all

Local Countryside

Out there almost every single day
We were kids playing in the hay
Someone set light to the stubble
Man, we were so in big trouble

All summer cricket in Pondside rec
So seriously we took it for young ones
Special stumps came from the wood lathe
The cricket square mown and painted
Picked and your total best you gave

Camping out was so simple back then
Nothing about permission or planning
Cider we’d gained and trying a cigarette
Fire, sausages and blackened bread

Then the stars and nature's glory
Conversations of goodness knows what
Oxygen and air and feeling so well
Back then little trouble to tell

New Year

Excused and removed
From what's real
You fly - Oh my
1000 feet in the sky

Freak out and cop out
At pops serving of fun
Leveled and peaceful
Cozy and numb

Jump up and barrier up
Next year? No fear!
Improve and disprove
The despicable and diabolical

Critics of thy truth 
Driven back, vanquished
They stumble and struggle
Coz they're empty oh 

Yes and bounded to fail
Hangovers and insincere regrets
Sobered and forced to step into
The survival of mine and your new year






Part Two



It’s near the top of the pile

Words on labels help

Similar cloth, can be easier

Reserved, but just won't do


Forbidden works of art

It won’t let people even start 
Smoke will make you happy
Is one of its illusions

It borrows and buys cars

Loans that are hard to mend
And doesn't it feel great
When its briefly gained


Instantly refusing a good job

Cos it baulked and retched

Dedication to this golden calf

Which picks and chooses paths


This malady can sabotage

People's calm and charm

Is it worth paying these prices?

To ensure I look cool


37 times I played that social media clip
It blotted and blocked the nagging drip 
In truth the list of tasks within grasp
But its trepidation, waiting and fear
That drives to fit on that comedic mask

The one for all easy fix in a bottle
With its fleeting, empty guarantees
It recruits new cannon fodder daily
Been tricked and it spits out half lives
Of course it was fake escape

And more because ‘it’s the way I work’ 
Justifying and enabling pain creating wrongs
Others sickened agreement makes it easier 
Rudimentary escapist philosophy then
That if bought into damages so long

Never saying here to kill the joy
By all means some wine and song

But if you recognise real and hear
Shake off the escapism with a courageous roar
So then honestly and genuinely fixed
Then escapisms preposterous gnaw, no more

You're not allowed


You’re not allowed to be too negative
Even if the facts warrant such as
Neither should you be too excited 

Or jump up overly delighted

You can’t claim welfare, so what if

There’s no work or land access

Never mind if you’re old or sick
Yes, no experts here thanks

It’s expressly forbidden to talk about yourself
Even if, it’s life and you’re just saying
I demand you adopt a plastic persona
Supposed to be popular see

Others frown at you 
Yet break their own unwritten social rules
Flee from ‘you’re not allowed’ as
It’s folly that will hurt and restrict you

Determine the daft but learn from the wise
And strike out in the world unafraid
Carving out your success
And never being put off by those
Screaming at you, to achieve failure

Social housing


Pregnant women smoking

Single dads joking

Claimants preferring working

Signed off sick hurting


Walking by the communal

But keeping the smiles frugal

Status gained any which way

Dogs keeping the pain away

You might get run over by a bus tomorrow

So stop preserving yourself in sorrow

Tattoos and baccy

Booze and feeling happy


Poor diet

But so what because life’s a riot

You’ve got brains

But pride is pulling your reins


Some of us playing it straight

Boy did they make us wait

Private housing can’t be reached

Should someone be impeached?

Christmas Day

Bubbling up with elation

Bounding in for the reunion

Comforted for the duration

The pain of the separation

Swept away for the moment


Quarrels and shouting

Old scores uncorked

The same battles re fought

Slumped back, was over keen

Green, bloated and mean


Money found any which way

Presents simply must be bought

A surge of effort for a special time

The best goods gathered up

Feast of feasts for King of Kings


Young creeping down the stairs

Toys fantastic and expectations met

Gorging orange and chocolate

Amongst the glitz and gild

Troubles on holiday, happy moods


Wise were called by starlight

Bringing gifts to Bethlehem

The first Christmas, Christ was born

Heralding rescue and peace

And He is like refiners fire

The Entrepreneur


Dormant ambition stirred

Easy payouts are deferred

Hope and courage adopted

Up the ladder of knowledge

Lost rungs negotiated


It’s time and you’re ready

You consider some heavy loans

But inside your sensibleness groans

People scoff, wince and grimace

Just who do you think you are?


Others are thoughtful and positive

Catching the vision and intent

You hold the course resolute

An independent business release

Low budget but live and real


Walking and then running

You harvest some coin

Job satisfaction set to maximum

Factory room 101 in distant past

Conventions smashed and gone

You did it!






Part Three

A week in the life


Five pm forecast predicts a frost

So blanket on Fords windscreen

Arrived at work the usual 11 mins early

Free coffee and conservatory chit chat

I always heads down at 3 minutes to

A months frozen bread and milk

Defrosted at exacting and right moments

The homemade beers 78% cheaper

Every second Sunday, lunch guests

Rehearsed jokes and visitors book


Laminated camping list, same pitch

We’ve got friends there you see

Oh and how the oak tree shades you

Always books the same two weeks

If my other half can get em too


Bleach and clean Mondays

Mother on rotating Wednesdays

So we tend to stay in Thursdays

Radio Times with big circles

Columbo, Poirot and Jim Bergerac


Can call this boring or maybe smart?

Don’t let me laugh or poke fun

Cos these things I often do

Now I too, have the efficiency

Of the middle aged

The Conversation


The Angel:

“May the Lord arrest you

Hark, halt, evil’s damage”


The Demon:

“Hiss and spit, you really think I care?

I will squash and suffocate

Not relinquish, but relish in hate”


The Angel:

“Instructions He has given me

Violate my people at your peril

Says Him endless of days”


The Demon:

“I shall continue to bear false witness

You tell that to His Highness

I will keep destroying His people

Cheating and robbing the vulnerable

Opportunistic on the naive”


The Angel:

“Those are your words unholy one

Yet His pure paradise shall return”


The Demon:

“Paradise indeed

I will stop his people being freed”

The Angel:

“He can and will overpower you

Those decreed, shall indeed be free

Ultimately, the infernal will be burnt

So roam loosed for an age

Fallen servant of Yahweh

But punishment will befall you”


The Demon:

“Mention not my inevitable fate

For I dread that hellish date”

Fairground Day


A rumour going round school

The fairs due in town

A high counsel of children

Secret plans and clever tricks

To unearth the must have coin


Top priority news gained

The fairs in the field for five days

Saturday morning the friends meet

Skipping and running down there

Music and multicoloured lights

Mexican hat and ghost train

Chairs are flying in the air

Upside down and heads high up

Exhilaration and excitement 

Like never been felt before


A crowd in the electronic arcade

Money tumbling from pockets

Bright flashes and beeping

Look at Space Invaders graphics

In 1984, it was all we knew


Melting fudge and appleade

Cone of chips with candy floss

Us children laughed in fun

Time had ticked along well

It was the best of days



Serious and stillness

So the mourners shuffle

Pain repressed and expressed

Tearful eyes and ashen of face

The church a spiritual place


Sunlight shining through

The cross enlightened

Pipe organ music plays

Sending up into notes

The words, too sad to say


A kindly life the mortal lived

Genuine family and friends

Respectful and solemn

The just and right servant

Now made perfect and glorious


From the ruins of the loss

Raised up victorious anew

Let your sadness and grief

Begin to fade and heal

Truth gently washing it away


The followers of God

Defeating death each time

Like a chrysalis to a butterfly

Freed from the chains of flesh

Finally home, in peace forever

World War 2 Pilot


Roughly shaken from sleep

Bleary yet leaping to alert

Jump in and buckle up

Pistons thunder into life

Roaring runway flying start


Pilot commanding the steel

Navigator over the deadly payload

Nerves both men refuse to feel

Despite their survival chances

The same as ration tobacco


40 miles from Hitler’s Berlin

Focke-Wulf bombers are in sight

Spitfire steeply drops and turns

Belting out machine gun rounds

Enemy bullet holed and bitten


Other planes fighting in fury

Blinding smoke and sky on fire

Arriving and obliterating the targets

Buildings crushed and smashed

Pilot grim-faced at wars triumph

Resident Patient


One doctor declared she’s mad

Others shook learned heads

And said, no she’s just bad

The kindly and sympathetic wept

And said, take pity, she’s so sad


Horrors terrible the patient had once seen

Her sense of right and wrong

Had been melted, tripped and gone

A confidently warped world view

Her mind had constructed to protect


Not perpetrator but perjury

Was how she spun her trial

But it was a hopeless ploy

The jury grasping she took joy

And delight, in those cut and destroyed


Years had turned since the awful crimes

She convinced the hospital board, I’m fine

Released to circulate, lowered security

A sharp she stabbed into serving cook

Look, the patient laughed, lucky me





Part Four

The Garden


I sit in the garden

Cos there's fresh air and sun

Hoping for some peace


Now and then people walk by

A lady, drunk and pale

I do want to help

But it’s not so easy


A resident's on the run

Police arrive four times a day

I look at them through shades

Are those guns? No they're Tasers


Women pull up in ageing cars

Shouting at their children

I pull my hat over my ears

And put on more sun block


A criminal walks past

I perform a polite greeting

Keeping my tone held back

So as not to suggest he's junk


The postman barges through

'Got no work to do' he says crossly

I don't let his assumptions hurt me

'It's my day off, I have a job' I say.


My phones playing classical music

An attempt to silence the lot

I think, hoping my thoughts

Will take me far away.


I sit in the garden

Trying to cheat all this

To get a little peace

Winter Walk


Step out into crystal winter

Wrapped, muffled and warm

Faces cold and glowing red

Icy paths, gently you tread

In wonder at the snow


The couple, giving names

To lots of birds and trees

Two more, leaping from leads

Golden and large bounding past

Little Russell blisteringly fast


Branches freed of leaves

Bracing airs swirling breeze

Greeting silvery haired pairs

Meeting a frail and lined lady

Who speaks of a hearts struggle


Crackle and crunch you hear

Whilst walking on frosty grass

Reminisce into the hazy past

Stories told and jokes shared

Best of times, memories that last


Sledges launch as riders laugh

Look at the glorious moors

Drips and drops, slightest of thaws

The trip out, nothing like a chore

Kind of sad, to go back in the door



Try to enjoy life, journeying on and up

Or get stuck in gloom, advocating doom

Think smart and plan for a long future

Or pleasures for today, pain for tomorrow


Dance along to life’s great beat

Or look at the floor and stay off your feet

Tell tall stories and think you revel in glory

Or aim to stay away from blame


Be honest and do your best at work

Or take it easy and leave kind of early

Cook up the books and hope nobody looks

Or record what’s real, it’s wrong to steal


Construct weird inner, emotional walls

Or seek out the cause and save the falls

Crumple and give into the seven deadly sins

Or endeavour, and be one of those who wins


Taking the right decisions may be tough

But the rewards won’t ever grow old

Forget earth’s foolish measure of success

Frame your life with an eternal plan instead


Inner Conflict


Sometimes the days, seem carefree

In any means they pass quickly

Settled routines and fixed up values

No drive or care to question


Yet there’s this endless doubt

You tell yourself there’s more

You know that bit buried

Inside that won’t stop trying


Every day nature screams

Out this undeniable proof

Clever ruses and ideas

Explain it away, and the fall


Brings about trouble too

Courage, effort and honesty

Will break down these doors

And eternal life, it’s yours



Hurtling and flying along in space

It lives on the outer edge of the Milky Way

A colourful and radiant jewel

Coupled with a dutiful moon


Massive seas with living creatures

Flowers and plants and forests

Every type of tasty fruit abounds

Vegetables great in the ground


Giant volcanoes, imposing mountains

Thunderous waterfalls and peaceful places

Wonderful and natural sights

Worth travelling far and wide to see


Have you seen the multitude of animals?

So many, new ones still being found

At its best earth is warm and kind

At its worst earth is cold and cruel


Earth is like a coin with two different sides

You can make a holy allegiance with the fair side

Or an unholy bargain with the foul side

I urge you, put your money on the pure side




The promised land, the perfect home

God is there walking with his people

No night or darkness in his heaven

For the Lord is the wondrous light


A new heaven and a new earth

The skies sing out his goodness

The holy city built with eternal love

All roads leading toward the throne


Drink at the eternal fountain

Living water that heals all wounds

Merry angels and men give thanks

Women singing the song of the saved


Infinite peace, paradise endless

God with us, his name Immanuel

Pain and sickness don’t exist there

His people living in rich reward


Everlasting beings, made by a King

His people rejoicing in the delights

Music and dancing and happiness

Faithful and true is Jesus Christ












This book is dedicated to my son, Finlay.



























Copyright © 2012, 2013, James Bickle. All rights reserved.

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