five poems

Some poetry by James and me (credited to ‘M.J’ and ‘J.Z.’) from the first of my art college sketchbooks. Titled ‘five poems – an anthology of shopkeepers by 2 former customers’.


Camp Fred

Camp Fred – a ha’penny for two
Weighed down with gold
Smelling of BRUT.
Milky bears – sugar mice and CHIX;
Liquorice root, jamboree bag
and clicker.
Sweet Spanish Maine tobacco
Bad for teeth – good for you.
And me.
Open-neck shirt – and gold ingot chain
Diamond stud and rotting teeth.
You’re worth your weight in gold
You are your weight in gold.
What you lacked in eloquence
You gained in aroma.
Wheezing laugh:
And a Sunday Mirror.
Camp Fred – senile Adonis.



Someone said you were a mason -
But I never saw your apron.
And I never saw you smile -
But I bet Uncle Doug saw both.
Star Wars cards
HO-OO scale Robin Hood’s men.
A sort of up-market Gunters.



The only two things we can remember -
Your deaf assistant
Your high prices for T.V. repairs.
I’m sure you could remember more.


Lawrie (?)

Maple peas for my gun.
Sodium nitrate for my bombs
Fido meat for my cat.
Your funny hairdo to make me laugh.
Your allotment for your cabbages.
Put 2p on the tray for spastics -
Doggy puts it in his kennel -
except when he was broken.
A truly unique emporium.
A truly unique smell.
I hope you’re not dead.
If you are – I take it all back.



Corona – 20 Players’ No.10 – and a limp.
Blue overall – overall.

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