Recent Posts

30 June 2014

The Beautiful Game

Looking for a cross
But found
A corner

Clive Tyldesley, commentating on the England vs Uruguay World Cup match, 19th June 2014. Submitted by Ross McCleary.

28 June 2014

Sticks and stones

Unfortunately it is far from true…
The power of words to affect
your emotions and actions
is well demonstrated in science.

A word is not a crystal,
transparent and unchanged;
it is the skin of a living thought
and may vary greatly in color and content
according to the circumstances and time
in which it is used.

Majority Floor Leader Jim Stamas, R-Midland,
determined Lisa Brown's comments
violated the decorum of the House,
"What she said was offensive" said Rep. Mike Callton, R-Nashville.
“It was so offensive, I don't even want to say it
in front of women.
I would not say that in mixed company.”

Lisa Brown called a press conference, today.
She defended her use of the word "vagina"
saying it is the "anatomically medically correct term.”

Her English teacher even told her
you can’t get wet from the word water.

Each stanza from a different source: Susan Smalley, Professor Emeritus, Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at UCLA; Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr; Detroit News, June 2012; Detroit Free Press, June 2012; and Nin Andrews, Sleeping with Houdini (BOA Editions Ltd, 2008). Submitted by Joanna White.

23 June 2014

Absent Father

I find myself here with a baby with delicate bones,
fine features and blue eyes, who – especially asleep,
when she's at her most beautiful – looks exactly like you.
The fine movements of the lips, the almond-shaped eyes,
the one dimple on her right cheek.
I still find this resemblance strangely, unsettlingly painful.

I imagine you waking up beside that other woman,
whoever she might be; she will never find out
about this one aspect of your life.
I find it hard to picture you; I don't know your apartment,
but I imagine you waking up in it, flat on your back,
elbow tucked beneath your head, thinking of your baby,
somewhere, with someone else, hundreds of miles away.

For a few minutes every once in a while,
more rarely each year,
and too briefly.

Taken from A letter baby's absent father in The Guardian, 7th June 2014. Submitted by Angi Holden.

16 June 2014

Attention Dear Respected One

Greetings in Jesus name Amen!
Private Message, important message you.
Prayed over select name among other
names due to esteeming nature.

I am account officer south Korea government
accounts discovered most account dormant
account on further investigation particular account
belong former president PARK CHUNG HEE, rule
1963-1979. I am widow being lost husband.

Aware relation born 2nd February 1951, last
address West Africa? Father General Jonas
Savimbi rebel leader control diamond regions
Angola 27 years successfully. Narrowly escaped
tsunami affected spinal cord also ear drum claim
lifes entire family. Simeon Arag died in estate.

New desire assist helpless. First box 200KG
of 22 Karrat alluvia gold dust second ($40
million U.S. dollars). Disguised “Family Treasure.”
This thereby triggers procedure reverting
ownership funds to her majesty's government.
Known condition I make foundation
orphanages widows propagate word of God.

Need assurance you never, never cheat as fund
hit in your account. Transaction totally free of risk.
Forward: Full Name: Sex: any Contact Address.
Not destroy my chance, if not work with me
lets move on not destroy me. What shall it profit
man to wine the whole world and loose his soul?

A collation of various scam emails. Submitted by Hao Guang Tse.

13 June 2014

On the division of animals

More often than not, the linguist or anthropologist just throws up his hands and resorts to giving a list — a list that one would not be surprised to find in the writings of Borges.
George Lakoff

Those that belong to the Emperor,
embalmed ones,
those that are trained,
suckling pigs,
fabulous ones,
stray dogs,
those that are included in this classification,
those that tremble as if they were mad,
innumerable ones,
those drawn with a very fine camel’s hair brush,
those that have just broken a flower vase,
those that resemble flies from a distance.

From 'Other Inquisitions' in which Borges writes of a strange way of classifying animals in an ancient Chinese encyclopaedia. Via Futility Closet. Submitted by Gabriel Smy.

11 June 2014

Help My Mastiff (Not My Business)

I am going to tell you the whole story.

And if can
help to save
my 14 months mastiff; a baby himself.

And if you still feel
like helping you can make some call
on the dog Bruce behalf.

I am trying to understand
that the dog bite a 9 year old kid
that looks like a football player.

My toddles were playing next to the dog
to the neighbors house
and this kid that we do not want

Which the neighbor told him not to go to the back yard
because of the dog. He was there in a minute
hitting the dog on the head

Which my 2 toddles was playing near by. The dog broke the leash
and bite he in the arm. And now
they are going to kill him.

How do we know if the boy was going
to hurt the toddles. There is a lake
like 20 feet away.

What did this boy really want
to do? I guess
we will never know, but neighbors said he is a trouble kid.

He has all his paper work
and not other report of bite. They said
because of the severe of the bit to his arm.

If the dog really wanted to do damage he can he easily
take his arm off or ate it. The boy
had to 36 stitches.

Now we have 2 thing at play here the boy
is really plummie boy with a lot of meat and the second thing the dog
have a huge mouth.

So One bit, easy 36 stitches.

A post on Craigslist in Pets, 29 May 2014. Submitted by Susan Cody.

09 June 2014

How to Be a Bluesman

Never have a happy relationship.
If you do find yourself involved in a happy relationship,
kill your partner and then write a song about it.
If they arrest you, all the better.
You can now write a song about being in jail.

Chicago, St. Louis,
and Kansas City
are still the best places
to have the Blues.

Blues can take place
in New York City,
but not in Hawaii
or any place in Canada.

Hard times in Minneapolis
or Seattle is probably
just clinical depression.


No one will believe
it's the Blues
if you wear a suit –
unless, that is,
you slept in it.

Taken from a discussion on the Blindman's Blues Forum, 12th January 2010. Submitted by Howie Good.

06 June 2014


My Most Illustrious Lord,

I know how, in the course of the siege of a terrain,
to remove water from the moats and how to make
an infinite number of bridges, mantlets
and scaling ladders and other instruments
necessary to such an enterprise.

I have also types of cannon, most convenient
and easily portable, with which to hurl small stones
almost like a hail-storm; and the smoke from the cannon
will instil a great fear in the enemy
on account of the grave damage and confusion.

I have means of arriving at a designated
spot through mines and secret winding passages
constructed completely without noise, even if
it should be necessary to pass underneath
moats or any river.

Also I will make cannon, mortar and light ordnance
of very beautiful and functional design
that are quite out of the ordinary.

I will assemble catapults, mangonels,
trebuckets and other instruments of wonderful
efficiency not in general use.

And should a sea battle be occasioned,
I have examples of many instruments
which are highly suitable either in attack
or defence, and craft which will resist the fire
of all the heaviest cannon and powder and smoke.

Also I can execute sculpture in marble,
bronze and clay. Likewise in painting, I can do
everything possible as well as any other.

From a letter Leonardo da Vinci wrote to Ludovico Sforza around 1483, commending himself for court employment. Via Letters of Note. Submitted by Gabriel Smy.

05 June 2014


They are likely to have seen a world
much more alive than ours,
where every tree or hill may have had
the Spirit
or been associated with past times
or mythical stories,
where the soul of a man might inhabit
a dog after his death.
They would have known few other people
and few things they called their own.
But then
it’s worth remembering
the Scottish winters spent without houses,
the dangers of travelling
between islands in primitive boats.

Notes taken by a family member during final year of studying Archaeology at Glasgow University, 2012. Submitted by B.T. Joy.

02 June 2014

My mother would still like to know

what happened to the set
of yellow clip on bows
she bought for my hair
when I was about six. 

She put them in a safe place
ready to use
when I went to a birthday party later the same week
and thirty two years later they are still missing. 

Yet every now and again
she still wonders about them
and does this wistful gaze at my hair, and I know
she's imagining me wearing them now.

Taken from a post by user SarahandFuck on Mumsnet chat forum, July 2013. Submitted by Uschi Gatward.