Posted in Chutzpah


Everyone in the district said old Bill would see 100
almost, 103 actually.
Old Bill – reverse mathematics deducts years : 77
his age when I first heard the descriptor –
always old Bill,
like Big Ben
or Tricky Dicky
or Dirty Harry.
Old Bill
and iron willed.

About 80 his heart was causing some gyp
… not responding to medication.
His doctor said, give it time,
have faith in your pills.
Old Bill said, “ I want a doctor not a bloody faith healer,”
threw the medication away
and lived to tell the tale – for another 23 years.

Posted in Chutzpah


Carl was the rarest of species
a genuine,
ideology free non-believer :
a devout atheist,
committed and
didn’t twist or contrive conversation to God
to produce opportunities for contempt and slammers.
Big bang – evolution – civilisation unfolding and folding
human beings creating or screwing up …..
God – no part of it …. that’s what I think – you believe what you want.

Irony, being with him when we came across them –
two parties of cyclists
seeing the northern tip of the country by bike and tent
us – a twosome
them – eight or 10
a Christian church youth group – late teenagers
standing by an upturned bike – puncture – no idea –
absolutely none at all.
Carl fixed it in a jiffy-
“ d’you think you guys should perhaps ….
God will provide – WHAT!!
well, look you came along just we needed help.”

Posted in Chutzpah


Hemingway defined style as grace under pressure
remaining cool,
or at least never showing heat.
They fell out over a woman,
in Antarctica, in winter, so not many of them –
a triangle of sorts : one woman two men
one a senior manager, the other much less
alternated for a while until she chose –
The manager less than pleased, not used to demotion
or not having his way
dealt with it the old-fashioned way – with his fists
punchdrunk or drunk punch it made no difference
– dismissal.
A company pickup came with the job
he used it to drive to the airfield,
boarding the flight and leaving the keys in the truck.