My Poems

Having written and performed as The Big J in the 1980s, Janine started again in 2014, after a brief interlude of around a quarter of a century.

Froms sonnets to villanelles, limericks to ballads, the occasional rap and plenty of straightforward rants, serious and humorous and sometimes both, here is Janine's verse.

Janine's poems have been published in numerous poetry and other journals and websites, including Algebra of Owls, South Bank Poetry, the Daily Mirror, PUSH, Confluence Medway, Screaming Violets, Poetry24, Solidarity, Stand Up and Spit, Hastings Independent, Freedom, Women’s Fightback, Rising and TenFootCity; and in anthologies Spies4Life, Poems for Jeremy Corbyn and (forthcoming) Dark Bones.

Harvey is a Sex Addict

Harvey Weinstein is an addict
Harvey, he just has to have it
Harvey's checked into a clinic
Not convinced? You heartless cynic
Harvey can not help himself
Please pray for Harvey's failing health

Off Your Knees

Keep politics out of sport
Black lives may matter
but all that matters here
is the score

Keep politics out of football
because standing up for the national anthem 
is not political
but kneeling for it is

Keep politics off the pitch
Offence and defence 
are matters for the field of play
not for the field of struggle

Get a Grip

It's World Mental Health Day, so ...

SNAP OUT OF IT
Snap out of taking orders
Snap out of blame
Snap out of 'disorders'
Snap out of shame
Snap out of austerity
Snap out of stressors
Snap out of poverty
Snap out of pressures
Snap out of 'raising awareness'
and start raising hell
This system's sick
It isn't well

Spanish Lesson

Guardia Civil
know the drill
Drafted in from other places 
beating unfamiliar faces

Keepers of the peace
Police

That's the theory:
There and here, we
expect protection 
get subjection

Saw that theory
cracked in practice
Dragged and kicked
grabbed and nicked

Keepers of the peace
Police

1917: Nine Months That Shook The World

FEBRUARY
On Thursday, the women cried Bread, Peace and Land
On Friday, the workers walked out, joined their stand
On Saturday, more marched, a whole city spanned
On Sunday, the Tsar made the Duma disband
By Monday, Provisional and Soviet command

MARCH
Farewell, Tsar
He went too far
Nasty Nick
Legged it quick
And now he's off -
Bye, Romanov

When Will The Revolution Come?

When the shepherd can't whistle
and the sheep will not herd
The alarm couldn't sound
and when nobody stirred

When the owner growls Sit!
and the dog won't stay
The conductor drops the baton
and the orchestra won't play

That's when the revolution comes

When the piper can't pipe
and the children won't follow
When the lenders can not lend
and the borrowers won't borrow

Responses

Oh, I'm so sorry to hear that.
How awful.
I don't know what to say.

At least they caught it early.
Oh, they didn't?
Well, I'm sure you'll still be OK.

My friend's got that.
She's having chemo -
Head down the toilet all day.

My mum had that. They gave her a year.
That was sixteen years ago -
She's still here!

GlastonTory

They sleep in mansions instead of tents
They never scale the perimeter fence
There's high-class bogs for the ladies and gents

Only the rich elite may come
Get orf their land, you common scum
Tarquin's squiffy on a shot of rum

So tell us a true-blue campfire story
It's better than bloody Jackanory
The tales that are told of GlastonTory

My Love Loves the River Lea

My love loves the River Lea
Discovered in recovery
Visits uncover mystery
On trips with children one, two, three
Took looks and books and maps and found
His sanctuary, his way around
Walking Summer at Rammey Marsh
Fetch the ball tossed in the grass
A cup of tea and a water tub
At the café by the rowing club

Night Tube

It’s pushing two o’clock
And Julie and Sue
Are heading home after pogoing to
A Buzzcocks tribute band
They wear the brand
Got the T-shirt, got the buzz
Fallen in love
Probably shouldn’t have
Their youngests are old enough
To be out with mates
Or out on dates
So their mums can stay out late
It’s one of those nights
What do I get? Love bites.

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