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, Hour of Writes, Proletarian Poetry, Confluence Medway, Screaming Violets, Poetry24, Solidarity, Stand Up and Spit, Hastings Independent, Freedom, Women’s Fightback, the Morning Star, Rising and TenFootCity; and in anthologies Spies4Life, Poems for Jeremy Corbyn and Justice: Poems for Grenfell Tower.

A Tale of Two Cities (The Rich and the Towerful)

It was the best of times
and the worst of times
And the north of the borough
gets the worst
Because of accidents of birth
and because that's just the way it works
And yes, you guessed,
The south gets the best
And the rest of the country
had only registered
that Kensington had a proletariat
when it shocked the commentariat
by electing a Labour MP

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.

Proverbs

In the 1790s, poet William Blake wrote 'The Marriage of Heaven and Hell', which included 'Proverbs of Hell'. Here is a modern poem of proverbs ...

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If it ain't broke, it soon will be
If you want to get ahead, get yourself a trilby

A roast duck won't fly into the mouth of a peasant
No man is an island but some are a desert

Bring It Home

Bring help
Bring fire engines
Bring water
Bring air
Bring stretchers
Bring ambulances
Bring us round from sleep and out to safety

Bring food 
Bring clothes
Bring blankets
Bring camp beds
Bring phone chargers so we can find our friends and family 
And tell them that we made it

Disinfected Middle-Aged Women

The Disaffected Middle-Aged Women are having a spell in hospital ...

A ward where women fight cirrhosis
Cysts or endometriosis
Battling germs with hourly doses
We're Disinfected Middle-Aged Women

Sutures, dressings and a clip
Special socks so we don't slip
En route to the loo with an IV drip
We're Disinfected Middle-Aged Women

Hope is Safe

I have a friend from my Manchester days whose daughter Hope lives there ...

Hope's mum tweets
That Hope is safe
Not at the Arena
Not a fan
Too busy sweating
Her exams
Hope texted mum at six twenty-nine
Hope is fine

Hope's mum's relieved
But still bereaved
For all the others
Devastated
At death-cult murder perpetrated
In the name of god
Why?

Vox Pop

Molly choked
​On her voddy and coke
When Pat told her the Tories' intention
To unlock her pension
Not to mention
Their plans for social care
Grow old if you dare
Mrs May says
It's her lucky day
Molly can die in her own home
But as soon as she's cold
Her home will be sold
To pay off the loan
To cover the bill
She racked up being ill
Sod that

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