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, Justice: Poems for Grenfell Tower.and Ashes to Activists

Revise the System

Work hard, be conscientious, be afraid
Your life won't be worth living if you fail
The only thing that matters is your grade

Feel guilty for each error you have made
Learn quotes by rote and don't stop to exhale
Work hard, be conscientious, be afraid

Of falling short of A-star accolade
Don't eat, don't sleep, travail your skin to pale
The only thing that matters is your grade

Product Displacement

I peeled back the adverts and found
a beautiful town

Waiting at the bus stop
I stilled the rotating displays
and pasted timetables and useful information
in their place

I restored all the lamp posts
to their role as posts bearing lamps
rather than gallows
from which buy-me banners hang

The Subaltern's Swansong

- a rewrite of John Betjeman's The Subaltern's Love Song 

Young Duncan H Dunn was the subaltern's son
Born then withdrawn when the courting was won
Conceived in the back of the subaltern's car
His dad had not planned on it going so far

Hot Flush

by Donna How-I'm-Gonna-Cope-Come Summer

Sittin' here sweatin' my heart out waitin'
Waitin' for my temperature to fall
Tried about a thousand remedies lately
Want to bash my head on the wall

The Girl from Clapham

Ever wondered what Squeeze's Up The Junction might look like from the woman's point of view?

I never knew it was Gordon
The guy who came from Morden
His face was cute and handsome
So that's when we began some
Adventure most romantic
Impassioned snogging antics
He said I wasn't common
His chat-up lines were rotten

Don't You Want Me, Henry?

You were flirting with a racist in a cocktail bar
When I met you
I picked you up, I turned and you walked out on your wife
It really was quite easy to do
Then two months later on my racist texts were exposed
Embarrassing as fuck for you
But don't forget that UKIP put you where you are now
And they can put you back down too

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