Crystal Returns/Andrew Scotson


Sparkle, tiny fragments glitter glass
the pavement and the gutter, spread
beneath the feet of a people enraged
making a night to remember, a night
of crystals.

A swastika on the door and a half brick
through the window, the hands that
forced the lock emptied the till and
removed the stock.

The smell of the camp at the end of it
all, when the camera’s rolled and the
corpses swelled.

The arms of your father grabbed tight
to the bone and German words you
understood as they dragged him away.
Your mother tongue, what have they
done ?

©Andrew Scotson 2020

Happy Father’s Day Donald Trump

I doubt you will read this. But if you do I hope you will understand the sentiment of the following paragraphs. 

Last night I watched your Tulsa Rally. Slick & engaging. You are also a great comedian.

I think you would say ‘a showboat’. You made me laugh. You often do late at night, when the world echoes a darkness which seems endless.

In some respects my dad was like that.

And yes I agree news coverage is often manipulated. We don’t always see the whole truth. A responsible citizen takes time to review facts. Real facts from accredited sources. 

Right now I listen to birds twitter through my open door.

The sun shines. There is a steady breeze. You would have appreciated that when you stood on the podium at West Point & saluted 66 times to graduates.

It’s a beautiful thing to witness virile youth reach their potential. Go on to achieve greatness. 

I felt it was important to dispel the rumour that you might have Parkinson’s/Alzheimer’s.

You & I are from a generation where stained ties or other apparel do not command respect. Of course you would need to support your glass after 66 salutes.

At this point I worry a crazed conspiracy theorist will tweet 66 is the mark of the beast.

Dear Lord. Anybody who has read the bible is be able to interpret scripture from Revelations without distorting meaning.


I read somewhere DNA is made up of six smaller molecules. I forget where. I am getting old. My mind is not very sharp.

Sorry I digress. This is not meant to be a science lesson. So I will return to my original intention–to show my support. 

I did watch you come down the ramp. You ran the last 10 yards. Finished with a neat Grand Plie. A Black Swan. Amazing.

My source: The Damage Report. But don’t quote me. My mind is not very sharp.


You made me laugh when you spoke about the ten year old with the sniffles. ‘Another case’ you said. For a moment I saw him standing in front of you. Hair a mess. Runny nose. 

I miss my dad. He always carried a handkerchief in his pocket. He said it stopped the spread of germs. I believed him. I still do. It is why I cover my mouth & nose when I sneeze.

It is also why I spend time alone during this horrible pandemic.  Killing someone’s father is a crime.

I miss my dad. An ex serviceman. He died from a respiratory infection.  When I thought you might be sick. I felt sad. Very sad. 

Now I’m glad. Very glad. You have shown the world how strong & brave you are.


I mean only a coward hides in a room. Or wears a mask when he goes out among his fellow country men. Right?

Sometimes I wonder if your father would be proud of all you have done for America. But right now the imagine of the ten year old with the sniffles haunts me.

Poor kid. I hope he gets the best education money buys. And Health Care. I hope he grows up a fine young man.

It’s late afternoon now, Donald. I must finish my ramblings. You don’t mind me calling you Donald do you?

Friends always call each other by first names. I think it’s a kind thing to do. Neighbourly.


Now here comes the part where I failed you. Are you ready?

I stopped watching after you spoke about the little boy with the sniffles. I’m not sure why. I guess I felt uneasy. Sad. Very sad. 


This afternoon, I feel my father’s childhood. Grandma was a harsh woman. Nasty. 

She told anyone who would listen her husband was high ranking officer. A Lieutenant. She sent my father to boarding school when he was ten. 

If my father cried. She beat him until he stopped snivelling.

Her husband died young. He would hide in a shed & drink & smoke. He would not hit his wife. It’s what honest working class men do.


And if, I tell the truth, my dad never amounted to much.

He went bankrupt many times. Died alone one afternoon in a small room. Fell asleep. Stopped breathing. 

You would say a loser. Washed up.


I miss my dad. That ten year old boy, who read books in the John, his church, until he died.

Sartical cartoons by Giles. Mostly. 












Father and Rock Star

The world is a very strange place at the moment. We in uncertain times.
My father & Bowie believed in democracy & understood the importance of equal rights.
Dad died 2011, socially distanced from his community–Black, Asian, Chinese, Hasidic et al.

This poem takes me back to safer times & innocence.

Linton’s Legacy.

On The Victoria Line the rolling stock
feels old and grout fails mosaics. Back then
we were corpuscles pumped through a Titan’s body.
I asked if we could go there. You said Brixton
connections were too infrequent to warrant
the journey. Now, rush hour net throws up errors
like that pale blue horizon. Somehow
your name appears as an audio credit and Bowie’s
asterism is the wrong way round.
Not much further past Kings Cross, a grey man
probes what follows after The Great I Am
robs passports, boots and sedatives.
You are less traceable than a comet. And
his thunderbolt should point at the right clavicle.
Still too close to the heart.
Out in cold air black ice has done its work. Again
I buy flowers. Slip them to ground. Bowie’s face
shines like eloquent graffiti.
He rises through shin high water. Tells…

View original post 38 more words



Wet Wednesday comes again
weeping over a carcass almost picked clean.

I stoop       kneel       examine
what the fox left       frail wish bone
still intact,       a Duck feather trail.

There’s a rusted go kart by the door
like the one my brother’s feet pushed
down our snow covered path.

Him less than three years old
in vest & underpants

I should leave now
it’s not as if
a prying nose       commits a crime.

Easy to come with small lens
capture a life pulled up on bootstraps.

I cough another white feather
chair legs point to a bedroom      where table lace
hangs a wedding veil.

I should leave now       leave dust motes
to settle       but my brown eyes
ghoulish,        craves more

craves ownership.

& if I were a Jew there would be
a necklace of small stones

The charred cross skews his lawn
What lives in a house like this

20:20 vision


©N M Spencer. June 2020

Bridges/Andrew Scotson


Each gasping canopy stretches as the current catches
above fields that autumn has stripped of bright colours.
Soon countless mushrooms are drifting down, chased
by flak and bullet that hunt for legs, arms, belly or balls

Gliders abandon tired tow ropes and straining engines
growl as the ordinary boys jump into beckoning space.
Wings that still can head for home, back to Cottesmore
or Wittering, places the soldiers will bleed for but never

When shrapnel enters your stomach and your bitten fingers
cling to emptying contents the red beret will fall from your
shaven head and you will become the ink on the page that
your regiment writes a letter for a love that never ends.


©Andrew Scotson