This is just to say, Again.

This is just to say –


I have forgotten the

Raspberries in the refrigerator.


Four days

I was saving them;

Savouring the idea of them,

For breakfast.


Forgive me, raspberries

with  mauve morning stubble;

Forlon –

And so much mould.


Dan Belton 19/7/19 (after William Carlos Williams)


Apollo 11

an old poem re-posted on anniversary of Moon Landing July 20 1969

Apollo 11


It was

my step Grand Father’s parlour.

There was

a Spitfire he had made from a

shilling which flew

from a stand of it’s own body,

A complicated ivory jade

Oriental sculpture of

twisted tree climbing monkeys

and outside

the sandpit was full

of coarse sand and full of slugs

or turds

or slugs.

But on the telly

was a repeat of the Apollo 11


landing on the moon

and the rocket was a silent screaming thing.

A tin can twice imbued with wonder;

Science and magic –

utterly alien

to familiar Spitfires

and the men’s voices crackled

like the radio with the twisty dial

in which the batteries had almost died

and the astronauts seemed to hop about

like they were bursting for the lav.


This was the first thing I remember seeing

on television,

the screen of which was almost itself

like a space helmet visor.


That night I once again

took my bed clothes and slept on the landing

as against my bed pillow

the noises and voices in my room

never seemed to stop whistling and talking

in the static dark.


The second

thing I remember seeing on television

was a Doctor and a harsh thing on wheels

which reminded me of my mother

in sprung hair rollers.


It had a terrible death ray


the best bits of school for many years thereafter

was the certainty

that I was a robot devoid of programmed memory

and that one day

I would trip

and circuits would re-jumble

with an arcing spark

and I would remember my mission to destroy

all the teachers and children in school,

in fact the whole human race and

I would beat the cold war

as a steel tube full of electric death

slid noiselessly from where

my hand should have been.




I want a builder’s tea

Just quickly written in the frustration of myself always making tea, getting busy, half-forgetting it and coming back to a half-warm mug! Of course, in writing this, my tea has gone a tad luke-warm.

I want a builder’s tea.

I want a builder’s tea.

A brown gilded

No nonsense, emboldened, golden

Builder’s tea.


I want a builder’s tea.

I want a builder’s tea.

Spoon-stand-up and sweet

That puts miles in your feet,

Yes I want a builder’s tea


No today I do not wish for Earl Grey

All small finger raised and fey,

I don’t want my tea green

With a scented sheen,

I don’t want it refined

It’s just not tea-time –

I want a strong spleened

Hot sun bronze builders’ tea


I don’t want a tea for the night,

One that knocks me out like a light,

One of snore and peace

And camomile nice

I want a raring and proper cup of tea


I want a builder’s tea.

I want a builder’s tea.

I want it scalding hot

Mashed strong in the pot

And sweet as I want it to be,

I don’t want it old

Or skinned with cold,

I want a piping, fighting

Never mind storms ‘n’ lightning,

Bold and golden,

Shock curing sweet,

The wine of the meek,

Lip smacking

Woe forsaking tea!



Dan Belton


Ritual Green

(The only thing to improve a tree is a leaf)


Bedecked in the dangling bell

Of a fuchsia,

The smile white border of his Roma dress


As he swings

With twin martial sticks

At the




Of the traffic-light pole.



He exclaims

The strike rings out…


blossoms of surprise…



Rings out…


The season is his green anvil and he

Wracks upon it –


Forcing the sap to rise in tintinnabulations;

His carillon cries.


The traffic lights change to green.

His frock swinging,

The mirth of dance

Rising from asphalt clay.


Dan Belton 21/3/19


doggerel thoughts occurring whilst filming starlings across the roofs from my 5th floor window.


Derek twitches curtains

At the dawning of the day,

It’s how he feels he joins the flock,

the spirit of the play;

The dash of flight,

the coloured breast,

the plumage brightly gay.

I really was just watching birds he says

as they arrive to escort him away.



Dan Belton 7/4/19


Last Words

The cats purr is invisible;

Science says it cannot be found

Yet it curls in your lap

Like the soul of a nap ~

A blanket of comforting sounds.


The bumble bees wings can’t fly it

And true, I can only fly in a jet,

Yet the bee still he duz it

And busy he buzz it,

A honey-sweet impossibility, nonetheless.

The human can’t think with his brain

Yet he does it again and again,

Partly crackers at best he invented string vests,

Howitzers, TV, shame & blame.

I say wouldn’t it would be a jape

If he de-evolved backwards & fish-wards from ape,

To swim in the plastic he wove into Ma Nature’s knicker elastic,

And expired in a world he has shaped.





Dan Belton April 1st 2019

Answered Riddle


The green hinge

Eases winters lock,

The sun not yet toothed

A crack showing

The trembling yolk.


Slaking your finger’s thirst

With dew

The day is grey as goose;

You feel

Something more triumphant

Should greet your eye.


But look –

The spread cloud to your left

A wing,

The deft cloud to your right,

A wing.


You  have the soul

Of a bird



Dan Belton 21/03/2019