Archives for posts with tag: groceries

i

8:58PM
write poems
x1
x1
x1

I wrote on my week’s to-dos.
It’s 8:58PM on SUNDAY.
The radiator’s cranking up;
Counting down to the bedtime
routine. This isn’t a poem: it’s
a snapshot.

ii.
write poems
x1
x1

The idea was to help me
See each output as a ‘1’;
As a single entity achievable;
As a level in a game. To produce
this isn’t a poem: it’s
an item done.

iii.
write poem
x1


SATURDAY
All the things I had to do before I
could write a poem

Rise from bed by leaving warm duvet.
Eat breakfast, take meds.
Clean plug, thoroughly. Pull out
the hairs.
Dress for gym; catch bus; get there.
Take a class; do some more; stretch. Energy flags.
Buy almonds from Poundland and
have a coffee, write some notes.
Feel ready to do part two:

Groceries.
Buy lots of food. Have heavy bags. Wait for bus
to take them home. Carry the bags,
unpack, cook and eat.
Feel tired; have a shower and wash
hair; juggle doing laundry between – two
loads.

Now late. Make tea with mint
and give up to the day, now
Too late to start a poem.


Back in September I set myself the goal, which at that point seemed achievable, of writing 6 poems drawn from inspiration in my daily life. Since then I’ve written endless notes to myself in my weekly to-do lists in a quest to ‘optimize starting’, as they say in the productivity lingo. Some prompts included:

write – commute, 10 mins
poem = just 5 lines!
write just 5 mins!

My procrastination side-stepped all of these suggestions.

This last Sunday evening, I sat on my bed and decided – right, now, write.

Goal accomplished and just in time. The fireworks are going off outside my windows as I type this up on New Year’s Eve.

Thank you, dear reader, for another year of verse.
Wishing you a wonderful start to 2019.


Image courtesy of the Old Design Shop and is a detail is from from a small advertising booklet titled Franklin Sugar Candy Book.

layer cake image, cake printable, vintage food clipart, old fashioned cake, desserts sweets graphics.

What I Ate Today

Porridge for breakfast, again at three.
Stirfry for lunch; in the evening aubergine.

Brown rice with lentils, bulgur stirred in,
With the stirfry and at supper again.

A pear, peanut butter, boiled egg for a snack;
To finish it all a piece of chocolate.

I’ve been finding myself down YouTube wormholes recently. Favourite defaults include meal prep videos which loop into the auto plays of ‘What I Eat In A Day.’ After watching other people prepare and present their day’s meals, I decided to document my own version. This was a sampling from Tuesday last week.

Some other poems I’ve written about food:
I can tell a half bowl of you about leftover Friday rice
Making soup again
all breakfast?

Image above courtesy of The Old Design Shop from the Ryzon Baking Book by Marion Harris Neil, 1917

An illustration of a prawn salad from from Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management, 1907. Courtesy of the Old Design Shop., a vintage image treasury.

An illustration of a prawn salad from from Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management, 1907. Courtesy of the Old Design Shop, a vintage image treasury.

Today I present two poems from the archive –

Now here is something to marvel at… (posted in 2012)
and
Is it worth it? (posted in 2013)

Both poems tackle the theme of worldly aspirations and success. In “Now here…” the concerns of juggling a shoestring budget are interrupted by observations of life’s ordinary marvels and man’s urban success (the Gherkin).

Is it worth it?” uses the image of a well-kept lawn as the metaphor for reigned-in success. Grass is that something else that reaches from the earth and applauds the expansive blue of sky. It exists as a blade of grass merely being for being’s own sake. When the grass has once again reached an unruly height, the lawnmower returns to cut it down.

I explain in the 2013 post that “Is it worth it?” was a based on an earlier short poem I thought I had mislaid. That poem, about prawns and trekking up a London hill, later reappeared.

Success, achievement and priorities have also featured in these poems

Highest Priority
How do you make a dream come true?
A definition, notably for the cloud-dwelling artists
The Character Building
926 breathless accomplishments


Twitter: @BeadedQuill
Facebook: BeadedQuill
Books:
In the Ocean: a year of poetry
Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys
Shining in Brightness: Selected Poems, 1999 – 2012

It must be the time of year for food thoughts, because ‘Tightly Sealed‘ from this time last year took fridge leftovers as its starting point.

 

Can you believe two years have passed since the London Olympics? I was fortunate enough to attend an evening of paralympic events. It feels as though it was only last year that I was sitting in the massive stadium, with an enormous lion emblazoned across my t-shirt and yelling encouragement at the athletes. Clearly, it wasn’t. That moment was in 2012.

This time last year I posted a loose Pindaric ode to a golden mango.

In the spirit of archives – looking at the back catalogue in the present, possibly to inform the future – I encourage you to read this post about progress. Joanna Penn recommends measuring achievement across the span of four years by asking oneself, where was I during the last olympics? Equally, you can plot your goals by projecting, where would I like to be by the next games?

Where will you be in 2016?

In the meantime, I’m still waiting for this summer’s golden mangoes to appear on the local grocers’ tiers.

Find me on Twitter. I’m @BeadedQuill.

This poem is based on the day in 2012 when I finally took the plunge and bought a laptop in London. The incessant “£299 on Strand” echoes my personal obsession with the cost of things, which I really am trying to transcend in 2014 (…both the cost of things and the obsession). This close attention to price minutiae has proved fruitful for writing, though. The tallying has found it’s way into other verses: At the moment £2 and Now here is something to marvel at…

While my favourite blend of coffee is still £2,30 at my local Sainsbury’s, fortunately soya milk is back at 59p. My palate has had enough of sultanas, so now I bypass that shelf. More recently I’ve been into dates with my morning oats. Waitrose does a 250g bag for 99p and my local Cypriot greengrocer offers two trays for £1.

Oh, good. For now 
sultanas are back at 84p.
(Bizarrely, they were 92p for a while.)
Coffee, my favourite blend, now
ONLY £2! That’s a 28p saving

but coffee’s not on my list 
for today… Kiwi fruit –
Enjoying those at the moment 
(since “basic apples” – I know
they’re the windfall ones –
have risen from 68p in the summer to
the current £1/kg)
Kiwi fruit at the moment: £2 
for 2 bags. So, a 25px2 saving.

Only will I get through x2 bags 
in a week? Fruit budget is £2.
A whole week of kiwi fruit?
But a 50p saving on kiwi fruit
plus a 28p saving on coffee
gives us a total 78p saving!! On a £3 spend
on two items
I had no intention
of buying this week.

4/12/13

Today’s lines bring to a conclusion a week of poems connected by the subject of London life. As you will note from the date, these thoughts were penned at the end of last year. I had relegated them to the not-to-be-seen draft papers thinking that readers surely didn’t want another poem about the minutiae of a poet’s budget. (See earlier offerings “Now here is something to marvel at…” and “£299 from Strand”.)

I was reassured otherwise by a chance reading of Gogol’s “The Coat”.

(Here, a diversion as to how I arrived at Gogol’s short story. My reading had been spurred by online video versions of the famous tale. I stumbled upon these after watching – at @brainpicker’s recommendation – Yuriy Norshteyn’s animated classic, The Hedgehog in the Fog (1975). Hedgehog is beyond enchanting. Watch it now if you have 11 minutes to spare. )

At least a third of “The Coat” concerns itself with the minutiae of salary and budget and the cost of things, notably the title coat. This gave me courage. If Gogol could put such in a story, I could type up about my Sainsbury’s shop and the kiwi fruit and coffee on special.

P.S. I should have bought more of the coffee at £2. It’s now £2,30/ 227g. Happily, a bag of kiwi fruit is still £1 for 6.

I have published two books of poetry:
Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys
AND
Shining in Brightness

Follow me on Twitter as @BeadedQuill.

BeadedQuill is also on Facebook.

Today
the sour faces coming out of front doors
of those who must go to work

the pinched looks of those shuffling
with shopping trolleys; 
those who must buy groceries

Look at Grey Mullet
laid on ice at the fishmonger’s

Look at whole others who 
smile weakly and wave 
that magazine for the homeless/unemployed
outside where I buy stamps 

Broadest of coffee smiles 
         - another  
a flaky-rimmed pasteis de nata
         - time, thanks  

Yeah, yeah
he growls today and shakes his whole self on that concrete pavement
rousing the pigeons, in the rose bed, who then flap at the petals

and the thorns and leaves, but they are smaller and less interesting

like the work-faces folded away in drawers
or the pure bliss of 59p to buy soya milk
         for seven days of breakfast joy
a coffee smile and through a window,
a fishmonger’s whole plaice on ice

Preview my first volume of poems, SHINING IN BRIGHTNESS, at blurb.co.uk.
Follow my traipsing around London’s suburbs and high streets on Twitter. I tweet as @BeadedQuill.
BeadedQuill also has a Facebook page. You’ll find it here.

The flame is a scale held to the light.
It flickers in petition. It bids us to reignite
some salacity already gutted from our life.

red herring

Yes, that last line is akin to a title. I remembered that Debussy does likewise in his Préludes.

At the moment I am swimming with the red herrings. There’s perhaps another poem in that, though I have been imagining a fantastical puppet show. “Swimming with Red Herrings” would involve fire-eaters and tea-lights. There would have to be a pond on stage.

My grocery list of current cravings includes asparagus, scrambled eggs, real sheep and goat’s milk feta and the freshest pita bread from my local Greek-Cypriot grocer (Tony’s, incidentally). For some reason, I can’t get these items off my mind.

Preview my first volume of poetry, Shining in Brightness here. Follow me as @BeadedQuill on Twitter. Find BeadedQuill on Facebook.