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, Rising and TenFootCity; and in anthologies Spies4Life, Poems for Jeremy Corbyn and (forthcoming) Dark Bones.

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

Requiem for Carillion

Once Thatcher sold our silver for a song
Our telephones, our water, power and steel
The vultures were not satisfied for long
They wanted snacks to follow up their meal

The public body's stripped, its clothes torn off it
So next they chopped its limbs off piece by piece
And tossed them to the hounds that sought to profit
And let the corporate speculators feast

Busted

Carillion’s
Made its billions
Now its debt is so big, its account’s in vermillion
With coldness reptilian
It dumps on civilians
Rides off into sunset; the Tories ride pillion
If it were not so serious, it would be vaudevillian

On Shitholes

A place becomes a shithole
when someone digs a hole and shits in it
Someone like you, Donald Trump,
and all the rulers and raiders
and tin-pot dictators
the speculators and devastators
the extractors and the malefactors

A Grenfell Nativity

Expectant families
in temporary digs
waiting for a miracle
Led here by a burning star
and a government demand
to be counted

Drawing the short straw
bedding down in the stalls
Because there's no room
in the inner workings
of the political economy
for them

Watched over by
donkeys and sheep
Interrupted sleep
Silent night
Keeping the light on

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