A Carrot in the Toaster

I’ll put a carrot in the toaster,
a pot of face cream in my shoe.
Anything will do
as long as it is out of place;
a silent clue what I must do
to see me through
this ‘clean forgotten’ phase.

A handkerchief, tied in a knot,
once helped a lot.
A different issue, is a tissue.

A diary to rely on,
is the answer, if I choose it,
but then, I’d only lose it.

I will create a memory-mate.
Not a lot of people boast a
carrot in the toaster.

© Marion Sharville


The school bell rings its message out,
it’s home time, mum and tea.
The subsequent stampede resounds
with cries of “Wait for me.”

This kaleidoscope of infants,
their clothes in disarray,
are gathered up by doting mums
and slowly led away.

When all have gone, do daily sounds
still echo through the halls;
come floating from the rafters
and bounce around the walls?

Does Miss Payne’s weary voice call out
“No running on the stairs”
and all those feet yet clatter
through the hall and into prayers?

Does pushing, shoving anarchy
and voices, shrill and high,
stay still, for just a moment
as a teacher passes by

then rise again, discordant tones
of chair legs fiddle-squeak,
a timpani of desk lids;
trumpet voices as they speak

to long lost friends across the room,
whom every day they see,
tuning up these instruments
for the school cacophony?

A symphony that does not end, at last,
with rapt applause
but by the teacher entering
and closing of the doors.

The encore…”Children, settle down now,
Tommy, no more talk,”
the fidget-laden silence
and the scratch of teacher’s chalk.

© Marion Sharville


This is the tale of Flannelette Bill.
who, to this day, haunts the cotton mill.
One day at the loom, he was swept off his feet
and woven into a flannelette sheet.

At the mill, a week’s notice was always required,
unless, of a sudden, a workman was fired.
The way that he went caused quite a commotion,
especially as Bill had been due for promotion.

“He didn’t give notice,” the management said
as they laid the sheet out on the night watchman’s bed.
“He didn’t clock out, which is never allowed,
at least as he is, he will not need a shroud.

It’s most aggravating, he worked a short day,
so just tell his widow, we’re docking his pay.
Don’t think that I’m hard, I’m really quite nice.
to prove it I’ll sell her this sheet at half price.”

© Marion Sharville

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