Sunday, 4 September 2016

This week at Valley Press, #25: 'No wonder!'

Dear readers,

Our first new publication of the autumn is due this week: Poems for Pensioners by Andy Seed. Cover star Bert, above, is clearly keen to get his hands on a copy, and he's far from the only one!

It would be fair to say this is not one of the most brooding, contemplative, cutting-edge poetry titles we've ever brought you – but it may be the funniest, and occasionally, the most sweetly nostalgic. Below is a short poem titled 'Always Read the Label'. This one is something of a litmus test; if you laugh at this, Poems for Pensioners is probably up your street...

No wonder
you’re still
on the
toilet, Dilys;
the pills
that were blue?
You were
supposed to
take two
every twenty-four hours,
not twenty-four
every two.

Despite (or possibly because of) this toilet humour, Andy Seed is an award-winning author, most recently claiming the 2015 Blue Peter Book Award for the charmingly-titled Silly Book of Side-Splitting Stuff, published by Bloomsbury and illustrated by Scott Garrett, who also lends his artistic skills to Poems for Pensioners. You might say we've 'reunited the award-winning team' ... gosh, it's fun to use the phrase 'award-winning'!

I've got high hopes for this book, and I think you'll be hearing a lot more about it in the run-up to Christmas. In the meantime, you can read a longer 'pensioner poem' on the website here, and I'll end with a series of verses that come under the title 'Epitaphs':

Here is Tim,
Who went
To the gym;
Alas, discovered
It didn’t
Suit him.

Here lies Iris,
Former nurse;
Along the M6
She reversed.

Rest in peace
‘Windy’ Ron
(It’s much more peaceful
Now you’re gone).

Here lies the body
Of Mary Dinnings,
Who spent all of
Her bingo winnings
On Pink Champagne,
Carefully picked;
It came in the bucket
Which Mary kicked.

In memory
Of Eric, engineer;
Souped up
His stairlift;
Oh dear.

Here is buried
Godfrey Hunt –
Put his teeth in
Back to front.

Here lies
Henrietta Speke;
Didn’t feed
Her cats
One week.

Sacred to the memory
Of whatsis name.

All best,
Jamie McGarry, VP Publisher

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