Review by a Parent

Photograph by the Author

Spoiler Alert: Frederick is a book about a little grey mouse and his family, who are working hard to gather supplies to keep them going through the cold, hard winter. They are all scurrying about and doing their best to ensure the long-term survival of the mouse-hoard, all that is, except Frederick.

Frederick does not engage in any of the back-breaking, hard-labor that the other mice do, instead, he spends his days “half-asleep” — as the other mice quite accurately observe.

Let us just get things in perspective here for a moment. Frederick’s family are working their little mouse tails…


Dedicated to the Great Contrarians of 2020

Photograph by Marion

What a strange and curious year it’s been,
“Annus Horribilis”,
As might say the Queen.

The year the world was torn asunder,
Then lurched inexplicably from blunder,
to inexplicable blunder.

Amidst the din of alarm and fear,
Just One looked on, with eyes still clear,
He was, the Contrarian,
His questions rebuffed and answered by none.

Instead, subject to ridicule was he,
“Three weeks to flatten the curve,
That’s all, you’ll see”.

‘Twas the longest three weeks, we did ever know,
Taking us from spring to summer,
Then straight to snow.

And all…


For the descendants of Barbary Pirates and English Roses

Photography by Mrs. Brown

There will come a day when you,
will indeed discover,
that coursing through my veins is blood,
of my father, not my mother!

Despite my place of birth being,
a green and pleasant land,
my father gave me Pirate blood,
which those of Albion can not stand.

The disposition caused by this,
particular paternal gift,
is one of frequent agitation,
guaranteed to cause a rift.

It pushes one to speak one’s mind,
even when it’s not invited.
For having heated arguments,
makes those with Pirate blood delighted.

Contrarian is the “mot…


Photo by: A_Different_Perspective

Dear Clara,

I hope this letter finds you and your new and undoubtedly disgusting goldfish, very well.

In my last letter, I wrote to inform you what an ‘a**hole’ you had become. Although I made it perfectly clear that I was merely letting you know for your own good, I got the distinct impression from your letter, that you were not exactly grateful for my observations.

This particularly seemed to be the case when you described me as a ‘d***head’.

I just want you to know Clara, that I am not in the least bit offended. In fact, quite contrary…


Photograph by Falarcompaulo

I grew up thinking I spoke English. I got the shock of my life when I moved from the South West of England to go to university in The Big Smoke (London). I had only moved a 2 hours’ drive away from home, and yet apparently I was speaking a different language entirely, which according to some required translation.

At first, I didn’t realize that people couldn’t understand me until a pivotal moment occurred. A young man in my history class, who we will call “Darren”, suddenly called out after I made a comment:

“Hey, could you say that again…


Words inspired by the photograph

Photograph by Lena Lensen

You promised you’d never use,
an Apple, man!

You swore you’d not ditch Windows,
But here you are with a MacBook,
in your hand!

Was it always the plan?

I could just accept it,
But your face is so smug,
Each time you sit,
Anywhere near it!

I just want to type stuff out on Word,
Which is not something found on an Apple,
As far as I’ve heard!

So stop trying to convince me,
That Apples are best,
Finally, I got that off my chest!

Look, it’s not like I’m a fan of Bill…


Image by Pete Linforth

People of this great nation! I stand before you today not just as your Prime Minister, but as a man who, much like everyone else in the country, has had a terrible few months.

There is an entire list of words related to what I am going to talk about now, which have been banned as of noon today — in order to mitigate the adverse effects on our health, caused by their vast overuse in the last six months. …


Photograph by Jan Steiner

-Betty’s the only person I know who calls the cupboard where she keeps all the cleaning stuff…“the utility room”. She’s a class act, our Betty!

-I went round to see my sister Betty this morning…She’s a businesswoman you know… as elegant as they come and as hard as nails! You can count on Bett to tell you what’s what…

-She had a lovely sponge cake ready today — it went down a treat with the tea. Not any old tea either, it was the Queen Anne blend from Fortnum & Mason. …


Photograph by Gellert

Rest assured this is not some sappy, soppy tale about first love — no it is not! Simon was my first friend and the basis of our friendship was quite simply that his mother was friends with my mother. Simon was a boy and a year older than I was, so he was also bigger, stronger, unpredictable and mostly terrible — but I thought he was great.

We have photographic evidence of our friendship dating back to the days when our little bottoms were still wrapped in nappies, and we maintained that friendship until the age of about twelve. This…


Words inspired by my favorite painting

Etienne Dinet: Slave of Love and Light of the Eyes circa 1900

All it took,
Just one look,
From your eyes,
This was my prize.

Enslaved by love,
I soar above,
Falcon’s flight o’er dune,
Beside you soon.

Captive am I,
Your laugh so shy,
To love you aching,
Now fallen, breaking.

Your perfume infused,
In my memory perused.
I breathe in the night,
Without respite.

Selene Bey

Words inspired by photographs

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