Monday, 9 August 2010

AlphaPoem of the Week - Toads

My poem of this week is for all writers out there doing a day job and writing on the side.  And for anyone who would rather not work at all!

Don't get me wrong, I actually quite like my job.  I've had a few and it's the best one yet - some great people, changing faces, and I feel like I'm making a difference to some people.

But, oh - to be in a book-lined study all day...  As Larkin says, that's the stuff that dreams are made on!

I hope you enjoy it.

Philip Larkin

Why should I let the toad work
Squat on my life?
Can't I use my wit as a pitchfork
And drive the brute off?

Six days of the week it soils
With its sickening poison -
Just for paying a few bills!
That's out of proportion.

Lots of folk live on their wits:
Lecturers, lispers,
Losels, loblolly-men, louts-
They don't end as paupers;

Lots of folk live up lanes
With fires in a bucket,
Eat windfalls and tinned sardines-
they seem to like it.

Their nippers have got bare feet,
Their unspeakable wives
Are skinny as whippets - and yet
No one actually starves.

Ah, were I courageous enough
To shout Stuff your pension!
But I know, all too well, that's the stuff
That dreams are made on:

For something sufficiently toad-like
Squats in me, too;
Its hunkers are heavy as hard luck,
And cold as snow,

And will never allow me to blarney
My way of getting
The fame and the girl and the money
All at one sitting.

I don't say, one bodies the other
One's spiritual truth;
But I do say it's hard to lose either,
When you have both.


  1. My thoughts exactly! Well, not that I could them in such a clever way.

  2. This is wonderful! Stuff your pension! HA!

  3. Brilliant poem! I would love to spend all day writing too... Hmmmm.

    You must forgive me! I thought I was following you but apparently I'm NOT. Geez, mind like sieve Mia. MIND LIKE A SIEVE.

    Anyhow, I do apologise. I am now a follower :D

  4. p.s. I fed your fish. Hope that's ok.

  5. Welcome Mia! I like your blog very much so lovely to see you stopping by here!

    And yes, please feed the fish as much as you want to. They are hungry little blighters :-)