Songs fro the Lifeboats cover image

Author Tom Bartlett writes: ‘This anthology is a flotilla of ‘songs’ from my experience of life; the personal, detached and observant. Here you will find the music of joy and the music of sadness, offered to support the life-changing work of the excellent charity Advantage Africa.’

This 100-page paperback is available for £6.99 including postage. Please send a cheque made payable to 'Advantage Africa' to us at 9 High Street, Olney, Bucks, MK46 4EB and we'll send you a copy by return post.

Here’s a couple of poems give you an idea of the variety of verse contained in this thought-provoking volume:


Looking / Down
Fat North / Lean South
Hand in pocket / hand to mouth
Developed / D... developing
A portly bee / a lethal sting.
Ample portions / meagre gruel
Here, the students / where the school?
Text a message / tweet the news
No clean water / what excuse?
Have no car / meander far
Home's a box / outside of Dar
A family caught / with empty pot
A ration neither / cold nor hot.
Looking up / but looking down
A bowl of soup / a starving town
Where will this go? / well, God knows
The river dies / unless it flows.

Laugharne Lament
I've seen enough of the pelting rain,
I've heard enough of this world's refrain,
I've scarred enough to remember pain,
Yet still I look for more.

I've lived enough to give thanks to life,
I've raged enough to confound a wife,
I've warred enough to have mastered strife,
Yet still I fight for more.

I've felt joy at celestial rises,
Been shocked at Cupid's sharp surprises,
And drowned in booze's many guises,
Yet still I thirst for more.

I've mused with Frost through 'Fire and Ice',
(The end days won't be very nice,
And Shakespeare's Witches vowed it thrice,
Yet still I pause for more.)

The selfish 'I' who knows no bounds,
Routinely makes his worldly rounds,
Scarce heedful of eternal Sounds,
Yet need I ask for more?