Sunday, 30 June 2013

McGough... and a cough

Me & McGough with matching poetry pants
You know that scene in 'Outbreak' when the carrier sneezes in the cinema? There was a moment on the stage on Friday night when I could have brought down the Great and the Good of Alsager with one unguarded 'Atchoo'.

Starting with the Mayor, the vicar and the manager of the Co-op, I could have spread contamination out across the poetry cartels of South Cheshire, the art-loving innocent of North Staffordshire and elderly fans of sixties bands just days before The Rolling Stones rolled on the Ralgex one more time.

Let me explain: I have a streaming cold at the moment. But that wasn't going to stop me meeting one of my poetry heroes: Roger McGough. I'd been invited as 'one of the top three prizewinners' to read my poem at his gig for the Alsager Summer Festival, and I'm delighted to report that I won! Hurrah! Huzzah! And I read my poem (in what I like to think of as a sexy, husky voice - dues to nasal congestion and a raw throat), and I managed not to have a coughing fit during any of the more poignant moments of Roger's performance  - although it was touch and go with the boy and the red ball on the beach.

But despite my mentioning I was full of cold, Roger, amused by my mentioning someone had once described me, rather disturbingly, as 'Roger McGough in a bra' had gone in for kissing in the French style... erm... I mean both cheeks, not tongues. I live in fear I may have done for him. The same thing probably happened to Nelson Mandela. Well, not exactly the same.

Who killed Roger McGough?
I said the poet, with my hacking cough.
I killed McGough

I could launch an attack on the poets of England this way:

Who killed Carol Anne Duffy?
I said the poet, with my nose so stuffy
I snuffed out Duffy

Who killed Ian Macmillan?
I said the poet, with a lack of penicillin
I killed Macmillan...



  1. Don't fret, BB. I'm sure McGough is tough enough.

  2. Who killed Andrew Motion?
    Me said the poet, with my herbal potion
    I killed A Motion

    Sounds like a permanent cure for diahorrea :)

    Many congratulations on both winning the prize and getting to meet Roger.

    1. Thanks! Sounds like something they do in Parliament too!

  3. jason t richardson30 June 2013 at 15:43

    who killed clare kirwin
    with a gallon of bourbon
    i killed clare kirwin

    1. Who killed Jason T
      Me! Me! It was me!

  4. Who killed Sylvia Plath?
    Er ...
    *awkward silence*

    Well done on your prize. £100, wasn't it? The drinks are on you ...

    1. You do the math
      I killed Sylvia Plath

      It was too! Cheers! Drinks are also in me! ('medicinal purposes')

  5. Loving the fact that there was a very serious well-meaning advert about avoiding cough congestion at the bottom of your post when I read it.

  6. Who killed Frank Bough
    oh no, he's not a poet ....

  7. Congratulations on your epic performance at Wirral's Festival of Firsts. You were the best poet in the room and nearly the best part of the whole day - only beaten by the curry and chips! X-)

    (You'll note my emoticon is wearing a mask for anonymity!)


    1. Kind of you to say so, sir, though do I detect a slight bias?