What do you do with the I-should-nevers
Where do you go with the wish-I-hadn’ts
How do you live with the if-only-I’d-nots?

Shove them behind the sofa with the how-come-we-didn’ts
Bundle them beneath the bed with the what-if-we-hadn’ts
Stuff them below the stairs with the why-did-we-evers?

Dig it all down deep and hope to God
That they do not rise to swallow up
the what-nexts
the where-nows
the who-elses?




Let the past find its place in the present.

Like standing beside a classical column in a medieval church
Like sitting below a Roman stone in a Romanesque tower
Like walking beneath an Etruscan arch in a Renaissance gateway

Take the best,
and leave the rest
to rest in pieces.

Build a new life with the shell of the old, welcoming
what was
what is
what will be.


re     gret
re     coil
re     cant
re     prieve

re     quest
re     mind
re     search
re     trieve

re     sume
re     store
re     stock
re     ceive

re     turn
re     joice
re     surrect
re     lieve


Like a tiller straining to resist the tide

Like a bridle striving to restrain the ride

Like a fable refusing to follow the facts

Like wallpaper declining to cover the cracks

Like a kite deciding to dodge the breeze

Like a sponge resolving to risk the squeeze


But now I know the no
Let me let                              go.

Satinder Singh

Curled up on the steps of the old church,
surrounded by boots, blankets, bottles,
middle of the day and still asleep, too deeply asleep.

Your hand was grey, too grey,
and as Mark gently shook you and said,
“Hello, my friend, hello?”
your hand stayed still, too still.

Phone calls, chest compressions, sirens
but late, too late,
for you, Satinder Singh.

Stretched out by the steps of the old church,
surrounded by paramedics, policemen, passers-by,
middle of the day and still asleep, too deeply asleep.

Southall Gazette, March 2016

A man appeared in court yesterday accused of selling NHS numbers to undocumented immigrants. Joshua Masih, aged 33, allegedly sold an NHS number to Zac Cheus, who faces deportation after out-staying his visa. The prosecution alleges that Cheus bought the number in order to access free medical care for a foot injury sustained in a fall from a tree. Masih, defending himself, denied the charge, claiming that he willingly gave his own NHS number to Cheus and did not profit from the arrangement. Under cross-examination, Masih acknowledged that his action could prevent him from accessing NHS care for himself in the future, but he stated that he was prepared to lay down his rights for the benefit of his friend. The case continues.–and-all-patients-will-have-to-prove-they-are-not-foreigners-to-get-treatment-free-on-the-nhs-9029586.html

The God of Small Things

Here’s a list of ten small joys . . .

The joy of not getting irritated by delayed trains

The joy of contemplative ironing

The joy of being eagerly greeted by a dog who’s delighted to see you or casually acknowledged by a cat who’s willing to tolerate your presence

The joy of custard

The joy of re-using old wrapping paper and finding it’s just the size you need

The joy of free-wheeling down a hill

The joy of a familiar path at different times and in different seasons

The joy of noticing an old name or date on a building

The joy of conversing in Franglais

The joy of spotting bus drivers waving to each other as they pass