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The joys of home

The joys of home

The New Normal

Today is the end of my struggle with an assignment for my Masters at MMU. It’s done and submitted early. More like abandoned into the wilderness of Turnitin. So time on my hands and that feels a bit strange. Of course, I have a list of things to do in this semi-new normal milieu, but I couldn’t resist posting the photo on here which may characterise this new situation for others. Cruel but fun. I wrote this piece a few weeks ago and feel that it is apt to put it up now. So enjoy as always.

 A Domestic in a Time of Disaster

 The Blue-ray remote has gone missing;

chaos has broken out in the aftermath;

a six and a four-year-old court-martialled

for endangering the lives of the household,

in this time of crisis and confinement.

Emergency services have been deployed;

boxes of Lego upended, cushions scattered.

The dog cowers in the corner terrorised;

no topic allowed to be voiced that offsets

the focus on this catastrophic slip.

Thousands of discs lie helpless on shelves,

useless and worthless without this magic key.

Stormtroopers revisit and repeat the search

among the rubble of toys and games and puzzles.

Those who can retreat, hide in isolation.

Peter Clarke

May 2020


David McDonough

13.05.2020 09:30

Absolutely brilliant

Margaret Dromey

11.05.2020 16:45

A lovely piece Peter. I can feel the pain! Well done on submitting the project.

Triona Mc Morrow

11.05.2020 16:03

Great photo and poem! There is a great frantic, searching pace to that poem!

Catherine D

11.05.2020 14:01

Ha! Brilliant Peter. I think that many households can relate to this. For us it is the Netflix remote.


11.05.2020 13:10

I tend to find in that area of the world (i.e. chez Mum) that remotes find a spot in the freezer, if it helps! 🤣

Latest comments

25.11 | 22:15

Grief is experience through the mundane. Simple but powerful. The accompanying image really compliments the poem.

07.11 | 11:14

Hi Peter,

A great observation! Social media can be a scary place... I also need to reduce my time there



06.11 | 16:24

A great one, Peter, in the context you describe. I don't read social media myself, I doubt my equilibrium could stand it. 'The balance of his mind disturbed' yes, I think it would be.

06.11 | 15:59

Yes, gossip is a weapon of mass destruction.

In my business as well as personal life I have zero tolerance.

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And What About . . .


I have neglected this for far too long, and now it is time again. But what to write about, what poem to share? The world is packed with catastrophic possibilities. Such choices: dementia/genocide colluder or extreme narcissism in the White House; a hung parliament in the UK; the reunification of the USSR with a tyrannical megalomaniac at its head; the eradication of a race by a genocidal government in Gaza; the African continent reduced to bankruptcy and regression to male tribalism; in Ireland, even with an appalling electoral turnout the routing of the far right and Sinn Féin may offer some comfort except we face another FF/FG fiasco. Mother Nature rumbles on its rampage, raging against the human species’ abject destruction of the planet’s habitat. What the . . .

Being facetious right now is my only defence against absolute despair. So read, comment, pass it on, and send feedback.

City Walking and Cycling take 680,000

cars per day off the road

Irish Time Heading

More and more folk, cycling and walking, may 

keep gases from greenhouses further at bay

This newspaper heading illustrates vividly

thousands of cyclists and walkers assiduously 

stopping some cars on their journey

pushing them aside - making drivers quite surly

Mountains of metal - like scrapyards of sculpture

keep bicycle lanes quite safe - at this juncture

The new revolution is well underway

don’t get behind wheels - hear what they say:

Cars and their fumes play a very big part 

the smell is quite phew don’t mention cow farts

Wear out your shoe leather walking

greet travellers with smiles while you’re talking

Force councils to make better spaces

to go out and about roaming those places

where vitamin D, and oxygen from trees

fill our lungs and our brains so we see

how to save us and this magical planet

except for some vicious old tyrants goddammit 

Peter Clarke, 18th March 2024

Haydée Otero