Hastings Battleaxe plods on – stormy weather, post-Covid fatigue

The last post ended with ‘What next we ask ourselves? Storm clouds ahead.’  Well, over a week later, the answer is more of the same. The weather is grim – brief interludes of sun interspersed with torrential rain and strong wind. Political situation is in limbo – we are playing a disagreeable ‘wait and see’ game in which Sunak tells us we will have a budget statement on 17 November but we are just fed ever-wilder and ever-gloomier speculation in the media as to what we might be in for, while we are supposedly distracted by nasty Braverman and the vile treatment of migrants and asylum seekers.  I have recovered from Covid, but still feel incredibly tired. This week have been to my novel critiquing group, the Stanza poetry group and lunch with friends, but each excursion leaves me knackered. I did write a poem for Stanza, about Nadine Dorries. I have put it in this post – it is too rude, sweary and scurrilous to be published anywhere else.  My Stanza colleagues enjoyed it but Philosopher was decidedly unenthusiastic –  ‘mildly amusing and doesn’t say very much’. Judge for yourselves!

Here’s a couple of pictures taken from our front balcony when the weather was briefly warm enough to sit out…  There was an amazing sky – clouds indicating storms to come. For Christmas, Philosopher is getting me a plaque with ‘Villa Belvedere’ on it in cod Italian style… seems an odd present on the face of it but it is what I want. It has to be hand done and sent from Italy so I hope it gets here in time.

Novel group? We have to take it in turns to present chapters of our novels-in-progress to our colleagues. It was my turn this week. Discovered to my horror that one of my lead characters, Precious the Vicar, has the same name as the heroine of those tiresome Alexander McColl Smith No 1 Ladies Detective Agency books.

‘Tiresome’ she says. Well, he has published around 24 in the series… and all have sold well. Here am I fiddling about with my effort, which also, let’s face it, will belong in the ‘cosy crime’ category – at this rate of procrastination etc I should be so lucky to even get a single one published.

I guess that takes me on to Nadine Dorries. Yes, she is the well-deserving butt of endless Twitter jokes and media ribbings about her loose-mouthed dimness, unfeasible devotion to Boris Johnson etc. but she has published at least 16 novels – proper printed ones with a real publisher. Here is a more than somewhat dismissive article about her novel writing from the Guardian – but it tells us that she has sold 2.5 million copies of the things. Say what you like, that is formidable. I was thinking about that when I had a go at a poem about her. I largely did it just to cheer us up at Stanza, and to help me get through one of my first outings into the big bad world on a lighter note… So, here it is – with a big health warning. Do not read if you don’t like swearing or rudeness. This is purely a fantasy….


Or Hash Tag Mad Nads, according to the Twitterati.
I once went in for drunken calls, clumsy-fingered texts,
but now I’m into tweeting. Get bollocked by the Party
Whips but look, why should I give a fuck about ‘effects

on my career.’ I’ll have a little gin, ta, only just a nip,
and a glass or two of fizz. Not like it was back then,
legless with the girls, pissing ourselves laughing up
the Anfield Road, fallin’ on our arses, shrieking when

the lads passed by. I’ve gotta say, men have been bad
news for me. Him as well. Look, I’ve never said before
but God knows I tried so hard, I must be bleedin’ mad.
I was just the grab-a-granny joke dead cat, sure

to cock it up, act drunk and draw the tabloids fire
while he blethered out his lies. Yes, I’m much too old.
My tits are great, legs fine, bum’s good too. I can buy a
classy face-lift, with subtle tweaks that mean I’m told

I look younger than my daughters, but it’s not enough.
He can only get it up with younger flesh. So, I’ve never
shagged him, and now I never will. I’m reduced to rough
trade on the back benches, vile BO and shouting every

bloody day. I fancied the Lords, but I must have Tourettes
or something, blew it big time with my ever-flappin’ gob.
Sod it, Nads, get back to writing. Could you ever guess
that I write novels? Like real printed books that knobs

pay money for? Kerching! My advances make no sense,
it’s like they pay me when I fart. I nail it every single time,
no need for fancy culture stuff like point of view or tense.
And look at this! I do poems as well… proper ones that rhyme

There you go. It has been suggested to me that my next effort should be about Braverman… Trouble is, real life seems to overtake the wildest realms of fantasy at the moment. What, Matt Hancock in the jungle…?

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