As a poet and song writer, Beckett was a great inspiration to me. I never studied English Literature because it clashed with maths, but spent a lot of time reading him , including in French, during my final rather spaced out year at the University of East Anglia in the early 1970s. Robert Cook
CASCANDO :- A POEM BY SAMUEL BECKETT !
why not merely the despaired of
is it not better abort than be barren
the hours after you are gone are so leaden
they will always start dragging too soon
the grapples clawing blindly the bed of want
bringing up the bones the old loves
sockets filled once with eyes like yours
all always is it better too soon than never
the black want splashing their faces
saying again nine days never floated the loved
nor nine months
nor nine lives
if you do not teach me I shall not learn
saying again there is a last
even of last times
last times of begging
last times of loving
of knowing not knowing pretending
a last even of last times of saying
if you do not love me I shall not be loved
if I do not love you I shall not love
the churn of stale words in the heart again
love love love thud of the old plunger
pestling the unalterable
whey of words
of not loving
of loving and not you
of being loved and not by you
of knowing not knowing pretending
I and all the others that will love you
if they love you
unless they love you.
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Working girl flushed red
Out of school and keen for bed.
Ruddy rugged zest for life,
Eager to become a workman’s wife.
Working girl with rotten teeth
Tripping over Hampstead Heath
Struttin’ down to Camden Town
Wears more makeup than a circus clown.
Working girl with CSEs
Risks her life from STDS
Working girl not understanding
Has taken off, no thought of landing.
Pills to take in a case condom fails
Crimson varnish on finger nails
High heels tapping in the park
Headlights burning through the dark
Alleyways and avenues ,
She is there for him to abuse.
What would she do with education
When she excels with masturbation.
Beauty fades , skin turns to leather
Hers is no job in stormy weather.
Bang bang bang against the wall
She takes them all, short and tall.
Better that than life alone
With her fags and telephone.
We’re all doomed I have to say
Like autumn leaves just blown away.
R,J Cook September 1979
Temporary Blip by Robert Cook, 2003
Old folk at home watching TV repeats
young ones fighting in the streets,
young ones fighting in the bars ,
killing each other in motor cars.
Urban warriors, black & white,
rats from the woodwork, out in the night,
Jennifer walks, takes a wrong turn,
spins when she hears the tyres burn.
Headlights flicker and flash like stars,
one then another go racing in cars.
She steps back in horror, nearly cut down,
heart beats go faster on this side of town.
His breath makes war with her perfume,
she’s another statistic, lost in the gloom.
Boy racers spinning, drowning her screams,
killing her hopes, ending her dreams.
This is a country with get up and go,
glittering adverts, all just for show.
Now there’s the sirens, like big cats gone mad.
Is this a city or an apple gone bad.
The economy’s slowing, a temporary blip,
time to get moving, find a big ship.
Islands of tower blocks light up the sky,
life specks inside them live and let die.
Lifts smell of urine, show messages of hate,
a whole world away from cottage and gate.
Life must adapt or it’s no more,
that’s why someone has got nine locks on their door.
Some have got guns, sticks or knives,
Some are too stoned to fear for their lives.
The economy’s growing, Blair says so,
Don’t sail away, please don’t go.
No don’t panic, there’s hope for us all,
England’s a place where you can walk tall.
England’s a planet, a world on its own,
where people are judged by the style of their phone.
England once swung like a pendulum do,
But spin now it does, like a drunk in a stew.
Copyright Robert Cook 2003.
Under The Bridge January 18th 2021
By Robert Cook
Under the bridge where the water flows past
Is a man in a bed who is free at last.
He lived in this place in his ragged clothes
When people went by they turned up their nose.
He had no TV or internet connection
He had no means to vote in the election.
Pictures in his head while he froze in the Cold
Wondering how he lived to be so old.
Down in the town he would beg for food
Eating scraps improved his mood.
His water came from the mouldering canal
This was his world, a private hell.
How did he get here, did he come by boat
How come his life just didn’t float.
It did for a while, he had a house
There he lived like a little mouse.
Lost his job at the stroke of a pen
Man in the office said he didn’t need men.
The world was changing, all re arranged
It helped you survive if you were deranged.
His wife went to work and he lost her approval
She called the police who sorted his removal.
She said he had started speaking out of turn
Not good enough now he couldn’t earn.
She had a job at the local bank
Then ran off with a very rich Yank.
She took him to court for his abuse
When truth be told he was no more use.
She copped the lot of his life time achievement
So off he walked with his bereavement
All squeezed into two battered cases,
He was just another loser in the human races.
Robert Cook January 18th 2021
Nothing to Say By Robert Cook, January 17th 2021
Life don’t flow, doesn’t ryhme
Long road back before my time
Wish mum & dad were never there
To make a boy with golden hair.
Wish I’d stayed lost in space
Never ever shown my face.
Not a footfall on this earth
No good for me, no real worth.
Full of animals, humans too.
Put the humans in the zoo.
Wish I wasn’t one of those
Planted here where bad grows
Where liars cheats lead astray
drive the good ones far away.
Mum and dad from depression years
Parted young many tears.
Wars for who, rich folks way
Had to go, no real say.
Say hurrah for democracy
Believe all that, then U can’t see.
All the dead from long ago.
Hear the bands, all for show.
Glory, glory, vote for me
Then see things you’ll never see.
See the world on a plate
fight the people, don’t relate
Fear the police, learn the rules,
rebellion is all for fools.
Deprogramme yourself, vaccinate.
Learn to love what you hate.
Call the man if there’s trouble,
Take more pills when you’re seeing double.
Madness is so normal now
Don’t worry, don’t ask how.
Watch the news, do as told
Then they’ll let you get old.
Be careful, pass the mark
Then they’ll put you in the dark.
In the dark, in the gloom
They will lock you in the room.
Slowly dying, dying fast
all you had is in the past.
Scream for release , scream aloud
On your knees, don’t be proud.
Then in time, time will pass
There’ll be no more , no more grass.
No more sky to fly away,
No more words, nothing to say.
R.J Cook January 17th 2021
Bed Sit Girl By R.J Cook
Bed Sit Girl
Bed sit girl now must work as a hooker.
She lives in a room with a small cooker.
Her clients arrive by the light of the moon.
She hates them all and will give up soon.
All she needs is a lot more money.
Then life can be just milk & honey.
Before the plague she worked in an office.
Now this poor girl must work an orifice.
A girl must live, there’s rent to be paid.
So bed sit girl gets laid and laid.
Up the stairs they come to her creaky bed.
They use her face with her lips so red.
Her life is a dream, a hopeful past.
The future’s gone, it didn’t last.
One day there will be nothing left,
Just a corpse but she did her best.
R.J Cook September 6th 2020
Imagining Tony Blair as the white rapper star he always wanted to be.
Dis me song in de line o’duty
I’m phoney Bliar lookin’ snooty
Listen up to de true liar
Am gonna set de world on fire
Phoney Bliar rocks again
Phoney Tony I’m insane
Wid me on lead, Boy Bush on bass
We blast de planet into space
Phoney Tony playin’ de lead
Me band we call ‘Total Greed’.
‘Human Rights’ now number one.
Foolin’ de people, havi’n fun
Freed Bosnia Kosovo as well
Turned Middle East into hell
Open de doors for refugee
We de band set you free
Freed for de rich not for you
Phoney Tony’s still brand ‘New’
Me not bad, me not good
Me just king o’ de ‘hood’.
War Crimes here, war crimes there
All 4 U , I don’t care
Course I’d do it all ag’ en
Boy Bush and me, we real men
Any chords will do for me,
Phoney Bliar, I’m still free
My guitar hardly used
Not like u not abused
Distortion pedal is full on
Just like me, it’s a con
Never get me Phoney Blair
‘Rock Star’ see my mental stare.
Robert Cook June 30th 2020