A doughty champion of his local culture.(Poet Tom Hubbard)Your performance at the city hall was soooooooooo good! Christoph thought it was excellent! (Carolyn)




“All rich people are parasites”,
said the girl as she glided in,
drifting through the French window,
with a face that looked ready to kill.

She sat next to me on the chaise longue,
she had next to nothing on.
And Stockhausen’s friend played piano
and the party became a song.

Her eyes moved amongst the guests,
cutting them up with her glare.
She draped her legs across mine
and played with the strands of her hair.

“All rich people are parasites.
The future belongs to the poor.”
And she put her hand on my thigh
and she kicked her shoes on the floor.

She took me upstairs to my room,
she was drunk on red wine and champagne.
In the rich afternoon we made love,
in the evening it spat on to rain.

Her hair was wild and soaked
as we wandered through the wood.
She fell and cut her leg
and I licked it to taste the blood.

In town we sat in a candlelit pub,
with the light flickering over our lives.
Somebody tried to sell us a rose
but she told him she wasn’t in love.

“All rich people are parasites”,
I’ll forever remember those words,
and the evening we spent by the Neckar,
feeding the crumbs to the birds.

Keith Armstrong,


nee gud luck in durham gaol!


Cobbled webs of my thoughts
hang around your lanes.
A brass band nestles in my head,
cosy as a bed-bug.
I’m reading from a balcony
poems of Revolution.
It’s Gala Day and the words are lost
in the coal-dust of your lungs.

Your dark satanic brooding Gaol
throws a blanket over blankness:
a grim era of second-hand visions
aches like a scab in a cell.
And rowing a punt up your Bishop’s arse
a shaft of sunlight on the river
strikes me only as true,
shining into the eyes of all the prisoners
swinging from Cathedral bells.

Old Durham Town, you imprison me
like a scream in a Salvation Army song,
release me soon:

get ready to hug me.



return to tuebingen

GIRL IN HOLZMARKT by Keith Armstrong
(for Susanne, from a photograph)

Near Heckenhauer’s snoozing bookshop,
where Hesse once shelved poems,
you are standing
arms crossed lightly
in the pouring sun.
Your fine cheekbones
in shadow,
drenched face
in thought,
you listen deeply
to the bright street-harpist
plucking music from the day.
Your hair is flowing
black in the fine afternoon;
you are obviously a thinker,
fragile as a cloud;
withdrawn you are
yet still stand out
in this basking, strolling, crowd:
I think your name is Susanne
and I see your skin is milky;
and I wonder,
twelve years on,
where you have gone.
I sense
that you’ll have babies,
they are plainly in blue eyes,
and, in that filmic moment,
you do look beautiful to me:
a precious one, you’re trapped
in this snapshot album,
in not knowing
that the wall has been
pulled down.


return to north queensferry




This poet’s wild imagination
is open all hours.
Fired by the flash of barmaids
I have worshipped,
I crawl the Shields bars,
seeking memories 
of old sailors.
Thrashing through The Jungle
of sun- kissed lounges,
I look for a date
with a Tyneside Dolly,
trawl through the faded papers
for a glimpse of a dashing blade.
My thirsty history is in these pubs,
seeping through The Porthole,
swimming with the Low Lights blues.
My tongue is wagging with excitement,
I am the talk of the Tyne,
one of the many mouths
of this swilling river
in our blood.


the jingling geordie

My photo
whitley bay, tyne and wear, United Kingdom
poet and raconteur