Category Archives: Three Halves

Haiku: ‘Four’ by Graeme Sandford


All you need is love?
Love is a’four-letter-word’;
But, so, too, is ‘fork’.

Love is ‘dangerous’;
NOT to be treated lightly;
A game for two hearts?

And, don’t forget this:
It is, in ‘some’ languages,
Anagram of ‘vole’.

Those four letters are…
Quite different… when spelt: I…
L… O… V… E… U.

Tabitha Fetches a Stick

Tabitha Fetches a Stick by Graeme Sandford


When she was a kitten, Tabitha shocked us by barking.

Now, one of the things that you are taught (or discover) in life is that cats miaow and dogs bark; sometimes even before you can count up to a gazillion. To have this fundamental tenet turned topsy-turvy and upside down on its head is to cause the mind to go into premature meltdown (minds generally go into meltdown much later in life) as much as black and white suddenly changing places or gravity to work in the opposite way – but we wouldn’t lose so many balloons, would we?

Tabitha not only barked; she fetched sticks; chewed upon bones; howled when outside; to be let in; chased parked cars; and loved being in the car with her head stuck out the window as the parked cars flew by.

We got used to her ways; but, people, meeting her for the first time; were taken aback at her growling; until she decided they were harmless; may have humpable legs; or were going to take her for a walk… on a lead. Tabitha is one in a… well, one in a huge number (perhaps very near a gazillion) when it comes to pets.

7 Things About Me

Seven things about me:

·      Whilst with the English Army in Danuphyu, Burmah, my great grandfather, George Sandford (who I am named after) was present at the signing of the Treaty of Yandabo which formally ended the First Anglo-Burmese War. I have a copy of that treaty upon my wall.

·      Having a rare blood group – ICAM-4 (Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-4 – formerly known as the Landsteiner-Weiner [LW] blood system type) I am on twenty-four hour alert if there is a need for my specific blood type for transfusion (it works both ways if I need a transfusion). I wear a ICAM-4 wrist tag.

·      I once spent three months of my life going undercover under an assumed name (Peter A. Weeks). I was found out when the people I was then associating with happened (whilst with me – by purest chance) to meet up with some friends from my past life – it all blew up amazingly!

·      Fundamental to my being is my writing. Upon occasion I have been known to have online arguments that include up to four of my created writing-voices. The credibility is in the writers (me) having clearly defined back stories and points of view. Many were fooled. I was reconciled to myself – eventually.

·      I seem to have the gift of being able to tell somebody’s age from just looking at their face – there is more to it than that, but to tell would take all the mystery out of it for you.

·      Prior to my current job in Hampshire County Council as a Creative Writing Co-ordinator, I was a plumber.

·      I have a deep fear of the colour Heliotrope and the letter ‘J’ but only when the two are combined – separately they are okay; even though I do sense a prickling in my thumbs when they are seen.   

Poetry Is a Game of Three Halves

Poetry 2

‘poetry is a game of three halves!’


“three halves!” you exclaim.


‘yes!’, I reply.


“so, if that is the case, when do you have the oranges?”


in poetry you don’t ‘have’ the ‘oranges’, because the rhymes are not there…


…in poetry… we have ‘limes’.


“okay! but what are the rules!”


the rules? they are many, and they don’t suffer fools.


gladly will I tell them to you, it will pass a moment or two


before my muse calls and the answer-phone kicks in.


“do your poems have to rhyme?”


all the time! or, not at all…. or when they like!


it’s a matter of style.


for some, the rules of poetic form are a guide,


behind and beyond which they can hide.


others decide to flaunt the rules,


taunt the tools of a decent poem.


in a recent poem, which I had the misfortune to see,


I saw the ‘poet’ (who apparently had feet of clay)


had written, so it seemed, that rhymes were all, (he must have been having an off-day)


but, he had missed the metre, the rhythm, the caesural pause,


avoided the basic laws, just to get a ‘how-now-brown-cow’


‘bish-bash, mish-mash’ sort of an effect, making for a rather ‘air-bourne-pink-sow’ defect.


‘I amb, you see, a man, in all, I say, or do, – or am I?’


reflect upon the Iambic metre of the above,


and did you espy the finale


with all the pterror of a Dactyl flying in to end it?