Sunday, 30 August 2015

Oh, brother (part 10) by Grant Harbison

“Oh, Brother Ilirium, let’s do it again,” cried Sister Dunn. “I never knew it would be such fun with men.”
“Dear Sister, haven’t you had enough? I’m really spent and you are a little rough.”
“Hell and damnation. Don’t you be talking about cessation. I’ve lived a life of habit in a habit. Now rise to the occasion!” 
“Twice in the garden, twice on the floor, twice in my bed and you still want more?”
“Stop your fussing. I don’t want to hear a peep. Now satisfy me or I’ll remove it while you’re asleep.”
Ilirium felt a chill and cowered
As it suddenly became apparent that a maniac had been deflowered
He hadn’t expected her to fall for his charm
And there hadn’t been any cause for alarm
Just another conquest
Another topping
But now he was mortified
As his pride was flopping
Something that has never happened before
Even on a drunken night with a pockmarked whore
Hardly surprising
But to Ilirium it was so demoralising
Never had he been asked for so much more
And now the act of pleasure had become a chore
“I said rise to the occasion. Don’t keep me waiting in anticipation!”
Ilirium looked down and yelled with frustration
And her scathing taunts increased his degradation
But unexpectedly he felt movement
And smiled with relief when he saw inflation
The nun clapped her hands and squealed with glee. “Come, dear Ilirium. Come to me!”
Ilirium did what had to be done
But he had to think of a way of getting rid of the nun
Little did he know that help was at hand
From the latest arrival from the Nordic land
A tower of a man by the name of Derek
Viking warrior and brother of Erik

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Oh, brother (part 9) by Grant Harbison

The judge eyed Borium and Truman with contempt. “In curbing your carnal desires, you have made no attempt. This is a serious charge and no one is exempt. Before I spit vitriol and vent my wrath, is there anyone here who wants to speak on their behalf?”
Ilirium rose, anxious and tentative. “My lord, if it pleases the court, I shall be their representative.”
“Very well, you may commence. What do you have to say in their defence?”
“My lord, I feel that their arrest was highly unjust and there is an explanation for their insatiable lust.”
“This had better not be inane. You run the risk of excruciating pain. Explain!”
“My lord, due to the spell of a witch, these poor souls couldn’t control the itch. And I say to you, my lord, she is the bitch!” cried Ilirium as he pointed to Sister Dunn. “She is the one!”
“Liar!” screamed Sister Dunn. “You are Satan’s servant and should be consumed with fire!”
“Silence, wench!” the judge screamed from the bench.
“My lord,” said Ilirium. “It’s clear from her outburst that she and Lucifer are in accord.”
Ilirium hoped his allegation would sway the judge
But he stared at Ilirium stoically and wouldn’t budge
“For your sake I hope this is not retaliation and you can back up this insinuation,” said the judge. “Witch accusers are usually liars and merely hold a grudge.”   
“My lord, I can assure you this is neither rancour nor lark. Upon her body she has a mark. I can attest it’s above her left breast.”
Suddenly Sister Dunn’s habit was caught in a grip
And forceful hands began to rip
Ripped until they exposed her upper body
Resulting in loud gasps from everybody
As above her breast
Round and dark
Was Sister Dunn’s lasting birthmark
“How did you know that the mark was there?” the judge asked Ilirium. “If you know of this then you must have seen her bare.”
“My lord, it was extremely degrading when she came to me naked and began parading. The way she was flaunting was rather daunting. But I avoided humiliation by not giving in to temptation.”
“Then there is only one solution,” said the judge. “Prepare her for execution!”
“My lord, there is another solution to this. Release her to me and I will be her exorcist.”
“Very well. For her soul’s sake, I’ll save her from the stake. And as for the accused standing before me, you are pardoned and may go free.”
“How did you know about the mole?” whispered Borium to Illirium.
“It’s amazing what one can discover when one has a goal.”

Monday, 24 August 2015

Guest spot. What women do instead by Maria Manuela Cardiga

O sacrosanct
Flesh plundered

O sacrosanct
Tower tumbled
Humbled by
Vicious power
O flower

O sacrosanct
Screams unheard
Pearls of tender pride
Ripped stripped
Of virile joy

O sacrosanct
Laid low
O bitter biter-blow
The taste and smell
And touch of it
The unending
Sight of it

O sacrosanct
Chest embraced
Why oh why?
Did I by smile
Or word or deed
Invite this spite?

O sacrosanct
Do they
(will they) know?
Does it show?
(oh that final
hideous sound
that grunting moan)

Will they know?
Will they all know?
(I screamed
for mercy
under that blow)

"Get up
Get up
Get up
Get out of bed;
Do what women
Do instead:
Raise high your
Did you think
Yourself sacrosanct
Precious alloy?
Your flesh sacred

"Get out of bed.
Do what women
Do instead.
Straighten that spine!
Will you repine?
Cradle the sick-pup
Of your male pride?
The only sacrosanct part,
What they cannot
Reach with a prick
Or tear apart
Is your heart"

"So get out of bed;
Do what women
Do instead,
Go home
To your wife,
Get on
With your life."

So I did
What the woman said.
I got out of bed.

Saturday, 22 August 2015

Oh, brother (part 8) by Grant Harbison

Spare a thought for Borium and Truman
After all
They are only human
And susceptible to temptation
An appeal which has led to their current situation
Locked in a cell awaiting trial
Victims of vestal bile
Their shenanigans Sister Dunn attested
And for their wantonness they were immediately arrested
“Oh, Brother Truman, I do fear our fate has been decided,” cried Brother Borium. “These damn trials are so one sided.”
“Yes, Brother Borium, our situation looks grave. But try, little Brother, try to be brave.”
“How can one be brave when one only contemplates the horrific execution that indubitably awaits?”
“Faith, dear Brother, we haven’t been condemned yet. Brother Ilirium will find a solution, I’ll bet.”
“What makes you think that he’ll come to our aid? He’s probably just glad that he left the brothel before the raid.”  
“Through fear of implication if we gave voice to our association.”
Suddenly there was the sound of rattling keys
And the Brothers stared at the door with great unease
Fearing it would be a sadistic inquisitor
But it was only guard and he announced their visitor
“Greetings, dear Brothers,” said Ilirium as he stepped into the cell. “I trust everything is well?”
“Optimism I cannot fake,” replied Brother Borium. “For tomorrow it’s likely we’ll burn at the stake.”
“Relax, my brother. I have everything planned. So just keep the faith, understand? Just leave everything up to me and tomorrow I guarantee that you will both walk free.”  

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Oh, brother (part 7) by Grant Harbison

So what of Erik, our Viking friend?
Did you think that was the end?
Well, he gave up the life of carnage and pillage
And with Sioux and the others they created a village
It was pretty as a picture and they called it Amour
It had ten little homes and a general store
A thatched roof saloon with a wooden floor
A community hall for the weekly ball
And Erik and Sioux’s market stall
There was even a church with a miniature steeple
It was the pride and joy of the village people
There were Roman baths for relaxation
A stylish salon for titivation
Amour for everyone was the perfect place to stay
And every single one had their role to play
Erik so enjoyed living this way
Never in his life had he been so gay
But every silver lining has a cloud
And early one day while they were parading proud
A group arrived in shiny robes
Mindless thugs known as Phobes
They tried to destroy the little town
Smash it up and burn it down
But Erik and his friends fought them back
And managed to thwart their unprovoked attack
It was a show of courage and of unity
And a severe warning to the small community
That not everyone was willing to accept
Especially the dogmatic and the tolerance inept  

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Oh, brother (part 6) by Grant Harbison

With grace and providence from the great Almighty
Borium and Truman made it back to Blighty
But things were not as they were in their monastic home
As Brother Nolan had been promoted and had gone to Rome
And Brother Ilirium was now the monastery’s new abbot
An amiable monk with a tendency to rabbit
And it was widely known that he’d chase anything in a habit
But to Borium and Truman he was a valuable friend
For with Ilirium there was no need to pretend
And certain rules they were able to bend
Like early to bed and strict curfew
As both of them knew what Ilirium liked to do
His late night jaunts and secret affair
With Maude the bawd in her illicit lair
She was his best kept secret
His forbidden fruit
But Borium and Truman had been very astute
And late one night they’d followed him to the house of ill repute
His face had been a picture when they’d caught him in the act
But they’d sworn to secrecy and then made a pact
That they’d be allowed the very same leisure
And he would have to pay for their sinful pleasure
So, by day they got on with their monotonous chores
And at night they delighted in Madame Maude’s whores
But little did they know about Sister Dunn
A sour faced stickler and suspicious nun
One who was about to spoil their fun

Sunday, 16 August 2015

Oh, brother (part 5) by Grant Harbison

Morten, son of Leif, stared at the ceremony in disbelief
“What in the name of Odin is going on?” yelled the Viking chief.
“Oh, great one!” cried Erik and fell to his knees.
Hoping that his action would Morten appease
“Speak, son of Fester, or I’ll have your head.”
“Oh, great chieftain,” replied Erik. “I’m about to be wed.”
“Then why are you dressed as the bride?”
“I’m marrying Borium, the beauty by my side.”
Morten lost his temper and kicked him in the face. “You call yourself a Viking? You’re an utter disgrace!”
“Oh, great warrior!” cried Erik in pain. “It wasn’t my intention to provoke your disdain.”
Morten kicked him once again. “Disdain? An act like this could have you slain. Have you gone utterly insane? Have you no pride? Have you no shame?”
“I’d say that love was to blame.”
“Love? Great Odin above! Tonight I will have to decide your plight. Now take your monk and get out of my sight!”
Morten summoned Erik early the next morn
Since the chief’s berating
He’d been treated with scorn
“I’ve come to a decision, Erik, and I think it’s the best,” said Morten. “You will take a ship and then you will head west.”
“Chief, am I being banished?”
“I think that it would be best for all if you vanished. There’s a rumour that there is a great land to west, and if that is so, it could be another Viking conquest. If not, and you sail over the edge, your warrior bravery will be put to the test.”
 “Oh, Morten, son of Leif, leaving Borium would bring me such grief.”
“I shall allow him to stay for a while, until I can return him to the Angel isle.”
So, Erik, son of Fester, sailed to the west
And his search for the great land was a huge success
He annexed a piece for his principal plan
A place where man could be with man
And walk hand in hand across the land
Eventually one day his dream came true
When he fell in love with a boy named Sioux  

Friday, 14 August 2015

Guest spot. Lizzie Borden took an ax by author and poet Maria Manuela Cardiga

I have loved life
Much longer
Than I have loved you,
So I know
There is no loss
Of love or limb
I cannot survive,
And in this case,
Only amputation
Will suffice
To cut that bind,
That thing
Between us two-
End it -
Cut it through.

Whatever pain
 From what love
May remain
I will cure,
The phantom
Of my heart
I will endure.

Come now,
Don't complain!
Must I yet again
This is your will,
Not mine!

So hold still;
Don't struggle so,
While I strike
That final blow
And sever
My heart from you.

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Oh, brother (part 4) by Grant Harbison

With Brother Truman over his shoulder and Brother Borium by the hand
Erik once again snatched them from the Angel land
And so they sailed to the land of the fjord
On the wooden longship of the heathen horde
It was a horrendous voyage of considerable unease
With gale force winds and stormy seas
But eventually they reached the safety of the shore
And not long after there was a huge furore
Pigs were put on spits and roasted over fires
And nubile wenches catered for lustful desires
There were chants and cheers and the occasional brawl
While locked in a cage and wrapped in a shawl
Borium and Truman were enthralled by it all
That was until Erik whisked Borium away
And took him to his shelter to have his wicked way
After it was over and they’d lain on the bed
He’d told Brother Borium to rest his weary head
But the next words he’d uttered had filled Borium with dread
When Erik had told him that the following day they’d wed
Thoughts had spun around in Borium’s head
“But, Erik,” he’d said. “Couldn’t we just live together instead?”
“No,” Erik had replied. “You are mine to keep. Now hush, little Borium and get some sleep.”
After a sleepless night and much distress
Borium tried to think of a way out of this mess
But there was no way out
He was under duress
So he donned a robe
His Sunday best
As Erik had decided that he’d be wearing the dress 

Monday, 10 August 2015

Oh, brother (part 3) by Grant Harbison

Brother Borium and Brother Truman strolled in the garden
Two weeks had passed since Brother Nolan’s pardon
“We’ve been back such a short while and it’s such a bore,” said Brother Borium. “I’d give anything for a tankard of ale and a buxom whore.”
“Patience, dear Borium, we’ll have our fun,” responded Brother Truman. “With our worldly wisdom, we could even corrupt a nun.”
“Some thoughts do trouble me though. Ones I cannot erase.”
‘What thoughts are those, Brother Borium? You shall not disgrace.”
“I’ve been having fantasies about the Norseman; do you think that it’s just a phase?”
“No, Brother Borium. All it means is that you swing both ways.”
“Perhaps if I stick to girls, these feelings will pass.”
“If you believe that, then you are truly an ass.”
“But how can one desire both girl and boy?”
“Just embrace it and don’t be coy.”
Suddenly there were shouts and pandemonium
“I wonder what’s going on,” said Brother Borium.
It was then that they heard the most pitiful cries
And not long after
A huge surprise
For there stood Erik
Son of Fester
The towering giant
Their Nordic molester

Saturday, 8 August 2015

Guest spot. Why I got kicked off the tardis and on my butt by Doctor Who by author and poet Maria Manuela Cardiga

I danced through the Empire.
And I suppose you could say
I tripped out
Over Julius Caesar's
Funeral pyre;
Oh! And that bit
Where Nero
Sung to his lyre?
And warmed
His chubby toes
To the fire...
That was just so cool!
I really admired
The guy, seriously!
I know he was cruel,
And had major issues
With his mum
And his poking her corpse
Was just sooooo gross?

But he was hip-hop
Beat happening
Before it was
"Hey man! What's hangin'?"
Look the guy was
Just that cool...
He had a groove.
That's all I'm sayin'.
It's not that I approve
Of his martyring dudes
And being cruel to animals?
(Feeding people to lions
Can't do them no good.
To the lions I mean,
But you gotta understand,
Nutrition wasn't a big deal
In Ancient Rome.)
I just liked him, is all.
I'd buy his record.
Nero Claudius Caesar
Rock on!

Thursday, 6 August 2015

Oh, brother (part 2) by Grant Harbison

After five long years
Brother Borium and Brother Truman returned to the abbey
And found that Brother Nolan was the abbot and just as crabby
“Oh, Brother Nolan, don’t turn us away,” pleaded Brother Truman and knelt down to pray.
“Our errant departure led to a life of hell,” said Brother Borium as tears began to well. “We’ve been victims of those under Beelzebub’s spell and a spate of misfortune none of us could foretell.”
“And now you want to return to the place you once did ridicule and spurn?” asked Brother Nolan. “No, you sought the path of sin and in Hell you shall burn. Reduced to piles of ash in the Devil’s own urn.”
“Brother Nolan, please!” yelled Brother Truman. “If you leave us out here we will surely freeze!”
“Brother Nolan, we return with the utmost shame,” cried Brother Borium. “But if you hear us out you’ll see that we’re not to blame.”
Brother Nolan eyed them with deep mistrust. “Go on, if you must. I’ll hear what you have to say, but don’t think that will allow you to stay.”
“We were abducted and taken to the land of the Norse,” stated Brother Truman.
“And forced to be sex slaves for a man hung like a horse,” added Brother Borium.
Brother Nolan stared with mouth agape and then stammered. “B…b…but how did you escape?”
“One night he was drunk and we gave him the slip,” replied Brother Truman.
“And then disguised ourselves as Vikings and sailed in their ship,” Brother Borium continued. 
“Diabolical berserkers to say the least,” said Brother Nolan. “Evil men who are brothers to the Beast.”
“Well, we arrived on Anglo shore and met a priest,” Brother Truman continued further. “And decided to join him on a pilgrimage east.”
“But we befriended a Sultan and things fell apart,” said Brother Borium. “His deviousness we should have known from the start.”
“Yes, we should have been more vigilant and known the risks,” admitted Brother Truman. “For now we had to satisfy his odalisques.”
“Oh what degradation others condone!” cried Brother Nolan.
“But we were told that what he has never has grown,” said Brother Borium.
“So, we had to put a plan into action,” said Brother Truman. “And waited for them to sleep after some late night satisfaction.”
“It was then our resolve was put to the test,” said Brother Borium. “And it was a challenging task to return to the west.”
“So that is our story, we can say no more,” Brother Truman concluded. “And we beseech you now to let us through the door.”
“I was most displeased when you decided to roam,” said Brother Nolan. “But welcome my brothers, welcome home.”

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Oh, brother (part 1) by Grant Harbison

“In the scriptorium we laborium,” complained Brother Borium. “Every day the same old tedium.”
Brother Nolan gave him a hardened look. “Brother Borium, it’s for the love of the book.”
Brother Truman chortled with glee. “Brother Borium, I wholly agree. How wonderful it would be to be totally free. I’m so tired of this boredom and tranquillity.”
Brother Borium sighed. “Yes, Brother Truman, we are so denied. Oh, how good it would be to sail the seven seas, and have the freedom to do as I please.”
Brother Nolan responded with ire. “Cast your wicked thoughts into the Devil’s fire!”
Brother Truman stared at him sombrely. “But Brother Nolan, can’t you see? We are all prisoners in this monastery.”
“Yes, Brother Truman,” Brother Borium concurred. “There are times when I feel like a caged bird.”
Brother Nolan banged the table with his fist. “Stop this right now; I utterly insist!”
“Brother Nolan, we are only human,” said Brother Truman. “Withdrawn from the world without the love of a woman.”
“A woman’s love, a woman’s touch,” said Brother Borium. “Something I long for so very much.”   
“Brothers, vanquish that ridiculous notion! You’ve both chosen your life as one of devotion!”    
Brother Truman jumped up and threw his hands in the air. “I really don’t care! I’m going back to a life that was stolen. So, I say to you farewell, dear Brother Nolan. Brother Borium you’re welcome to come along. If something feels right, then it cannot be wrong.”
“Yes, Brother Truman, let’s not delay. Let’s pack a bag and be on our merry way.”
Brother Nolan looked on in amazement, unable to speak. They wouldn’t be the first monks to leave in that week.

Monday, 3 August 2015

No freedom to roam by Grant Harbison

“Innocentium, my arsium,” the Roman copper said unto me.
What else could ah say?
He wis the law
And ah wis on the other side o’ Hadrian’s wa’
It disnae matter if ah’m innocent or guilty as sin
Wi’ these Roman bastards ye can never win
The fascist thugs have nae sense o’ humour
And ah’ve been nabbed because o’ some stupid rumour
It’s times like these when ye reach the end o’ yer tether
Ah mean, what dae they want here?
Aw they dae is complain aboot the weather
Well, ah’ve been arrested and ah’m surely goin’ down
Or maybe sentenced tae a life o’ slavery by a Latin speakin’ clown
Anglo judges would jist gie ye a fine
For comin’ over the wa’ for some cheap Roman wine

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Hell for a bell by Grant Harbison


“I need to pee, Miss Dee!” he whined and then started to scream.

“Johnny Lee!” yelled Miss Dee. “Your constant urge is extreme!”

“But Miss Dee!”

“Johnny Lee, put up your hand if you want to talk to me!”

Johnny became hysterical and started to shake. “But Miss, I’m really starting to ache!”

“That’s not my problem and you’ll have to wait till your break.”

He wriggled in his chair and began to blow. “Please!” he cried. “I’ve really got to go!”

“I’ve given you my answer and that answer is no.” 

“But I can feel it coming; it’s going to flow!”

Miss Dee reached the end of her tether and it was beginning to show. “What exactly is it that you don’t understand about no?”

“I need to go now or else I’ll pee on the floor!”

“Don’t you even think about going out that door!”

“But my need is getting stronger!”

“Then you’ll just have to hold on a little bit longer!”

“Please Miss, I’m going through hell!”

“Oh, very well. It’s almost time for the bell.”