Worst Xmas Ever by Ian Lewis Copestick

 Worst Xmas Ever

Surely this is going to be the
worst Xmas ever.
During both World Wars, and
the years of the depression
in-between, times were hard,
and then there was rationing.
But, although people didn’t have
much materially they could still
meet up for a drink and a song.
Voices lifted in unison, and singing in harmony can make things seem that little bit
better, or at least not quite so
bad. This is why we have folk
The dirt poor families of the
rural areas gathering together
at night, with a guitar, or more
usually a  banjo, or fiddle, and
they would sing the old gospel
songs of ‘ better times a-comin’.
Then some started to write their
own songs, about their own lives,
Which has led to a great tradition,
one of the few traditions that has
been worth keeping.

But, no we are denied even that
fleeting pleasure.
Friends and families aren’t allowed
to meet, never mind mingle, and
laugh, or sing.
Or do anything.

Like I said, the worst Xmas ever

The Choice Is Yours by Ian Lewis Copestick

The Choice Is Yours

Never forget that,
no matter how bad
today may have been,
tomorrow is always a
new set of opportunities.
Every 24 hours is another
chance to change your
life, and yourself for the
better, or worse.
The choice is yours.
However you approach
it, tomorrow is always
there for the taking.
Unfolding like a piece
of origami. Opening up,
like a rose on a time
delay film.
Every minute of every
day is a countdown to
what could be the best
day of our lives.
Can’t you feel it ? 

Redundant by Ian Lewis Copestick


I remember, as a child
thinking of the future.
Of the year 2000.
Even then I knew that
it wasn’t going to be
like the T.V. programme,
Space 1999, I wasn’t
expecting an atomic
jet pack. Still, I thought,
” In the year 2000, I’ll be
28 years old. My life
will be settled, I will have
a wife, kids a calm life
and a good career.”
Here I am, aged 48, and
my life is a howling chaos.
I don’t have a wife, or
any kids, and a calm,
settled life ?
You must be fucking
As for a career ?
I must have had at
least 50 jobs and nearly
every one I’ve hated.
The few I’ve liked, and
the rest, have all ended
pretty much the same
way. Redundancy,
recession, or just being
fired. But usually,
redundancy. There’s
nothing that destroys
your pride like being
told that you’re redundant,
in the real meaning of
the word ;

Out of date,


Of no use to anyone.

Yet the people of my
generation have had
to get used to being
called it again, again
and again.
Yet we get up, brush
ourselves off and on
we go. Applying for
any job that you can
get your hands on.
Minimum wage,  no
brain jobs, I even got
turned down by fucking
McDonald’s !

Am I bitter ?
You bet I fucking am !
Once upon a time
I had a trade, I was a
precision engineer.
Then they closed all
of the factories, moved
the jobs to Indonesia,

or maybe Malaysia
and all of the workers
were left high and dry.
I had worked hard, gone

to college at night,

after a full day at work, but

suddenly there was no

need for my skills anymore,

my qualifications were useless.

It’s the way that capitalism


Then you were something,

because we needed you,
now you’re just

This is the story of my life, my city, my county.
We were known as the potteries, now we are nothing.

This Earth by Ian Lewis Copestick

 This Earth

It’s strange when you think
of the Earth under your feet.
Not only the fact that you are
on a piece of rock, rotating
through the nothingness of
space at roughly 65,000 miles
per hour, but this actual earth
and how many feet must have
trodden on it before you were
even born. Not just the farmers
and factory workers of the last
few generations, but the serfs,
and peasants of the 18th, 19th,
or whatever century. Before, even
that, I wonder what was happening
here in the Civil War, or going back
even further, did the Vikings reach
this part of England ? Was this
ground ever trod by a Celtic berserker ?
Or has it just been drunken Stoke City
fans ?

A Bad Stephen King Book by Ian Lewis Copestick

A Bad Stephen King Book

Life has turned into
a Bad Stephen King
book. It may sound
crazy, but it’s true.
All of the elements
are in place;

The plague that
threatens humanity.

The scarily, crazed
crypto – fascist leader.

All we need now is
a plucky band of
outsiders. Preferably
one with a special
forces background.
A feisty female, to be
the love interest, and
at least one innocent
child, with strange, but
strangely relevant

If they are still casting,
I’d like to audition for
the part of the guy who
has a history of addiction.
Who seems like a coward,
until he becomes the
unlikely, but obvious
hero in the last quarter
of the book.

Let’s hope that in
real life, it’s the same
as in fiction.

Let’s all hope that
the bad guys don’t

In Context by Ian Lewis Copestick

In Context

As you get older,
one of the many
things you learn
is that certain
things only work
as being cool in
a certain context.
When I was in my
teens a ‘Head ‘ shop
opened in my town.
This meant that it
sold vintage ’60’s, and
’70’s clothes. I went
and bought a really
loud silk shirt, it was
almost exactly the
same as the one that
Bob Dylan was wearing
on the cover of ” Highway
61 Revisited “. I thought
it was the coolest thing
But context, yes context.
In 1960’s New York, being
worn by Bob Dylan it was
In 1980’s Stoke On Trent,
being worn by a spotty,
ginger haired 15 year old.
Well, what do you think ?
Everyone laughed at me,
and I do mean everyone.
But, at least I learned
a valuable lesson…
And I thank God that I
couldn’t afford the
leather trousers.

Two Poems from Ian Lewis Copestick

Not Fair

If there’s one thing
that’s just not fair,
it’s seeing someone
you really care
about being used
like a fancy wank,
by some dick who’s
thicker than two
short planks.
But, she wouldn’t
look at you twice,
so what’s the point
in trying to be nice.
Just forget about it
have another drink,
and another joint,
try not to think.

       Shadow People From
        Strange Dimension

I’d forgotten the fear
of walking home in the
dark. But it doesn’t take
long for my old friend,
paranoia to reacquaint
itself. A jogger just ran
past me, dressed all in
black. I nearly had a
heart attack and changed
the colour of my trousers.
I guess that all of the so
called ‘paranormal ‘ clips
I’ve been watching on
YouTube aren’t helping
much either.
I don’t believe in ghosts,
but there’s something
freaky going on. Even if
it’s just the amount of
hoaxers out there. I
particularly love the
‘shadow people’, they
scare the shit out of me.
So I try to keep my eyes
on the ground of the
dark, creepy country
paths that are my route
to get home.
Screw the shadow people,
from strange dimensions.
I’m hungry, and I want my
tea !

Surroundings by Ian Lewis Copestick


A dark, damp Sunday evening,
it’s not raining now, but my
coat and shoes still feel soggy
from earlier. These dark nights
may have only just kicked in
for this year, but somehow it
feels like summer was just a
two minute ad break between
the programmes of darkness.
I roll, then light a cigarette, at
least it’s dry and I’m able to do  that. I blow out the smoke to
temporarily blur my view of
deep purple sky, dark green  grass, and the ugly grey  concrete of pavement and  road. Never believe people  who’ll tell you that your  surroundings don’t influence  the way that you feel.
I feel like;
deep purple,
dark green, and
ugly, ugly grey.

Can’t Help But Care by Ian Lewis Copestick

Can’t Help But Care

Sometimes I wonder
why do I bother ?
You can’t seem to
please anyone, any
of the time. Why not
just say ” Fuck ’em all “
and live for yourself.
Never worry about
anybody else at all.
But, it’s not in my
nature, I can’t be that
selfish. You have to
share this world with
other people, and I can’t
help but care. Sometimes
I wish that I could,
but it’s just not in me.
I’m too much of a softie
to turn my back on
them all.

The Suburbs by Ian Lewis Copestick

The Suburbs

Private places,
privet hedges
green lawns,
and total, total
boredom. Grey
skies, identical
houses, hidden
secrets, and
desires. The
suburbs are
terrifying, nothing
is out in the open.
Not upsetting the
neighbours is the
most important
thing in life. I hate
the suburbs, and I
love them. They are
the only thing I’ve
ever known. I truly
believe that there’s
more evil, more lurid
tales, and more sick
crimes happening in
the suburbs than in
the inner city. The
suburbs are where
the criminals move
to when they’ve made
a bit of money. Nobody
looks over their hedges
so no one sees a bloody