Life In The Gutter

by Lynn Gerrard

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A short collection of spoken word poetry by Lynn Gerrard aka The Grumbling Gargoyle.

This is her blog

Lynn has just announced that the first of four books of her poems will be released by Wallace Publishing on 29.5.15.

All proceeds from the track Dark Skies will be donated to The Not Forgotten Association who provide leisure and recreation opportunities for Service and ex-Service military personnel from the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force who have been wounded, who have sustained permanent injuries in the line of duty or after leaving the Service.


released November 28, 2013



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Track Name: The Kid
The Kid

Stick another pie in the fat kid

'Cos it's easier for you,

And sod exercise

Just feed it fries

As it's squashed into a seat for two.

Bang another game in its X Box

So you don't have to cope

With the boring themes

Of its hopes and dreams

As they're puffed away in your smoke.

Slap all the blame for your lifestyle

On the kid as it tries to sleep

To escape the pain

Slicing through its brain

Of the bullying that makes it weep.

Take another hit from your crack pipe

And let the kid sort out the mess

In the stinking hole

Of the dump that's home

Where it becomes more depressed.

Throw another punch when the money's spent

To remind the kid it's a drain

To buy it stuff

When there's hardly enough

Cash for your cocaine.

Knock another nail in its coffin

Pretend you don't know why

A kid so sweet would admit defeat

And lonely and lost...

...Choose to die.

© Copyright Lynn Woods 2.8.2012
Track Name: Best Friend
Don't need his lies,

His roving eyes,

His alcohol fuelled,


Got my chocs,

Music that rocks,

And a friend who comes with

Batteries ~~

© Copyright Lynn Woods 2.8.2012
Track Name: Panic Attack
I'm frightened to drift

To slip

To slide

Will you stop me?

I'm beginning to tremble

To shake

To shiver

Will you hold me?

I'm starting to gasp

To choke

To die

Will you save me?

I'm going to flip

To fall

To drop

Will you catch me?

I'm needing to flee

To run

To hide

Will you find me?

I'm wanting to stop

To start

To live

Will you help me?

Help set me free.......

© Copyright Lynn Woods 2.8.2012
Track Name: Removal
I have no idea what time the truck arrived

It was just there,

Outside the house,




One by one her treasures were piled into it

Without thought,

Or care.




Laden, the removal men chatted as they passed the other

Fags dangling from lips,

Sharing a joke,




And all the while her life's story continued to lie naked

Before the elements,

On public display,




Each item thrown with disregard into the truck still bore the shadows

Of so many hopes and dreams

Long past,

Irretrievable now,



Forever silenced by Death, no more would these remnants of life

Stand to tell her tale

Of love,




Nor could I.

Whoever she had been in life I do not know

I was just a passer by,

An observer,

A stranger,

Of no consequence...

...And still I cried

For the loss of her.

© Copyright Lynn Woods 2.8.2012
Track Name: Senses
To be bullied, to be beaten is a crime

But not to be touched,

Never to know contact,

Is as much a crime.

To be stared at, to be sneered at is a sin

But not to be seen,

Never to be noticed,

Is as much a sin.

To be shouted at, to be ridiculed is a hurt

But not to be heard,

Never to be listened to

Is as much a hurt.

To be spat at, to be devoured is unbearable

But not to be kissed,

Never to taste another

Is as unbearable.

To be smothered, to be suffocated is painful

But not to inhale life,

Never to breathe

Is possibly the only relief from the pain of everything...
Track Name: Footsteps
Cold tarmac hides the footsteps of my youth,

Still the warmth of cobbled memories linger on

To tell their tale of lolly sticks and laughter,

Grazed knee caps from a summer's day of play.

The air so sharp and clear catches my breath,

In contrast to the foggy days back then,

When factory chimney pots each puffed with pride,

Their smoky giggles filling somber skies.

And whilst friction from fast food blazes a trail,

It can not replace the graceful gait of fare

Prepared, as then, by a flurry of floury hands,

Each offering wholesome pies to smiling mouths.

Children now, no longer play outside,

Remaining pallid prisoners of some screen,

They will never know the freedom or the fun

Of playing catch or chasing balls along the streets.

The streets where empty pavements now reside

In a world where no one chats and no one trusts

Yet in the shadows of my childhood still I dance

To the cheery tune of echo's from the past....
Track Name: Home Truths
You will not want to hear this

But still it must be said,

Home truths are never easy,

I understand your dread.

Regardless you should listen

To every word I say.

My friend I want to help you

To save you from the pain

Of being who you really are

Of doing what you do

Of totally repulsing

All those who know of you.

You see you're just not likeable

Or loveable or nice

You're ugly and quite worthless

Oh do take my advice!

Disappear, just vanish

Take your boring tones

And bury them with the hopeless sob

Of your ever moaning bones.

If anyone should notice

Most will be relieved

That you're no longer visible

So can't you just concede?

Go lock yourself away somewhere

Throw away the key.

Oh...who am I to say these things?

I'm you of course,

You're me.......

© Copyright Lynn Woods 2.8.2012
Track Name: Dark Skies
Dark Skies

Dark skies hung as heavy

As a fat dog's sweaty belly

When Arthur took her hand outside the abattoir.

And to the tune of doom filled moos

Arthur bit his lip and shuffled his shoes

Before asking Mary if she would be his girl

A gas light flickered into life

At the gas lamp lighting mans first strike

Adding dancing shadows to Mary's blushing cheeks

And as Arthur waited for a yea or nay

With a half chewed lip and a nervous sway

A stray dog paused to pee upon his leg

Pretending that she hadn't seen

Arthur's pants leg start to steam

Mary swallowed a titter and replaced it with a grin

Then giving Arthur's hand a squeeze

Whilst feeling quite weak at the knees

With an eager nod she agreed to be with him

And so their courtship began with joy

The young housemaid and the slaughterhouse boy

Snatching stolen moments 'tween cleaning and killing cows

And sure enough it wasn't long

Before true love blossomed and with passions strong

They were up the aisle exchanging heartfelt vows

In a two up two down in a tiny street,

The newly weds nuptials being complete,

A few months on saw Mary with news to share

And over a jellied eel and a plate of tripe

Arthur's eyes shed tears of delight

To hear of the child that Mary would soon bear

The years passed quickly, as they do

But their love for the other just grew and grew

Bringing two more babies to join the happy clan

And whilst Arthur's pay from his slaughtering days

Just about managed to keep hunger at bay

Mary fed well from the love she held for her man

But times were changing and very soon

More dark skies, bringing doom and gloom

Would empty their bowels on the happy family scene

And as nappies were washed and grazed knees fixed

A cruel world played nasty tricks

When war broke out, incinerating hopes and dreams

One by one young soldiers left

To fight for freedom as their families wept

Never knowing as they waved them off who would come home

And so it was she stood that day

A heartbroken Mary whose tears would say

" Be safe, my Arthur, don't leave us on our own"

Still, Mary had more luck than some

Although not often Arthur's letters did come

And she'd trace a fretful finger over each word

Which, written from some mud drenched trench,

Despite the cheer Arthur's prose did attempt,

Couldn't hide the horrors of a blood soaked, mindless world

But Mary had a plan in mind

To keep her busy until such time

As Arthur's slaughtering boots would once more rest

On the threadbare rug at the side of the bed

Where she prayed each day 'till her knees nearly bled,

And she smiled the more she thought about her quest

Off to the hospital she would go

To tend to the wounded and let them know

That a caring, loving hand would help them cope

With their broken bones and their missing limbs

And their shattered minds, paying for the sins

Of those who sent them into hell without any hope

So it was, Mary walked that day

Homeward bound with a weary sway

But happy, to have served in helping those

Whose loved ones waited with baited breath

For the familiar tread upon a well worn step

As bent and buckled their heroes limped back home

It was just in passing the abattoir

That Mary's cheer began to sour

And pondering as to why she raised her eyes

To see above the darkening folds of the crumpling clouds

As they swallowed the gold of the morning's sun

To make way for sinister skies

Trying to ignore these foreboding flavours

Mary knocked on the door of her neighbour

And with a smile that belied her worry she carried on in

To cuddle her kids and to thank her friend

Upon whose kindness Mary's work did depend

But the face that greeted Mary's wore a veil of grim

The kids were chewing on their bread and jam

As Mary was passed the telegram

And a shaking hand sensed the weight of the words within

And thunder groaned and muffled the cries of a grief stricken Mary

Who, through tear soaked eyes

Read "Deeply regret..." before collapsing as her world caved in

Dark skies, thankfully, didn't last

And the sacrifices made in the Great War's pernicious past

Allowed for a peaceful new start in a troubled world

Where despite the relief and the jubilation

The human cost didn't warrant celebration

As grieving families struggled to come to terms

And as for Mary and her much loved brood

Well, times were hard but they struggled through

And on many occasion they'd wander to the abattoir

To stand on the corner where she'd reminisce

About simpler times and true loves first kiss

When the slaughterhouse boy asked the housemaid to be his girl

Now bright skies saunter overhead

As we pay our respects to the bold, brave dead

Who gave the ultimate so we could live our lives

Lives we should cherish every day

Remembering the freedom that came our way

Through the Arthur's and the others who for our sake gave up theirs.

© Copyright Lynn Gerrard 2.8.2012