Peter Wyton – 4 poems



We, as poetic pensioners,

Wish it to be known

That we’re not stepping aside for youth

Now that we’re fully grown.


What about prizes for wrinklies,

Awards for the long in the tooth,

A Gregory for geriatrics

As opposed to callow youth?

A pox on the pink-cheeked. Give us

Poets stricken in years.

We want a laid-back laureate

Without fluff between its ears.


Away with the purveyors

Of newfangled nursery rhymes.

Bring us a bard who has seen some life

And remembers the good old times.






Someone is going to kill me. I don’t know who.

I see this in the eyes of those who pity me,

yet there is nothing either they or I can do.

Those who might help are frightened that complicity

in an escape will see them charged with treachery

by the usurpers who are poised to drag me down,

wipe me from the face of the earth and claim my crown.


Someone, but who? The range of possibilities

is vast. Uncle Richard, my supposed protector.

The Earl of Richmond, now in exile overseas.

Henry Stafford, Duke of Buckingham. Many more,

ambitious for a throne. One thing’s for sure.

Nobles will always dodge dirty work, if they can.

They’ll send a common soldier, or some serving man.


My brother thinks that being in the Tower’s a game.

He’s only nine. I’m twelve, and yet I do not dare

to tell the poor boy that his fate will be the same

as mine.  I hope our bodies aren’t dumped anywhere,

down in the dungeons, or beneath a stair.

I pray to God to guide my killers. There is room

to bury us at Windsor, in my father’s tomb.







A silent recital of scents

extrudes from the perfumer’s organ,

slow-sinking to stipple

the nebulous forms of the faithful

at prayer in a temple to fragrance,

furnished in sandalwood, lit by white dittany.


A phantasmal fellowship,

chemists from China, Assyrian kings,

courtesans from a century of centuries,

myrrh tinted cheek by rose watered jowl

next to Charles of the Ritz and the founders

of Fragonard, Coty, Elizabeth Arden.


Incense alone is inadequate

for such adherents, led by the nose, willingly,

through long hallowed rites, age old attraction

of oakmoss, angelica, love-in-a-mist

luring the wraiths of the beau and the belle from their tombs,

nostrils a-flare like ethereal wine tasters.






Illyria. The very utterance

evokes a misty, half-forgotten past

of effervescent Balkans brilliance,

another mini-realm doomed not to last

amidst the perpetual rise and fall

of localised kingdoms, down centuries.

William Shakespeare rediscovered the small

relic, borrowed its royalty to please

demanding theatre audiences,

but that’s not necessarily the thing

which quickens the auditory senses.

Pronunciation gifts the word its ring.

Listen. ILLYRIA. The long lost sound

chorused by forebears from beneath the ground.




Peter Wyton is a page and performance poet who has presented his work at Festivals, Arts Centres and countless smaller venues from Penzance to the Kingdom of Fife and from Aldeburgh to the Glens of Antrim. He has eight published collections to his name, two of which are still in print. The most recent ‘Not All Men Are From Mars’, has raised over £2000 for the charity ‘Womens Aid.’

Anthologies in which he has featured are numerous, the pick of them being the 1997 Forward Book Of Poetry, in which he has the back page all to himself. Presumably Benjamin Zephaniah must have been having an off year that year!  Also the New Oxford Book Of War Poetry in which the editor, John Stallworthy, paid tribute to his poem in the Introduction.

He has so far won 28 1st Prizes in written competition and 20 in performance poem Slams. He was Gloucestershire Millennium Poet in the year 2000 and is currently Poet Laureate to the Towton Battlefield Association in Yorkshire. His work has appeared in the Daily Telegraph, the Daily Mail and the Daily Express. He broadcasts regularly on B.B.C. Radio Gloucestershire, as Breakfast Bard on the Mark Cummings Show and his work has also featured on B.B.C. Radio 2 ‘s ‘Poetry Please’ and ‘Something Understood.’

He regularly addresses branches of the W.I., Probus and similar organisations at their monthly meetings He can be contacted at or on 01452-532081

By Heavenly Flower Publishing

Bindweed Magazine publishes two anthologies each year: Midsummer Madness and Winter Wonderland. Bindweed is run as a not for profit, labour of love endeavour by an author/poet couple: Leilanie Stewart and Joseph Robert. Bindweed can be found at

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