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Man’s laughter & Simples

Poems odd & even

Touched Press, London, 1999
Stapled A5 booklet of 48 pages, privately printed in a limited edition of 100 copies


The first production of the Touched Press is this bifarious booklet, realised with the help of Prontaprint on Borough High Street.

Man’s laughter runs from back to front, the ‘odd’ poems, ludic and cunning, . The ‘even’ poems, the Simples (a simple being the herbalists’ term for a remedy made of one plant) are more straightforwardly lyrical and run from front to back.

Or vice versa.

There’s one of each below, and a pair of pages here as a pdf.


The Loves of Rick Lime

I’ll tell you in a metaphor
The only thing he met her for:
A bloom draws a bee
Sure as A-B-C
But he’ll take the rose for a whore.

Now I cannot go down.
You bear me up as a great ship.
However long the storm, day breaks on us.

We lie with our arms around
And sail down the river to sleep.
However long our day, night falls on us.

Birds in the dark make sound,
Living on promises to keep.
However long our night, dawn calls on us.

A few copies of this first Touched Press publication are still available.

Buy Man’s Laughter/Simples
via PayPal

Man’s Laughter/Simples
John Gibbens
Touched Press, London, 1999
(signed copy)

UK: £6.00 (includes P&P)

Europe: £9.00 (includes P&P)

Rest of World: £11.50 (includes P&P)


More about John Gibbens


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