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Hauled up by the Guardia

with a nod to the smugglers,

chaperoned with a gun to the bodega

everyone merry on Cava, still life

fast moving, crab soup, pescado.


                 from; Arrested Moment by Angela Croft







       How to Dress a Crab                

       Siberian Kiss                                 


       Arrested Moment                        

       Girl Running                                   

       Nursery Glow                           



       Bucks Fizz                                      




1 – BIOGRAPHY:  Angela Croft


Angela Croft spent her childhood split between London, Wales and Cornwall. She worked as a journalist followed by a career in the Government Information Services and took to writing poetry in retirement.


She enjoys the London Poetry scene having been a guest poet at Torriano Meeting House and reading at the Poetry Café, the Betsey Trotwood, and venues held in aid of the Cold Weather Shelter. Widely published, she was highly commended in Poetry News for her response to the anatomical drawings by Leonardo da Vinci exhibited in the Royal Collection.


Her poems first appeared in South Bank Poetry, and have been recently published in Interpreters House, MsLexia, Assent, Poetry Cornwall and several anthologies.









Pins fall from her pale hair

as she ghosts through London

at four in the morning

calling me, calling:


crazed letters drift through my door

before she darts in

tearing her shadow

like a thorn on the wind


changing twice from the grey

to the green

hem unstitched

beads unravelling


she flits off again

taking a book

and my indigo scarf

patterned like the wing of a bird




How to Dress a Crab


Swaddling clothes are best

definitely no frills

buttons down the back

strings round the neck


bonnet, shades

sun-lotion, windmill

water-wings, float

bucket, spades


ice cream, wet wipes

first-aid kit, life-boat

wind shield, wasp-

repellant, Union Jack


and when choosing shoes

pink suits crabbed feet

but do ensure the toes

don’t pinch and be wary


of cuffed sleeves –

just add a touch of French

dressing for a sense

of joie de vivre






Siberian Kiss


Been in a fight, he said

afraid of being sent back to Kiev

where they slug it out

no questions asked


would rather stay in Ealing

enjoy the craic

the social drinking

though not the English tea


the workmen lazy here

his wife a problem there


drawn to him

though not too close

didn’t catch his name


he spoke of Siberia

huskies skimming

the frozen waste

packs of wolves

the white heat

of the tundra

purple robes

incense burners

candles glowing

in the church


hoped to go there

to meet his maker


when he fused the lights

launched my cooker into space –

his voice echoing over the windswept plains

his shadow scorched on the ceiling                                                    






I wore a plain grey suit, tried to blend in

but my stiletto heels gave me away

as I clocked into breakfast

had to share a teapot with a man

too absorbed in the stock-market results

to say good morning

or look up from his black-pudding

as I swallowed my porridge:

next time I saw him he was on the podium

discussing a motion on equal pay

and later he was caught cruising

round Blackpool Tower

trying to figure women out in the dark                                               





Arrested Moment


Franco flashes by in his landaulet,

checks out the Barcelona beachwear

as I fall down a cliff,

a blue fish flattened onto a rock.

Hauled up by the Guardia

with a nod to the smugglers,

chaperoned with a gun to the bodega

everyone merry on Cava, still life

fast moving, crab soup, pescado.

My Spanish querido cries for brandy

as the doctor snips off my hair,

clips my head, prods my hips

says babies will slip out unawares

while I morph into a Violoncello,

hear the screeching of strings

the rasp of the bow

x-ray shows a broken wrist,

a mythical goat, ticker like a

melting clock. I fly back to London,

battle in the clouds, trace the angel

of alchemy in Gower Street

who hacks off my plaster

and bespoke cartoons,

re-sets the bone. Fingers flexed,

assorted men escort me across the road,

carry my bags, rise up in the tube

while the Spanish guy sends me a severed

hand – foiled in a festive shawl                                                          





Girl Running


Cameras watch over you as you head for the park

where a short time ago you hung out with your mates

after being shown at school how to sheath a banana

amid the cheek, the ribald laughter and learnt

of the morning after pill and what not to do

but not of the unthinkable happening to you


pale girl running, you cut down the alley

the glare of security lights blanching your skin

your ashen hair shaken loose, under surveillance

the only star your cigarette as you perch on a swing

ponder on the not yet thought of, suck in your breath


no-one to listen to except the cry of the unborn

and the beat of your heart





Nursery Glow


Drawing the curtains to muffle

the sounds of the street

stay the neon glare

she hears her drowsy infant’s breath

the flutter of a moth

feels for the switch

to dim the nursery glow

tiptoes into the next room

where her dog sleeps

and taking up her book moves

her hands deftly over the raised print                                     






I gaze at a life beyond the fly

glued to the picture window


watch the trawler go down in flames

the waves pummel the rocks


see the chopper circle the bay

winch the crew to safety


in the evening the sailors roll

into the bar, ask me what I’m drinking


later I hear their husky voices

in the room next door, their heavy breathing


imagine them forcing an entry

as I light a candle, get stuck in the bath


chair wedged under the handle                                                                    




Bucks Fizz


Her sequins reflected in the window

like a galaxy of stars, the pianist tickles

the ivories as the waiter anchors

me to a table for one

invites me to admire the view

my back to the chattering guests

the clink of cutlery, the rattle of cups


I watch the waves pound the rocks

reach a crescendo, Force 9 on the Beaufort scale

when a trawler capsizes, the music stops

our diva breezes over to the buffet

opens her mouth to sample an oyster

when a pearl drops out

tinkles  as it swivels in her flute






Two bronzed bodies stretched

out upon the sand, almost touching

sparkling wine already poured


marguerites, blue umbrella

life becalmed in a golden haze


sunlit vines trail down the trellis

veil the darkened room beyond


she toys with an empty shell

driftwood shaped by wind and wave


traces the outline of the rocks

abraded in a different age


studies the stamp, sighs to herself

places the postcard back on the shelf                                     



3 - Publishing History 

1.      Nightshade                                          Other Poetry

2.      How to Dress a Crab                           Seeking Refuge (Cinnamon Press)

3.      Siberian Kiss                                       South Bank Poetry

4.      Congress                                              the Interpreters House

5.      Arrested Moment                                Assent

6.      Girl Running                                        Mslexia

7.      Nursery Glow                                      South Bank Poetry

8.      Beached                                               South

9.      Marooned                                            Equinox

10.  Bucks Fizz                                           unpublished as yet



4 - Afterword

Email Poetry Kit - info@poetrykit.org    - if you would like to tell us what you think. 

We are looking for other poets to feature in this series, and are open to submissions.  Please send one poem and a short bio to - info@poetrykit.org

Thank you for taking the time to read Caught in the Net.  Our other magazine s are Transparent Words ands Poetry Kit Magazine, which are webzines on the Poetry Kit site and this can be found at -