Jerome Betts


Nocturne In A Flat

The hunter viewed his quarry;
This prey seemed ripe for snaring.
Veteran of many conquests,
He knew successful pairing
Requires well-planned approaches,
Art, alcohol, wit, daring.
Cue album! (Certain sketches’
Accustomed monthly airing.)

He praised their chiaroscuro,
Fine detail in their drawing,
Then followed up with Meissen
To foster further thawing,
Rare volumes, blind-tooled leather,
Goatskins and alum-tawing.
(Just atmosphere-creation,
No mood-disruptive pawing.)

To finish off? Carved figures
From some crude peasant fable
Once found, a risqué triptych,
High on a Flemish gable.
What next? The first large bottle
(A most impressive label.)
So, in his flat, she . . . drank him
Right under his Boulle table.

Beau and Arrows

To assuage sensual swellings and stretchings
An archer scorned coffee or etchings.
With his feelings on fire
He preferred to enquire,
“Would you fancy a look at my fletchings?”

Jerome Betts lives in Devon, England and edits the quarterly Lighten Up Online. His verse has appeared in a wide variety of British magazines and anthologies as well as UK, European, and North American web venues such as Amsterdam Quarterly, Angle, Light, The Asses of Parnassus, The New Verse News, Per Contra, The Rotary Dial, and Snakeskin.