Mental pause

 last update (if memory serves) 28 September 2021 

Intentionally banal menopause poems

Hey, you are so welcome here.

What follows is satire because surely you knew that the only acceptable form for unfiltered menopause talk is in jokes?

I use economical language and bald truthfulness to show what is gritty not pretty about 'the change' and to play against the feminine tradition of bearing up well under the circumstances. Let’s face it, we women face circumstances aplenty and sometimes it is OK to just act out or call a spade a shovel.

And yes, some of this is vulgar.









Midriff, mammary and minge issues

Meh. No. Pause.


short shrift


Child-bearing years:

Blancmange belly

Transition years:

Vaginal atrophy

Golden years:

Turkey neck and bingo wings

Final years:

Glassy eyes - and pipe

that’ll be for my weed




  1. a. give a practical exhibition of the symptoms of menopause thereby illustrating its existence; give rational explanation or evidence of menopause (less likely).​​

        b. illustrate and explain menopause especially with many examples


// "she was menonstratably red in the face"

 2. a public display by mid-age women which aims to make clear a position or argument


// "they menonstrated peacefully but conspicuously"


pause play


30s and 40s

Play by the rules

Play the game

Play nicely

Play it safe


Pause the rules

Pause the game

Pause niceties

Pause safety

There are 30 - 48 symptoms

Though accuracy anyone's guess

I’ve found 24 'side-splitting' memes

And celebs exposing their mess

I've learned female killer whales, narwhals,

and short-finned belugas

are the only other mammals to change

And I wonder

Do they swim in anxious circles or

sporadically plunge to the ocean depths?

Were their fins short before or after?

And do they have access to natural meds?

Then I cry, (rage, ruminate), care desperately

and get nothing done for days




Play pause

There's no sign of Rewind or Fast Forward

This is surely an ellipsis?


places I've found my patch


Left cheek      Right cheek     Left hip        Right hip


Left waist      Right waist

Bottom of foot

Left sacrum.  Right sacrum


Left belly     Right belly

Bathroom cabinet




My skin flapping like something untended

Trespassing body aches

This meno-pause for something

Holds me at a junction without exit

Like a puzzle grid

And a pen without ink

Age has crept in to my life-lexicon

With new categories

It offers up indexes, files and definitions 

but no true answers

Like a paper fortune-teller

No-one’s written in





Not vaginal ones

(That’s always seemed creepy)

The ones we build around taboos

And un-salutary topics

Like going through the change

Walls of silence



when can you say you are in perimenopause?


When you haven’t had a rational thought in 12 months

When recent periods were like hacksaw murders

When the word ‘natural’ makes you want to shout ‘fuck you’

When even your ears looks a bit saggy 

When you’ve drunk collagen tea


wtf woman?


'Wise woman'

'Well woman'

Bloody hell woman

I’m Cranky

A bit skanky



And there’s a hair on my chin

Just one but it wants company


sorry to my bits


Your vagina rips in childbirth

In breastfeeding your tits

feel like they’ve collapsed combusted been torn open

- or crocs have bitten your nips

Baby by baby

your belly lags lumpishly

And then suddenly, shit

It's peri-menopause

and you're lub'ing, lifting and hoping

Til menopause grips

rolling you up into dough

and drought

(I think I am wanting to write 'doubt')

I really never knew this

never prepared

never took care

And now I feel so damn sorry for my bits


at last


At last

I don’t give a toss about the dirty clothes

Or the food gone foul in the refrigerator

I’m gonna tell you about my needs

In bed

In the kitchen

And in therapy

I may reveal them at a party


my darkness has a name


I call it my undertow

l’appel du vide

Some days I can stare inwardly for hours

to feel it creeping

I can lose time then

No matter

Says the vide, the emptiness

Towing me down and under


several marriages


My therapist quoted a woman

who wrote

"She'd had several marriages but only one husband"

And we chortled a while at the prescience

of a woman who'd held it together

contractually, in spirit and in print

Since she'd written a book and sold it 


though sadly her name didn't stick.

And I mentioned in turn that it seemed

"60% of women who initiate divorce

are in their menopausal years"

And wouldn't it be a great kindness

 if they and their partners had known

That the contract can be re-negotiated?

That one marriage could become


or possibly even three

Like an escape clause

Or a reset

free of...


Free of the male gaze

I'll run my own race


Free of the child's plea

I'll carve something for me


Free of the corporate game

I'll make my own fame

Free of the friend's need

I'll advance at speed

Hang on, there's relevance but I'm writing the wrong poem

That's brain fog for you




I'm going to be amazing

I'm going to bloom again

I'm going to bring the world to rights

And fix so many things

Just not today

Or tomorrow

When I'm less tired

blotchy and bleh

when I'm more me


hot feet


I had an interview

in which I tried to take off my socks

with my big toe

It was a hot flush hot flash hot flop moment

the socks resisted

so I leaned down and started pulling with my fingers

saying there was something in the way of my feet

to the interviewer

How my zoom standards slid

as my slightly-off-screen face

went south while semi-smiling

and my socks 

still exercised restraint

As I got hotter

and uttered nonsense

inwardly seething

'oh the bastards'


what not to say


I was on google (again)

and among the menopause results

the searchopoly felt it was wise to list

what you shouldn't say to a menopausal woman

And it went:

What not to say to someone going through the menopause

“Women have always had to deal with the menopause”

“At least you don't have periods any more”

“I found the menopause easy”

“Your poor husband”

I feel google should do more research

as only one of those bullets is so patently wrong

it could cause a blind effing rage

(if not some personal injury)

But being fair

it did source to Good Housekeeping

and that rests my case.

Underneath this question was another:

What Every Man Should Know about menopause?

I couldn't help but click

The less said about it the better

Except I must point out this:

"It's not something you just “go through”"

was written

without it being clear

If that was for the male readers

or us women