Barry Gardner p.1

The Visitation


The Windmill

The Visitation

I roused from a deep slumber when
I herd the sound of old Big Ben
Then heard a knock upon the door
Just like a thousand times before
I opened up as in a dream
But there was no-one to be seen
So staring into cold night air
I nervously called out "Who's there?"
Then the visitor who I couldn't see
Spake forth in gentle tone to me

"I'm both a stranger and a friend
Who's come your way at Old Year's end
You'll want to know just why I'm here
I've come to bring you your New Year
To herald in a brand new dawn
To make you happy or forlorn
A year to bring you peace and joy
The sort you've dreamed of since a boy
Or one to bring you much duress
Be filled with tragedy and stress

But perhaps a bit of everything
The vagaries that chance can bring
As time ekes out your life on earth
Enjoy the good for all it's worth
But in the dark stand tall and proud
Don't spend the day with your head bowed
Not stand aggrieved in angry curse
There are plenty folk who'll have it worse
So hold forth to the nitty-gritty
Don't ever wallow in self-pity"

His next words make me stand aghast
He said "This year could be your last
Our heavenly father may decide
It's time that you with him abide
But don't you sit around and mope
for what I offer now is HOPE
Time alone can tell what will befall
Now I've many more on whom to call"
Then the presence left to the sound of strings
And the gentle beating of gossamer wings

Copyright © 2009 Barry Gardner

They've brought joy and contentment, excitement and glee
It seems bubbles have been quite important to me
At different times and in different places
My existence has bubbled through various phases

As a first recollection when still very young
The bubbles with words in made comics such fun
Billy Bunter and Korky and Desperate Dan
I read all about them with my dear old Nan

Then when still a small kid along with a chum
I'd spend many an hour blowing bubbles with gum
And I can't resist chocolate - I always have craved it -
Way back then the bubbles made Aero my favourite

We also made bubbles with tins of solution
With never a thought about causing pollution
We blew them with care then waved them goodbye
Then watched on in wonder as they reached for the sky

Next came Bubbles the dancer down in old Soho
Where my Mum and my Dad told me I shouldn't go
But I had already decided I should
Mum thought that I wouldn't, but Dad knew that I would

Then as a young man before settling down
I'd often go out with the lads on the town
After work, rest or play there was much to be said
For the odd pint of beer with a nice bubbly head

We now come to the most mundane mention so far
I have to use bubbles when washing the car
But bubbles and boredom are mixed with bravado
When up on the ladder and cleaning a window

Then on to the great dotcom bubble which burst
The lucky ones got all their money out first
But after it all I was largely unscathed
And hung on to most of the nest-egg I'd saved

This next verse brings the opportunity
For metaphore (or is it simile?)
'Cos bubbly's how I feel when things go well
But is they go wrong then it hurts me like hell

Like the time I met up with the love of my life
Who gave her consent to becoming my wife
Effervesced and ecstatic I was about that
Then when she left all my bubbles went flat

In later life now, from a day sorely testing
Under foam bubbles in the bath I'll be resting
They hide my sad body, now decrepit and grey
Which didn't even look good in its heyday

We now come to bubbles of congratulation
For myself or others or maybe the nation
From wine, beer and spirits I'd gladly refrain
To toast with a nice glass of bubby champagne

But at any old time I've always found pleasure
In the company of family and friends that I treasure
Thinking the best things really are free, or nearly,
As the water starts bubbling for a nive cup of tea

Yet the bubbles that bring me the greatest joy
And have caused me amusement since I was a boy
The ones that still give me the heartiest laugh
Are the ones that I make when I fart in the bath.

Copyright © 2009 Barry Gardner 
The Windmill

On the rural landscape stands a tower
With sails proudly reaching high
A harness for God’s mighty power
Recalling days now long gone by
A monument for all to see
To take us back to ‘used-to-be’

Where dusty men process the grain
Hopper to stone to output bin
While other staff the mill maintain
To keep the workplace functioning
The outputs packed in Hessian sacks
They end their day with aching backs

But with new technology explored
And traditional methods superseded
Old styles of life become ignored
So the stately mill’s no longer needed
In heritage now laid to rest
Mere academic interest

Now lovers lurk among the brambles
While artists with their easels come
And school kids out on nature rambles
Or picnicking with Dad and Mum
The windmill all of these surveys
Enjoying its retirement days

Does it sometimes like me shed a tear
To know its time was yesteryear?

Copyright © 2008 Barry Gardner

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