READERS’ POETRY: From the Bury Free Press of Friday, November 13

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This week, we have poems from Gillian Grinham and Jon Mecham.


For King and country they fought,

Many for King and country died.

Young men born in the Eastern realms,

Bred under wide East Anglian skies.

Strangers to smoky, city streets,

The factory bench, the pitch-dark mill.

They did not walk in halls of state,

Nor tread the corridors of power.

These rose with the sun and worked the soil,

Dark fenland loam or Breckland sand.

They harvested each season’s wealth-

Soft summer fruits and winter beet.

Strong Suffolk Punches pulled their ploughs,

They wore the wool from Suffolk sheep.

The hectares which they called their home

Bore names like ‘ham’, and ‘ford’, and ‘stowe’.

And on each skyline flint-walled towers

Gazed down on these young Suffolk men.

This was the countryside they loved,

And for this countryside they died.



It was dark

It was late

It was cold

It was Hallowe’en

“Allo Ian,” Said Jack

“I’m not Ian,” I objected “But…hey”

“Ok Mr.Hay, get yer skates on, we’re going to a party.”

I chose a pair of my finest rollers

A squirt from my oil can and a quick buff and I was ready to roll

I strapped them to my feet and glided majestically down the street

Jack followed on his two wheeled toy push scooter machine thingy

We arrived like heroes, the Batman and Robin of Acacia Avenue

The party was swinging, swings were swinging, see-saws see-sawing

Fireworks were firing, rockets were rocketing, scary masks masking

Witches nattering, broomsticks flying, faces screaming

Howling, wailing, screeching, Jack rolled a pumpkin into them

Yelling and scattering to the hog-roast in the ginger beer tent

We scoffed and we guzzled and we cheered all evening

It was dark

It was late

It was cold

It was Hallowe’en


Email your poems to Please put ‘Poetry Please’ in the subject line and include your name and address. Alternatively, post them to: Poetry Please, Bury Free Press, King’s Road, Bury St Edmunds IP33 3ET.