This collection has been selected from Terence Anthony's publications....
Butterflies and Bicycles, Stories from Joe's Diner, Picking Up The Pieces (Americana Reflections), Different Shades and
Folk Country Americana (The lyrics & Verse of TERENCE ANTHONY).
"From the sad and the serious,
to the lighthearted and the lyrical...
A wonderful, eclectic mix"
LONDON – 1840
May I please ask you, Sir, can you spare a little change?
Perhaps you have a sixpence that you don’t need.
Please don’t judge me too harshly,
Please don’t think that it’s strange,
That I am only seventeen, and have a baby to feed.
But it seems to me, Sir, that you’re a decent man,
Who always tries to see the very best in everyone.
Believe me I’m a good girl, who fell on difficult times,
I can tell you honestly, that I have committed no crimes.
And so I ask you once again, to spare a little small change,
And maybe you’ll remember me when you go back to your grange,
And know the silver sixpence, that you have placed in my hand,
Will help to feed my baby, who one day will understand,
That just a little kindness, can go a long, long way,
And he will remember the sixpence, that helped to save the day.
The precious silver sixpence, that surely saved the day.
The Apple Tree
You say that you don’t know me, but I remember you,
When you were just a little boy of ten;
Sitting in my apple tree, to see what you could view,
Falling down, then climbing up again.
Perhaps I should have scolded you, but you were having fun,
And who was I to stop a child at play?
Life is an adventure when, the heart is very young,
And I would never take that dream away.
And so I made you welcome with some cake and lemonade,
But never really knew from where you came;
As you left and closed the gate, you looked at me and waved,
I never thought I’d see that smile again.
But here we are once more my friend, though many things have changed,
The laughter in your eyes is still the same;
Which makes this such a special day, that fate somehow arranged
And just to let it pass would be a shame.
So now do you remember me, before my hair turned grey?
And you became a young man in your prime;
Sitting in my apple tree, when you were only ten,
That golden summer, once upon a time.
The day that Superman Died
I always knew that Superman could fly,
And I believed that he would never die.
That was how I used to feel, when I saw the ‘Man of Steel’,
In the comics that I read in days gone by.
When you’re young your Super Heroes are so real,
But only when you’re young, well that’s the deal;
That’s the time they live and breathe, they are strong, and you believe,
But only when you’re young, yes that’s the deal.
Those Saturdays down at the Picture Show,
With all the other kids I used to know.
For a nickel and a dime, we could move through space and time.
But now that seems a long, long time ago.
When Superman was up there on the Screen,
I always knew that I could live the dream.
And know a special truth, that only comes with youth,
But now I’m old, I know it’s not the same.
If I’d recognised my feelings,
Then perhaps I would have cried,
On the day that Superman died.
Yesterday, I saw the ‘Catalina’, flying proudly in a perfect sky,
Then coming in to land, on a perfect sea,
And I gave a little smile, and I gave a little sigh,
For the memories came flooding back to me,
Of that day in the bay back in 1953,
When I saw that flying boat for the very first time,
And I loved the way it moved, and I loved it’s great design,
And I was just a little boy of nine.
My father was a pilot in the war,
Now he started reminiscing as we sat there on the shore,
On that golden day, way back in ’53,
When we saw the ‘Catalina’ resting on a perfect sea.
I learnt so many things about that special plane,
For I had so many questions, and my father would explain,
Of the ‘Catalina’s service in the war,
And how it helped our heroes, on land and sea and shore.
Now I watch the ‘Catalina’ resting on a sapphire sea,
And remembering my father, and what he meant to me,
And the time we spent together, sitting by the bay,
And the ‘Catalina’ flying in, on that golden day.
Somewhere in Flanders field there lies
A boy I knew so well,
From the fading dream of golden days;
We were friends from childhood,
To the moment when he fell,
Drifting down beyond the twilight haze.
In scarlet cap with silver crest,
I see his smiling face,
Shining brightly through the passing play;
From the playing fields of morning,
To a dark and lonely place,
Weeping, at the closing n of the day.
Return to School
They’re going to pull it down, my old school,
That’s a pity, after all those glorious years;
But it’s derelict now, and I know it has to fall,
So I went inside the gate, whilst holding back my tears.
The corridors echoed to a familiar noise,
The coming and going of so many eager boys;
I heard their ghostly voices from out of the past,
A timely reminder that nothing ever lasts.
I saw books and pencils scattered on the floor,
But of course I realised I didn’t need them anymore;
And there on a blackboard, in a practised hand,
I saw notes from a Master that I tried to understand.
And in the Great Hall, through the darkness and the dust,
I saw the names of heroes, and I knew the best was lost;
I heard the choir singing, but there was no one there,
And then there was a stillness in the air.
I remembered my classroom, a green field, and the games,
And each sporting ‘First Eleven’, in their special picture frames;
But a man from the Company was tugging at my sleeve,
And reluctantly I knew I had to leave.
The very next day, when I passed that hallowed ground,
I saw men and machinery, and I heard the dreadful sound,
Of the building that I loved been slowly torn apart,
And that left an empty feeling in my heart.
This was my school, and those were my years,
That’s why I had returned, perhaps to find some souvenirs;
Yet nothing could match the memories, that I’ll share with all my friends,
And hope that we are wiser, when the final lesson ends
Pascal (so little time)
I never wanted it to be this way,
But sometimes you don’t have any say; Fate takes a hand, and puts you to the test,
But it’s hard to understand, when you lose the very best ….
I’m sorry that you never met Pascal,
And never heard his laughter, and never saw his smile;
And never knew the boy, wise beyond his years,
And never shared his happiness, before the silent tears.
But now the days go by without Pascal,
And I will miss his laughter, and I will miss his smile;
Remembering the boy running in the lane,
Sometimes falling down, then trying to hide his pain;
Now life without Pascal is not the same.
His life was brief, just like a shooting star,
Hoping to reach some distant point, tho’ never moving far;
But now my child I wonder where you are.
Are you in a place where a bluebird sings?
Are you playing your favourite games, and making lots of friends?
Are you chasing the rainbow, that appeared after the rain ?
But most of all I need to know, when will I see you again?
So little time my friend, so little time,
Sharing life’s brief moments, by chance or by design;
But must we lose the ones we love, before they reach their prime?
So little time my friend, so little time.
So little time Pascal, so little time.
Remember Burley Wood, on the edge of town ?
Well, soon it won’t be there anymore;
The Company has said, that the trees are coming down,
And they won’t change their mind, yes, that’s for sure.
The controversy began about a year ago,
When the bids came in to buy that precious land;
Precious to the people for a hundred years or more,
That’s something that the Company could never understand.
And soon their steel and concrete will dominate the sky,
In the place where children played not long ago;
Bright flowers that young lovers pick, will fade away and die,
And Burley Wood, will be no more.
Hide and seek in summer, a place to walk the dog,
The memories come flooding back to me;
And picnics with the family, or resting on a log,
Recovering, from climbing up a favourite tree.
Orange, red and gold were shades of autumn,
And spring arrived, to melt the winter snow;
The birds came alive, with the rising sun,
And we would watch the seasons come and go.
Tomorrow, I shall return to Burley Wood,
And think of you, my dear old friend;
And take a final look, at the place that we both loved,
In those golden days of summer, that we thought would never end.
Well, just before you reach the city limits,
You're bound to see ‘Joe’s Diner’ on the right;
Call in there for ham and eggs and coffee,
He’s open every day, and through the night.
It seems like Joe has run the place forever,
Well I've been eating there since ’68;
He serves the finest ‘T-Bones’ in the County,
And there’s so much, you need a bigger plate.
And I remember, in my times of trouble,
How Joe would put a smile back on my face;
Just serving words of comfort with the coffee,
So I don’t want to lose this special place.
But eat at ‘Joe’s’, for no one knows,
What all those grey suits plan at ‘City Hall’;
They shake you by the hand, then re-possess the land,
And you are out of business by the Fall.
I sometimes wonder if they have no feelings,
The grey suits that control the city purse;
‘cause if they did they’d leave alone ‘Joe’s Diner’,
But no, they let things go from bad to worse.
They build their super highways, but you’re going nowhere fast,
So maybe all the ‘Suits’ will think again,
And leave us with ‘Joe’s Diner’, well at least until the last,
And we can eat those ham and eggs again.
No, I don’t ever get to feel lonely,
tho’ I’ve never had children or a wife;
But the truth is, I’m never really on my own,
‘cause there is someone special in my life.
I’m talking about the greatest friend a fella had,
his name is Mister Murphy, he’s my dog,
And if I ever lost him, that would make me feel real sad,
Like the time that he went missing in the fog.
He’s sitting at my feet, and hears me talking;
His big brown eyes are looking straight at me,
He’s waiting for those words, ‘’shall we go walking’’?
Then puts a friendly paw across my knee.
And so I take him out into the forest,
And he just loves it, barking at the birds;
When it comes to company, I’ve got the very best,
I’m not sure that I can put it into words.
A stranger one day asked me, ‘’Is your dog a special breed’’?
And I replied, ‘’That’s obvious to see’’;
He looked at my companion, then I knew we both agreed,
How special Mister Murphy was to me.
Yes, he’s a little bit of this, and a little bit of that,
Tho’ I don’t really care about his breed;
But he moves like a greyhound, when chasing that ‘darn cat’,
I’ve never known a dog with so much speed.
But sometimes he gets lazy, and just lays there on the lawn,
Contented, just to watch the world go by;
Then I join Mister Murphy, as he greets me with a yawn,
And we both fall asleep, beneath a crimson sky.
Crazy Mixed Up World
Late at night when the world is winding down,
I get the feeling something’s wrong.
I take a walk through the streets of the town,
Hear voices calling, but then I carry on.
In paper boxes down the cold alleyways,
I see the victims of the night;
The lonely people who have known better days,
And now they’re hiding from the light.
Yet someone sleeps in a warm feather bed,
And someone is near the fire glow;
While some folk think they’d be far better dead,
It’s a crazy mixed up world you know.
Rain soaked pavements reflect the neon light,
And somewhere nearby a sad cafe;
With ‘certain ladies’, just a part of the night,
But true love seems many miles away.
Yet someone smiles at a welcoming touch,
And someone will say ‘I love you so’;
While some folk think that the pain is too much,
It’s a crazy mixed up world you know.
Time goes slowly and the night lingers on,
Then suddenly the shadows disappear;
A new beginning, with the bright morning sun,
And it’s time to throw away your fear.
People rising and about to take flight,
Hurrying to catch the morning train;
They’ve disappeared, those ‘certain ladies’ of the night
And the world starts turning once again.
They’ve disappeared, the lonely people of the night,
And the world starts turning once again.
On the Shoulders of Love
From the smallest to the tallest,
When your father’s trusted hands,
Raised you there, to where you touched the sky;
You were a child on the shoulders of love,
And looking at the world from way up high.
And the world was a magical place,
With so many things to see and do;
And there would be a loving embrace,
When the darkness closed in around you.
In the morning when sunlight filled the room,
And you were ready for another day,
You always knew that you were not alone,
With someone there to show you the way.
And now you have a child of your own,
And remember how it was back then,
When you were on the shoulders of love,
I know you’ll make it happen once again.
The Girl in the Yellow Dress
I’m eighty-five years old, and I forget so many things,
I guess my age is catching up with me;
But I remember a special time, when I was just sixteen,
And a girl in a yellow dress I used to see..
playing in the park, or running in the lane,
Her beauty once reflected in a stream,
Her eyes the deepest blue, her hair a golden flame,
Walking in the sun, through fields of emerald green.
Perhaps she didn’t notice me, but now I’ll never know,
For even strong willed boys are often shy;
I couldn’t find the words that say “I love you, please don’t go”.
So the girl in the yellow dress went walking by.
And I will miss her, until the day I die.
There’s a warehouse on the corner
Of Delaney Street and Franklin;
But going back at least some sixty years,
It used to be a movie house Where all the kids would go;
But I still hear the echo of their cheers.
When they saw the 7th Cavalry,
Coming right over the hill;
Chasing all the Indians away;
And I’d be some great general then,
Or maybe Buffalo Bill;
And always live to fight another day.
But each kid had their favourite star,
And mine was dressed in black;
His name was Hopalong Cassidy by the way;
He’d always fight guys fairly,
Never shoot them in the back;
Yes, I remember ‘Hoppy’ to this day.
His great white horse, his Stetson hat,
And his favourite neckerchief;
Yes, that was Hopalong Cassidy my best friend;
Although I never met him,
He was always there for me;
In the way that Movie Heroes give you strength.
The cowboy with the silver hair,
Riding out over the Plain,
My hero Hopalong Cassidy,
Please, come back again.
The House on Cricklewood Avenue
The house on Cricklewood Avenue looked menacing in the dark,
A silhouette against the evening sky;
And children playing in the park, who’d soon be homeward bound,
Said “Don’t go near that house or you could die.”
The place looked so deserted, there was not a sign of life,
Yet tales were told of what went on inside;
The house on Cricklewood Avenue, that made the blood run cold,
Was that the place where little children died?
Some said the house was haunted, and reports of evil deeds,
Would keep away so many girls and boys;
But I was left undaunted by the thorns and tangled weeds,
To reach the house, despite a warning voice.
The dark and dusty windows made it difficult to see,
If anyone was hiding there inside;
But the house on Cricklewood Avenue, was waiting there for me,
For suddenly a door was open wide.
I stepped into the hallway, I was shaking all the time,
But there was no one answering my call;
“I’m just a little boy I cried, are you a friend of mine?”
But the house it seemed was empty after all.
And just a few days later, that old house was up for sale,
I saw the sign they’d fixed upon the wall;
Replacing the original that fell down in the gale,
But that was long ago when I was small.
Now the house on Cricklewood Avenue is full of life and joy,
Illuminated by a golden sun;
And from inside the laughter of a happy girl and boy,
Reminds me how it should be when you’re young.
The year was 1934, and I remember it so well,
That peaceful time before the War,
When so many of my friends marched in to Hell.
But going back to 1934,
Before the wounds that never healed,
Fighting to win a different ‘War’,
Playing for the ‘Lockhart Cricket Shield’.
The College Team was excellent that year;
The `Favourites’, you could say, to win their games;
A group of lads who showed no fear,
And I remember all their names....
There was Bates and Evans in the slips,
And Chester, ready in the deep;
And Wilson’s spinning finger tips,
And Bentley-James, to wicket-keep;
The flashing ‘blade’ of Vernon-Brown,
Who liked to bat at number three,
Hitting the ball around the ground,
For every man and boy to see;
Those great ‘all-rounders’, Henderson and Blake,
Equally as good with bat and ball;
The lightning pace of Butterworth and Drake,
But one name was greater than them all....
Donaldson.... William Robert Donaldson, Billy to all his friends,
Hoping to score a thousand runs, before the Season ends.
And it was done with time to spare, upon that College field,
Triumphantly raising in the air, the ‘Lockhart Cricket Shield’.
But he played his greatest innings in 1943,
Leading out those brave young men, and winning the VC;
Billy the Hero, once again, but this time in the War,
Carrying on despite the pain, to reach his highest score.
Chapter's One to Nine
Grand-papa, l heard the children call,
How did you live your life when you were small?
Can you remember, did you have lots of fun?
And I replied, sometimes I cried, but mostly it was fun,
In ‘Chapter One’.
In ‘Chapter One’? What is ‘Chapter One’?
I told the children what that meant,
I knew they’d understand,
That life is a book we write, about our time,
The days and years from ‘Chapter One’, perhaps to Chapter Nine’,
When we are very old, but can recall,
Those special days of love, when we were small.
A picnic in the park, with lemonade,
A friendly voice when it got dark, so we were not afraid;
We’d fly a paper plane, or play a favourite game,
Enjoying all the seasons as they came.
The April showers, and then the summer heat;
The fallen leaves of Autumn, that moved below our feet;
A snowman in the yard, when winter came,
A lonely figure in the night, that melted in the rain.
So many golden days, and happy years;
Rut suddenly it fades away, and then it disappears,
The opening chapter, when life was fine,
But there is still so much to do, from Two, to Chapter Nine.
But listen children, please have lots of fun,
For nothing beats the best of ‘Chapter One’;
And love your friends, but try to be yourself,
And then return your book of life, back to the Master’s shelf.
I think perhaps I knew ....
There was something in the air,
It was not the time to sell the moment cheap;
The boy’s thin arms around me, as he rested in my chair,
The prelude to an everlasting sleep.
He was as light as a feather,
When I laid him in his bed,
His complexion almost whiter than the sheet;
And as the child lay sleeping I could hear his gentle breath,
But then silence .... does the heart still beat?
The boy with no tomorrows,
Leaving memories of the past,
And sadness at the closing of the day;
But then we share our sorrows, for we know that nothing lasts,
And we are unknown players in life’s sad and tragic play.
Then down the lonely days,
And after all these years,
There doesn’t seem much more than I can say;
But that was the beginning, of all my silent tears,
When the boy with no tomorrows slipped away.
The Boy with no Tomorrows
The 'Kabin' (isn't open anymore)
‘The ‘Kabin’ isn’t open anymore’:
I read that simple notice on the door:
But I stood there in the rain,
And I read those words again,
‘The ‘Kabin’ isn’t open anymore’.
The ‘Kabin’ was our favourite candy store:
We’d go there after school, and stay ’til four:
Buying sweets and lemonade,
And then resting in the shade,
Listening to the waves break on the shore.
I think about the ones I used to know,
My best friend Mary-Ann, and Phil and Joe,
Mr. Williams owned the store,
And his son, killed in the war,
Now that seems a long, long time ago.
The memories, they come flooding back to me,
Of all those halcyon days in ’53:
And that place down by the beach,
And those friends, now out of reach:
They will always mean so much to me.
‘The ‘Kabin’ isn’t open anymore’:
I read that simple notice on the door;
I tried and tried again,
But then no one could explain,
Why the ‘Kabin’ isn’t open anymore.
It is such a crying shame,
And I don’t know who to blame;
Now the ‘Kabin’ isn’t open anymore.
I was on the ‘Super Chief’ in nineteen fifty –three,
On my way to Hollywood, to set the spirit free;
And though I didn’t know it then, I guess I couldn’t see,
How far I’d go in Hollywood, from nineteen fifty-three.
But going back a little while, I made the New York scene,
I met a guy who didn’t smile, who said “My name’s James Dean”;
I listened to the words he said, the kid was so alive,
How could I know he’d end up dead, in nineteen fifty-five?
We hung around in clubs and bars, and met some crazy ‘Dudes’,
Who thought they’d all be movie stars, but didn’t have the moves;
Not like my good friend Jimmy, who knew he’d be the best,
Along with Clift and Brando, much better than the rest.
In ‘fifty-two’ I loved New York, and James Dean made it great,
sometimes we’d sit around and talk, until the hour got late;
Then walk around the city, and take in every scene,
The ugly and the pretty, with my best friend James Dean.
One day Jimmy said “You’re good, you write terrific stuff,
Why don’t you go to Hollywood, I know you’re good enough,
And maybe in the years to come, you’ll write a script for me”,
But in a sad September sun, I knew it couldn’t be.
The year was nineteen fifty-five, I turned the radio on,
Jimmy, are you still alive? I can’t believe you’re gone;
But then I read the headline, the legend had begun,
And Jim went home before his time, in that September sun.
I’m standing in a cold and empty room,
my footsteps are sounding on the floor;
The furniture has gone, and I’m leaving soon,
When I turn the key and lock the front door.
I’m saying farewell to the place that we called home,
That is, Melissa, and the kids and me;
But Melissa’s not here, and the kids have moved on,
And now I know, it’s happening to me.
So I spend a little time in every room,
Remembering, the laughter, and the tears;
And sweet Melissa, who had to leave to soon,
And never knew too many golden years.
And then I turn the key and lock the door,
And suddenly the house looks very small;
I walk away, but then look back once more,
And I tell the taxi driver where to call.
Yes, I’ve got a fine apartment, with a great view of the bay,
But living on my own, is not the same;
I miss my wife and children, and there’s not much more to say,
But how it’s all worked out is such a shame.
Now I’m moving on, and getting by,
Well you have to, if you want to show some pride;
It’s not easy, but I’m going to try,
Despite the hurt I’ll always feel inside.
And I’ll keep moving on….moving on.
Breaking Stomes and Aching Bones
Breaking stones and aching bones, the nightmare’s back again,
You’re working on a chain gang, with all those broken men;
Well maybe you’re just dreaming, you’ll have to count to ten,
And maybe you’ll be back at home, instead of in the ‘Pen’.
Breaking stones and aching bones, the work is mighty hard,
You think that you could get away, if you could ‘jump’ the Guard;
And break the chains that bind you, but there’s a loaded gun,
That’s bound to hunt and find you, before the day is done.
No hope on the horizon, but still you must be strong,
And try to find the reason, that everything went wrong;
And when you leave the chain gang, and all those breaking stones,
You’ll come up with a simple plan, to save those aching bones.
But then the nightmare wakes you up, and you’re at home in bed,
You rise and fill a coffee cup, to clear your troubled head;
But suddenly reality is knocking at your door,
And men in dark blue uniforms, are waiting there for sure.
The past is catching up with you, they’re taking you away,
The nightmare that was bugging you, is coming true today;
And you’ll be on that chain gang, with no one else to blame,
And breaking stones and aching bones, are coming back again.
Breaking stones and aching bones, is that what life’s about?
You hate the situation, but how do you get out?
You’re looking for an answer, my friend I wish you well,
But get it right, or in the end, you’ll spend your days in Hell.
Breaking stones….breaking stones…. Those aching bones….breaking stones.
Hey, Kid ! Get out of this bar, I don’t want to see you getting hurt;
You think your tough, well maybe you are, but you’ll end up in the dirt,
With blood on your face, your teeth on the floor, and not a friend in sight;
And I can’t help you anymore, if you won’t see the light.
You’re just a kid, you’re seventeen, you won’t know what to do,
When some dark stranger makes the scene, and points a gun at you,
You’ll think he’s old, you’ll think he’s slow, you’ll think he’s past his best,
But you’ll be crying like a crow, when you’re put to the test.
And that’s if you survive at all, so Kid come on get wise,
I want to see you standing tall, not like the other guy’s,
Who think they’re rough, who think they’re tough, and have the right to kill,
And throw away the chance to love, and end up in Boot Hill.
Leave it there, that loaded gun, that you’ve hid under your shirt,
You’re just a kid, I’ve told you son, that soon you’re going to get hurt;
So leave the bar, and leave this town, and make a brand new start,
And maybe Kid, you’ll be around, with a smile and a tender heart.
So Kid ! Get out of this place, I don’t want to see you lying dead;
Staying alive is no disgrace, it shows you’re using your head;
Then one day when you’re good and grown, you’ll know these words were true,
‘cause you’ll have young kids of your own, and you’ll know what to do.
Hey Kid ! Please believe me, I was a young fellow too, When I got into trouble at the age of twenty-two;
But then somebody helped me, just like I’m helping you,
To see the light, and get it right, and end up happy too.
Good Times, Bad Times (and not much in between)
From cowboys and country roads, and all those crazy fights,
To young men in grey suits, who loved the city lights;
From pretty girls who loved too much, to those who didn’t care,
And sad ones that lost their looks, and those with the golden hair.
I’ve heard it all, I’ve seen it all, I’ve lived a hundred years,
And you could learn, from what I’m telling you;
And maybe I will raise a smile, or maybe there’ll be tears,
But you will find that what I say is true.
The villains and the good guys, I guess I’ve met them all,
The stupid, and the very wise, who saved me from a fall;
And friendly folk, who shared their food, and helped me on my way,
And just a few with evil blood, who tried to spoil the day.
I’ve had a lot of money, that I won in poker games,
Cause I could spot the phonies, that would never give their names;
And then as I grew older, I put my winnings in the bank,
For when the deck grew colder, and my luck would draw a blank.
I’ve lived a lot, I’ve loved a lot, and made some big mistakes,
But I’ve never blamed another soul, when I didn’t get the breaks;
I’ve been a travelling cowboy, to the East and to the West,
I’ve worn the boots, and hated suits, and shook hands with the best.
Sometimes I’ve lived in hovels, and I’ve stayed in fine hotels,
But I’m not the type that grovels, to the smart and to the swells;
I’ve been around the World three times, and seen so many things,
I’ve made some friends, and drunk the wines, with peasants and with kings.
Good times, Bad times, and not much in between,
You only get one shot at life my friend;
So try to make the most of it, the ever changing scene,
‘cause it doesn’t really matter in the end.
And I think I’ll have another drink my friend!
Chromium and Steel
I’ve never been jealous in my life,
That was until today;
When a blue and silver limousine,
Happened to pass this way.
Real leather seats, and tinted glass,
And chromium, and steel;
And I’ve got to say, the guy had class,
That fella there at the wheel.
In light blue ‘shades’ and short blond hair,
The ‘spit’ of Steve McQueen;
And with a look that said ‘Beware’,
And just a little mean.
And by his side a pretty young girl,
No more than twenty three;
And there we were in different worlds,
The two of them and me.
What a car, that dream machine,
The dashboard polished wood;
The headlights burning bright and clean,
No motor looked this good.
Then burning rubber, and moving fast,
That ‘cool’ car left the scene;
With a pretty young girl with lots of class,
And a guy like Steve McQueen.
Will I forget this special day?
I’m sure I never will;
When blue and silver passed this way,
And chromium and steel.
Showtime at the Zoo
Down at the City Zoo, I’ve seen a thing or two;
Crazy times you wouldn’t believe,
But trust me, they’re all true!
I’m the City Keeper, I close and lock the gate,
The people leave at 5 o’clock, but I stay on ‘til eight;
I feed the birds and animals,
I wash the cages down,
I work with Joe and Alison,
But when they’re not around,
It’s party time, oh what a time!
Before I’m homeward bound.
When I tell the latest jokes,
The lions give a roar;
Hyenas laugh until they cry,
Then they come back for more!
Then I make a pot of tea,
For all the chimpanzee’s;
And one or two jump on my back,
And try to steal my keys!
An eagle takes a fancy,
To a bird of paradise;
The parrot’s talk among themselves,
But then that’s no surprise!
The elephants, the tigers,
I guess I love them all;
But when I start to sing a song,
The snakes climb up the wall!
The polar bear has had enough,
And he’s back in the pool;
I used to think I knew my stuff,
Well, maybe he’s no fool!
But then I tell another joke,
It gets them every time;
Before I close and lock the gates,
And that suits us just fine!
Down at the City Zoo,
I’ve seen a thing or two;
Crazy times, you wouldn’t believe,
But trust me, they’re all true!
Last night there was a tiger in my room,
And when you’re only ten that’s not so good,
Because I didn’t have a rifle or a gun,
And so I did the only thing I could.
I hid under the sheets and said a prayer,
And told that horrid beast to go away;
In the morning the tiger wasn’t there,
And so I lived to fight another day.
I told the other children that I knew,
How brave I was, though I’m not really sure;
But one thing that I know I’ve got to do,
Is put a tiger-trap outside my door.
Then if that great big cat comes back again,
He’s going to get an awfully big surprise:
When captured by a little boy of ten,
Who when it comes to tigers is so wise.
All poems available in my
book 'Putting it into words'
I don’t want your money, said the spider to the fly,
I just want to eat you up, so you’d better get ready to die;
And you ain’t going to change my mind, no matter how hard you try,
So now my friend it’s near the end, and you’d better get ready to die.
The fly was feeling kind of sick, not ready for his fate,
And then he came up with a trick, but knew it couldn’t wait;
And saying to the spider, “Before you start to poke,
Take it easy, sit awhile, and listen to my joke.”
The spider gave a little smile, and said, “You’ve got some nerve,
I’m going to wait a little while, that’s more than you deserve,
And if your joke is funny, then I’ll let you fly away,
But if it’s bad, I’ll get real mad, and eat you right away!”
The fly said, “It’s a deal, and thank you spider,
It’s good of you to give this fly some hope,
Now open up your ears a little wider,
’cause now you’re going to hear a funny joke.”
“A spider was eating in a Bistro,
But he wasn’t very happy with the cook,
He said this food is awful, you’ve got to take it back,
’cause you've only put one fly into my soup!”
The cook said, “It’s an accident, we don’t put flies in soup,
So if you’ve got one you’re a lucky guy,
But if you come in here again, you'd better bring a group,
Or else we’ll have to charge you for the fly!”
And so the joke was over, and what would the spider say,
Would he eat the funny fly, or let him get away?
I could give the answer, but no, I think instead,
If you want to know what happened next,
Then look on the Spider’s Web!