Monday, 5 December 2011

WALKABOUTSVERSE 10 OF 230

Poem 10 of 230:  LAND’S END TO JOHN O’ GROATS

(TUNE - IN THE KEY OF C MAJOR:

D2 G3 A2 A3 B2 B3 A2 A3
D2 A3 B2 B3 A2 A3 G2 G3
D2 B3 B2 B3 A2 A3 G2 G3
D2 A3 B2 A3 B2 A3 G2 G3)

At the bold age of twenty-one,
    Via Hong Kong, China, Macau,
I flew from Sydney to London -
    Land’s End to John o’ Groats my vow.

I took a train out of London,
    Found a highway and thumbed a ride;
I headed down toward Brighton,
    Then hitch-hiked roads the coast beside.

On the face of my shoulder bag,
A sketched map of Aus. was my tag;
For said a Scot who’d hitched Europe:
“Some emblem may well boost your hope.”

And drivers throughout the island,
Over a two month riding span,
Were the kindest folks I have met -
I swear not once did I get wet!

I stopped overnight in Portsmouth,
    And one or two nights in Torquay;
Then headed along to Plymouth -
    Still travelling beside the sea.

After viewing rugged Land’s End,
    I began the long journey north -
North-east, rather, before a bend,
    Somewhere in a bit from Bournemouth.

On the way, I saw relatives,
Whom after leaving I did miss -
Their home's cosy atmosphere,
And their local pub's good cheer.

And the hitched-lifts came from many:
An off-work Bobbie, a truckie,
As well as on-duty soldiers -
Thanks, and I’ve not said where each was!

I headed west through South Wales,
    And viewed Cardiff Arms from afar -
I was hitching with local males,
    And they showed me from in the car.

I stayed a while at Swansea -
    Saw the local footballers play;
Then hitched north through Llandovery -
    Beautiful farmland, I must say.

I slept mostly in B. & B.s,
Where the full breakfasts sure did please;
But also stopped in Youth Hostels,
Where it’s the comradeship that tells.

My favourite sites were Bath, Torquay,
Old St. Andrews (noted shortly),
The road Glasgow-to-Inverness,
The Lakes, plus London’s spots, no less.

From Colwyn Bay, I headed east
    To Manchester, my place of birth;
Then on the Lakes my eyes did feast,
    Before I passed by Solway Firth.

Onto Edinburgh, Glasgow,
    St. Andrews, before Inverness;
Then waves from locals were the go -
    Warm folks round John o’ Groats, I’d guess.

(C) David Franks 2003
Hear here - http://www.writeoutloud.net/public/blogentry.php?blogentryid=28787





Bath's famous Crescent of terraced houses; 8/4/16

Youth Hostel Association stamp from 1988