Monday, 5 May 2008



At The Tender Age Of Five.

In the early 50’s when I was very young, I remember having this little friend called Tim and we’d spend a good amount of the time playing in his large overgrown garden.

On my 5th birthday I had the most memorable party ever. Infact, it was the ‘only’ one, as we weren’t really a ‘party’ family. Our little house was jam-packed with friends and neighbours who’d all brought me a present of some description each. I’d never seen so many toys and books.

Strangely though, little Tim wasn’t there. The following morning I was to find out why.
20 years or so ago I wrote this poem to explain my feelings about that day, and most days since.

Timothy’s calling.

At the tender age of four
we were barely alive.
But adventure we were finding,
in your garden, long and winding.

It seemed to go forever.
No fences of despair.
We forged a bond of friendship.
Took our fun out of the air.

Old saucepans, now we’re warriors,
hunting out our foe.
The old tin bath is now our boat.
Across the sea we’ll go.
The woodshed is our castle,
defended with our lives.

Look out for ‘Old Nick’,
my dad says he’s quick.
He hides in the long grass,
and he won’t let us pass.

He’ll chase us, and kill us,
for being a kid.
All innocent children,
‘Old Nick’ will get rid.

It’s quiet this morning
in assembly at school.
The teachers look sad.....
Have they heard something bad ?

“Listen now children, you have to be brave.
Timothy’s left us, ask Jesus to save,
all of you who are in this room.
The scarlet fever is hitting a boom”.

Timothy’s dead. Timothy’s dead.
These words keep rushing through my head.
Now cut in half, how will I play
our special games, the natural way ?

An angel made of pure white marble
looked out for Timothy, all alone.
Just fifty yards from our noisy class,
I could hear him calling from the grass.

‘Old Nick’ had crept into Timothy’s bed.
While Tim lay asleep, crept into his head.
‘Old Nick’ thought he’d struck young Timothy down.
In life, he did.
But Tim’s still around.

He talks now about the power of gold.
The diamond eyes that can unfold,
to show ‘Old Nick’ residing there.
Tim shows me life, and lays it bare.

Into my mind, he comes each day.
He tells me how the ‘chord’ is played.
He keeps ‘Old Nick’ away from me.
He shows me secrets he can see.

Tim’s grave has now been vandalised.
The angel broken down.
Those children didn’t know young Tim.
They would have shown respect for him.

But Tim still says he loves them,
and will try to help them through.
But they have to open up their minds,
or there’s nothing he can do.

‘Old Nick’ will climb inside instead,
and they’ll wake up,

to find they’re dead.

Catch you later,


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