Old photographs, within a box,
hidden under wind-up clocks
and darning needles, for wool socks -
the kind my father wore.
A scarfing toggle, for the scouts,
a comic that called Germans ‘Krauts’,
who, naturally, were square-jawed louts
and lost the ‘bally’ war.
A Trilby, claiming; ‘Kiss Me Quick!’
A house, made of red Lego brick.
Oh my…is that my Pogo Stick,
It seems so very small?
Some Cockle shells, we’d picked by hand,
[still crusted with their Herne Bay sand],
then brought back to the caravan…
though never ate at all.
Just William books, which show the age
of stories, in each well-thumbed page.
He was my friend, my peer, my sage;
we were boys together.
Birds’ eggs in a biscuit tin,
a West Ham badge, with broken pin -
I’ll have to get that fixed again;
A ‘Hammers’ fan forever!
A school cap, green with yellow pipe,
a belt as well; the ‘S’ clasp type.
My Peashooter; lethal blowpipe -
all of our gang had one.
A jam jar, full of Gollywogs,
from Robertson’s but once, where frogs
or Sticklebacks, from ponds and bogs,
had liberty undone.
Hey, there’s my plastic boomerang…
And it all comes back, with a bang.
I feel a loss; a lonely pang,
Am I the only one, who sits
among the odds and bods and bits
of a life, that he no longer fits,
full of lost innocence?
Chris Birrane © 2012