The theme for this week’s JVG Radio Method poem is “Homesick“.
Good afternoon Jon and greetings, once again from Coventry.
I’m still in recovery mode from The Warwick Folk Festival, which, as always featured four days of great music, including some incredible impromptu performances in the beer and food tents, so probably not the best week to ask me if I’m homesick.
Besides, thanks to the internet I feel as though I haven’t left, with particular reference to Stan Grant’s speech at The University of New South Wales on Friday – a very powerful, emotive and unfortunately necessary response to the detention centre abuse scandal in the Northern Territory.
But homesick, absolutely not – although I am missing Sundays at RRR and Ed’s smiling face – and Dan, and Dr Pump, Jane, Nathan, Pete, The Lomond, and God, I’m going to miss Radiothon again – and even you Jon, with your purple suits and rude, dismissive comments.
But homesick – absolutely not.
To play this poem directly in your browser – just click the “play” button below:
His mother woke him up a little after five
“Get up Fred” called Mum, “we’re going for a drive”
“A drive?” moaned Fred, “but Mum, it’s a miserable day”
Since everyone was going, Fred didn’t have much say
“Get yourself some breakfast son, and don’t make such a fuss”
So Fred scoffed down some cereal, then piled on to the bus
“Bags a window seat” he cried, but you needed to be quick
Snapped up by those, like Min and Wes, who were often travel sick
Two hours north they drove, another hour due west
Halfway up a mountain track they finally came to rest
They’d been singing on the bus: the usual noise and chatter
A bit messy I suppose, but not so’s you’d think would matter
The driver, a surly prick, jumped out on the track
“Okay you lot, out you get, find your own way back”
All of Fred’s mates scampered, spooked by the driver’s tone
Fred, as usual napping, found himself all on his own
“Which direction’s home?” he mulled, having no idea
Nothing looked familiar since he’d slept the whole way here
He chased after the bus but it soon left him behind
When he reached an intersection he was really traveling blind
He passed a country pub and thought it seemed to ring a bell
Though those pubs all look the same so he couldn’t really tell
It was bucketing with rain, he was soaked right to the skin
He saw an empty barn and thought he’d wander in
“I’ll just dry off a while; warm up a bit, that’s all”
Till a Rottweiler roared in and wasn’t looking to play ball
Startled, Fred spun round, and took off, scared to death
The Rotty came so close he could feel the mongrel’s breath
“I’m out of here” thought Fred “that’s the last time that I stop”
Until he saw some kids outside a burger shop
“I’m starving” he wailed and gave a feeble little cough
But the kids threw rocks at Fred and told him to bugger offer
Once again he scarpered, despite his hunger pangs
“Bloody kids” he seethed “the streets are ruled by gangs”
On and on he struggled, first one way then the other
Half frozen he began to weep “I miss my home and mother”
He sheltered at a Bus Stop; his eyes and ears were stinging
Wafting through the tempest he thought he heard some singing
“It sounds like Mum” he strained “and Elaine, Min, and Stu
Thelma, Malcom, Karen, Cliff, Wes and all the crew”
Fred scurried round the back and charged in through the door
Someone grabbed him from behind and pinned him to the floor
Ripped something from Fred’s leg, then gently stroked his head
It was the man who drove the bus, he rasped “Last one back, eh Fred?
Don’t be scared” he comforted “you’re frozen and you’re wet
Here, have something to eat – you’ll make a Homing Pigeon yet”
© Copyright 2016 Ian Bland
Also have a listen to the songs on “Angel In Reverse”