Dolly Blue---and things!
By Gerry.
Published: July 5, 2010
Updated: July 5, 2010


Please read poem description for explanation.

The streets are all cobbled
Where large horses puff,
Pulling dust-carts and coal,
Dead people and stuff!

Gas-tar in summer
That melts in the sun,
Then in the winter---
Home made sledges will run.

Old corner shop
With terraced house view,
Where old Mrs Rutter
Buys her dolly-blue.*

Patches on trousers---
Split shoes on the feet
Shopping on Thursdays
But not much to eat!

Two mile walk every day
To Victorian school,
Freezing in winter
Never have fuel!

Women alone now
Men off to their fate!
Washing the lino*
Black-leading* the grate.

Wail of the sirens
The Germans are back
'Please spare our house---
Get the one at the back'.

With conkers and rounders
Shrapnel and such---
Skipping and marbles,
Laughs---but not much!

The scouts cubs and guides
Parade down the street---
To St Aiden’s on Sundays,
All clean smart and neat.

The church always full
Folks sing with full voice
No pressure applied--
They are all there from choice.

I remember those times
They all seem so clear
People were frightened---
But didn’t show fear.

Look out of my window---
Mangy dogs fight for bone,

And there is old Mrs Rutter
With her Donkey stone…*

*Dolly blue---a small sachet for a couple of pence that made ‘clothes white’.
*Lino—--‘oil cloth’ floor covering (if you could afford it)
*Black lead---a substance that was rubbed on fireplaces and ovens to keep them ‘clean and shiny’.
*Donkey stone. For yellowing the frontage of terraced houses
To keep them looking ‘neat and tidy’.

No telephones, televisions, computers, cars, holidays, clothes, money, and very little of anything else. Think about it, before you complain …