When I was young


When I was young I made mud pies

And lay on my back watching clouds in the skies

Put a book on a roller skate and whizzed down the street

And got threpence a day to buy a sweet treat


I lived in a pit cottage, up the downs

And earned pocket money with my paper round

The garden was huge and I loved to explore

Not in our garden but the one next door


Down the park my brother and me

Would jump in clarts or climb a tree

I was always told not to climb the pit heap

So I climbed it anyway to take a peek


I played in the street or along the old line

Catching bumble bees to pass the time

Or down by the pond where the sticklebacks swam

Then thru the park and back to mam


I scratched Jack Frost off a window pane

And sledged like a rocket down the back lane

Hands and feet that felt like ice

But a roaring fire thawed them out nice


I played three baller off the wall

And skipped in the street with one and all

I played hide and seek behind the netty

And ran races thru streets till puffed and sweaty


My dad was a pitman, like most in the street

And a day at Seaham was a special treat

Id collect the glass, my hoard of treasure

And explore the rock pools at my leisure



Part 2

When I was young I walked to school

Dipped my pen in ink and had a 12 inch rule

The women stayed home and wore a pinny

And the older folk called us young ones hinny


My mam made puddings boiled in a clout

And we had to eat all, or go without

Our bath was of tin and we waited our turn

To splash in used water while the open fired burned


Every Easter I got new clothes

And for my long hair, some clips and bows

At Christmas we helped to put up the tree

And Santa put nuts in a sock for me


I would go to the library which was full of books

And if I made a sound I got scowling looks

And every Saturday, frozen jubbly in hand

I went to the pictures and was in another land


Out on my bike all alone

Id have an adventure before going home

I discovered nature with hands and eyes

And was always asking how, when, what, and why


I had no Facebook, I had no twitter

I wrote and sent cards and letters

I had no web, no ipad, no phone

But I had the chance to explore and roam


Part 3

When I was young I had a top

And whipped it so it would not stop

I'd clean my shoes to empty the tin

And chalk some bays to toss it in


Up the pit lodden I would run

With nothing to protect me from the sun

So every night before hitting the sack

My brother and me would peel each other's back


Out we'd go, exploring the quarry

Daring each other without a worry

And after exploring, home for tea

To dripping sarnies for my brother and me


There wasn't much on the telly then

Andy Pandy, Bill and Ben

My favourite, Twizzle, with expanding limbs

And top cat popping out of bins


And when it snowed we had such fun

Throwing snowballs at everyone

Sledging like rockets down the back street

With angels and snowmen the scene is complete


When at school it was miss and sir

And I never back answered him or her

The threat of the cane kept me in check

Or the blackboard rubber flying by my neck.


The pit cottage garden was my dad's joy and pride

And included a shed where he could hide

I'd pull up rhubarb growing down by the wall

And dipped it in sugar, eating it raw


I'd go round the doors collecting glass bottles

And return them to shops for as little as threpence

Or we'd play knocky nine doors, or ask penny for the guy

We weren't  afraid, we were never shy


Now I'm a TWIRLY, and OAP

I have happy memories


When I was young


Georgina Smith

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