Thursday, 16 March 2017

Night school

Dad mended our shoes with bicycle tyres on a last, detail of Fresh Air and Poverty quilt

Dickens takes some reading, he does
Descriptive is Dickens
Went to night school
And asked for more.

Now take my life
Born in a poor family
In the village,
School were pretty basic.

Ordinary kids, expectations not great
Didn't mind them not being.
School, I played the wag
Down to the the stream.

Youths hanging around to find work
The long chains of iron
Or gold, of thorns, or flowers.
Accepted your situation. Played 

Kick can, football, or the Artful Dodger.
Miners didn't want their kids 
Down the pit
Wanted better for them.

Scrooge loves cash
Nicholas Nickleby meets the crook
On the moors and makes his
Escape. Me?

I left school at 14. Dad says,
"Want to better yourself?
Go to night school."
The world lay spread before me:

Dazzling before me, the world.

Hugh Bradbury

29 January 2015

From the arthur+martha project Stitching the Wars. A Two year collaboration with older people in Derbyshire, producing two embroidered quilts, a book, interviews and a series of poems. 
More poems found here. A short documentary film about the project found here.

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