|This group started in March 2006|
Monthly First Wednesday
Group Liaison (Kevin Stock)
We are a friendly group of less than 10 members. Our aim is to increase our knowledge of poets and to enjoy reading and listening to poetry. We meet in a comfortable environment where we take turns to read our own choice of poems on a previously agreed theme. A few of us write and read our own compositions.
At each meeting a new theme is selected for use the following month.
Spring in White Horse Lane (Denmead)
Before the vernal equinox,
Before the rose and hollyhocks
The songbirds start their lovely choir.
Consulting the celestial clock
The sun turns up its fire.
Along the banks the celandine
Announces that the weather’s fine.
A primrose shows its yellow head,
A leaf, which I thought was dead,
Shows on the wild clematis vine.
A baby rabbit soon appears,
A cuckoo’s call assails my ears.
The blackbird and the speckled thrush
Are building nests in every bush.
And smaller birds, like the male wren
Who builds not one but almost ten,
His fussy mate must then select
Where every chick will stretch its neck.
Hedgerows now as white as snow
Where the blackthorn bushes grow.
A field mouse rubs its sleepy eyes,
A pheasant gives its startled cries.
How little warmth it takes to bring
Those treasured moments we call spring.
The Magical Place
The most magical place, a place to see,
At least as a child is seemed so to me.
A beautiful pond shaded by willows,
Where in the spring the anemone grows.
Frogs and small fish, easily caught,
And no one else knew it, or so I thought.
This place was mine and I still think of it so.
Whenever I dream that’s where I go.
I would spend hours just watching the fish
If there’s one place to return to this is my wish.
The crystal clear stream that ran from it’s spring
With minnows and sticklebacks and wild birds to sing.
In summer a paddling pool, in winter to skate.
At hay making and harvest staying up late.
The placid old farm horse came for a drink.
The best place on earth, I always think.
We moved away and the old place was sold,
The builders moved in and it struck my heart cold
Those fields and the farm, the pond and the stream
Now a thousand houses or more it would seem.
Lost are all signs of my magical place
Except in my memories which can’t be replaced
Sixty years on, with a tear in my eye
This is the memory I will have ‘till I die.
The farm and fields referred to were Old Hartplain Farm which was located nearly a quarter of a mile north of Hambledon Road, Waterlooville, now the site of what is known as Berg Estate. Ray did not live on the then derelict farm, no one did, but his father had bought and rented some land there adjacent to their home. The fields were under used and remained as described until 1958 when they moved out.