There’s strength in numbers…..

This poem was requested by my former employers at Alcohol Concern, as a contribution to a drugs and alcohol journal. It’s really hard, or at least I find it so, to write a poem ‘to order’ but I do hope that this goes some way to representing the amazing achievements of a lot of people who live, work, volunteer and take part in the community life of Fishguard and Goodwick. Hats off to one and all of them.   

 

There’s strength in numbers

What are the ties that bind?

Good times, sad times, celebration and commiseration.

The chink of glass, the drowning of sorrows,

take a drop, take a little,

taken too much on board?

“Ain’t you got no home to go to?”

How do we talk this through together

without condemnation, lecture, or impunity?

 

We start to chat,

a little bit of this, a little bit of that.

Meeting here and there,

coffee shops, church halls and draughty rooms.

And out of conversation blooms :

Coffee mornings, storm warnings,

Scouts, Sea cadets , the Army youth too,

Brass bands, Lifeboats, Coastguards

Fishguard and Goodwick, the beautiful blue.

Lion’s gentle roarings

(“you’re like a breath of fresh air”).

Are the old folks all grumpy?

Do the younger ones care?

Let’s celebrate our age friendliness, with Festivals and Fairs.

Soroptimists, many other optimists too,

but also nay sayers who

would have us believe that

there’s nothing to be done.

Bring on the school children, Bowls Clubs, Rotary and Round Tablers,

Fishguard AFC players, Sound of Youth ravers, Good Neighbours,

each and every one.

Community Forum, Town Team, County Council, Town Hall,

on ye come, come ye all.

Think about the’ tombstoneing’

before you make the fall.

Folks singers and poets, pancakes and pizzas,

pirates, playgrounds, snowmen and Santa.

Library, Theatr Gwaun, amongst the hubs.

Not quite so good, at getting into the pubs?

Yet, in our town of Transition

we are talking moderation,

not preaching prohibition,

thus no alcohol beer is the festival king

at the Seagulls Rugby Club.

Chamber of Commerce,

Last Invasion ideas – advance, and

if we are feeling none the worse

whisk me off to the Bay Hotel

for a Sunday afternoon Tea Dance.

Music, scones and jam, nothing silly

and the endless energy of Jockabilly.

 

 

Do we drink less, or more?

To find the correct answer, now that would be clever.

Let’s talk the talk, to find the cure.

But learn this we did, and learned it well.

There’s more strength in numbers

with people, the glue. Communities Together.

 

Marc Mordey (with ideas and comments – all much appreciated – shared by several Fishguard and Goodwick community champions) August 2017.

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Summer poem – of calves, community and being an outsider, an incomer….

“All things must pass. Mankind is as grass.”

 

Summer poem

Two calves adventured, maybe misdirected

or spooked? Perhaps, a dog?

dived into the grassy basket of Matilda’s field,

bovine misadventure,

not equine, resurrected.

 

In the morning,

a delicious day, already sun baked by nine

June, “in like a lion”,

jet steams, cats cradled patterns

streaked the blue backed, split of sunshine,

and I found one calf

nestled into a bower of bracken

nettled and serenaded by the marshmallow pink and white

of baby breathed hawthorn,

bordered by buttercups.

There it stayed, the whole lazy summer’s day,

nervous, ill at ease

unwilling to gambol or feed

unwilling to make hay.

 

Three farmers came

cattle calling

as the evening slipped away.

Stealthy summer sunset.

Dinas Head diminished,

shadowed

lost horizons

a fishing boat scarred by light

a duskling starshine

in the breathless bay.

 

“They’ve only been out a day or two,

everything a new sensation,

even the sunlight is new.

Don’t know grass

Nor bonded as a group.

They simply don’t understand

what it is

they’re meant to do.”

 

We herded the two runaways out of the gate

leading them lane wards

as opposed to astray

through the greened canopy

outfoxed by foxgloves

the elders floated subdued, ethereal amongst the elderflower

motes, particles, as we passed

behind Bryneithen

and into the railway sided field.

The man I walked alongside of

spoke wistfully

of those, “our friends” likewise lost,

of the ties of this small community

the roped weight of history.

And a hint, a nod perhaps,

towards the incoming stream

a Westwards eddy,

and suggested, maybe implied

the consequential claim:

fragmentation, discord, disunity.

 

In T shirt, shorts and wellies

no farmer, I,

we talked on, joked a little,

a slither of gossip, happenstance,

and yet, a sense, a fractioned hint

of difference

akin somehow, to distance.

Discontent with

the immigrant?

 

The calves were happy though.

For now,

“Let them eat cake”.

 

And then

Dusk dropped the lid

and we parted.

“Perhaps you’ll write a poem”

they ribbed.

And so,

I did.

 

 

Marc Mordey 12 7 14