by Roger Stevens and Michael Leigh
The sky was as blue as a blueberry fool
The fields were as green as peas
The smells of Autumn drifted through
The decayed traffic lights and trees
Reminding Bob of cheese
Bob closed the gate and walked away
With scarce a backward look
His mother watched and bit her lip
And as she hung the beetroot on the hook
A tear splashed on her library book
Oh, Surrey wastelands -
Once green belt
That held life's trousers on
The empty houses, broken dreams
Once so alive with children's song,
And the merry click of Playstations, all long gone.
Bob walked along the dusty streets
And whistled as he strode
A favourite song from years gone by
About the Highway Code.
From a drain, a robin crowed.
But what was that?
Bob's heart stopped.
A ghostly sound. A soul in pain.
Like hogs loosed on a frozen heath
Like rats run-over by a train
(Bob's heart began to beat again
And he sighed with great relief)
On the road there lay an upturned van
That bore the legend V
Cautiously Bob tip-toed past
But then, a breath, an icy blast
A monster was upon him fast
Its mouth a hole of blackest black
Its head two hippos in a sack
Its claws as sharp as brie
Bob drew his trusty sword and then
He threw his pencil down
For art would not discourage it
Our Bob thought with a frown
The ghastly thing towered over him
Like a tower towering high
It's shadow whiffed of sulphur
And its feet of dead-dog pie
What do you want, vile creature?
Cried Bob, fearing the end.
When all at once the monster hushed
And said, its voice a silky sigh,
I only want... a friend
So, Bob felt sorry for the beast
He asked, What is your name?
Some call me Ice-cream-of-the-soul
Others call me Shame
To many I'm Death-upon-a-stick
My mother calls me Slim
In legend I am Discouragement
But you can call me Jim.
For many years I've been alone
Like a watch without a strap
Lying forgotten in a drawer
As Time drips like a broken tap
That drips all of the time
Upon some long neglected, faded map
The creature sniffed
The creature sighed
And then committed suicide.
But Bob took pity on the beast,
Reviving him with mouth to mouth
I'll call you Fred, he said. And we
Will do the thing that we do best
Have adventures on our quest
But first we'll have a little rest
And a cup of tea
And thus it was
Bob found a friend
Some one to talk to as they strode
A companion for his journey
Along the Surrey Road
And as they walked they talked of spots
And why giraffes explode