I still seem to be stuck in poetry mode at the moment, although these little verses came about in a slightly different fashion. It’s all Facebook’s fault.
Well, actually, that’s not quite true, it’s all a guy called Phil McMenemy’s fault.
No, that’s not entirely true either, let me explain…
Phil McMenemy is a photographer. And not just any old photographer, but a very good photographer (if you ask me – and I’m a photographer too, so I should know at least a little about what I’m talking about). If you want to judge for yourself, you can track him down on Facebook (if that’s your preference) or you can check out his website at www.pmcphotography.co.uk
Anyway, Phil has a gallery in the lovely little village of Laurieston in Dumfries and Galloway (a little to the north and west of Castle Douglas). It’s simply called The Gallery at Laurieston, it also has its own page on Facebook and it’s a wonderful place to visit to see Phil’s beautiful photos as well as artwork by other local artists and creative types. Phil also makes a fine cup of tea and often has a stash of cake to bring to the table as well. All in all, a very very good place indeed.
OK, so what’s that got to do with poems?
Well, just the other day, Phil posted an interesting little piece on Facebook about how the village of Laurieston was once known as Clachanpluck. This led to a long stream of comments from many different folk and the occasional bit of silly rhyming and limerick-writing along the way. In my case, it fired up the old lyrical muscles and – with only a hint of encouragement from Phil – led to an outbreak of utter silliness in verse form.
Hence, I can now bring you…The Clachanpluck Poems!
It all started very simply, with the realisation that Clachanpluck worked rather well in the old “pheasant plucker” comedy rhyme:
I’m not a Clachanplucker
I’m a Clachanplucker’s mate
And I’m only plucking Clachans
‘Cos the Clachanplucker’s late.
(Someone else spotted this as well and commented on it at almost the same instant that I did.)
Next, it was time for a limerick:
There was a man from Clachanpluck
Who mistook his wife for a duck
She called the police
Whom he thought were all geese
As they carried him off in their truck.
Things just got sillier from that point onwards when Phil suggested something based on the famous (infamous?) opening line from Casabianca (“The boy stood on the burning deck…”).
First, I give you the more sensible, polite version:
The boy stood on the burning deck
He was from Clachanpluck
He once performed in Shakespeare
As Hamlet, then as Puck.
But then the sea-life called him
Upon the waves he flew.
He sailed the seven seas around
On all the oceans blue.
Until he yearned for Clachanpluck
And made his way back hame
To find it’s now called Laurieston
Some bugger changed the name!
So let this be a warning
To all who wander far
Don’t be too long returning
Or you won’t know where you are.
And, last, but by no means least (and certainly the longest), we have the very silly version. Which is not rude or crude at all, honest. If you see anything even slightly naughty in here, it’s obviously all in your own mind…
The boy stood on the burning deck
He came from Clachanpluck
A spark flew up his trouser leg
And made him cry “Oh dear!”
The captain was a ladies’ man
His body hard as rock
With muscles finely sculpted
And a most enormous hat.
The bosun was an older man
Who sailed through storms and squalls
While chewing on tobacco
And scratching on his knees.
And still the flames grew higher
The mast began to split
The bosun fell onto his knees
The captain cried “Oh bother!”
The captain’s daughter came on deck
As fine as crystal glass
The longest legs, the slimmest waist
And such a lovely nose.
And so the ship began to sink
The crew were all in fits
Distracted only briefly
By the captain’s daughter’s smile.
They climbed aboard the lifeboats
And trusted to their luck
And a boy with smokey trousers
Wished he’d stayed in Clachanpluck.
See? I told you. Not rude or crude at all…