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  • Tony Frobisher

England-by-the-Sea (Up North)

England-by-the-Sea (Up North)


(Written after an afternoon in Whitby, North Yorkshire, ey, twas a grand day)


It was the best of British

Seaside times and the

Holiday folk relaxed for a while.

Unshackled by the yoke

Of routine and the daily grind,

A chance to unwind, though royally

Battered by a keen wind reminding

Them that this is summer - up North.

Where the day trippers pray for sun

And when it returns after a night time

Deluge, they stroll in family packs

And couple goals, stories to be told to

The young uns, as we grow old with

Memories made in sun and shade and

Promenade and bandstand and

Sand and waving at the children

Splashing in the incoming tide.

Trying not to hide the fact that the

Sea is always brass monkeys.

Never mind it's an August afternoon

In an august seaside town.

Dressed up to the nines,

Time to impress the tourists and

Blooming brilliant for Britain in Bloom.

Floral displays in hanging baskets and

Seafront beds for all welcome, thronging

Passed arcades and souvenir shops, stopped

For a stick of rock, and no one buys postcards

Anymore, any more for the bus tour,

The harbour boat tour, and the tourists flock

In sandals and socks and shorts and

Vest tops and kagools and rain coats.

Fleeced out of hard earned cash,

40p for a pee, 40p for a slash?

Public inconvenience!

As the gulls fly high, eye spy a distracted

Chap, flap flap, attack and pinch a

Bag of chips and scatter the tourists

Who take flight, pursued by the rabid

Gulls, a Hitchcockian flock that

Caw and cackle and squawk and mock -

There'll be more victims the 'morrow.

And the children wail, Ah!

The sorrows of cold water and rough towels,

Howls of indignation, the desperation of small

Faces that wish to remain by the sea,

Where memories are made

Come sunshine, come wind and come rain.

And ey, we know we'll all be back.




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