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They stand in rows like soldiers on parade

Those memorial stones in the war cemetery

A poignant of those gallant men

Who died fighting to protect our liberty

Many words have been written about the great war

Words which describe the living hell

Words which should have a profound effect on our thinking

Words which remind us of the brave words who tell

They were fighting for the honour of our country

They were fighting to ensure we stayed free

That is what their sacrifice was made for

That is something that should be etched in our memory

These sacrifices should often be in our thoughts

Not just once a year on Remembrance day

When we watch the veterans march past cenotaph

Paying their tribute as the bands their solemn music play

We should think about those who cherish our traditions

We should think about those who died on a foreign shore

To think about the present and the future of our country

And to ask ourselves if this is what they were fighting for

Ron Martin

An early start

bird in tree

I woke early in the morning and nothing could be heard

But as I listened carefully I could hear the singing of a bird

It was the early morning chorus bidding welcome to the day

And listening to its singing that bird was heard to say 

Wake up, wake up everybody the sun is on its way

Daylight will soon be breaking, prepare to meet the day

Don’t lie in bed a’sleepnig, when there is so much to do

Rise early in the morning, take the opportunities life gives to you

They won’t last forever, they will quickly pass away

The time is ripe to take them at the beginning of the day

If you miss these opportunities it could bring sadness to your heart

So take example from the birds and make an early start


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At Harvest time

We ploughed the  fields in springtime

We spread the seed upon the ground

Then we hoped for rain and sunshine

Which would let the seeds abound

To produce a wonderful harvest

Which wound satisfy our need

To ensure that our lives could continue

Hopefully without falling to temptation of greed

For when our essential needs are provided

With these we should be satisfied

And remember that to many throughout the world

That these blessings are often denied

And so at harvest time we should be satisfied

And thank god for the bounty we share 

And be prepared to share this with our neighbours

And to show just how much we care.

By Ron Martin

The city of Benares

Where is the City of Benares?
I’ve searched hard to find its location,
I’ve looked at maps and searched the index of my atlas,
Thinking that it might be the capital of a great nation.
India, South America or the Middle East,
Each of these sound likely places for it to be located,
Then suddenly my searching came to an end,
When I discovered it was the name of a ship that was ill fated.
It was sailing in a convoy from England to Canada,
Ninety children were being taken there for the duration of the war,
Their parents had thought this would ensure their safety,
But very soon the ship way lying on the ocean floor.
The ship had been torpedoed by a German U boat,
Eighty three of the children would never be seen again,
Only seven of the ninety children were rescued,
The parents of the eighty three were left to feel the pain.
During the war many of our ships were sunk,
Countless lives were lost in tragedies at sea,
The Ark Royal, The Prince of Wales and the Hood are still remembered,
The names of other ships are lost to our memory.
The City of Benares will always be remembered
By the families of the children who were lost,
But we have to remember all those other ships,
When we calculate how much our freedom really cost.
History tells us of many cities which have been destroyed,
Sodom, Gomorrah and Pompeii are three we might recall,
But for the parents of those eighty three children,
The loss of the City of Benares was the greatest disaster of them all
By Ron Martin

The peasants revolt



It took place in the year of thirteen eighty one,
But the origin of it had been many years before,
It had started when the “Black Death” plague swept the land,
And festered due to the landowners treatment of the poor.
The plague decimated the manpower available to work on the land,
As a consequence the serfs were able to claim better pay,
The landowners did not relish this at all,
They used Parliament in order to rule the day.
In thirteen fifty one a new law was passed,
To ensure that labourers’ wages would not increase,
This caused widespread anger amongst the working class,
Especially when they heard their freedom to move would cease.
.Some of them had moved to find better jobs,
Now they were forced to stay and work where they were,
The landlords had demanded their Manorial Rights,
The conditions the Peasants faced were quite austere.
In thirteen eighty a Poll Tax was imposed,
Which incensed the labourers who faced further poverty,
Peasants from Essex and Kent marched to London to protest,
And demanded that they should all be set free.
They were met at Mile End by the young King Richard,
Who readily listened to their demands for freedom,
He managed to persuade them to disperse,
When he promised fair rents and abolition of serfdom.
In thirteen eighty three some of the rebels led by Wat Tyler and John Ball,
Went to London and captured the famous Tower,
They beheaded the Treasurer and the Lord Chancellor,
Who had imposed the Poll Tax and who in other things exercised much power.
Then they met the King at Smithfield to demand,
That the Church should be divested of all of its property,
Wat Tyler exchanged blows with the Mayor and was arrested,
He was quickly found guilty and forced to pay the penalty.
For leading the revolt he was beheaded,
The Government were annoyed they had been provoked,
The rebels dispersed and the revolt was quickly over,
And all the promises made by the King at Mile End were revoked.
The peasants were still bound to spend their lives in serfdom,
What the revolt sought to achieve finally came to naught,
The name of Wat Tyler still lives on in legend,
And we still remember the aims for which he fought.
Ron Martin
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