A Network of Writing and Community Publishers

'Childhood Memories'
October 2011

04 May 2012

Summer fun!

It was a warm summer’s day and we had arranged to meet at the top of my road. After about the fifth change of clothing, 1 bottle of hair mousse and six hairstyle make over’s later, I was ready. It was the first weekend of the summer holidays and I was in year 5 or these days year 11.

Hayley turned up and she was wearing her jeans as well so I didn’t think I looked freaky although mine were maroon! Valentines Park was overflowing with families and other people around our age. It was boiling hot! Hayley suggested a boat ride on the boating lake, even though she knew I couldn’t swim properly. I kind of fluked my length!

She promised we wouldn’t go too far into the lake middle and then I don’t know what possessed me but I said, yes! I kept thinking of Jaws the movie though realistically there was no chance of a great white shark being in Valentines parks’ lake, was there? It took us a good 15 minutes to get into synch’ with the rowing but it was actually fun until we heard the whistles. Two shirtless, okayish looking blonde guys on the embankment were smiling at us. Hayley promptly stuck two fingers up to reply to their invitation. Instead of putting them off the louder one jumped in and started swimming over. By now I had cursed Hayley to kingdom come with no return ticket!

As I was the one with no experience I was obviously the one screaming loudest.”Help! Help!” The guy just kept coming undeterred with a massive grin on his face. Admittedly he was better than o.kay looking but at that moment he was not a priority! I started to imagine the bottom of the lake, dark, murky and full of rubbish with an empty shopping trolley. Hayley and me lying there motionless, pale and eyes bulging out. The guy put his arms up over the side of the boat, tilting over to Hayley’s side and this time she was the loudest screamer! All the commotion had actually attracted the attention of the boat hire shed and the men were shouting “Oy!” to the guy still hanging onto our boat. He seemed quite amused.

”We could’ve had fun, see you around!” Blurrgh!! Thank God and good riddance. His idea of fun was obviously out of some psychotic horror film where they scare you to death. After watching him swimming away Hayley and I finally co-ordinated our rowing technique and made our way back. Finally dry land! Solid concrete under our feet.

“You two! Where’ve you been? We’ve been looking everywhere! Hurry up, there’s still time to catch the last film! It’s really scary!” Little is known to our friends, in a round about way we had just been in a live version of a real scary film!

Zahida Shah


A shopping trip to Reading

To buy a pair of jeans

To the pink flared type I was heading

A shopping trip to Reading

Would suit me by all means

With two blue seahorses as beading

A shopping trip to Reading

To buy a pair of jeans.

Mark Crittenden


Memory Stick

Can you remember the day you began?

A fragment of nature, a purpose, a plan;

who turned into a wee small boy.

Was he called Sebastian or just plain Roy?

Eating jam sandwiches by the sea;

starting to scream;being stung by a bee.

Tree house in a forest;there's no escape;

seeing a rider with a soft velvet cape.

What colour was it? I asked myself;

another memory crawling with stealth.

Some will recall the times they ran

across open fields waving a fan;

Sam lost a football down a flowing stream;

Judy cheered on the winning team.

Street names with relatives wearing thick woolen socks;

being reprimanded for watching "The Box".

"You'll have to work young man,no use sitting round here;

get yourself a paper and don't get drunk on beer.

The sisters however did agree;

they started sewing hems on skirts showing them off for free.

Me,I prefered the long dune walks on a sandy beach

chasing fading specks on a shoreline retreat.

To some childhood's an observatory in which you stare at life;

or a place where adulthood is sharpened with a knife.

Cuts,bruises,adventures;drawers of Leggo and thread

put in a filing cabinet stored inside my head.

Simon Walker

Group (if any): Goodmayes Writers


(from Memory Harbour: a reading of Jack B.Yeats' Watercolours)

This is what he remembers most clearly

of Donegal, not the mountains, the loughs,

the townlands, the abandoned lime-kilns

he used to play among, but the various bogs,

each named after some long-forgotten

farmer, fisherman, priest, or maybe just

the first man who ever fell into one

and couldn’t climb out. The colours form

a backdrop against which his parents,

his brothers & sisters, his friends, the priest,

are gradually fading year by year.

Mainly browns & greens, occasional

small flowers & heathers, often washed

to grey by the rain he always hated.

Green, he learned early on, could turn

treacherous, to be tested with sticks & stones;

brown could stick to your boots

or slide you into standing water.

On his ninth birthday, the priest

took a sally rod to his backside

for saying emerald green was the colour

of treachery, the priest shouting out

“Only an Orangeman could claim that

to be literal or metaphorical truth.”

His father declined to beat him further,

but sent him out to cut some more turf,

his least favourite chore even then

He has travelled the Eastern Seaboard

of America these forty years, but never,

never, thank God, has he seen a bog.

Brian Docherty

Word for Word Writers Group


Every time I visited the Kelvingrove Museum,

I would head straight for two things,

one was the Japanese Spider Crab,

Macrochiera kaempferi, big enough

to put me off swimming in the ocean,

the other, was the little brass model

in its glass case, an analogue of some part

of the machinery of the Industrial Revolution,

Mamod miming Mammon endlessly,

which had a large button, resembling

the delayed-action light switch in houses

converted to bedsits; thumbed decisively,

it set this piece of machinery in motion.

It did one thing, performed one action,

then stopped. This was its single function

in life, which it performed to perfection,

or at least to my ten year old satisfaction.

No matter how many times I approached

& thumbed the button, it never did

anything more or anything different.

I never heard that anyone else succeeded

in getting this little machine to behave

differently, but I’m sure all of us had

the satisfaction of seeing it perform

faultlessly every time, & some of us

might have suspected that this could be

a preview of our working lives, to stand

in front of a machine or on an assembly line,

punch a button over and over again

& watch the same outcome over & over.

Brian Docherty

Word for Word Writers Group

Childhood memories

Childhood memories

full of dreams

and wishes.

One day

I shall grow up

and only crumbs

are left.

All paths


into snowy


and howling wind

outside the windows

is reminding ...

- of what?

Of endless hours

of play like

there is no tomorrow.

Protective brothers

and sisters

who were always there

for comfort,

to calm down

each outcry,

to hang a red balloon

at the bed post.

Childhood memories -

mother's face

turned up

to my window

in the hospital.

Childhood memories

swept away

by living

grown up life.

Childhood memories,

world of illusions

and fairy tales.

Marie Neumann


I remember when I was a child

I remember when I was a child

I used to let my imagination run wild

I remember the fun and games

Memories today in picture frames

Those were the days when I couldn’t care less

And other people were there to clear up my mess

I had an adventurous spirit and a thirst to explore

Whatever it was I wanted to know more

It was lovely to live a life with no worries

And to be able to take my time, no hurry

No set deadlines, no pressure no responsibility

All I worried about was whether people at school liked me

There would be a party every year for my birthday

When all my friends would come to play

I grew up on a farm so I could play free

I loved to go for walks and climb trees

I used to try and distract my parent’s watchful eyes

Then I used to go and hide, with trees as my disguise

I used to love to help out on the farm

With constant supervision so I came to no harm

I used to help to hand rear the orphan lambs

I wanted to keep them, but the farmer had other plans

Now as an adult I look at the fond memories and say

Things were an awful lot cheaper back in my day

Elizabeth Jury



I had a one eyed teddy bear

And he went with me everywhere,

A tin drum and a rocking horse,

Toy guns and cowboy hats of course;

Bows and arrows, big balloons,

A xylophone to make my tunes

And there were board games I would play

Or jigsaws for a rainy day.

I had a scooter and a bike

And rode all over, as I’d like.

Sometimes I would read a book

Or even watch my mother cook.

She’d get me hoovering the hall,

Then I’d go outside with my ball.

We didn’t have computers then

So we played cards now and again.

No Emails, so we’d write a letter.

I think those times were much better.

Kids today don’t know the joy

Of growing up a post war boy

When even toys were less delight

Than playing on a building site.

Andrew Diamond

Goodmayes Writers


When I was two I never knew

How Jean could live along the road

And be my cousin in Southend,

Or be the lady in the shop,

Because to me Jean was Jean,

Yet different each time she was seen.

Andrew Diamond

Goodmayes Writers

Do you remember?

Do you remember

How important it was to fit in

When your fate rested

Upon the whim

Of the popular kids,

The ones who judged you

On the clothes you wore

And found you wanting -

Even when they had

The same gear at home?

Do you remember

How bad it felt to be left out

Watching the other kids playing

Wanting to join in

But not understanding the rules

Lurking on the periphery

Hoping that your isolation,

The difference that made

Them ok and you not,

Wouldn't be too obvious?

Do you remember

How you cried inside

When they turned on you

Told you to go away

Said you stank, were dirty, had nits

And your clothes were rot

And that if they were like you

They'd kill themselves

And why didn't you kill yourself

Because no-one liked you anyway?

Do you remember

Wishing you were dead

So you wouldn't have to pretend

Not to see the faces they pulled

or hear their spiteful comments

Yet you still stood near them

Because there was nowhere else to go

And the sound of your own voice

Was strange because you were

Never allowed to answer?

Do you remember

That huddle that whispered and pointed

And made you feel less than nothing

Even when you were the centre of attention

And how they took it in turns

To shoulder past you

Making sure you understood that

Even the space you stood in

Belonged to them and that they had

All the power and you had none.

Do you remember?

Ashley Jordan


A room with a view

In the house where I grew up

The first home that I knew

I had a bedroom in the loft

My own room with a view

It overlooked a little wood

Where I would often play

I always thought, as I looked out

My soul could drift away

It was such a peaceful place

Cares and troubles banished

Hopes and spirits were uplifted

As restrictions vanished

I felt so free, so released

Behind the breath-steamed glass

My mind rustling through the leaves

Dreams dancing on the grass

Ashley Jordan


Child in a Storm

(A memory of my daughter, Jessica, as a toddler)

Slate eyes bright, framed by lashes

Gaze up from the soft grey quilt

Shadows dance between the flashes

Slate eyes bright, framed by lashes

Rumbling thunder, rain that dashes

Fearless and with wonder filled

Slate eyes bright, framed by lashes

Gaze up from the soft grey quilt

Ashley Jordan


Growing Pains

I used to wear a blazer

With a badge sewn on the pocket

To show the school I went to;

A white shirt and a school tie,

A pullover to keep me warm,

Black shoes, grey trousers and a cap,

Completing my school uniform;

A tidy little chap.

But when I was a teenager

I bought a pair of baseball boots

And then a pair of jeans,

A tee shirt with a logo

And I’d wear these at weekends

When I was full of beans.

I’d be a rebel, cause some trouble,

Chat up girls and play loud music.

I would smoke and lounge about,

Sophisticated, cool ..........

And when it came to Monday

I’d get dressed again for school.

Andrew Diamond

Goodmayes Writers

Misspent Youth

Some years ago

I got on a bus.

The conductor alighted,

Continuing a row

With a man on the pavement,

So I rang the bell.

The driver moved off

And the bus took me home.

When I was at school

I got half a crown

Each day from my mum

To purchase my lunch,

But I went to my aunt

Who fed me for nothing.

I bought some fags

With the money instead

And like a fool

I genuinely thought

That my mum didn’t know.

I went to the pictures

And I didn’t pay.

I got in through the exits

Held open by friends.

I was kicked out of galleries,

Banned from museums

And sometimes was stopped

From entering a shop.

I’d trespass and truant,

School didn’t appeal,

But I never did violence

Or blatantly steal.

And over the years

I had clips round the ears

For so many things.

If I did them today

They would put me away.

Andrew Diamond

Goodmayes Writers

The Bite

I was bitten

By a dog

Upon the bum

When I was four.

I ran home to my mum

Crying and sore.

And so I was soaked

In a boiling hot bath

To get rid of the germs.

It gave me a fright

That was worse than the bite.

I’ve always been wary

Of dogs after that.

I much prefer

To be scratched by a cat.

Andrew Diamond

Goodmayes Writers

The Rec

When I was a kid I went to the Rec

In South Tottenham behind the school.

We’d play football and cricket and go on the swings

When we got older we did other things.

There was a tramp who we called Dirty Dick,

He sat in the Rec and was smelly and thick.

The older boys made him do things for money;

Many thought it was terribly funny.

I never did, I was only a kid.

We played in the street, there were no cars about.

My mother agreed I was better off out.

We’d play knock down ginger or play hide and seek

Some had competitions in taking a leak.

Then there was tennis, where I was a menace

By smashing my balls against neighbours’ walls.

They’d complain to my dad and he would go mad.

He’d lock up my racquet, a pain in the neck,

So I’d get all my mates and we’d go to the Rec.

Andrew Diamond

Goodmayes Writers

Close Shave

When I was fourteen I went out

And visited a chemist’s shop.

I bought myself a razor

Because I knew I was growing up.

And then, as I was walking home,

I met a girl I knew from school.

I proudly showed her what I bought

To prove I had a manly tool.

She said, “You best put that away

‘Cause you may need to shave one day!”

Andrew Diamond

Goodmayes Writers

The Circus

My father and I went to the circus

Under a Big Top in Lea Bridge Road.

When it wasn't there the ground it was on

Was used as a fair and we went there too.

But back to the circus, with animals then;

Elephants, seals, horses, lions, chimpanzees;

The men and the girls on the flying trapeze;

The clowns with red hooters and comical tooters.

So many things going on in the ring.

The bare back riders, the man on the tight rope.

A safety net hung to catch flyers who might drop.

The music, the popcorn, seats near the front row;

A spectacle under the Ring Master’s nose.

Not many of these sort of shows any more.

They say it is cruel to make animals work,

But the elephants seemed to have had a good time.

They enjoyed all the chocolates I put in their trunks

When they were displayed at the end of the show.

We went home on the bus and sat on the top

And then my dad sneezed; his dentures fell out

And they split in half. Oh, how I laughed!

He never cared; never had them repaired.

At times I’d enjoy simply being a boy.

I have submitted an earlier version of this poem in Challenge 18 (The Circus) but it is a true childhood memory that I think deserves to be read in this category.

Andrew Diamond

Goodmayes Writers

The Funeral

I looked in his grave;

He lay next to Mum

And then, in my head,

A picture had come

Of days when at school

And home for my lunch.

My friends all would call;

A glad, noisy bunch.

My parents were there

And they both looked on.

I thought of those days

And realised they’d gone.

Andrew Diamond

Goodmayes Writers

My Mother

Newham Festival of Writing - 25th Anniversary 21st May 2011 Working Memories - Workshop (Jackie Premitt)

My notes & finished piece

1st Brief

Visualise and write about a room from memory – describe – how does it make you feel?


Back door with wooden panels. Red patterned lino floor. Two doors to the right, one to the cosy, welcoming living room. The other a cellar door – closed holding it's secrets. Pushed against the wall, a large rectangle, white wooden table, with three chairs around. Opposite a white enamel sink, chipped along its front edge – by me when I was five!

Thin material hung as curtains, the colour and pattern escapes my memory. Next to the sink, a cooker – clean, but showing signs of age – very well used! On one of its rings, a chip pan always sat. The only other furniture, was a home-made cupboard, with a pale blue door and I remember wire mesh in one of its panels.

Wallpaper, with flowers, slightly peeling at the corners.

A happy place – a family gathering place, despite other rooms in the house, making me feel warm, nurtured and loved. Sometimes though, when arguments broke out, I didn't like the kitchen and would hide behind the cellar door (our cellar was clean and swept, it had a light you could switch on, so it didn't scare me, like my Aunts cellar next door.

Once there was a chip pan fire – I didn't like it at all then.

2nd Brief

See a person in the room, in the context of the time you described the room, and describe the person, what are they doing in the room?

My Mother

The person is my mother. Although many tasks were carried out in the kitchen, it is the memory of her standing at the cooker, that is the strongest. Looking weary and worn-out tired – yet always unruffled, coping.

Navy blue cotton frock with white spots, belted at the waist – not quite a full skirt, that would be two extravagant. Covering her arms, always a cardigan and when cooking, sleeves pushed up. Mom never wore an apron.

Cooking chips at a Saturday tea-time, my nephew – not yet two – on one hip as she shook the chips in the pan and all the time, holding a conversation with the family gathered in the kitchen. Except Dad, who would be quietly sitting his armchair in the next room, waiting for the classified football results.

3rd Brief

Write a poem ( or piece of writing) 'around' one's notes, making changes if need be. Or write from 'fresh' of another room, time or place.

My Response Poem

Back door flung open, bringing in the scents from the potted plants, hung on the whitewashed wall.

Red Geraniums, Candy-tuft, blue and white trailing Lobelia and sun orange Marigolds; bright with fresh watering – they broke the routine of her day.

The baker called, the milkman called, the window cleaner knocked for a bucket of water and the dustman clattered metal bins. She knew them all by name.

All came to her kitchen door, but none crossed the threshold onto the patterned lino, or graced the kitchen table; each, including her, knew their place.

Her place now, was at the tired looking cooker, she knew how it felt, so treated it gently, coaxing the blue flame into life and heat, to melt the lard in the brown veined chip pan. Watching it slip from a whole, into a bubbling liquid; into which she lowered the basket of the first batch of snake peeled King Edwards, the best potato for chips, carried home from Charlie's that morning, in a newspaper lined old shopping bag.

For today was Saturday. Match day! Blues were at home, and soon they would be home ; her family. Win or lose, they would all want to shake malt vinegar over her crisp coated chips and re-write the game.

Jan Hedger


My Aunty Oll

‘Go on, go on, pull him down, hold him, yes, yes! Hoy! Yer dirty devil, come on referee!’

‘Yer aunts off, hark at her,’ our mom would chuckle. Then we’d collapse in a fit of giggles, as a great guffaw of laughter exploded through the wall. Aunty Oll was watching the wrestling.

Born in1900, the eldest of twelve three died in infancy) aunty Oll lived next door. She was more like a Nan to me, loving, caring and sweet natured; she had a wicked sense of humour. She could also be as stubborn as a mule, as strong-willed as a camel and as set in her ways as a footprint in cement! One could describe her as a chocolate covered toffee with a soft centre.

A great lady, with the courage of a lion and an indomitable spirit, the early chapters of aunty Oll’s life could be likened to a Catherine Cookson novel. Kept at home from school with the arrival of each new brother and sister, she was self –taught, intelligent and as sharp as a needle. You could never pull the wool over aunty Oll’s eyes!

When she was eighteen, my uncle Ray was born, physically and mentally disabled from a high fever in the early weeks of his life; aunty Oll took him under her wing, cared for him and nurtured him. It was to her credit that he blossomed and grew into a fine man.

Aunty Oll had a son, Colin, born of an ill-fated affair. It must have been a very hard time for her, as a child born out of wedlock was much frowned upon. I used to weave a magical story of a fairytale romance, a true love story, reminiscent of an old black and white movie; starring Walter Pidgeon and Greer Garson; it was a world of fantasies, of heroes and heroines.

Such a dream world started for me the moment I opened aunty Oll’s gate and stepped into the back yard. Leaving the cold stark entry behind, one was met by a profusion of colour and scent. Vibrant red, deep-sea blue, salmon pink, snowy white and many shades of green. An artist’s palette sprinkled with nature’s perfume. Plants in pots on rickety old tables, plants in boxes appearing as if they had grown out of the very world itself. All tended lovingly by aunty Oll, they bloomed. Aunty Oll would talk to them,

‘Look after them and they will reward you with their beauty,’ she used to say.

‘Yer aunt can get anything to grow, she’s got the touch,’ our mom would chuckle.

When it was dark mind, I used to open that same gate very gingerly. Aunty Oll still had an outside toilet and I used to imagine a fierce menacing figure would leap out of the shadows. Courage would fail me!

In three strides I’d be through the back door only to be met with the door to the cellar, mocking me, daring me to open it and face the demons lurking below. The very kitchen itself would become, scary, frightening, threatening!

On entering the living room all fears vanished with the warmth of the welcoming air. Here was the hub of the house. Aunty Oll was the Queen bee; family, friends, neighbours would buzz in and out daily; workers returning to their hive, exchanging news and seeking advice. Aunty Oll was already to listen, share her wisdom and offer a cheery word. She was a mother figure, a matriarch.

Some of my earliest memories are of being minded by aunty Oll. Curled up on uncle Ray’s bed – in the front room him and aunty Oll shared – I would watch in fascination as she cocooned herself in layer upon layer of clothing. Two vests, a liberty bodice, two petticoats, a dress a cardigan and finishing off by enveloping herself in a large flowery apron!

Then, whilst aunty Oll tended to uncle Ray’s needs, I would amuse myself by playing ‘Littlewoods’. I’d set out my groceries (empty boxes, packets etc.) on a small table, aunty Oll would give me a few coppers and I would happily play shopkeeper to imaginary customers.

Often, on a winters evening, aunty Oll would get out the family photographs and as we sat by the coal fire she would tell me of days gone by. I’d close my eyes and picture this house full of children’s laughter and tin baths in front of the dancing flames. Such simple pleasures. Only later when I grew up, was I aware that it hadn’t always been so; life had indeed been very tough, but as a child I had been protected from this.

Aunty Oll continued to care for Uncle Ray until his death aged forty-eight. On shaking hands with the vicar after the service – where Uncle Ray had been buried in the family grave – he said, ‘I’m so sorry, was that your son?’

Aunty Oll replied, ‘no, I’ve just given him back to his mother.’ So began another chapter in aunty Oll’s life.

With her new found freedom, aunty Oll joined clubs and came on family outings. I recall one trip in particular. On a visit to visit to see family in Wales we’d stopped at a transport café. When asked did she want a small or a large cup of tea, with no hesitation, she emphatically replied, ‘a large one!’ Well it was a bucket! Not only did she drink every drop she also tucked into a full fried breakfast!

With one of her clubs, aunty Oll went on holiday for the first time, joining in the fun and frolics with great gusto. On one evening a fancy dress was held and aunty Oll transformed herself into a swashbuckling pirate. I treasure dearly the photo I have of her brandishing a cutlass!

Aunty Oll retained her fighting spirit right to the end, frustrating family and social workers alike. She’d stand in the doorway (having now moved to a bungalow) arms folded, grim faced like a bouncer refusing them entry. For instance, when the physiotherapist tried to deliver a Zimmer frame, she took up her stance and sent her off with a flea in her ear, saying,

"You are NOT bringing THAT in here!"

She relented only once, using a wheelchair for her grand-daughters wedding.

Struck down with arthritis she remained stoic and rarely complained. Sadly illness overcame her and aunty Oll died aged ninety.

After her funeral, it was heard to be said,

"The helm has gone."

I miss her and will be forever grateful to have known such a wonderful woman.

Written for my English GCSE - eight years ago - and reproduced here in its original form.

Jan Hedger



As I sit on Sunday evening

With little on my mind

I tried to recollect

Some of the Memories left behind

To take that long walk back in time

When I was only three

And bought a bag of chocolate buttons

For just one half-penny

There were no thoughts of War then

And luxuries we never had

But Happiness was paramount

When I were but a lad

So on along Life’s road I walk

To 1939

And War’s declared in Europe

The bright lights no longer shine

‘Tho young at heart I saw the difference

And noticed the growth of fear

As hostilities were extended

In little more than a year

Food was now on Ration

As an Island supplies were short

For a lot of the food we needed to live

We only acquired by Import

From other parts of the Commonwealth

South Africa and the U S A

Even Argentina had an important part to play

Of course the mode of travel then

Was across the Atlantic Ocean

But because of German U-boats & Navy

Armed convoys were set in motion

To guard their precious cargo

Too many Merchant ships were lost

Along with Naval vessels & crews

What an enormous price in lives lost

Undaunted they carried on their task

As did the RAF lads in the skies above

Relentless to repel the Luftwaffe

To save the Cities we all love

Civil Defence & Fire Service as well

Civilians too were joining the fight

Even the Air Raid Wardens

Saying “ Oi! you put out that Light”

But back to the children who now knew the strain

And witnessed Air Warfare

As the bombs continually rain

Down on their home Towns and Cities as well

Is this what it’s like if you are living in Hell

Where once were rows of houses

Now huge craters in the ground

Death and destruction

Is all that can be found

But they carried on their young lives

As well as they could

For this sort of existence

Is all they understood

They went to school with Gas Masks

And in Air Raid Shelters they slept

Whilst Mum & Dad were sleepless

As their nightly vigil they kept

Then the youngsters were resilient

Not too worried at their plight

As they played in the Park in the daylight

And did their homework at night

There were smiles on their faces

And laughter and tears

As they carried on with their young lives

During those disastrous five years

So once again in Post War years

When hostilities cease

Did the children of Great Britain

Know the meaning of Peace

Now they can move forwards

On Life’s road once more

In a peaceful environment

And free to explore

The pleasures that surround them

Never aware of the cost

That regaining their freedom meant

Many thousands of lives that were lost.

Dennis Shrubshall

16th March 2008 


Your Name: Ashley Jordan
Your Comment: Hi Zahida - your story reminded me of many similar escapades I had while staying in my friend's caravan with her grandparents when I was a young teen.  I don't know how we didn't drown ourselves!  Thanks for triggering some great memories - I hope we'll be seeing a lot more of your writing in future :-)

Your Name: Jan Hedger
Your Comment: Good to see you here again Zahida! Lovely 'playing a prank' story!

Your Name: Andrew Diamond
Your Comment: Zahida, you should put more on the challenge. Your writing just flows and people should read it!

Your Name: Andrew Diamond
Your Comment: Nice one Simon. You incorporate the memories with the way ahead.

Your Name: Jan Hedger
Your Comment: Mark - so funny!

Your Name: Ashley Jordan
Your Comment: Mark - I love the seahorse detail - sets the time-period perfectly!

Your Name: Jan Hedger
Your Comment: Hi Brian and welcome! Two different and great poems - I would have gone for the spider crab too!

Your Name: Ashley Jordan
Your Comment: Some lovely writing this month - you all make my inbox a pleasure to open :-)  Simon I had to introduce extra line-breaks into yours to make it fit on the page - hope this is ok?

Your Name: Jan Hedger
Your Comment: Great entries Marie and Liz!

Your Name: Jan Hedger
Your Comment: I agree Andrew - Ashley does pack a punch with this piece! Good work.
Great memories all who have posted so far - as always enjoy your work Andrew!

Your Name: Andrew Diamond
Your Comment: Ashley, your poem about being an outsider reminds all of us about how we sometimes felt and about how cruel childhood could be. It's brilliant!

Your Name: Andrew Diamond
Your Comment: Your writing has evoked so many memories of my own childhood Jan; the way things were in those days. No matter the hardships, they're the most valuable things we've got!

Your Name: Jan Hedger
Your Comment: First of the mark, Dennis, with one of your poems that builds a story so beautifully and poignantly well! - Jan

Your Name: Ashley Jordan
Your Comment: Great piece Dennis - love the expansion of awareness as the poem builds to a poignant conclusion!  I hope you'll be coming to TheFED Writing Festival this year? 


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