The Lads of Garston

Printed with permission from Greg Quiery His book In Hardship and Hope is available from News From Nowhere.

These are the lads of Garston,
Who once ruled here,
Who stroll on now. Easy.
Putting in the long day.
Walking the dog.
Minding kids<
Talking out the past.

Here was their summers out of school
Their muddy riviera,
Where they lit fires of driftwood after sunset,
Rolled up bifters,
Smoothed out the blanket she brought with her,
Drove scramblers down the runway in the dark,
And laughed all night.

Remember your Max running on behind, barking like fuck?
Breathless.
Thought he was gonna die, man,
With the excitement.

Remember Prince?
You got him on that stick. Locked on.
You swung him round your head, like he was flying,
Holding on for death. You were a cruel bastard.
He loved it.
Yeah. As if.

Remember Curtis?
Boss jockey, la.
Pulled out six bizzie cars
That night he got the Cosworth.
They had the ‘copter on him.
Chased him down,
‘til he took the shortcut to heaven.
Those bizzies, la.
So shady.

And Mick.
When they got him with that gun outside the bingo?
What was that about?
Can’t remember.

And Pig,
Who got in the army.
Jesus. When they found that note. In his back pocket.
That was tight, man. I mean,
To put the blame on her.

All that talk at the funeral, and she not even there.
Imagine that.
So sly.
But he was off his head.

And the koi carp!
That was you was into them.
No way!
And the terrapins. Mad or what?
You dumped yours in the dam.
Swear to God, it weren’t me, mate.
Yeah. As if.

All memories now.
Jason bends to straighten up the hat on Benji’s head.
Love the bones of these.
Grandkids. At our age? Who’d have thought?
All them years.
They shut the door on us, mate, you know.
Yeah. Think these’ll have it any better?
Don’t hold your breath.

Look son. There’s a heron there, so still.
I love them birds, man.
You used to throw stones at them.
Never.
You fucking did, mate!



Published by jackbyrnewriter

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