Sunday, January 15, 2012

Creative Writing from The Boarder issue 4 July 1961

The following pieces of creative writing are taken from The Boarder No 4 July 1961 - the magazine of the City of Coventry Boarding School - kindly submitted to us by Paul Williamson. The magazine was edited by K. Moyle, aided and abetted by M. McAvoy, N. Blackford, and teachers Mr Cox and Colin Partridge (English).

THE BEACH by N.S. Brennan - Upper 11

It was the late summer, 1940, when most of the British Army was stranded along the beaches of Dunkirk.
I said to my wife: "I'm going for a spot of fishing, my dear." 
(Really I had no intention of going fishing). we lived on the banks of a river which flowed into the sea, so naturally we owned a boat. Just as I was going out of the door I heard : 
"Yes, dear. What do you want?" I replied.
"You've forgotten your wellingtons. They are over there in the corner."
"Oh yes, so I have."
I went back and put on my wellingtons. It wasn't long before i was heading for the open sea and shores of Dunkirk.
I was getting near Dunkirk. I could see the little fishing boats. They looked like taxis waiting to pick up passengers. the men looked like ants along the shores. The sea was quite rough and I was bobbing up and down with the waves. You could see the men rushing towards the boats.
I picked up ten soldiers out of about five thousand. The boats were coming in and they departed. i joined them and set course for England.

It was not long before I had started off from England again. This time, though, I saw some German planes flying overhead. It was not long after I saw an explosion but it must have been at least five miles off the Dunkirk shore. I did not return home till I had been to Dunkirk four times.
When I arrived home I heard the dreaded voice:
"Where have you been all this time"
"Just for a spot of fishing"
"Well come on in and have some tea"
"All right, dear"
"How many did you catch?"
"About four".


Engines cough
Generators hum
Crowds collect
In a sweltering throng.

"Come on. Roll up. roll up!"
The thin man cries aloud;
Slowly collecting an interested crowd.
" 'Ave a go. Eight for sixpence - 
Knock the nuts off the fence."
The crowds are coming quickly now,
To see the lean six legged cow,
The fat lady in her tent,
the strong man with the iron bent,
The brave men on the wall of death,
The woman in her pearly dress,

To try their luck on the hoop-la stalls
to listen to the cries and calls....
All are there
For the fun of the fair.

A  S U P E R F C I A L  L A Y E R - Paul Harman Form V

I was walking in a forest thinking how beautiful everything looked. The leaves were out and so was the blossom, yet there was an eeriness about this forest. I plodded on, making the leaves crackle again, when a blackbird flew out of a nearby bush, making a terrific burst of song. While the blackbird sang, warning me to keep away from his nest, the bluebells swayed in the wind like the rippling of the sea.

I was careful where I trod in case it was really wet under foot. I plodded on to see some new baby birds, just learning to fly. What was this creepiness in the forest? The sun shone through the trees as if somebody was shining a mirror towards me. I walked faster to keep out of their way, but where were they?

I started to walk on my toes, but I was not silent, as the mirror still followed me. I stopped; the birds burst into a song. "Cuckoo! Cuckoo!" soon filled the air.

"My first cuckoo this year" I thought.

I sat on a log listening, but the trees were also listening. sometimes they whispered about me. I looked behind, but i could not see the edge of the forest. I was lost, I supposed. I had only meant to come a little way into this mysterious forest.

The log I was sitting on rolled over to reveal a skull. I jumped from my gravestone and started to run. I did not go more than a few feet before I fell headlong into a thorn bush. Somebody had set that trap, I thought. I sat in the forest, terrified and helpless. I struggled and tore my face to shreds. Blood trickling down my face instantly made me think of spiders. A big green spider crawled down my back and made me shudder. i suddenly lurched forward as I felt a hand touch my face, or skull. That tree over there had a whole skelton inside it, which had been put there by some convicts. (You see, this forest is near Pentecost Prison). In the middle of the forest is the execution shed. The gallows are next to that. Perhaps you can imagine the bird in the forest "swinging" to that. The souls in the forest must be very numerous. later i saw a man walk past with no head; he just vanished into the forest.

The cuckoo was still singing, and I was wishing my first cuckoo of the year was dead. I looked down at my feet int he bush, and saw another skull. I stripped off my jacket and started to run again, but a warder caught hold of me from behind a bush.

J U N G L E  N I G H T - C Brennan - form Upper 1V

The tiger's eyes are in the sky,
Venemous bats and insects fly,
The cricket's tongue is now vibrating,
Fearful noises of whining and grating,
The sleeping buffalo hears and grunts,
While the agile leopard for animal hunts.

This is a typical jungle night,
Full of danger, full of fright;
You have a pistol at your side,
But even so you have to hide.
There are snakes with poison fangs;
Up every tree a dark death hangs.

Many a heart breathes free again
When dawn's long fingers on darkness gain.
But others will see the dawn no more
For they lie dead on the jungle floor - 
A pile of bones and scattered flesh.

1 comment:

  1. I remember Neale Blackford well, was in my class - he was good at writing essays - lived off Four Pounds Ave in Coventry, after leaving Cleobury joined the forces Signed "The Original M28"