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As It Used to Be
Michael Jones


A summer’s day on an English beach,
crowds gather to celebrate the sun.
men in suits with waistcoats buttoned,
cloth caps and trilbies,
ladies in full-length skirts.
Some dare to swim
with knee-length costumes.
Deckchairs abound,
knotted hankies on view.
Fish and chips for lunch
held carefully in yesterday’s news.
Ice creams for the kiddies
(sometimes for us).
Socks and shoes off,
trousers and skirts up
to paddle,
holding hands.
Brass band plays “Sons of the Sea”.
Donkey man cries,
“Only a shilling.”
Bored-looking donkey carries bored-looking child
to the pier and back.
Watch Punch and Judy
cheer for the crocodile.
Sun dips down,
time to go.
Hats on,
find the charabanc*,
driver waiting.
“All aboard for the sing-song!”
Home for tea,
work tomorrow.
It was a lovely day.

© by Michael Jones.
Used here with the author’s permission.


*A type of horse-drawn vehicle or an early motor coach



Michael Jones lives in Finchley, a suburb of London, England. He originally focused on writing song lyrics, but has turned to poetry in recent years. Retired after a diverse career in sales and marketing, Mike’s latest hobby is learning to play the ukulele.



Post New Comment:
This does indeed sound like a lovely day!
Posted 08/15/2023 02:01 PM
Lori Levy:
Great portrayal of this beach scene.
Posted 08/15/2023 01:14 PM
A newspaper read and used again.
Posted 08/15/2023 10:19 AM
A lovely day indeed! And well-portrayed.
Posted 08/15/2023 09:37 AM
Larry Schug:
This poem took me to a place I've never been. Who could ask for more?
Posted 08/15/2023 07:41 AM
liz dolan:
How times have changed- great details.
Posted 08/15/2023 07:10 AM
I enjoyed this so much! such delightful imagery and this made me chuckle, perfectly worded to perfectly picture... 'Bored-looking donkey carries bored-looking child'!
Posted 08/15/2023 06:46 AM

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