A collection of short stories and journalistic commentaries depicting my simple life
and how I fit in with the modern day universe of our times





I’ll tell you an old fashioned story,
That grandfather used to relate.
Of a joiner and building contractor,
His name, it was Sam Oglesthwaite

In a shop on the banks of the Irwell,
Old Sam used to follow his trade.
In a place you’ll have heard of called Bury,
You know, where black puddings are made.

Sam were filling holes with some putty,
When in through the door walked an old blower.
His face was fair covered in whiskers,
The old chap said “good morning, I’m Noah.”

Sam asked Noah, “what’s your business?”
And the old chap went on to remark.
That not liking the look of the weather,
He was thinking of building an ark.

He’d gotten the wood for the bulwarks,
And all t’other ship building junk.
And wanted some nice bird’s eye maple,
To panel the sides of his bunk.

Now maple were Sam’s mono poly,
That means it were all his to cut.
And nobody else hadn’t got none,
So he asked Noah, three fifty a foot.

“It be too much”, replied our old Noah,
“A pound a foot’s more near the mark.”
“A pound every foot and when rain comes,
I’ll give you a ride in my Ark.”

But neither would budge in the bargain,
The old chaps in kind of a jam.
So Sam put his tongue out at Noah,
And Noah made long bacon at Sam.

In wrath and ill feeling they parted,
Not knowing when they’d meet again.
And Sam had forgot all about it,
Till one day it started to rain.

It rained and it rained for a fortnight,
And flooded the old countryside.
It rained and it still kept on raining,
Till the Irwell were fifty miles wide.

The houses were soon under water,
And folks to their roofs had to climb.
They said, ‘twas the rottenest summer,
That bury had had for some time.

The rain showed no sign of abating,
And water rose hour by hour.
Till the only dry land was at Blackpool,
And that were on top of the tower.

So Sam started swimming to Blackpool,
It took him best part of a week.
His clothes were wet through when he got there,
And his boots were beginning to leak.

He stood to his watch chain in water,
On tower top just before dark.
When who should come sailing towards him?
But old Noah, steering his ark.

They stared at each other in silence,
Till the ark were alongside, all but.
Then Noah said, “What price yon maple?”
Sam answered, “Three fifty a foot.”

Noah said, “Nay, I’ll make thee an offer,
Same as I did t’other day.
A pound a foot and a free ride,
Now come on lad what does thy say?”

“Three fifty a foot”, came the answer,
So Noah his sail had to hoist.
And sail off again in a dudgeon,
While Sam stood, determined but moist.

Noah cruised round flying his pigeons,
Till fortieth day of the wet.
And on his way back passing Blackpool,
He saw old Sam standing there yet.

His chin just stuck out of the water,
A comical figure he cut.
Noah said, “Now what price is your maple?”
Sam answered, “Three fifty a foot.”

Said Noah, “You’d best take my offer,
It’s last time I’ll be here abouts.
And if water comes half an inch higher,
I’ll happen get maple for nowt.

“Three fifty a foot it’ll cost you!
And as for me”, Sam says “don’t fret.
The sky’s took a turn since this morning,
I think it’ll brighten up yet.”





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