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Children growing up in the UK during the seventies were oft exposed to the following poetry and its ilk. I know many people all grown up now from that era who hate poetry. They really do. They usually like mine though. Hahahahaha. This is true, and I know more curmudgeonly people than you can shake a tree branch with several wailing cats trapped within at – tact is not their forte. Both sexes included. Honest folks in a nutshell. Insulting ones. – falls about. The fact that they can like some poems leads esme to belive they can like others, ones beyond the expulsions of esme (euuuwww). The following is not is not an example of said potentially good poems. No siree. It is an example of the kind of poetry I speak of at the beginning of this jibbering post. The sort that was the main TV option for kids way back when (then, that’s when, keep up).

Pam Ayres.

I look back now and see they were wise words — at the time I couldn’t stand her arrangement of letters, nor her recitals. These days they are so evocative of that place where the summer of 1976 resides, crisps were six pence a packet, and Space Dust sparkled on the tongue turning it flourescent yellow, as we gurned so everyone nearby could see the spectacle, whilst wearing garish polo necks . . . I almost like her.

She’s right about teef at least.

Oh I Wish I’d Looked after me Teeth by Pam Ayres. (You can listen to her, if you’re some kind of nut,  here.)

Oh, I wish I’d looked after me teeth,
And spotted the dangers beneath
All the toffees I chewed,
And the sweet sticky food.
Oh, I wish I’d looked after me teeth.

I wish I’d been that much more willin’
When I had more tooth there than fillin’
To give up gobstoppers,
From respect to me choppers,
And to buy something else with me shillin’.

When I think of the lollies I licked
And the liquorice allsorts I picked,
Sherbet dabs, big and little,
All that hard peanut brittle,
My conscience gets horribly pricked.

My mother, she told me no end,
‘If you got a tooth, you got a friend.’
I was young then, and careless,
My toothbrush was hairless,
I never had much time to spend.

Oh I showed them the toothpaste all right,
I flashed it about late at night,
But up-and-down brushin’
And pokin’ and fussin’
Didn’t seem worth the time – I could bite!

If I’d known I was paving the way
To cavities, caps and decay,
The murder of fillin’s,
Injections and drillin’s,
I’d have thrown all me sherbet away.

So I lie in the old dentist’s chair,
And I gaze up his nose in despair,
And his drill it do whine
In these molars of mine.
‘Two amalgam,’ he’ll say, ‘for in there.’

How I laughed at my mother’s false teeth,
As they foamed in the waters beneath.
But now comes the reckonin’
It’s methey are beckonin’
Oh, I wish I’d looked after me teeth.

Taken from the The Works: The Classic Collection 2008.

Here she is on TV way back then. I always thought she was about sixty-five when clocking her on the box. How our young minds skew the world. (She was probably younger than esme is right now (erkles!))

And then I found this. Hahahahahaha. Enjoy.