Terry Collett

Gold Star - 23,291 Points (13/12/1947 / LONDON)

Granddad's Statue Of Boy And Dog. - Poem by Terry Collett

There was
on the sideboard
in your granddad's house
a small statue

of a boy and dog
and you used
to stand and stare
at it each time you visited

the house on Sunday afternoons
running your finger
over the outline
as if to make the boy move

or the dog bark
but they never did
and each time
you hoped they would

and Gran said
mind you don't
knock it over Benedict
it's one of your granddad's

prized possessions
he bought it off a man
in the market
some years ago

and you stood
with your finger poised
a few inches away
eager to feel

the cold china once more
the smoothness
on the finger's skin
your eyes searching

each aspect
of the boy
the way he had
his hands

the dog looking up
the boy looking down

Granddad's dog
was not a bit like that
it was grey and old
and was kept

in the back garden
in a kennel
where it would
bark or whine

and Gran said
shut up Major
you've been fed
and sometimes

you'd go out
in the garden
and stroke its fur
or pat its head

its dull eyes
looking at you
but the boy

in the statue
had an exciting dog
which probably
wagged its tail

and licked
its young master
although not
when you

were gazing
on Sunday afternoons
and your mother said
don't knock it off

the sideboard
or there'll be hell to pay
you said

and wandered into
the warm
but cluttered lounge
where Granddad sat

in the huge armchair
in his grey flannel trousers
grey cardigan
and thinning grey hair

and you sat still
while the parents
and grandparents talked
your eyes scanning

the photographs
on ledges and surfaces
faces you knew
and some you didn't

small statues of dogs
or a girl with fruit
or boy playing
a silent flute

or aged paintings
of country scenes
of hills or fields
or rivers and streams

but it was the statue
of the boy and dog
that filled your head
and night time dreams.

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, January 17, 2013

Poem Edited: Thursday, January 17, 2013

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