Geoffrey Anketell Studdert Kennedy

(1883-1929 / Great Britain)

Worry - Poem by Geoffrey Anketell Studdert Kennedy

Right as ninepence, thank ye kindly,
There are umpty worse than me,
I'd be fit to fight tomorrer
If my bloomin' eyes could see.
But they can't, sir, that's the noosance,
I'm as blind as forty bats,
And I 'as to work by feel, sir,
Like ye does at night for chats.
'Ow it 'appened—well it 'appened
On a bloomin' night patrol,
When I got a blinkin' whizzbang
To myself and got it whole.
Yes, the last thing as I seed, sir,
Were a burst of silver light,
And it went and left the darkness,
'Cause it took away my sight.
There was me and old Bill Drury
And 'e got one through the 'ead,
We tried 'ard to fetch 'im back, sir,
But it weren't no bon — 'e's dead.
And it's when I thinks of 'im, sir,
Of 'is kiddies and 'is wife,
That I thanks the one above, sir,
That I still 'ave got my life.

There are times I wants to see, sir,
Like a beggar wants a meal,
But when I remembers Billie
Then I ain't disposed to squeal.
For I've got my legs and arms, sir,
And these 'ands is willing still,
I can do my job of work yet,
I can do it - and I will.
There's just one thing I'm afeard on,
Will they find me work to do?
That's the thing as makes me worry,
Same as it would worry you.
When this blarsted war is over,
And we settles dahn again
To the makin' of the money,
Will they still remember then?
Yes, I know they've been and promised,
But it's easy to forget.
When the shoutin's done and over,
There's accounts to settle yet.
There'll be thousands same as me, sir,
Out to do what work they can,
Not disabled, but like me, sir,
Not just everybody's man.
Will they find us jobs to work at
Where two 'ands can earn their pay,
For a wage enough to keep us
Free from debt, and pay our way?
That's the only thing as worries
When I sits me down to think,
Will I get my charnce of 'ome, sir,
And enough to eat and drink?

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Poem Submitted: Friday, September 17, 2010

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