25.10.04 | What Does A Harle Syker Sound Like? (The Saturnyne Points The Way)
Many of you have been wondering, subtly and subconsciously, i know, what folks sound like in my part of the world. So i've been racking my humble brain, in an attempt to show you. And last night, while carousing through my vast library (all three bookshelves) i found a solution.
Step forward, the late Mr R.D. Kippax. Friend and fellow bowler probably (Like I can remember that far back) of The Saturnynes equally late and wonderful Grandfather (On his mothers side). Also a very well respected and known local poet...
(Yeah, i know he can't very easily step forward, what with being quite dead for probably longer than some of you have been alive, but perhaps we could fit his urn or coffin with some nice shiny wheels so he can roll forward instead. With a cheerful helping shove. Where was i? oh yeah...)
Taken from the now out of print: 'Th'owd Syker Looks At Life'
Aggate 'Airse O Lords
Th' Airse o' Lords up th' Aggate wer i' session,
His Lordship frae t' Valley i' t' chair,
Not a vacant seat i' the bairlairse,
Expectancy rife i' the air.
New rise i' t' rates for discussion,
On the agenda, the cairncil flats, too
But they first hed to discuss pollution-
Ther' wer a horrible smell blowing thru.
The Speaker said "This pugent aroma,
What is it that's causing this smell?"
But when t' greenkeeper came into t' bairlairse,
It were him it were easy to tell.
He said "Ahm mixing a tonic, airt ut back ere
An ahm bairn spreard it airt on ter green.
It's some boorns, some dried blood an' some potash
Wi' some Epsom Salts mixed in between."
He put all ut he'd mixed in a spreader,
An he scattered weer we could see,
Mixed wi' stuff he called organic matter,
Which mearns 'orsemuck to yo and to me.
We doornt know what that tonic were meant for,
Whether for t' worms, or for t' soil, or for t' grass,
But them worms nair are fierce and ferocious,
And the birds 'ev departed en masse.
First coom a seagull frae Blackpool,
Gliding gracefully dairn on' ter green,
It took off a blooming seet faster,
An' were o'er Ireland when last it were seen.
It' really bin ard ont' er th' insects,
It's performed such a lot o' queer tricks,
The centipede or hundred legs as we called it,
Alas now it has niney six.
The daddy long legs, which kids loved to capture,
At times it could move very quick,
It's nair in a state of enrapture,
An' it moves wi a hop an a kick.
The caterpillar is 'evving convulsions,
Which mearns ut it's gettin it worse,
It can nobbut move backwards and sideways,
It's gears ev getten stuck i' reverse.
The leatherjackets, alas are in tatters,
Wireworms are hiding i' t' cracks,
An' cockroaches are suffering frae hiccups,
They'e surrendered and are laid on their backs.
This tonic is quite omnipotent,
They say it'll go worse when it rains,
So yo Sykers yerd better be wary,
Nobody knows what'l come airt o' yon drains.
-R.D. Kippax (R.I.P.)
So, there yer have it. Yer now have a bit of an idea what a "Syker" sounds like. Alas, that there are so few of us left. But that's the way of the world, old customs and ways die out, they give way to the new. One may as well try and push back the sea, like old King Canute, for all the good it does in resisting change. I shall try and hold my memories of what this old Lancashire village was once like though, and perhaps when i too am old and forgetful, these memories, and the memories of my Pumpkin will stay with me and see me through to that final exhale of breath.
Goodnight, gentle reader.