Ammon Wrigley - "A Doomed Oak"

The following is a transcription of a work by Saddleworth poet Ammon Wrigley (1861-1946).

A Doomed Oak

When wur theau born owd rugged oak,
I’ what year did theau spring?
Aw think thi little acorn fell
When James the First wur king;
Aw guess theau’d know thi fayther weel,
He’d be a gallant tree
Of lusty girth an’ mighty limb
To breed sich like as thee.
Aw'll bet theau’d see em cut him deawn
To build a ship o’ war;
For owt theau knows he did his share
That day at Trafalgar.
He’d be some holed an’ split wi’ shot
An’ red wi’ battle blood;
An’ happen Nelson lay in death
Upon thi fayther’s wood.
Theau didn’t pick a sheltered nook
When theau began to groo,
Theau set thi sel i’ th’ wildest spot
There is upon this broo.
Theau scorned a grassy garden lawn
Wi roses fine o’ reaund,
An’ bulldog like theau fastened on
This rough an’ windy greaund.
Theau’d ha’ some weary days an’ neets
When theau’r a little shoot,
An’ storms wur tryin’ o they could
To rip thee op bi th’ root.
An’ oft that lion March coom here,
An’ roarin fierce an’ loud,
It tried to rive thi off this knowe
But never broke thi howd.
An’ when th’ April rains coom deawn
Theau’d wonder what thi wur,
Thi little twigs would stretch ther sel
Fain to be eaut o’ th’ dur.
It’s hard to think neaw spring is here
This field an’ thee mun part,
An’ when May comes wi’ leaves for thee
It'll wonder where theau art.
Theau'll never feel the sap agen
Run through thi boughs wi glee,
An’ summer sun an’ winter’s snow
Will come no more to thee.
An’ autumn winds that stole thi leaves
An’ whirled em deawn the glen,
When they come sheawtin o’er the moor
They’ll ne’er find thee agen.
When summer fleawers wake at morn
Wi’ teardrops i’ ther een,
They'll grieve to see the blackened stump
Where once theau stood so green.
Death comes alike to men an’ trees
When an’ heaw none con tell,
An’ th’ mon at lays thi op o’ th’ greaund
He'll drop some day his sel.

Ammon Wrigley - "A Doomed Oak"


This page was last modified on 12 August 2018 and has been edited by Dave Pattern.

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