My mother was born in Winterslow, Wiltshire in 1910 and she was the eldest daughter of 7 daughters.  She died in January 1991 and I inherited boxes of old letters etc that she had kept.  Today (September 2017 I discovered a treasure.  I know Mum liked poetry but I didn't know that she ever wrote any but I'll put this on here for you all to see.  It is a little poem that she wrote when, later in her life, she returned to the village that she loved so much and had so many memories - Winterslow.  I hope you like it, and if you go to Winterslow churchyard (the church on the hill in flat Wiltshire), you'll see her little grave.  Put a few flowers on her grave with my love.  I live so far away from there, in Yorkshire in the north of England now.  God bless you Mum.  Josie

The Return - Heading Main Poetry Index People Poems My Garden Listening Page



By Josie Whitehead

At Ten Past Eight

The return: To our little village today I returned.

For many years, just for this I yearned.

    There are houses now where we used to play -

    All the trees and bushes bulldozed away.


But the shop at the corner still stands there.

There is no Bob Horner with greying hair.

     Instead there's a youngster in faded blue jeans

     Selling sweets and groceries and ice cream.


Wandering on, what a joy to see

The old Blacksmiths shop and the old oak tree

   Where we used to play all the day long

    And my dear Granny's cottage still standing there.


We walked in the woods where the hazel nuts grew

And sat on the stile to admire the view,

    And we ran through the fields in joyous delight

    Where we laughed and played from morning till night.


The cottage is still there where I was born

And the church on the hilltop, by long fields of corn - - -

    And I let a few tears from my eyelids flow

    For the carefree days of long ago.


Copyright on this poem


My mother would have been very surprised, I think, to know that I had written so many poems for you all because whilst she lived I only ever wrote one poem:  "My Garden" for the secondary school magazine, when I was 11 years of age.  Josie