Search This Blog

Friday, 18 July 2014


Photography by Robin Banneville
My light-hearted look at summer continues with a poem by William Baron, a Lancashire printer/poet, also known as Bill o'Jacks.  Written in 1911,
 A Wail of the Heat Wave
 still has
resonance today.

The usual thing it used to be
Our summers to decry,
Because they were too wet, you see,—
We longed to have them dry.
But now for months, from morn till night,
We've basked in Sol's bright rays ;
Yet few you'll find who show delight,
Or speak in terms of praise
Of these aggravating, irritating,
Half-cremating, wrath-creating,
Mercury-raising, semi-blazing, scorching summer days.

One feels much like a jelly-fish,
Or limpet washed ashore ;
If this is getting what we wish,
We'll crave for it no more.
Each man you meet reviles the heat
In none-too-classic phrase ;
To be polite, one cannot write
Exactly what he says
Of these hot, oppressive, fierce, aggressive,
Sweat-producing, fat-reducing,
Liquid-yearning, throttle-burning, parching summer days.

O, for a trip to either pole,
With Peary, or with Scott!
Where icebergs rear their white forms tall,
And heat waves trouble not.
A month or so 'mid Arctic snow
Our drooping hearts would raise ;
And soften down the angry frown
Which everyone displays
These roasting, boiling, toasting, broiling,
Record-breaking, sweltering, baking,
Ultra-torrid, beastly horrid, melting summer days.
Guernsey 2014 



Another Guernseyman said...

This should be compulsive summer reading!

Guernsey Girl said...

Especially as I'm still in an 'ultra-torried, beastly horrid, melting summer DAZE!

clo said...

Too hot for me - literally!

Guernsey Girl said...

I've revisited this post in July 2016 - and it's even hotter now!