Richard B Gillion

On bonfire night the Ramsbottoms
Gave Albert a sparkler to wave
He'd asked for a great roaring rocket
But they thought that their money they'd save

They didn't think much to the bonfire
The flames they was fiddling and small
No clothes smoking or whiskers singeing
In fact nothing to laugh at at all

There was no great square wadge of parkin
No toffee that sticks in your hair
No taties to roast in the embers
And they'd gone baht their tea to get there

They didn't think much o't' Guy neither
Albert coulda done better himsen
Wives had put their husbands old suits out
But the men'd brought 'em back in again

But the attraction of the occasion
On the posters all stuck up on high
Was the greatest display of the fireworks
That Standard of Huddersfield supply

They'd have twenty huge Roman candles
(If the Anglican vicar didn't mind)
And Catherine wheels t' size of millstones
One per man and per woman and per child

There'd be rockets that flew on straight uppards
For over a quarter a mile
And burst with such wonderous magic
As would make e'en a misery smile

But before the display could be viewed like
A contest they said there'd be there
All t'lads and t'lasses with sparklers
Had to make patterns in t'air

Some spelt their names or drew circles
Or waved them to left and to right
But Albert he dreamt of a rocket
That would fly right up into the night

So he pulled back his arm with a will like
Half singeing his short back and sides
Flung his sparkler in a spinning parabola
Like one of them newfangled rides

It was a fair attempt at a rocket
And a sight for each patron to see
But Albert had given no thought for
The end of its tra-jec-tor-y

It were in an old wooden container
With a tarpaulin stretched o'er the top.
But when t'sparkler landed upon it
That's not where the red hot wire stopped

The display t'were meant to be a big un
To last the best part of an hour
Well t'best part of an hour was three minutes
And the whole lot went up with a roar

The rockets were meant to go 400 yards up
And explode into starlight and ash
But many folk found for t'first time in their lives
They were good at t'400 yards dash

T'Roman candles went off with such colours
Like you never have heard or have seen
And some of them headed for t'vicar
Who legged it straight over t'town green

But t' Catherine wheels were what you might call
A kind of a piece de resistance
Which made farmer Brown travel t' length of the town
Without any mot'rised assistance.

Now the lads and the lasses all started to cheer
While their parents all dived under cover
They clapped Albert on t'back and shook both his hands
As if he was some long-lost brother

The news of this firework fiasco
Travelled to neighbouring places
About as fast as the fireworks themselves
And some of the fleeing spectators

When after a time the adults emerged
Looking shaken and stirred summat rotten
The looked round about and then looked daggers drawn
At Mr and Mrs Ramsbottom

And many a child got a clip round the ear
For giving young Albert acclaim
They said thank the Lord the family concerned
Had got no more daft kids to their name

The folks all went home to their suppers
Some saying "See you next year"
And although Albert still thought it t' best display yet
He went home with a flea in his ear.

Stanley Holloway
Marriott Edgar
Standard Fireworks