Scrap of paper in hand ,fearless in his ratty kilt 6 years old toothless smile , in his gumboots he strode up the aisle.Chestnut hair stuck in tufts on his little head. It was his first day of school and the first poem he had ever read.In a voice bigger than he was Godfrey read- Dad Was DRUNK when I was born that is why MY NAME IS GODFREY- and I do not like BEETS Hooray for Me….His teacher threw a piece of chalk it hit his ear and shattered on the floor . Godfrey never read his poetry in front of his class any more.It was pure unfiltered Godfrey not cheek or sass, and he was sent to join me Beatrice Wambe,down the basement in Mrs Kromplak’s Special Class.
40 years and many miles and poems later…..I had feeling upon waking of something odd that day. There was more noise than usual outside.Amid early morning crowing and hungry donkeys bray, my Belgian filly Amber stood still in her paddock, she was staring off at something up the road far away.My pets were annoyed with me getting up so late,and as I fumbled out the door there stood Godfrey at my gate.He was laughing at the house painted Horse-Slobber-Green ,the trim still PUCE touched up a time or two over the years.(I had never heard the end of it from his late Uncle Lou) Godfrey had come home.
We had farm chores and much catching up to do.Godfrey,same chipped tooth,scruffy kilt; plaid suitcase. Same old waifish charm.Dear silly face. I showed him the photo of a photo of a painting that hung above my fireplace.He told me yes I recall who painted this-Mary Smith into the Outback like many she went there to disappear.But I have not a clue who sent it here.So the mystery remained and to my joy so did Godfrey,and we picked like the ragamuffins we used to be, Home to stay if it was fine for me. We visited Miss Commorford the nurse retired,(she still spits)Maria Tillapia going strong as always selling fish.We saw Tenbrooks Smythe The Third and his Grandson Tenbrooks the Fith.We took Whiskey to Mrs Kromplak ancient but delighted with her flask in the Old Ladies Home,to talk of Clementine I left the two alone.
His Ma and sister Alice had moved south to East Tuckware, we planned to journey north to visit there.As you will learn Godfrey had his quirks and during the day outside is where he slept the best.On this day he was tired and felt a slight wheeze in his chest.It was under the apple trees of Obovus, near the Ponies graves he lay down to rest…twas there I found him..
..I once tore a sack of goat feed the pellets spreading across the grass, far and wide.Like the memories that spilled forth that night as I knelt by Godfrey’s side .Fearless in his kilt scrap of paper in hand. Beatrice, dear friend, feeling Lurgy he had wrote-Beatrice if by chance I croak,and return before you do to the great round- give to Worzel in Canada this book of wisdoms and scatter me here at Sonsie Farm across the ground.Anything left at the bottom of the jar please scatter off the dock where ALICE threw me in the sea as a baby. Dance,Laugh sing and have a big Mangold-WURZEL-Hurl- For I Do NOT like BEETS- Hooray for all I have loved- Hooray for me and you-Farewell From Godfrey