I looked but couldn’t find the house where I was born,
Bulldozed down it was, the ground allscarred and torn,
Four square it had stood, welcoming all men,
The inn, home of my parents, I had wished to see again,
At six, Dad served the night-shift from the foundry near,
A tot of rum and coffee – a striped pint mug of beer,
Either was only tuppence, unless you were the “class”
Who drank their beer in the best room. At threepence a glass,
There on some mornings was put out a tray,
Cheese, bread and onions – nothing to pay.
Scotch whiskey came in kegs, pungent it was strong,
My father would mix and bottle it while I stood along,
Side of him, setting his instruments out,
Hydrometer, thermometer, weights, ladle and chart
Helpers we had, they were not far to seek,
“Live as family, all found, four shillings a week”,
Mum ran the house, in the bar did her share,
Cared for us kids, and always was there.
A close loving family with trusted and tried,
Servants who loved us, and stayed until they died.
I gazed on the site of my home once so dear,
Can’t show people round, that’s abundantly clear,
When asked for my birthplace, in truth I must state,
I was born on the Bradford New Trading Estate.