SONGS AND POEMS

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Charlotte Peters – Rock, a Cheshire poet-performer and songwriter- singer, produced songs and poems based on her research both locally and nationally. Charlotte attended some previous events to get inspiration for her work, which is not only written but performed. Here are some examples of her work.


They say it’ll finish by Christmas
With everything over and done
They say we won’t get there til Christmas
And we’ll be too late – We’ll have won

The war will all be over – we’ll have missed it
The war will all be settled up and gone
We took the old King’s shilling – We enlisted
So we could go to battle with the Hun

They say it’ll finish by Christmas
With everything over and done
They say we won’t get there til Christmas
And we’ll be too late – We’ll have won

We’re marching round the square in deepest Cheshire
We’re marching up the hill and down the lane
We haven’t seen a gun – and where’s the danger
But next week – so they say – we’re on the train

They say it’ll finish by Christmas
With everything over and done
They say we won’t get there til Christmas
And we’ll be too late – We’ll have won

I joined up with ma brothers – Tom and Johnnie
An half the street an several lads wi know
An Mam fetched back mi little brother Ronnie
Who tried to join up with us and to go

They say it’ll finish by Christmas
With everything over and done
They say we won’t get there til Christmas
And we’ll be too late – We’ll have won

The war will all be over – we’ll have missed it
The war will all be settled up and gone
We took the old King’s shilling – We enlisted
So we could go to battle with the Hun

They say it’ll finish by Christmas
With everything over and done
They say we won’t get there til Christmas
And we’ll be too late – We’ll have won

We’re marching round the square in deepest Cheshire
We’re marching up the hill and down the lane
We haven’t seen a gun – and where’s the danger
But next week – so they say – we’re on the train

They say it’ll finish by Christmas
With everything over and done
They say we won’t get there til Christmas
And we’ll be too late – We’ll have won

I joined up with ma brothers – Tom and Johnnie
An half the street an several lads wi know
An Mam fetched back mi little brother Ronnie
Who tried to join up with us and to go

They say it’ll finish by Christmas
With everything over and done
They say we won’t get there til Christmas
And we’ll be too late – We’ll have won

{tab=Battlefield Toys}
We look back now along the years
To where the century is met
And see – we think we understand
The hope – the loss – the grief – the tears
But we don’t understand it yet

We find the photographs we kept
When granddad or great-granddad died
We look – and think we understand
The bleakness where our forebears stepped
Look through – and don’t be satisfied

We need to find the single fact
To set in its own history
Not cease – until we understand
Struck down by one act that we lacked
Make life from then return to be

Electric – strong – our right and will
Compares in no small part to then
Yet minds – caught up – can’t understand
How young men then were brought to kill
And – fatalist – were dying when

With carnal screams the mortars rained
To slaughter bloodied – buried  – boys
In death they did not understand
In life they did as they were trained
Those little men they used as toys.

{tab=Harvest Time}
Bait time – leaning on the stooks
Whimbrel wade along the shore
They thought of what this war would be
And heard the hum and throb in air
As pilots – practicing their skills
Put fear in skylarks hovering

This harvest drew men to the field
Who soon would claim the Khaki cloth
To travel where they’d not before
Considered in their life – But war
Makes men lay down their hooks and scythes
To fit the spaces – battling

And whether on a hill or trench
Or on the sea or in the air
They’re sent – they do as there is need
To serve – to kill – to live – and die
Far from their harvest or their seed
For those who take their suffering

A hundred years or so go by
Yet still the field is harvested
And whimbrel wade along the shore
Those honest workers long gone now
Their blood used up their lives laid by
Inconsequentially their days were dying

{tab=Middlewich World War 1}

Marchin off ter war mi lads
A fine upstanding bunch yer are
Marchin off to war – now get
Them shoulders up an back

The call as cum to serve yer King an country
An all the farms an works are in a quand’ry
Dunt leave that lorry body on the gantry

ch

Yer big an brave – dunt lissen ter yer Muther
Yer used ter workin ard in any weather
Cum on mi lads – jus sign up all together

ch

Eres yer docket fur the train that’s leavin
Kiss yer girl – cum on an old the shovin
Practicin yer marchin not yer lovin

ch

Overseas before yer know – mi sailors
Old yer sickness – eat yer grease yer foulers
Worse than this ull soon be yours – yer wailers

ch

Weeks away an silences an worry
Ow ahr lads were marched off in a flurry
Nah thur comin omeward – thurs no urry

ch

John’s gon blind an Little Eddie’s wailin
Tom an Rob an Arry’s all ome limpin
Most of ahr lads brought back in a coffin

ch

See the empty fields an read the roll call
Widders – orphans – family by the church wall
Never loved these lads to see thur youth fall.

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