Goff Morgan - Adventures In Hack Poetry

A repository for the poetry of Goff Morgan, the one and only Newport Town Poet. Goff was the only official town poet in Wales from 1997 to 2000, and since then has continued in an informal capacity to write commissioned verse for BBC Radio Wales, and others.

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Location: Newport, Gwent, United Kingdom

I trained as an actor in the early eighties, and performed my own one-man shows until 2000. I was made Newport Town Poet in 1997, and have broadcast on BBC Radio Wales since 1991. My first solo programme for Radio Wales was "Goff At The Pictures", and I've recently completed a two parter called "Goff's Guiding Principles".

Thursday, January 12, 2006

City of Cherubs

Written to replace a short "haiku" that was written during the BBC Wales live news broadcast when Newport was made a city. This poem was performed at a Jubilee Fireworks and Concert at Caerleon Campus in June 2002.

City Of Cherubs.
(After W. S. Gilbert.)

At either end of the Old Town Bridge
The City Cherubs nest.
Above a shield of red and gold,
They take their daily rest.

Their heads are doffed with yellow curls,
And dimpled is the blushing cheek,
That hints of many a saucy tale
If those metal tongues could speak,

And their smiling eyes are frosty blue,
And twinkle with hidden quips,
And a single butt from a cigarette
Hangs ever from their rosy lips.

They doze and smile the whole day through,
And when Phoebus' course is run,
A most peculiar scene takes place
When the City's clocks strike one!

With wings that whirr like a hummingbird's,
Attached `neath either ear,
Those curly heads each night take flight,
And, fluttering, disappear,

They flitter around the whole, wide world,
(`Tis one of their cherub tricks!),
And alight once more on the Town Bridge ends,
Ere the City's clocks strike six!

None are aware of these nightly flights,
And the terrible pains they take,
And no-one know of the things they've seen,
Or comparisons that they make,

But a solitary reveller, out at dawn,
And obliged to the bridge to cling,
May semi-sober, half awake,
Hear the cherubs softly sing,

"We're not a City of Angels,
A Big Apple, or a London Town,
Or Gay Paree, or Amsterdam,
Or Venice where the lions gaze down,

We're neither Rome nor Istanbul,
And Bruge may be nicer far,
But pluck the butt-end from our cherubic mouths,
And insert a large cigar!

We must adopt far loftier airs,
Our public now expects `em.
Though we don't yet rank with York or Bath,
We're nicer far than Wrexham!"

The haiku form poem, should anyone be interested, was written with a 10 minute deadline and can be found below.


Add four letters to our name
And, when we're spoken of,
Drop the exclamation mark!

Goodness, that upset some people!


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