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".

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Stolen Days

I chose to celebrate September 3rd 1752 because it was a day that never happened. It, and ten other days, were stripped out of the calendar when Britain finally got around to adopting the Gregorian calendar. The calendar had be adopted throughout Europe as early as the 1580's, but GB stuck it out, and ended up losing another day in consequence.

The story that people rioted in the streets, demanding the return of their eleven days is now believed to be apocryphal, but if they didn't then there's still time to do so today! They've got to be there somewhere, and wouldn't it be nice to get them back. Every time you'd had a rotten day, you could have eleven goes at having it again.

This poem was broadcast on Roy's Rarebits on BBC radio Wales on September 3 2006.

Stolen Days

Lined up in a row,
Eleven days are owed us,
Eleven unshaped temporal nuggets,
Eleven shining dayfuls of raw potential
For extra opportunities;

Each and every one a chance
For a second chance,
For one more throw of the dice,
For another stab at it,
To lap it up or muck it up;

Additional batches of possibilities
To say what you'd wished you'd said,
To tell it as it is,
To let it all come out,
Or deal with it when it did;

Who wouldn't grasp at these occasions,
Or choose to leave fondness unspoken,
Or harsh words unremedied,
Or final partings hurried through and cursory
When you could have another day?

Another day, and another,
When the hammer doesn't slip,
When the bus comes on time,
When your mouth doesn't open
And the wrong words tumble out!

They say they took to the streets when they were taken
And we should do so now,
And march, fervently, to Greenwich (possibly)
And demand back from the grasping calendar of Gregory
Eleven stolen days.


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