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Ole Tom
An observation in an English Essex Pub

J Henry Foster
Ole’Tom ee’sat in the corner-ee-did

By that there ole’picture’ont’wall.

Sat there ee’did every day of is’life

Wen ‘is ‘misses’ allowed im’at’all.

Part of the furniture-folks would say.

Wiv’is’glass of ale’n’is’fag.

But the tales wot ee’told

Wer times of the old,

Wer the best that ee’ever’ad.

Tuppance ‘a ‘pint ‘a ‘good strong ale,

A tanner a packet of fags,

A chunk’a’good cheese-n’onion’n’bread,

An a game’a ‘shove’apney-with lad’s.

Orse’s’n’traps that’s all that there wer,

So a good pair’a legs, did elp.

“Money was scarce” - so Tom would say

“Yer pockets soon empty when felt”

But work they ,did-sixty hours a week.

Muck cart’n’turning of hay,

Milking ole’cows’n’feeding sows

Then under cold tap-end of day.

Ee-enjoyed’is pint –Ole Tom ee’did.

An is yarns were enjoyed by all.

But now old Toms gone-no one to replace

Cept the memories ee’left’wiv us all.

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