Sunday, August 19, 2007

A Family Historian’s Lament

I’ve been doing my family history for nearly thirty years,
Diligently tracing my illustrious forebears.
From Peterhead to Peterborough, from Pendle to Penzance,
My merry band of ancestors has led me quite a dance.

There’s cooks from Kent and guards from Gwent and chimney-sweeps from Chester.
There’s even one daft fisherman lived all his life in Leicester.
There’s no-one rich nor famous, no, not even well–to-do,
Though a second cousin twice removed once played in goal for Crewe.

I’ve haunted record offices from Gillingham to Jarrow,
The little grey cells of my mind would humble Hercule Poirot.
I’ve deciphered bad handwriting that would shame a three-year-old,
And brought the black sheep of the family back into the fold.

My bride of just three minutes I left standing in the church,
As I nipped out to the graveyard for a spot of quick research.
Eventually I found an uncle sixty years deceased-
It was far more satisfying than a silly wedding feast.

After three whole weeks of wedded bliss, my wife became despondent.
She named the Public Record Office as the co-respondent.
I didn’t even notice when she packed her bags and went-
I was looking for great granddad Dixon’s will in Stoke on Trent.

But now my thirty-year obsession’s lying in the bin.
Last Tuesday week, I heard some news that made me jack it in.
For my darling aged mother, who is not long for this earth,
Casually informed me they’d adopted me at birth!

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