Monthly Archives: June 2014

An Accident

A couple of weeks ago I managed to track down a copy of “Vagabond Verse”, an anthology by Thomas Henry Aggett (‘The Railway Poet’) published in 1894.  He wrote a number of poems related to Teignmouth which I’ll be posting over the coming months.  Whilst not the greatest poet of his time he produced an interesting collection of verse much of which was social commentary or observation of local and national events of his time.   This poem though reflects a different side of Aggett – some saucy humour.

An Accident
(Thomas Henry Aggett)

Our boat was floating down the Teign,
‘Twas pleasant on the water,
The boat containing only I
And somebody’s sweet daughter.
Since she had never felt love’s flame
For Cupid never sought her;
I explained to her who Ovid was,
And his art of love I taught her.

Now in our bosoms all supreme
The god of love was ruling;
I found the maid as pleased to learn,
As I to give her schooling.
But, ah! That curséd boat upset
While we were busy fooling;
And she and I with love and all
Were in the river cooling.

Want to know more?  Check out:  Thomas Aggett


Teignmouth (Causley)

Charles Causley

Charles Causley

I was about to post another Charles Causley poem when “Straight Outta’ Teignmouth” came along; then I met up with NME and the idea of the “Elegy to a Parratt” was born.  So back now to Charles Causley.

I have chosen his poem “Teignmouth” to continue the theme of general impressions about the town.  However, this one is slightly different because Causley is not writing about the Teignmouth he knew but the Teignmouth of his parents.

This touching poem about his parents’ early romance in Teignmouth has a slightly ominous twist at the end when we realise that their “date” on the seafront is right on the eve of the outbreak of World War I.


(Charles Causley)

Teignmouth, ox-red sand and scree
The pier`s long finger testing the sea

Salt-damp deck-chairs along the Den
Pierrots singing, Here we are again!

Sand-artist crimping the crocodile
Quartz for a yellow eye, shells for a smile

Punch kills the Baby the Mission sings a hymn
Through the level water the sailboats swim

My father, slick from his boots to his cap
Driving the Doctor`s pony and trap

Here`s my mother, lives next door
Strolling with a sun-shade the long blue shore

The sun and the day burn gold, burn green
August Bank Holiday, 1914

The tide runs grey; washes the world
Away, away

Want to know more?  Check out:  Charles Causley

Elegy to a Parrat

NME - mythical bird 2So I met Teignmouth street artist NME today.  He had created me a piece to put on my backpack for my coming 3 Peaks venture up Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon.

We got talking and, as I suspected, he had also created the famous mythical creature which was displayed for a few years on a gate off the main road from Bishopsteignton coming into Teignmouth.  I used to call it the Dodo but NME told me that he named it the ‘Parrat’ because it had the head of a parrot and the body of a rat.

Sadly the Parrat is no more.  It has been overpainted by an equally exquisite but very different piece of work – a surreal vision of a woman swimming underwater.  That got me thinking about the transitory nature of street art, maybe a metaphor for life, and Monty Python.  The result was ‘Elegy to a Parrat’.

Elegy to a Parrat

The Parrat is dead –
(Stress on the ‘rat’) –
Long live the Parrat.

The Parrat was no dodo, oh no no.
It was a psittacine rodent
that lived for a moment
and felt no senescence
just pure evanescence of art on the go.

The Parrat is deceased,
or at least in my dreams
it seems that it’s late,
long gone from that gate
that once was its home.

The Parrat has been bubbled –
(that’s the trouble with street art).
It’s been layered in blue,
so many coats you cannot see through
to its acrylicised grave millennia below.

The Parrat has expired,
it’s retired, no more, definitely ex,
replaced by a mermaid that’s oozing with sex
cruising sublimely cerulean depths.
She’s cool, unknowing what picture comes next.

Want to know more, see more art?  Check out these 2 Facebook sites:

NME and
Arts Anonymous

Related verse:

Cool Dudes




Straight Outta’ Teignmouth

Street art in Teignmouth

Street art in Teignmouth

I was going to post another Charles Causley poem but then this hit me yesterday.  I discovered it on the Teignmouth Oracle Facebook page – a brilliant piece of rap about Teignmouth.  I don’t know the rappers names (real) so I’ve just called them the ‘Teignmouth Rappers’.  They did this apparently as part of a school project.  I’ve posted the lyrics here but if you want to see the whole rap performance then go to the Youtube link at the end.


Straight Outta’ Teignmouth
(The Teignmouth Rappers)

[Dr. Buffet] You are now about to witness the strength of street knowledge…

[Verse One: T-Bone]

Straight outta’ Teignmouth, crazy motherfudger named T-Bone,
from the womb with 42 Chromosomes.
When I’m cheesed off, take my socks off.
Pier’s not bigger, than the one in Roscof!
Yours too, boy, if you come and see me,
come n visit t-town don’t throw litter please.
Global warming, is not very cool,
used to learn about it erryday in school.
Teachers start to mumble, belly on tha’ rumble.
Mix em and cook em’. I likes an apple crumble.
In Harbour Fish Bar cod n chips twice,
Central, Pizza House — Not very nice!
So give it up smooth!
Queue at Lloyd Maunders, puts me in a bad mood.
Here’s a pleasant rap about our town,
Muse ‘n’ ice cream is for what we’re renowned.
TQ-14 is the postcode
Stagecoach buses stay in race mode.
Me you can go toe to toe, no maybe,
I’m pickin’ up litter yea’ that’s daily.
Yo weekly, monthly and yearly,
until them little litter droppers see clearly,
that I’m down with the capital T-C-C.
Boy you can’t play with me.
So when I’m in your neighborhood, you better duck,
Coz’ T-Bone is crazy as FUDGE!
As I leave, believe I’m rough,
but when I come back, boy, I’m comin’ straight outta Teignmouth!

[Eazy-Peazy-E] Yo Riz!
[MC Riz] Whassup?
[Eazy-Peazy-E] Tell em’ where you from!

[Verse Two: MC Riz]

Straight outta’ Teignmouth, born and raised in the slums!
Now living in paradise, where we have LOADS of fun!
Skating on the seafront, and you all know this,
Teignbridge Council won’t condone this!
But I don’t give a dayum’, I’ma make my round,
in Cellars bar, where I spend my pounds!
I don’t like crime, what I do like is the beach,
Down by Teignmouth letters, with a right tasty peach.
Off to work, at The Ship Inn pub,
I find a good ol’ pussy, and I give it a rub!
On the back beach, you can watch people row,
it looks hard work, I don’t fancy a go.
You’ll probably get tired like a normal person is supposed to,
but that shows me, you’re not very good at rowing.
A crazy rower from tha’ river Teign.
Attitude legit cause’ I’m green.
MC Riz has a real sick ride,
salty-sea dog, predicting the tide!
Not the right hand cause I am the hand itself,
every time I pick a piece of fudge off the shelf!
Security is max and that’s the law.
R-I-Z spells Riz but I’m raw!
See, coz’ I ain’t no villain.
On the seafront I be chillin’!
I eat chips, one then two,
curry sauce and gravy I don’t want to choose!
Look, you might take it as a trip,
but a brother like Riz is on a gangsta tip
Straight outta Teignmouth!

[Dr. Buffet] Eazy-Peazy is his name and the boy is comin’!

[Verse Three: Eazy-Peazy-E]

Straight outta’ Teignmouth!
Is a brotha’ that’ll cuddle yo’ mother,
and make ya’ sister think I love her!
Dangerous benefit cheat raising hell,
and you know that you’re in Dawlish cause’ the smell!
See, I care to much, ‘n’ that’s the problem,
I see a seagull, but I dodge him!
But I’m smart, lay low, and creep a while,
and when I see a gull pass, I smile!
Down Dicey’s for free pool on a Monday,
‘Cause I’m not paying 50 pence on a Sunday!
Lookin’ for the one they call Peazy!
When I play Flappy Bird it tends to please me.
Conscientious! Never been on the swings in the park.
“Push me higher T-Bone!”
The harbour front is a sensation,
I like to catch a crustacean.
Give a little gust of wind and I’m jettin’,
but leave a memory no one’ll be forgettin’,
so what about the fool who ate crabs? Forget him!
You think I give a damn about a sea spider’s limb?
This is the autobiography of ‘The E’, and if you ever play with me,
you’ll get taken, to tourist information.
They’ll show you where pasties be makin’,
Straight outta’ Teignmouth!

To see the video go to:  Youtube link

Note:  in the video you’ll catch a glimpse of the street art shown at the start of this post.  For an earlier post about this check out Cool Dudes