Ode to an Oggie

The venerable oggie

The venerable oggie

And so at last to Keats.

I have been told that a number of poems have been written about Keats. Already I have posted the tributes from Charles Causley and Wilfred Owen. In the following selection I have tried to include those which also refer to Teignmouth or the time that he spent here.

This first poem may be a little tongue-in-cheek but then expect some more serious stuff! It comes from an article in the Torquay Herald Express from 2010. The columnist apparently had been called 15 years earlier by the landlord of the Ferry Boat Inn in Shaldon. The story was that the landlord had discovered in the beer cellar of the Inn a previously unknown poem by John Keats entitled simply ‘Ode to an Oggie’ and yer tis.

Ode to an Oggie
(attributed to John Keats)

Thou still unravished triumph of kitchen art,
Foster child of Appetite and oven skill,
Gourmet crafted who canst thus impart
A flavoursome tingle to the fast food thrill.
What warm-wreathed phantoms haunt thy shape
Of meat and potatoes, or both,
In cafe or high class bakery?
What food for gods are these?
What weight watchers loth?
What trad pursuit? What chances to escape
Big Mac and Dunkin Do-nut tyranny?
Fish and chips are great but Devon pasties
Are greater; therefore, ye good cooks, bake on,
Not for clowns engrossed in video nasties,
But for redsoil locals that take on
The mantle of yesterday’s oggie elite.
Thy aroma is Devon to the core,
Bold dispenser of tastebud bliss,
All the fragrance of the morning street.
I could wish for nothing more
Than thy shortcrust or flaky kiss.

To see the original article go to:

Torquay Herald Express …..


4 thoughts on “Ode to an Oggie

  1. Viv Wilson

    Great Big Joke methings Do you know Neil…despite the perfect timing of my article re Mackworth Praed in last week’s T PistI heard not a single word of appreciation from this great crowd of Teignmouth poetry loversBah Humbug I say! RegardsViv

    Date: Sun, 29 Mar 2015 21:13:31 +0000 To: vivwilsonteignmouth@hotmail.co.uk

    1. pherecrates1 Post author

      Hi Viv. Mackworth Praed will definitely feature in my poetry walk in a few weeks time – you might like to join us to say a few words about the man himself?

  2. pherecrates1 Post author

    Yes Viv (2!) the reference to Big Mac gives it away I suppose unless of course Keats was referring to the other Teignmouth poet Viv(1) mentioned above – ‘Mac’kworth Praed!!


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