Saturday, 22 May 2010

My First Time

We’ve been sorting out the loft and I found the school English literature magazine from nineteen seventy cough-cough and it contains my very first published piece.

Would you like to read it?

Of course you wouldn’t, but I’m going to put it on here anyway.

It’s called A Bundle of Dynamite and it was about my dog Cassie who lived to be seventeen and was the best mate a girl ever had.

He sits quite still upon the chair,
A bundle of dynamite covered in hair,
Two bright brown eyes, a velvet nose,
What will he do next? Goodness knows.
His ears prick up; there’s a tap at the door,
The bundle of dynamite hits the floor,
“Watch out!” cries Mum. “It’s only Dad.”
He gives a bark. His tail does wag.

Peace for a while. His restless spirit is still,
Will he come for a walk? I think he will,
I pick up his lead and rattle the chain,
The bundle of dynamite’s active again.
Now he is tired, not dynamite now,
He’s even too sleepy to say “Bow wow”.

Oh come on! I heard you groan from here. I was just a kid and I’ve never claimed to be a poet, but it was my first time – well if you don’t count when my friend Malc and I did a community newsletter and tried to flog it to the neighbours . . . following so hot on the heels of the perfume incident it was no wonder we got into trouble really. Happy days.

And please go along to the Gentle Footprints blog and read my lovely friend (and very talented writer) Lyn Fountain’s posts which start today. And buy the book!


  1. Once a dog lover, always a dog lover! How wonderful to still have your first published piece.

  2. That's a great poem, Teresa, as it comes from the heart. You were obviously very fond of that lovely dog.

    Julie xx

  3. If I had written that, as a kid, I'd be very proud of it. From the heart, no messing, you wrote what you saw and felt. In my book, that's the key to writing poetry.

  4. A fine poem, Teresa!

    My first published piece was also a poem, in Jackie magazine, when I was about twelve or thirteen. I haven't got a copy and can only remember the gist of it, but that is enough to make me cringe. Apparently 'love is like a swan', though in what way I can no longer remember or imagine!

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  6. Aah - lovely poem and photo. I also like the 1970s style carpet!

  7. It's a lovely poem, full of heart.

    Like Joanne, I noticed the carpet and feel nostalgic for the seventies.

  8. Funnily enough my first published piece was a poem in Judy comic aged 11. Back then I was happy rhyming away, but as I got older I got the feeling it wasn't considered 'proper' poetry (unless you were Pam Ayres)and gave it up!

    I enjoyed yours - loved the photo too :o)

  9. It was a nice surprise to find it, David. I’m amazed at just how much treasure I’ve found in the loft boxes – including Cassie’s first dog licence!

    I loved him to bits, Julie. I first saw him when he was just a couple of days old. He used to sleep in my bed, listen to all my secrets and he lived long enough to play with two of my kids. I was with him at the end and it was one of the saddest moments of my life.

    Thank you so much Martin – that means such a lot coming from someone who writes such beautiful poetry.

    What a shame you don’t have a copy, Bernadette. I used to love Jackie – it was one of my favourite magazines (all those lovely posters adorning my bedroom walls). I think that sounds perfectly lovely – love is like a swan!

    Thank you Joanne! Ah, the carpet – it was so fantastic when my mum got it to replace the old plain red one.

    Thank you Joanna – the 70s was a very colourful decade wasn’t it. I remember the first carpet I bought just before we got married – purple and turquoise swirls on a black background – I thought it was the height of sophistication!!

    Judy was another favourite of mine, Karen! Have you still got the one with your poem in?

  10. Don't know anything about poetry but not only did I notice the carpet I think I recognise the display cabinet in the background. Was it a flatpack from Woolies?

  11. I have no idea, Keith - probably! My mum used to keep her LPs in there with her record player on the top.

  12. Aw, that's a lovely poem - and love the photo, too.

    I've kept a local Rainbows magazine with a poem my daughter wrote when she was 6. She's not at all interested in it now, but I hope, one day, she'll be pleased.


  13. I'm sure she will, Suzanne - my mum had kept the old school magazine for me and I was so pleased when it eventually came to light after all those years x

  14. Lovely evocative poem, Teresa. My first dog was 'Lucie' a bright-eyed waggy-tailed little cairn terrier. She was a present from my parents for my 13th birthday.

    Lucie went everywhere with me - I even used to take her on my bike in a basket fixed on the front. She loved it. My mum ("I'm not really a doggy person") cried so much when I got married and left home with Lucie, I had to give her back to mum and dad and get myself a puppy!

  15. I think I may have to 'come out' and publish my first poem. It was about our cat, a ginger and white one called Sandy! The exercise book it's written in is covered in tearstains which plopped onto it after poor Sandy died.

  16. I don't know where the replies I put on here went - I've been hacked so it might be something to do with that - bah!

    I wasn't sure about it coming from Woolies, Keith - it may well have done.

    Your daughter will thank you for keeping it in the future, Suzanne x

    Lucie sounds lovely Annieye - I had to leave Cassie behind when I got married but I used to go back in my lunch hour every day to take him out.

    That's so sad, hydra. The tearstains.