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Poetry D Jour by Beryl McMullen coming December, 2010


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Kandor
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« on: September 21, 2014, 10:36:15 AM »

No new born child gets to choose their name.
But if you're lucky you are given a good one.

Over the years I've had the pee taken out of mine many times.
The people who have told me that ''Leslie'' is a girls name? well I've lost count.
But in truth it was water off a duck's back.

Oh sure, I sometimes wanted a classier and tougher monicker, a Mills and Boon name, something like Lance Prodder, or Brett Scuttler...but hey-ho.
Leslie is it.
Leslie or Les it remains..

What always made it easier to accept, was the fact I was named after a great, great man.
The first Leslie Robinson was given his name 30 years before I was born.
Kind, tall, hard working, strong, he was everything you define a man to be.
He was someone who inspired you, better still he was blood.
He tried to kill me once.

Whilst my Mom and Dad never owned a car, Uncle Les who lived with us had several, the old Rovers, Morris Oxford's, the Austin Cambridge, none that were top of the range but they were certainly iconic.
He was working on his car one day and let the jack down while I was under it.
The tyre had my hand my trapped and I was screaming...it was easily the longest 4 seconds of my life.
That was Ashted Row.

He also bought me and my brother pop guns once, I remember him calling me and Robert up to his attic bedroom where he gave them us..it was a brilliantly sunny April day and within minutes, we were both downstairs, string and cork cut off, firing small pebbles at each other.
Uncle Les lived with me for the first 12 years of my life.
He took me camping once to Arley, I remember it mainly for the fact he pitched our tent on an Anthill.
Silly bugger.

He raced pigeons..not with much success though, his were all skanky one legged things, with barely a feather between them he could almost fly better than his pigeons.
Uncle Les died of cancer in 1983.

It was a day of contrasts....I watched my little girl being born in the morning and after a completely sleepless night, at 1pm, I headed off to Perry Barr crematorium to say goodbye to the greatest Uncle a man has ever had.
8 days before, I had gone to visit him with my brother Pete at the Taylor memorial hospital.

Cancer had taken away all of the huge man, from 6ft plus and 16st he had been reduced to a shell.
His last words to me were heartbreaking..
He looked up from his hospital bed and in a voice barely above a whisper, said ''Who are you''?

It doesn't matter Uncle Les, cancer may have made you forget me, but I'll always love and remember you.

When Mom died in her 40's, I was just a kid, and when you're a kid, anyone over 30 seems old, so when I lost my Uncle Sam, Aunt May, Uncle Robbie, Grandad, little Susie, Uncle George, and about 6 others, I consoled myself in the thought, apart from Susie, they were ''Old''
Of course they weren't.

They were ALL young...their lives should still have been ahead of them, not behind.
Hand on my heart, apart from Grandad I miss them all.

And my beautiful Uncle Les, a man whose name I am proud to carry, wasn't old at all.
Oh, he seemed it back in those far off days when I held my second little girl in my arms.

Today I become older than he was. Today is the day I outlive him..
Oh my loved Uncle Les.
You weren't old at all
xxx
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Chessy
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« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2014, 04:44:48 PM »

That is one of the most poignant posts I've ever read, thank you Les.

Incidentally my ex husband's middle name was Les and my mother's maiden name was Robinson.

I added two names to my own name - Elizabeth and Jennifer - names I would have given my daughters if I had had any and then I replaced them with the name I would like to have been called, after all, it seems funny that we go through life with the name others have given us

 Smiley
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Kandor
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« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2014, 07:17:57 PM »

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