Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Advent Poems (Dec 24th) - You Came

I am here
You came

I am here, refusing to move
You came to meet the stubborn
I screw up, never getting it right
You came to forgive the mistakes
I don’t know what it is to live – not properly
You came to teach the hopeless

I’m here
You came

I put myself first
You came as the least
I like to look important
You came in humiliation
I keep getting lost
You came to find me

I am here
And you came

I give, predominantly according to what I am likely to get in return
You gave up everything to serve those who had nothing

I avoid spending time with those I don’t deem to be worthy of my company
You became a joke
An embarrassment
A disgrace
You sacrificed a throne of power and influence to be looked down upon by those residing in gutters
You left behind royal robes to wash the feet of fishermen

I am here
You came

I insist on comfort
On popularity
On attention
I demand my rights
I focus on what I do not have
As I “sacrifice” my ten percent

You came into this world amongst cows
Covered in blood and hay and filth
You came into the cold
To a world that rejected you to barns and sheds
Even before your birth

You came

You came to a poor family
You came to a lowly and pathetic set of guests
You came to a government that feared you
You came to a law that sought to destroy you
You came as an outlaw
You came as a child
A baby
A newborn
A foetus
You came to a dangerous world
A world that already hated you
Already despised you
A world that long before had turned its back on you
A world that would spend 30 years of its history trying to physically annihilate you
And thousands more trying to get rid of you completely
You came to that world in the most vulnerable of states

And you changed everything

I am nothing
Filling that void with worthless importance
Searching for meaning
And purpose
And love

I am here
And you came

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 23rd) - Dear Santa

Dear Santa,

For Christmas this year
I would like peace for all mankind.
Place it in a box and wrap it in a bow.
Make sure, this year, everyone knows
That peace on earth is achieved.
I would really love to receive
Peace and joy and harmony
And cheer and understanding for all
Make the weak feel ten feet tall.
To the poor give wealth
To the sick give health
And make the world a better place
Let earth and sky resound with grace
Let global peace be waiting for me
When I look under the Christmas tree
Dear Santa Claus I make this plea
Yours truly, lots of love, from Me -x-

P.S. Dear Santa
Also, please do not forget
My radio controlled Meccano set
And if it’s not too high a price
A chocolate fountain would be nice
I need, of course, some garden tools
An i-pod would be pretty cool
A drill, some socks, a model train
Some DVD’s and candy canes
And if all this weighs down your sleigh
We’ll save peace for another day
I really want world hope and love
Just not instead of other stuff
So Santa let my gifts increase
And maybe next year ask for peace.

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 22nd) - If I Were a Turkey

To be sung to the tune of If I were a Rich Man from Fiddler on the Roof (I have attached the song so you can play it and sing along if you don't know it).

If I were a turkey
Gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble yum
I would run away at Christmas time
If I were a turkey bird
I’d really have to work hard
Gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble yum
Christmas day is not a festive time
If you are a big, fat turkey bird

I’d act like big fat cows or small tiny gerbils
Dogs, cats or any kind of pet
Animals that aren’t served as Christmas lunch
There would be one mad turkey just going moo
And one even madder who’s a vet
And one crazed bird who thinks he’s Captain Crunch

I’d wag my tail and purr and bark and I’d bleat and neigh
For the farm to see and hear
Anytime the farmer or wife gets near
And each loud “woof!” and “meow!” and “baaa!” and “eeaaw!”
Would land like a trumpet on the ear
As if to say “there are no turkeys here.”

If I were a turkey
Gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble yum
I would run away at Christmas time
If I were a turkey bird
Oh sage and onion stuffing
Mix it, boil it, stir it, ball it and then stick it up my bum
Christmas day is not a festive time
If you are a big, fat turkey bird

I’d hide in sheds or trees or behind other turkeys
Inside a bush or underground
Anywhere to make sure that I wasn’t seen
I would hitch-hike my way to some exotic country
Somewhere where I could not be found
Where turkeys are treated like kings and queens

The most important men in town would come to fawn on me!
They would ask me to advise them,
Like a Mother Goose the Wise.
"If you please, Sir Turkey..."
"Pardon me, Sir Turkey..."
Posing problems that would cross my farmer's eyes.
Gobble Gooooooble
Gobble Gooooooble
Gobble Gooooooble
And it won't make one bit of difference if I answer right or wrong.
When you're there, they treat you like a god.

If I were there, I'd have the time that I lack
To sit in the sun all day and tan.
And made to feel that I stood at ten feet tall
And at Christmas they’d serve the finest of foods
And I am not on the menu plan.
And that would be the sweetest thing of all.

If I were a turkey
Gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble yum
All day long I’d gobble gobble yum
If I were a turkey bird
I’d really have to work hard
Gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble gobble yum
There are things I never could avoid
Christmas time my neck would feel a void
That is why I’m vastly overjoyed
That I’m not a turkey bird

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 21st) - My Last Mince Pie

I hate mince pies, mince pies suck
The chewy, slimy, sickly mess
One more pie I swear I’ll chuck
I couldn’t like those mince pies less

All month long I’ve had to munch
Each day and every night
Pies for breakfast, pies for lunch
I cannot take another bite

I’m full, I’m done, I’m going to die
My head and guts are reeling
As every chew of every pieGets less and less appealing

So burn and destroy all supplies
I’m sick to death of fresh mince pies

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 20th) - Joseph Limerick

There was a young man named Joseph
Who, um…. darnit!

Advent Poems (Dec 19th) - Carol Singers (Part 4)

Sitting alone in my flat in the cold
People I loved have now left
Family and friends walked out long ago
Now I’m anxious, depressed and bereft

Everything I’ve ever believed in was false
All those I trusted told lies
There is no humanity, love has no pulse
And kindliness dwindles and dies

Today I discovered that nothing is real
Today marked the back-breaking straw
Today put an end to every ideal
Today my heart learnt to close doors

Tonight is the night that all of this ends
Tonight I escape from the pain
Tonight I respond to a world that pretends
Tonight I will crumble in vain

I slowly and cautiously get to my feet
And pray for a reason to fight
When suddenly, quietly, out from the street
Some soft voices sing “Silent Night”

I peer through my curtains and smile as I see
Ten people with mince pies and wine
They grin and they laugh as they sing out of key
Their quivering voices divine

They walk down the road and they sing outside drives
In their jubilant, Christmas time quest
I sit and I listen and keep closing my eyes
As I silently make my requests

After an hour, I hear my bell ring
I hold my breath, hoping they’ll pass
Not wanting to show them this mess that I’m in
So I freeze as I peer through the glass

They leave and I see them try a few more
Who seem to think that it’s a con
Maybe I should have just opened the door
But when I look back they are gone

I wish I had joined them and not stayed and moped
I wish I had worked to spread cheer
But as I reflect, I am filled with the hope
That maybe I’ll see them next year

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 18th) - Carol Singers (Part 3)

We sing for an hour then slowly head home
Heads down and feeling dejected
Ten people united in feeling alone
In not getting what was expected

The smiles have faded, the laughter has stopped
The mince pies and mulled wine have gone cold
Our mission to brighten up Christmas has flopped
I guess Christmas is getting too old

They’ve all stopped believing that people are nice
So nobody answers the door
People assume it must come at a price
That we’re scouting and asking for more

Maybe our seasonal plan was naïve
In a world that will always suspect
Perhaps it was foolishness had us believe
That carols would have an affect

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 17th) - Carol Singers (Part 2)

Relaxing at home with a beer
These moments of calm are in danger
When suddenly what do I hear
Songs of “Away in a Manger”

I jump up to switch off the lights
So when they knock, I can ignore
But I’m too late and they catch sight
Of my frame through the glass in the door

They tell me they don’t want my money
Which instantly makes me suspect
These guys are up to something funny
Recruiting for some kind of sect

I make my excuse and they make their retreat
I can’t help a slight twinge of shame
I peer out my window and all down the street
The reactions are mostly the same

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Advent Poems (Dec 16th) - Carol Singers (Part 1)

Wrapped up, gloved and excited
Traditional songbooks in hand
Ten people together, united
In our seasonal holiday plan

Tonight we are going to sing
Carol’s of Jesus’ birth
Our joyful endeavour to bring
A blessing to our bit of earth

We’re handing out free, fresh mince pies
And non-alcoholic mulled wine
To neighbours and cold passers-by
To brighten up their Christmas time

So here we stand, cold and aflame
Our songbooks out, ready to start
We silently whisper one name
As we sing from the depths of our hearts

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 15th) - Gateway FM

Click here for a full explanation as to why this poem came to be:
Sitting in the studio
Matt and Ruth are a gem
From the Basildon steeple to all of three people
It’s Christmas on Gateway FM

With music across the decades
And local news from the shops
We’re here until three. There’s a big walking tree
He’s live and not likely to stop

Ruth didn’t get the good mic
Because she turned up quite late
The gremlins were lurking, the music stopped working
But now it’s all back and it’s great

So this is my day on the radio
Let’s hope it happens again
The tinsel is glistening but no one is listening
This Christmas on Gateway FM

Advent Poems (Dec 14th) - Herod Limerick

There was an old man who was king
Who did a peculiar thing
He ordered all boys
Under two be destroyed
Just so king could then cling to his bling

Advent Poems (Dec 13th) - Shepherd Limerick

There was a young man called Phillipe
Whose job was to look after sheep
One night he looked higher
To a heavenly choir
And ran waking peeps from their sleep

Friday, December 12, 2008

Advent Poems (Dec 12th) - Advent Songs

Advent poems and advent songs
Advent solos, advent throngs
Losing patience, gaining strength
Holding now and then at length

We pause and as we rest we toil
Bringing silence to the boil
Longing still to be connected
To something more than we expected

Making noise and celebration
In active anticipation
Working hard in quiet reflection
Waiting for divine detection

Our spirits lift and we’re aware
For what it is we must prepare
And while we wait, we scrape along
Singing joyful advent songs

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Advent Poems (Dec 11th) - Radio Times

As that beautiful day approaches
And the anticipation climbs
There is always one thing that makes my heart sing
It’s the Christmas Radio Times

With all of that seasonal telly
There is only one source you can trust
It’s detailed and forthright and lasts for a fortnight
The Radio Times is a must

With all of its info on programmes and films
And its practical family guide
Through the Times I’ll be thumbing. I’ll know just what’s coming
This Christmas I’m staying inside

So bring on those holiday listings
From now to the new year’s eve chimes
No matter what’s aired, I’ll know, I’m prepared
With my Christmas Radio Times

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 10th) - The Retailer's Christmas

Watching millions and millions peruse the shelves
In my suited up Christmas-themed store
Spending their money and losing themselves
In a world that will always want more

Oh how I love the consumers of Yule
Those wide-eyed, excited young shoppers
A young spender’s cash is a retailer’s fuel
Their notes, their coins and their coppers

I love it, I love it, the closer it gets
The last minute panic and rush
Well meaning mothers working up debts
In that purchase crazed, pre-Christmas crush

The spin and ker-ching of the roll in the till
The pile-up of notes in the bank
The wallets are emptied, the shopping bags filled
And who do we have to thank?

This wonderful season of products and things
Of marketing, posters and ads
Reminding the public what joy it can bring
To fill up your stockings with fads

Never allow the silence to stir
Drown out the peace with a cry
Spin Christmas into a spend-crazy blur
And keep them believing the lie

“The value of love is the value of cash
A man without love is a thrift
The more that one loves, the more one should dash
The more one should spend on a gift”

Force them to buy, remove their autonomy
Make Christmas spend without reason
The loss of the spirit boosts the economy
God bless the retailer’s season

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 9th) - Wise Men Limerick

This is the tale of some men
Whose wisdom exceeded them when
They followed a star
Which took them quite far
And led them to Jesus – Amen!

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 8th) - The Innkeeper's Limerick

There was an innkeeper named Ned
Who offered some hope when he said
You’ve taken too long
The birthing suites gone
But I know of a beautiful shed

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 7th) - Santa

This poem, of course, refers to Santa Clause the movie starring Tim Allen as opposed to Santa Claus the Christmas character because, as we all know, that would be inaccurate and stupid.



Advent Poems (Dec 6th) - My First Mince Pie

My first mince pie and I’m in heaven
The flaky, crumbly, mincemeat bliss
Give me the choice, I’d eat eleven
Sweet pastry it doesn’t get better than this

Serve it hot or serve it cold
I do not care just serve it
If someone’s selling, deem it sold
If I’m not there reserve it

Clotted/double/single cream
I’m a mince pie eating fool
I go to bed to mince pie dreams
If only it were always Yule

So stuff me full, I’ll still surmise
I’ll never tire of fresh mince pies

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Friday, December 05, 2008

Advent Poems (Dec 5th) - Jack's Limerick

Due to heavy public criticism, this poem has been adapted so that the final line scans "better".  For the original (and, I would say, superior) poem, please see here.

This is the story of Jack
Whose energy started to lack
See Jack was a donkey
Whose legs were quite wonky
With a pregnant girl sat on his back

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Advent Poems (Dec 4th) - Christmas Trees

Shower needles
Make mess
Have to be watered
Need to be thrown away!
Like spoilt children
They always demand attention
Insisting they be kept and tended to.
But I love real Christmas trees
They make a room smell of Christmas
They bring life to a warmly decorated lounge
They change the air, the atmosphere
They turn a neglected corner into a centre piece
They become an extra seasonal character to the family
And for this reason
I’ll always love
Real trees

Keep going
Do not change
They are practical
Can be used year after year
They want for nothing
They effect their job effortlessly
Spending summer months in the attic
They wait for next year patiently
They do not intrude on the atmosphere
Simply offer visual stimulus for those who look
In their manufactured shades of green.
They are clean, cost effective, strong and plastic
Nothing can be more reliable than a fake Christmas tree
And for this reason
I’ll always use
Fake trees

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Advent Poems (Dec 3rd) - The Christmas Lesson

They wait
Wide eyed and expectant
In a season where good things come
From the darkest places

They know
From the dull comes excitement
From frowns comes laughter
And soon those who oppressed and restricted
Will join and smile and encourage and play.

He stands
Before them and smiles
Allowing their hope to grow
Filling their hearts.
Behind their eyes he can see it
A joy unmistakable
Leaning forward
Ready to breakout across their faces with one word:


They smile,
They laugh,
They sigh with relief
Their brains switch off and their hearts engage
A veil dissipates
The room brightens

There will be no writing today
No marks
No assessments
No judgement
They know this subject
They do it well
This is their speciality

“What is Christmas?”

Hands shoot up,
Stretching to the ceiling
Like vines to the sun
Answers explode:
They laugh

He stops
He looks
He asks

“What about Jesus?”

They pause
They think
They consider
They discuss

The boring nativity
The children’s play
The distraction from what’s really important


They continue

They ask
They answer
They learn
They teach

The importance of a childish tale
The relevance of an old fable
The excitement of a dull story
So much knowledge to be acquired from that already known
No separation but a solid synthesis
Everything they felt
And believed
And knew
Confirmed by what has been procured

They leave
Affirmed in their faith of what is pure and perfect and real

He stays
Inspired, refreshed and challenged
He sits and he waits
Wide eyed and expectant
The only student in the class

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Advent Poems (Dec 2nd) - Mary Limerick

There was a young girl named Mary
Whose encounter with God made her wary
He said she’d give birth
To the saviour of earth
I think I’d have found that quite scary

Monday, December 01, 2008

Advent Poems (Dec 1st) - Advent Calendars

I love advent – advent calendars
The chocolaty, picture based, countdown challengers
I love opening advent doors
Advent windows, advent drawers

December first and I start counting
Christmas is coming, the excitements mounting
Put up the tinsel, break out the lights
Stockings are great but you’ll get more in tights

Keep shopping, no stopping it all starts here
December the first – it’s commercial cheer
The presents, the trees, the food – it’s great
Putting off budgets and putting on weight

I’m already singing, I’m already Dancing
And Dashing and Blitzing and Donning and Prancing
It’s time to join throngs of festive scavengers
And it all starts here with advent calendars

Copyright © 2007 Glyn Harries