Michael Rosen's Coldham's Common Poem

Aug 18, 2016, 10:39 AM
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Poem devised collaboratively with Helen Weinstein who briefed Michael Rosen about the area and the local history & you can find the resources for parents and teachers about Coldham's Common, Coprolite mining and more on our website http://www.creatingmycambridge.com/songs-creative/resources/local-history-topics

MICHAEL ROSEN'S COLDHAM'S COMMON POEM

The years pass

and the grass grows,

the grass grows over

the years disappear...

Underground

clues are found.

Listen! And we can hear

across a hundred million years...

The sound of the sea

where now there’s a tree;

giant lizards in the sky

wide wings take them high

swooping on fish in the waves

gliding over rocks and caves

flapping and stopping

leaving their droppings

for millions of years

right here, just here.

The years pass

and the grass grows,

the grass grows over

the years disappear.

What were droppings and bone

turn to stone

deep down, day and night

silent, slow, out of sight

vast beyond measure

a secret treasure

deep in the ground

waiting to be found.

Up above people come and go

their pigs and cows moving slow

free to graze upon the ground

until a Lord puts fences round:

nowhere for the pigs and cows,

and with the people starving now

one Jack o’ the Style leads a revolt

with a hundred others they call a halt

break the fences and burst back through

with pigs and cows, their hens and ewes.

The years pass

and the grass grows,

the grass grows over

the years disappear.

One John Ball from Barnwell way

beneath the grass, said there lay

some sort o’ magical stuff

the which - if ye had enough,

mixed it right, made it just so,

it’d make any plant grow

and in a matter of just a few years

thousands came and dug right here.

Very few knew that all the while

they were free to do so, ‘cos of Jack o’ the Style

very few knew that the reason why

was down to lizards in the sky

for millions of years, leaving behind

what many years later, others would find.

The years pass

and the grass grows,

the grass grows over

the years disappear

and here we are:

we stand right here.

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