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The Death of Yarmouth

We’ll open this new blog with a poem I wrote in 2015. It may seem like a negative start to a new site celebrating this great town, but in fact behind the initial, gloomy facade it reveals my deep and unending love for the home of my ancestors.

She rose a thousand year afore
A spit of sand, no more
The fishers came to dry their nets
On Yarmouth’s virgin shore

Then settlers staked a claim on her
A church, a town, a port
And soon she claimed the eastern coast
The Great, no afterthought

For centuries then, Old Yarmouth swelled
The Rows within the walls
The Roads were graced by naval might
The streets by Kings and Fools

The fishing fleets were Yarmouth’s blood
On Herring she grew rich
The fisher girls with knives and spite
Could gut you with a twitch

But the silver darlings tarnished
A long, long time ago
The oil-wells stopped pumping
Or found a different place to flow

The tourists found Majorca
And blue skies guaranteed
And the gold on Yarmouth’s pavements
Was soon replaced with weed

And now she stands more shabby
The not so Golden Mile
Where the landaus trot less often
And stand empty half the while

The jetty once marked proudly
Where Nelson stepped ashore
And now it’s ripped asunder
On duty nevermore

Yet still I yearn for Yarmouth
The market, front and quay
Where ever I may wander
She’s where my heart will be

Steve Smith (C) 2015


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