Willie Brinn

 

By Phil Carradice(from Issue 14)

       We all knew Willie Brinn;

       a constant in our lives,
       yodelling his way along the road
       or swaggering a tuneless whistle
       across the hill. This idiot boy
       who squatted at the top end of our street
       where town and country met,
       easy in either environment.

       We pitied him, his childish ways,
       prodding at the cowpats with a stick,
       roaring his demented ditties to the stars.
       We pointed, laughed behind our hands.
       Willie smiled and whistled on, rolling
       like a schooner, out of view.

       Not for him our worries
       about Castro and the Bay of Pigs,
       the Cold War tensions that might
       some day blow into a hurricane
       of whirlwind terror.

       Frank Ifield's latest hit
       was more the fare
       of Willie's addled brain.

       And so we worried; Willie sang
       "The Wayward Wind" or "I Remember You,"
       as happy as the day was long.

       Oh yes, we all knew Willie Brinn.
       But only now, with hindsight,
       can we admit how much
       we envied him.