Thursday, 9 April 2015

The Graveyard Of Ale (Revisited)

My memory tells me that it was an evening much like this one: a long melancholic sunset after a bright day that still required hats and scarves. I am lost in a maze of streets trying to navigate them inside my head all of these years on. I reach a long shady road at the edge of town where the houses have locked gates, gravelled drives and carriage lamps around the doors. The cars on the drives are sculpted like space shuttles. At the end of the road there is the church of St Lawrence’s and a graveyard which kind of fitted in with a hair-brained plan hatched by a heavy set boy we called Kay.
Kay was unusual in that he was a literary man. He had read all of Sven Hassle’s books and had a taste for all things punk, The Damned in particular. His scam involved the graveyard where his Dad worked as a maintenance man. We would cut the grass one evening for his Dad and, in return, he would pay us enough money to buy a yard of ale. Each.

‘We’ll drink it Friday night in The Bull. No-one bothers to check your age in there. You just have to stay out the back in the pool room and keep your head down.’

We glided the mower machines around the graves, often scalping and burning the hitherto immaculate grass. There was this one grave with a life size angel. Her eyes followed me everywhere as I wondered why the grave needed a padlocked door and a wrought iron fence. It seemed like an elaborate security system. Who would want to go in there? Or for that matter, come out?

I can’t remember getting paid. I can’t remember The Bull.

So I reckon we must have drunk that yard of ale after all.

The only good song we could agree on. Naturally, Kay preferred the version by The Damned


  1. I love your stories....

    ...just sending a hello tonight......hope you're well my friend.....

    1. Ah, thank you Liz. Very well, thank you. Hope all's well with you...



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