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My next door neighbour had a friend who just loved to walk on the Bronte moors in Yorkshire early in the mornings, but it was very cold. So I knitted her a balaclava hat and wrote this to go with it. This is more or less how I used to speak then!


I thowt o’ Lesley up on t’moor wi nowt upon ‘er ‘ead

Gerrin cold an ‘eck knows wot, it just int reyt ah said

An so I got me needles owt, an wool as I’d left ower

From a reyt posh ganzy as I’d med afower

I ad a pattern andy like an so wi’ no palaver

I set to knitting this ‘ere ‘at, a grand warm balaclava

I ‘ope it fits yer reyt an’ keeps yer lugoles warm an’ that

An’ you don’t ‘ave to walk no more on t’Bronte’s moor bhat ‘at


I thought of Lesley upon the moor with nothing on her head

Getting cold and who knows what, it just is not right, I said

And so I got some needles out, and wool that I had left over

from a very smart cardigan that I had made before

I had a pattern close by and so with no palaver

I began to make this hat, a fine warm balaclava

I hope it fits you correctly and keeps your ears warm and that

You don´t have to walk any more on the Bronte moor without a hat

Elsie Sharpe was our dear friend and neighbour
in the Yorkshire town of Brighouse. Sadly, when she moved away
we lost touch, but we still hold fond thoughts of her in our heart.



You’re such a lovely lady

And we’ll really miss you so

We’ve made this picture for you

And it’s just to let you know

You really are quite special

In a class all of your own

We hope you’re really happy

And content in your new home

I´ve had spinal disc problems for many years.
Julia was my physio at the hospital and really helped me.


Your healing hands and cheery chat

Have perked me up when I’ve felt flat

I’m so much better, feeling new

And it is all because of you

Thanks Julia

For a number of years we holidayed in Arnside, Morecambe Bay.
We met Stanley & Alan at the bed and breakfast where we stayed.



Sometimes life can be unkind to us

With the heartaches we have to bear

But blessings can still abound for some

Like the wonderful friendship we share

Dear Alan our prayers are with you

That God will bring healing your way

Dear Stanley we pray for His blessing and strength

For all your kindness each day

It isn’t often we’re honoured to meet

With people as nice as you two

That’s why we’ve written this poem

Especially Stanley and Alan, for you

We send you our love and our prayers every day

So you are never alone

Strong in the knowledge that in God’s dear care

Your hearts always have a safe home

My mum was diagnosed with cancer in 1993, just a few weeks before her birthday. This is what I wrote for her.

November 93
You’re not just my Mum, you’re my best friend too

And I’ve shared lots of brilliant times with you

We played silly games with balloons with ears

And laughed till our faces were streaked with tears
And when I was older you stayed with me

In Devon, and we went to a show in Torquay

So many good times when I’ve been glad

And you’ve been there too when I was sad
I cried in an armchair, calling for you

Many miles separated us, but you still knew

When I was so ill and things looked grim

You stayed by my side and wouldn’t give in

With the greatest love a mother can give

You held my hand and willed me to live

You are my friend, my helper and guide

In good times and bad you’re there by my side

I love you so much and I know it’s true

I’m greatly blessed to have a Mum like you

Jack was a good workmate and friend of both mine and Tony´s for many years.


Today’s the day you got it right

No more 8-6 after tonight
And no need to wish you all the best

Because today beats all the rest
From today you are the boss

And you can choose the path to cross
Now you’ve all the time you need

To make a perfect life indeed
So thanks for your years of friendship, JP

Have a really great time, your mate, Tony G

Penny and I have been friends for over 20 years.

To Penny & Nick I wish you joy, to last your whole lives through
Good luck, good health and happiness and a measure of treasure too!
I pray you stay the best of friend, each other both adore
And most of all I pray your love will last for ever more

Tony´s elder daughter


This verse is a pleasure to write you see

Because you’ve become very special to me

You’re so much a “chip off the block” I adore

I already cared for you years before

But now that we’ve met it’s better by far

Thanks to the sweet lovely person you are

A daughter and sister and friend in one go

And really the nicest young lady I know

So it’s not just a pleasure, it’s a delight

To get my brain working so that I can write

Happy Birthday dear Susan, may joy come your way

Increasing for ever, and starting today


My brother, 50th birthday,

Sept 1994

Although I don’t see you day to day

You’re never more than a thought away

And the thoughts I have bring me such joy

Because you’re truly a “special boy”

You protected me when I was small

And became my hero when you were tall

Though life wasn’t always easy or fair

When it really mattered, you were there

You made us laugh and we’d sing along

When you put your own words to a certain song

You’d strum your guitar and sing out loud

And it was cheeky! But we were proud

For years we lived many miles apart

But you were there with me in my heart

And when we’re together, any day

It’s as if I’ve never been away

I’m so proud of you and your success

And I wish you always happiness

I love you deeply and there’s no other

Just like you, my smashing brother

For Jim´s birthday I made a pressed flower paperweight

and gave it to him with this verse: 

May the paper you have most of be the green crinkly kind

May the pleasure that life brings you take the “weight off your mind”

May life blossom like a flower and bring you joy each day

To make your life perfect, Jim, starting with today

I met my dad for the first time when I was 14. We lost touch for 20 years, then met again. He died less than ten years later

DAD 1994
I didn’t know you very well the years we were apart

But since we met I found a lot of feelings in my heart

And though we missed the little things that dads and daughters do

There’ll always be a special place within my heart for you

This was written for my friend Jean when her ex-husband was very ill.

10 ROY Sept 94
When I think about you Roy and of the life we had

I remember all the good times and forget about the bad
We shared a lot together and created life anew

The children that we love will always be a part of you

And though love changes through the years and cannot be the same

The bonds were forged so long ago and friendship will remain
So though our paths must separate and we shall be apart

There’ll always be a special place for you within my heart

Lucy is my younger sister

I think the verse says it all!

40th birthday 1995
You’re a very special person and I just want you to know

Why it is dear Lucy I have always loved you so
When you were just a little girl we’d go up to the park

And I’d make pretty daisy chains for you, just for a lark
And you would always love them and wear them in your hair

That made me feel so happy just to have you there
And it taught me all the fun of craft and joy of giving too

So from the very start, my life has been enriched by you
I used to tell you stories of a fairy – name of Nuff

With socks for little puppets – my props were pretty rough!
But you would always ask for more, and so inside me grew

A love of words and joy to share, I owe it all to you
And through the years you’ve always been a special friend to me

With half-a-crown when I was short, or a holiday by the sea
A shoulder there to cry upon when I’ve been feeling low

It really is no wonder that I love you so

At school, at work, with family, I’m very proud of you

Because you make a great success of everything you do
And so for you Dear Lucy, these blessings do I pray

Peace, contentment, happiness, to always come your way

Tony´s Uncle Gordon, a lovely man



There’s a very special person that I’m thinking of today

Someone who is strong and kind, considerate in every way

One whose skills I’ve long admired, whose company I love to share

Who shows in everything he does, his great capacity to care

In all the world, if I could choose to be one other person

Then it would have to be just you, my dearest Uncle Gordon

Tony´s niece was a beautiful person, inside and out. I loved the way she always called me "Trishy-wishy". I lost a dear and loving friend when she died at 30 years old.

JULIE 30th

You’re a very special person and we just want you to know

Why it is dear Julie that we both love you so

When you were just a little girl your uncle felt such pride

So talented and pretty, his joy he could not hide

And as the years passed by, all your qualities did grow

Until you became the lovely woman we both know

You’re such a bubbly person, full of laughter, full of love

Brains and beauty too, so many blessings from above

You give such love to others it is easy to love you

Not least because you’re beautiful on the inside too

So for you our Julie these blessings we now pray

Peace, contentment, happiness, to always come your way

Pauline is my older sister. As the verse says, I admire her and we are now best friends.

50th birthday

June 1997

When we were kids we used to fight, we just could not get on

But through the years

we both grew up,

those fratching days are gone

Now I admire the things you do, your skills with DIY

Not scared of challenge, no not you, you’d give all jobs a try

Your generous and loving heart has sometimes caused you pain

But you just pick yourself right up and let love try again

You put your loved ones first in line to show them how you care

No matter what the day or time, they know for them, you’re there

So you deserve the very best now that your birthday’s here

A day of joy to beat the rest that lasts for many a year

Tony´s daughter, wedding

SUSAN and SEAN Nov 98
Dear Susan & Sean,

my wish for you

Is happiness your

whole lives through

Good health, some wealth,

but most I pray

Your love grows deeper

day by day

I wish you joy and love and light

A future that is ever bright

With all my heart I want to say

God bless you both on your wedding day


Dearest Jesus, precious Lord

How I love to hear your Word

Daily does my spirit rise

As I reach towards the prize

In Your love my soul can rest

Strengthened now for any test

In Your Word my life will be

Ever Yours, in victory

These were the words I heard in my head during my morning prayers



Don’t you want her to be free?

Let her come and rest in Me

Then in glory shall she be

Living, in eternity


Do not grieve too much for Julie

My child can you not see

She is MY lovely daughter

I wanted her with me
It’s not for you to understand

Or know the reason why

But just to trust Me all your life

Until the day you die
Then all will be revealed to you

The truth will set you free

And you will join your loved ones here

In paradise with Me


For Susan 17.2.1999

Lord take away her bitterness

Please take away her pain

Give her Your peace inside Lord

And let her smile again

Tony´s granddaughter

Easter 99

This special greeting is coming today

For you Rebecca especially to say

May God Bless you richly now Easter is here

And may He watch over you all through the year

For Tony´s 60th birthday we went to Portugal and met a really nice couple.

Sept 99
We hope you have a lovely birthday time

Here in the Algarve, where the sun does shine

And when you’re back in Liskeard and it’s grey

Just recall the happy sunshine of today

Rosemary & Joe were a couple we met in Majorca. We had a standing joke that the more cheap tonic we drank, the richer we would become with the savings!


Oct 01
To our dear friends

Rosemary and Joe

We had to write to let you know

We read your letter, drink in hand

And what a clever plot you planned

We’ll definitely buy the “t”

And treat each can so lovingly

Adorned with letters J and R

So from our minds you’re never far

And though our meeting days

were few

We had such pleasure

being with you

So even when the last can’s gone

Deep in our hearts, you’ll linger on

We met Gregorio in Majorca - this is the English version of my first Spanish verse that I wrote for him. He was such a nice man, grieving for the loss of his young daughter.


Remember with joy the good times

Speak of me every day

Keep me always in your heart

Then we will never be apart

Tony´s Aunt Lillian was a wonderful character and a really nice lady

Dec 01
Here’s a message from Majorca

To a very nice senora

Such loving thoughts

all fly your way

To celebrate your special day

We wish the very best for you

With lots of love and laughter too

Then happiness, good health

and cheer

To stay with you

throughout the year

Another ditty to our friends.

Dec 01

Think of us when

the snowflakes fall

On our terrace in the sun

having a ball!

Savings get better – agua 104

Now improved, down to 64

Still drinking the vodka

and tonica too

We’ll soon be millionaires

(just like you)

Christmas greetings

to you from afar

Hope to see you in

Torre del Mar

George & Theresa were our first friends in Spain where we holiday in winter.


We have two friends

whose name is Wee

But we just call them G & T

They travelled far from Singapore

To settle on Spain’s sunny shore

Their home stands proud

upon a hill

With views to make your heart stand still

Each Thursday morning

they come down

And we all go around the town

We stop for churros,

crisp and sweet

It is a lovely breakfast treat

And then to Velez market fair

To purchase all our bargains there

And often, as we wander round

We look, but George

cannot be found

We lose him, then he reappears

He must have radar in his ears!

Theresa roams around the stalls

And looks at all the frilly smalls

And as we walk we laugh with glee

At all the “BB’s” we can see

Then round the todo shops

we roam

Until it’s time to go on home

Now it is time for us to part

But you’ll go with us in our heart

Our friendship is so very dear

We just can’t wait until next year


For being our family a long long way from home

For making us so welcome ‘treat it as your own’

For all the joy and laughter and all the times we share

For showing us true friendship – for you we’ll always care

Irene is a beautiful lady whom we met at the local charity shop

Lovely Irene, star of Cudeca

How we will miss you,

while we’re away

Vaya con Dios, Gott behute dich

Until we meet another day

We met Willa in Antequera, Spain and still keep in touch.

The Spanish bit is because she was trying to teach me!


Vaya con Dios,

friend from El Paso

Dios le Bendiga,

wherever you go

Abrazos y besos

around every bend

Hasta la vista,

to Willa, our friend


March 03
To our dear Rebecca, here’s a special poem for you

You look a super Brownie in your uniform so new

We like your joined up writing and the verses that you do

We bet your teacher and your mum are very proud of you
We are too! Love Granddad and Tricia

Jacquie is a very nice Christian lady and she inspired me to write this


We haven’t known you very long, But this much is quite clear

You’re a really lovely lady, And a pleasure to be near

You’re thoughtful and considerate, And care for other’s needs

The special love of God in you, Shines out in all your deeds

So this little message comes to you, Dear Jacqui, just to say

We’re sure He is rejoicing too,

On this, your Special Day

Dear friends, we miss them whether we are in Spain or UK

Sept 04
We haven’t known you very long

But we will miss you when you’re gone

Sweet Lilibeth and chatty Ray

Your company often made our day

From meeting on the Velez bus

You’re now quite special friends to us

We’ve shared some interesting times

Like burro rides in foreign climes

And ajoblanco in the sun

Oh what a day, we had such fun

You made our ‘guided walks’ so bright

We’d chat and put the world to right

Our churros now won’t be the same

Until you join us once again

We’re sorry Ray you feel the cold

But we think you are very bold

Also you are fairly witty

And Lilibeth is very pretty

A quality that you both share

You make a date and you are there

We know we can rely on you

To be on time – that’s special too

Between you both you’re quite a pair

A friendship we’ve been glad to share

We wish you well in Land of Thai

And say with love a fond goodbye

When you return to sunny Spain

We’ll pick our friendship up again

And till that day, though far apart

You’re with us always in our heart

In Christmas 2004 I had prepared little gifts for our friends and their family, so I added little verses to go with them

(gift, gold embossing powder)

They say that it’s the thought that counts

Not what you spend in large amounts

This could be frankincense you hold

Or is it Myrrh, or even gold?



(tooth flossing sticks)

She said “do it daily if you can”

But it’s not always easy for a man

So hope this helps you every day

To do it in a simpler way!



(guardian angel)

This little gift is here for you

To wish you joy

the whole year through

To keep you safe

each night and day

We all have one –

or so they say!


(chewing gum)

No crisps or junk – you will not eat

So what can you have for a treat

A nicer nibble – not naughty too

Hope you have a cheerful chew!

LAURENCE (key rings)

We’ve seen you boxing in the ring

Oh my! How do you do dat ding?!

But here are rings

we hope you’ll find

Are of a gentler, useful kind

Eric is a good friend with a wonderful tenor singing voice


70th Birthday,


The voice of an angel

with the strength of ten

He’s truly a man

unique among men

He’s wary of people,

but when he’s your friend

He’ll be loyal and true

until the end

He’s a husband,

a father, a brother too

And he’s like a brother

to me and you

He’s tough on the outer,

but deep inside

There’s an easy-hurt boy

that he tries to hide

He’s 7 and he’s 70,

a Prince among men

Happy Birthday Eric,

our special friend

This was for our friends Angus and Angela when their daughter got married

March 2005
A perfect magical day for you

When all your special dreams come true

When you dear Beverley start your life

From this day on as Robert’s wife

Your brother and your three sisters too

All wish the very best for you

And we, your loving mum and dad

Hope it’s the best day you’ve ever had

When our lovely girl “serenity”

Becomes as one with “security”

A combination that’s bound with love

And blessed for ever from above

When neice Julie got breast cancer, I truly believed that if we prayed and believed enough, she would survive. I was devastated when she died in 1997. Ultimately I came to understand that our plan isn´t always God´s. Others I wrote for Julie are within this category, but if you prefer to see them all together please see the section headed "Bereavement, special ones"


Seven years of anguish

and I’m asking again

What could I have done

that I didn’t do then?
I truly believed in the

miracle prayer

And right to the end

I expected it there
God’s word says to pray and believe it will be

But I was left asking,

“Lord, why not for me?”
I truly believed and I felt so sure

Forgive me if I made it

hurt all the more

I just didn’t know what to do, what to say

And my heart broke the last time that I walked away.

Please forgive me, Julie



We once were friends

and got on well

But that all changed,

why I cannot tell

Now when we meet

you don’t say hi

Or talk or even say goodbye

Did I do wrong? I wish you’d say

Then I could put it right some way

I think and worry through the night

Please give me a chance

to put things right
Mildred and Dane are very dear friends - my second mum and dad



On your Silver Wedding

This card comes to say

Mildred & Dané

Have a wonderful day

God Bless you and keep you

With grace from above

For many more years

Filled with joy and with love

Tony´s Auntie Hilda is a fantastic lady. She gained her M A Degree with honours at 79


You’re a very special lady and we just want you to know

Why it is dear Auntie Hilda we both love you so

You’re thoughtful and considerate each time we call or phone

Though we don’t see you very much we always feel at home

For when we visit you will make some yummy pie or cake

And we are always so impressed with the lovely things you make

You always look so very nice, you’re our very special Queen

Of elegance and talent too and you have always been

So very special to us both that we just want to say

We’ll think of you our dearest Aunt while we are far away


(birthday, neighbour)
For a lovely lady named Beryl

This card is coming to say

We´re sending you love and good wishes

On this your own special day

Whenever I watched the Richard & Judy show I was drawn to the wonderful wooden ball on their coffee table. Sadly, I never got a reply to this!


There´s something about your programme that glues me every day

It isn´t just the way you look or great things that you say

It isn´t just your super guests

that bring a lot of fun

Or your brill personalities

that make you number one

The thing that draws me to your show, I´m crazy about trees

Your wooden ball is just fantastic – can I have it please?

This was a response to a great free magazine we get when we are in Spain

It´s great to have somewhere

to let off steam

To give an opinion and

say what you mean

Or sometimes to find

an answer you seek

At other folks´problems

to have a good peek

There´s useful advice

and fresh outlook too

It´s interesting, useful

and helpful to you

So where is this feature

that beats the rest?


the Market Place best!

My friend´s birthday

LYNN´S 60th
It´s your special birthday

So what can I do

I wanted a special present for you

I thought of a bag then thought of a purse

A necklace or bracelet, my ideas just got worse

My thoughts didn´t help, as I think you can see

And you can choose something much better than me

I don´t want to spoil it or make a big hash

So hope it´s OK if I give you the cash

I wrote this for Dané to give to Mildred

Because it´s your birthday

I want you to know

Just why it is Mildred

that I love you so

My friend and companion,

my partner and guide

You make my life perfect

with you at my side

You´re the perfect mother

and great grandma too

So kind to everyone,

your loving shines through

A whizz in the kitchen,

your scones are the best

Whatever you´re cooking

just beats all the rest

With your magical touch

and fingers of green

You´ve made the best garden

ever to be seen

A fountain of wisdom,

good sense and advice

You make people happy –

you really are nice

You´re the love of my heart

and the light of my life

My Beloved Mildred,

my wonderful wife

A friend of my friend lost her brother and couldn´t come to terms with it. I wrote this as though he was talking to her.

I didn´t want to leave you

But it was my time to go

But can I tell you something

I think that you should know

My leaving left a warning

To those I left behind

So they would be protected

And a remedy be found

I know, Elaine, you miss me

And sis, I miss you too

But please accept my message

What I want you to do

I want you to remember

The good times that we had

To bring a smile back to you

Whenever you are sad

Remember I am with you

And with the children too

I´m sharing every moment

of every day with you

I want you to be happy

To live my life for me

Please do as I am asking

And from your grief be free

I love you


Wendy & John are two of our best friends

A very special Christmas

And a wonderful new year

Is wished for John & Wendy

Our friends who are so dear



Because you are a special friend

Really nice in every way

It´s such a pleasure now to send

Greetings on your special day

In this birthday card so true

The prayer we have that God will bless

Today with joy, and then for you

Each day to come, with happiness


I´d walk for miles through winter snow

Just so that I could let you know

I wouldn´t ever want to miss

A special greeting for my Sis!


Such a lovely lady its a pleasure to say

Hope you have a truly wonderful day

Everything you hope for given to you

Every special dream you have coming true

Now and always we pray each day will bring

All that you wish for - the best of everything


Feb 2011

At Venta Baja on Sunday last

Jack cooked a meal – ‘twas a fine repast

He told us that you are doing well

It made us happier than we can tell

Hope it´s not too long till you are here

Where the sun shines and the skies are clear

Till then here´s a hug from him and me

Your friends down in Torre, that´s T and T

Sunday, December 16, 2012

This is dedicated to MARION, a lovely lady who deserves all the love in the world!

Unloving Parents!
We all expect our parents to love us,
and when they don´t it´s the hardest blow

We can´t understand and it hurts to much
and the reason - we really need to know

Perhaps he´s afraid to show you his love
in case all his love is not returned

Maybe she just doesn´t know how to love
for it´s something that has to be learned

If your grandparents never showed their love
what do your parents have to pass on?

Do they know any better how to care
How will you behave when they are gone?

Perhaps they´re just horrid – some people are!
So you´re better off being apart

The only link is blood in your veins
and what matters is what´s in the heart

Remember – the problem is theirs, not yours
You´re an innocent child, don´t you see

So pity them for their failure to love
forgive them, and then set yourself free

You don’t have to tell them that you forgive
This is something to keep in your heart

Just promise that you’ll be better than they
Then your own loving life you can start

This verse was written for dear Dané - widower of Mildred, our closest and
dearest friends in UK. 

Dearest wife and mother, grandma and friend

Our love for you will have no end

We miss you so much every day

Much more than simple words can say

The time goes by and years have passed

But our love for you will always last

I am so happy to have been accepted into a Facebook secret group - my life-savers! 

2013 onwards 

Thank you grumpy grannies and moaning minnies too
Gracias amigas for all the things you do
When I´m feeling stressed out and want a good old moan
Your comments make me realise I am not alone
And when I´m feeling sad I know that I will find
Something really funny – because you are so kind
Thanks for the invitation to join the “elite few”
It really is an honour to be classed “one of you”

Written in December 2014

How can your own children be so cruel
Is there somewhere a hidden rule
That says it´s ok to hurt your dad
To be real nasty and made him sad?

You´re judge and jury – sentence carried out
And we still don´t know what it´s all about
Your dad admits that he made mistakes
But being human is all that takes
There are two sides to every story in life
And you don´t know the facts between husband and wife
But your dad protects the secrets of the past
He doesn´t want the heartbreaks to last

You want to believe what you believe to be true!
And your dad is happy to leave it to you
He loved you so much, he could not go away
Though the life that he lived caused stress every day
And then in the end, as his surgeon has said
“all that unending stress to your heart attack led”
At death´s door you dad laid in intensive care
You didn´t even bother to visit him there

Now you may say, in hurt, “he deserved what he got”
And he, in his sorrow, may say “it´s my lot”
But how many years will you punish your dad?
It was NOT the “best of both worlds” that he had
Because he felt guilty, he would never defend
But there comes a time when the blaming MUST end

For so many years we were family/friends
What changed? What caused that friendship to end?
You´re so self-righteous, ignoring his pleas
But watch out child!  There is ONE who sees
Whatever you call Him, it ends up the same
God, the Universe, “what´s in a name”
But know for a fact, this law is so true
Whatever you give out will come back to you

His first wife forgave us, we all became friends
But for you – does the animosity ever end?
Now his first love has died and the sorrow is there
He would have sent flowers to show his true care,
 but you cut him out, not a word would you say
 and you´ve said not a word to him since that sad day
He wanted to show her his final respects
A little compassion from you – he expects
But no – not a word – then he poured out his heart 
to you in a letter – nothing came from you part

So now we don´t know – is the door shut for good?  
Are you cutting him out though it´s wrong that you should
He will try one more time with his words from his heart
 and if his family is still shattered apart

Then it won´t be his fault – he has tried all his best.  
The decision is yours – let the matter then rest

I am happy to say that one daughter does keep in touch now.  March 2015

This post first appeared on THE GIFT POETRY, please read the originial post: here

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