Fishy Hereafter
'Alf Term
All Saints?
Ambiguous Intransitive
Fishy Hereafter
Here and There
Lament of the Old Choristers
Lemon Baptism
Ode to Wetwang
The Ostrich




This may be sung, if desired to the tune of “My Bonny lies over the ocean.”

I’d like to come back as a turbot,
Now that would be really quite nice!
I wouldn’t be scorched by the sunshine,
Nor slither about on the ice

I’d never have difficult breathing,
It’s certain I’d never catch cold;
Bronchitis would not be a problem
In spite of my growing quite old.

Arthritis would never assail me,
I’d never need replacement hips;
(I might get occasional headaches
From noise made by overhead ships.)

But flopping along on the bottom
Of some remote part of the sea,
With no need to go out to Safeway -
My food would come floating to me!

No paying of Council or Road Tax,
Oh that would be some small relief!
No dustbin to put out on Tuesdays -
Just floundering about on a reef.

No having to set the alarm clock,
Or think what I’ll have for my tea.
No forking out mortgage repayments -
You don’t need a house in the sea!

Some eighty long years of “religion”
Suggest what I needs must expect
When off this old planet I shuffle -
When I have become “the elect”.

I don’t fancy gazing for ever
At some thumpin’ great golden throne,
Nor plucking away at my harp-strings
On some nice white cloud on my own.

Jerusalem’s not my ambition
With nothing but honey and milk,
Nor Islam’s delightful hereafter
With houris and rivers and silk

So, if I don’t make it to heaven,
Whatever that promise may mean,
Please let me come back as a turbot.
Yours faithfully, Revd. John Green.

WJG. 01.10.03

© The Estate of William John Green, 2004