A trip to Wells Cathedral

We went to Wells Cathedral on a rainy, windy day

In March there’s nothing open here, at least ‘till Mothers Day

And Somerset’s a lovely place but everything is shut

Unless you want to brave the shops with men who only “tut”

The four of us ran to the car and quickly shut the doors

We sat and watched and contemplated going back indoors

We all agreed it might clear up before we got to Wells

And anyhow we’d like to hear the choir and the bells

The journey took us half an hour – it wasn’t very far

And sure enough the rain had stopped before we parked the car

We walked along the High Street and the wind played with our hair

“A coffee would be nice,” Mum said, “the shop’s just over there.”

We ventured in and found a table in the window’s bay

The waitress brought the menu then and Dad said he would pay

Two coffees, teas, a Ploughman’s and some sticky toffee cake

We ate our fill, then Dad said, “Hurry up for goodness sake.”

“The choir sings at three o’clock – it’s almost half past two!”

He paid the bill while Mum and I went off to find the loo

The wind and rain had come again and caused us all to march

We saw the vast Cathedral as we hurried through the arch

Inside the atmosphere was still and quiet and serene

The entrance fee ‘donations’ had increased since last we’d been

We spoke in whispered undertones and wandered slowly round

And reverently walked upon the tombstones on the ground

The clock was fascinating and we sat upon the seat

And watched the jousting knights appear and carry out their feat

Four times in every hour and in every single day

They knock the same one down then he pops up again to play

We queued to hear the Evensong; the verger let us in

And fifty other people came and took their seats within

They seemed to know instinctively which seats were best to choose

Meanwhile the choir floated in and stood within their pews

The singing took us out of there to somewhere far beyond

That noble church, and all the earthly things of which we’re fond

The voices soared in harmony, and carried us until

We came back down to earth again - the voices were quite still

The service lasted longer than we’d ever dreamed it would

The sermon, prayers and hymns took place while we were sat and stood

We sat and stood so many times and followed others’ lead

The Church of England rituals were alien to our creed

The sermon was a bit too long and folks were looking bored

We only knew that Alec was asleep because he snored

We should have known the risks involved in Alec’s sitting down

It would have been more sensible to walk around the town

When eighty minutes had elapsed the choir floated out

And in procession sang again as we stood still, in doubt

Not knowing if the end had come and whether we could go

But everyone was staying there; we’d just go with the flow

Eventually the end did come – the verger let us out

And mother was so cold she didn’t want to hang about

So even though we’d more to see, consensus was to flee

Back to the car and home again to have a cup of tea


by S Fielding

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