Monday, 30 August 2010

Po-e-tree Bus: Skool's Owt

Finally back on the bus, y'all and this week Karen has sent the bus back to school - which in my memory was a good excuse to get out of detention. If you had to come on the school bus then you couldn't have evening detention or you would miss it (with the inevitable result that everyone who came on the bus was a total hooligan)

Hooligans are not invited on the school bus today, but I do have a couple of things to run by y'all. The first is a playground chant that was around in my parent's day and just about around in mine as well - maybe some of you will know it or know if it is still in circulation today. I'd like to think so:

We break up, we break down
We don't care if the school falls down
No more English, no more French
No more sitting on the old school bench
Kick the tables, kick the chairs
Kick the teachers down the stairs
If that does not shut them up
Dynamite will blow them up

And from the traditional to my own this week. I went to a school that had been standing since the 1900s - a school that my mum and uncle had been to before me (my uncle had one of the same teachers) - it was a horrible place with outside toilets and flip-top desks that still had holes for the inkwells and there was no light and practically no air in most of the rooms. I didn't really have a great time there.

Then a couple of years ago they tore it down to make way for an ultra-modern state-of-the-art teaching experience and there was a part of me that was a little saddened to see this part of my life gone - so I wrote the below. The video is an extreme close up of an old Tascam 488 home recorder with some of my paintbrushes in the background (and a pen i permanently borrowed from The Hilton). Lyrics are at the bottom.



Tearing Down The Old School

I never thought I'd say I'll miss you
With all the things that I went through
But when they tear apart your history
It always leaves a trace, it always leaves a trace

They're tearing down the old school, tearing down the old school
Smashing out your windows, tearing down your walls
I look outside my window, it's so far away
It's been so many years now, but it feels like yesterday
Feels like yesterday

I had adventures in the playground
I felt so free when I was young
But that freedom never lasted
The price was hard to pay, the price was hard to pay

And though those walls return to haunt me
And I'm glad that I am free
I know there'll always be a part of me
That lives inside those walls, lives inside those walls

9 comments:

The Bug said...

My old elementary school was torn down a number of years ago & I felt kind of sad too. I can barely remember those days - & now the building isn't there either.

I'll have to check out the video when I get home from work this evening...

Argent said...

They were going to knock down my old skool but government cuts mean it will soldier on a while yet. We had that chant at school as well, but can't remember if our words were exactly the same.

Argent said...

BTW - Chiccoreal was last week. It's Karen at http://keepingsecrets-karen.blogspot.com/2010/08/catch-big-yellow-poetry-bus.html who is driving this week (if you leave a comment there, more people will find your post).

Totalfeckineejit said...

I always love a song on the bus, and this is a fine one.I think the last verse is a cracker.It sums up exactly how I feel and I never even realised it till I read your words!

Peter Goulding said...

Once again, a masterpiece, even though I view my old school in the samelight that John Betjeman viewed Slough. You'll definitely be leading the singing down the back of the bus.

Lydia said...

You sure are talented! I love the song, especially after reading your description of the place. Amazing to attend the same school and have the same teacher that your uncle had.
My old grammar school still stands in Reno and is a beloved structure there where the past is not exactly honored!

btw, I never heard that chant before...it's wicked!

Karen said...

Every school I attended is now defunct! Some were torn down, others sold for other use. I like to think they still stand somewhere in the ether, haunted by the chanting of children!

I love playground songs!

Don't Feed The Pixies said...

bug - hope you got to see the video in the end

Argent - glad to know that versions of the chant were out there and thanks for setting me straight

TfE - nothing like a shared experience! You carry those things with you and they either break you or make you stronger.

Peter - i'm with you and Sir John on that, aside from the mock Tudor bars as there were none at my school :)

Lydia - the teacher was a mean old bastard as well!

Karen - i think it is a bit sad when an interesting old building goes

the watercats said...

I was sure i left a comment here last week!?.. but then blogger has been uckin with ma shi lately.. so it probably got eaten. I went on a big long rant about how my school/house and loads of other stuff doesn't exsist any more... and how I was sad about it!, lol!
Love the new song! You have a really brit thing going on, in the good way, not the BNP kill everything not english way. Have I said that before too?