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Construction Worker - Old John

A construction gang in Leeds
Working on the new YTV site,
And in the Old Queens Head
Every single working  night,
Where Mr Dennis served
A tolerable pint of beer 
And the laughter and craic
All added to the cheer.
Old John they called him,
Maybe fifty five, no more
And we always had a laugh
When old John held the floor.
Medium sized and wiry
Yet not really thin
Short grey hair a top
His big infectious grin:
A lined young old face,
A pair of laughing eyes 
That seem to judge the world
As life flowed smoothly by
A scaffler by trade
They said he moved around 
Deft and sure footed
 Far above the ground.

Seeming so much older 
Than any other on the site 
But he worked his share
Held his place by right. 
They treated him with respect
Due to his skill and age
And he would wax lyrical
That building site sage.
And we would laugh and chat
Me really just a callow youth
And Old John showed me
Quite a few home truths.
They gave me a fine send off
When my posting was done.
The next time I was there
He and the gang had gone.
The studio was finished 
And they had moved on.
It didn't seem quite right
 In the Old Queens Head
That very first night.
I sat alone at the bar
And proposed them a toast 
Very quickly seconded by
Mr Dennis the genial host.
I didn't know John very long,
 Never forgot those boozey nights
When me and him sat
And put the world to rights.
It's so hard to believe that 
Nearly fifty years have gone by.
Some times I just forget
How quickly time can fly

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