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A gentle swish of water
The faint burr of engine behind
Our boat slowly meandered past hedgerows
What joy would we next find?

Round the corner a field full of golden corn
Children sit dangling their nets
A coot and her babies all paddling
Then hiding from danger and threats

Lively dogs bark and follow by towpath
People wave and watch attentive to the code
Tracing the path where hundreds of years
Similar horse-pulled vehicles had rode

The new ones are quite posh now
They have fridges, central heating and such
But the ‘butties' and working barges
Luxuries were out of touch

Hard graft as they slogged for days upon end
Through locks that sapped all their strength
Delivering cargo and picking up others
The days would draw on to lonely length

Now holidays have overtaken the market
With waterwings and sowesters they arrive
The antics and daredevil escapades, some are
Lucky to be going home alive

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