A Childhood in Foxton and Meldreth ...
I lived at 4 Dryden Cottages in Foxton. My nanny moved to 2 Woolpack Way in Meldreth. I spent my childhood between the two addresses, with Ida Rosendale on the 108 bus.
As an adult, I became a professional writer in America, specialising in poetry and literature. With several books out, and awards, I’m now working on a book for Foxton and Meldreth.
Here’s a poem I have written for Ida.
for Ida Rosendale, of Royston
I never knew her name.
I was impoverished
by the amnesia of a four-year old.
All I can tell you
is what I need to keep for myself:
the age of my nanny, she was a woman
who rode a double-decker bus for a job.
She clipped tickets, laughed often,
and gave me ribbons of receipts to play with
when I rode the bus from Foxton to Cambridge
and Foxton to Royston.
She was a village and a world
a sepia lifetime ago — who rides
eternal through gratitude,
whose kindness to a four-year old child
continues in an ageing man who believes
village life has its certainties,
has a chance to retain
the innocence of a world, a black and white decade,
the dot of a red bus growing in the distance,
to come aboard by the hands of a kind person
lifting you into your place.