Sunday, 21 April 2013

Old Rivals

16:20:00 Posted by Shaun Brookes , , , , 1 comment

Good afternoon readers. 
This week on the blog, we've been looking at Cats vs Dogs, a theme so divisive it could rival Margaret Thatcher. Personally, I've only ever had cats. I'd like a dog but my girlfriend won't allow it and, to be honest, I'd rather keep the balls I have than 'grow some' bigger ones and have them cut off. For this reason, Cats v Dogs isn't really something that sparked me off this week. I don't have much of a preference- mainly based on the above reason and the fact we already have a cool, fairly easy going cat. 

For me the theme got me thinking about the old cliche- fighting like cats and dogs. As first born, I was the oldest child in the family. I was top dog, top cat, top banana for those that can't pick. It is a perk of being the eldest. Oldest cousin, oldest brother... I got used to winning. Anyway, these days, the age gap is relatively insignificant. He has yet to waste key years of his life, whereas I've done that. He has yet to do the Uni thing but I've done that. That aside, he has pretty much caught me up and as life propels us forwards ever faster, I decided it was appropriate to write a poem on it. 

Obviously, as a big brother, I get to make all the mistakes first. He is going to Uni this September. He took time out, decided on a course and seems to have found something he wants to do, which is a bonus in comparison. £9k a year pissed against a wall you could argue. I'm sure it'll be priceless when he tops all my grades. 

Old Rivals

I remember when we fought like cat and dog
When you broke my hand as I clobbered your head
When I broke yours back with a cricket slog
Fighting most days we would bicker and squabble
Then forget all about it, go off seeking trouble.

Frogs were chased along ditches, we would steal their young
We’d gather them up and take jars stuffed full home
Where the soft-glass like marbles would shine on the side
Before being emptied out, we had nowhere to hide them-
Small boys competing though- Who was biggest? Who was quick?
Who could catch one using their bare hands? Who dared to touch it?

Then one year, with a fish tank in the outhouse set up ready,
We went exploring as a team behind our father’s plot
After thrashing through brambles, we caught a tadpole- Pepsi
Named so as it swam into our plastic bottle top
What a catch- nothing much first but soon it grew bigger
We nursed it and cherished it, awaiting our frog
Only one day, the fish tank was cleaned by our mother
Tap water plus a tadpole equals one lifeless blob.

How I miss those days, how I miss making a fool of you
The job of big brother was to drag you along
Whilst you whinged and you whined like a soft little puppy
Though not Andrex, for back then you were soft but not strong.

There are big brother codes you see, ways to win arguments
Perfected through time to stay ahead of young ones
And for years I could beat you, I’d be tops at whatever
Biggest tadpole, fastest climber, then eventually none-
You grew up, could compete and then started to beat me
I never thought that would happen- I soon found I’d been wrong.

All those years, all those races, all those five year gap thrashings
All the comebacks, all the nearly times, all that lending a hand
They’re behind you, little brother and you’re something unthinkable  
Almost enviable, you've grown tall and become your own man.


 Thanks for reading,


Ashley R Lister said...

Me and my brother used to fight in this way - him being the elder and me being the younger - so I can see the truth in this one.

Great post,