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Brideshead Revisited


I lay awake in that dark hour and was reflecting on my life
From all the travelling I had done to the breakup with my wife
I was an architectural painter and was very successful too
And after leaving Oxford University that's what I'd wanted to do. 

But winds of war were blowing and we were at war with Germany
And I, Charles Ryder had enlisted, as an officer in the army
It took me a while to accept the harsh regime of the military 
Because I'd been a free spirit and answered to no one but me.

I learnt that soon we would be moving to a secret location
To prepare for our deployment to a middle eastern nation
The camp was a hive of activity as we were preparing to go
Where we were going was a mystery, nobody seemed to know. 

We marched to the railway station it was a cold and dark night
The train with its blacked out windows looked a forboding sight
We all boarded the train and then settled down for the journey 
To that place unknown, that had been shrouded in secrecy.

After a couple of hours the train stopped at an unknown railway station
We all disembarked and lined up and marched to our secret destination 
After a couple of hours we'd set up camp and settled down for the night
Then everything became quite peaceful, that is until morning light. 

The sounds of vehicles and men , woke me up from my slumber 
And where this transit camp was, I couldn't help but wonder 
I got dressed and headed for the mess tent for some morning tea
And as I gazed up at the grey sky line, it stood majestically before me. 

It was if someone had shone a bright light into my distant past 
Old memories resurfaced and I just stood there totally aghast 
Brideshead Castle looked magnificent in the grey morning light
And I remembered being invited there by Lord Sebastian Flyte. 

It had been well over twenty years since I had first been here 
After befriending Lord Sebastian at Oxford in my first year
He'd invited me to stay over to meet, his aristocratic family 
 I'll never forget their kindness and how they'd all welcomed me. 

My thoughts were shattered by Hooper, my lieutenant driving a jeep 
Who said "I've just been in the big grand old house for a peep
There's statues of men with trumpets, paintings and all kinds of bling
Outside in the gardens, giant fountains, you never saw such a thing" 

I answered "yes I did Hooper, I have been here many times before"
He said "then you know all about it and it's magnificent splendour"
I told him" better go and get the platoon ready" he said" righty oh "
And I was again left alone in my deep thoughts of a time long ago. 

I had breakfast and then walked up to the house, it's layout was vast
And I wondered if my visit would encounter any ghosts from the past
I saw the families Nanny Hawkins and she immediately recognised  me
She made some fresh tea and brought me up to date about the family. 

It had brought me some  kind of closure as I'd left under a cloud
And looking back I'd let the family down of which I was not proud
I left after about an hour and said goodbye, and went on my way
And hoped unpleasant memories of my past would now fade away. 

Written on the 18th September 2022.


Inspired by the opening scene of Brideshead Revisited, a television series
produced in 1981 by Granada Television and was based on the book of the 
same name written by the English author Evelyn Waugh.




Copyright © Tom Cunningham | Year Posted 2022

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Date: 9/29/2022 12:42:00 AM

Enjoyed reading of the time and imagery and feeling, Tom.
Date: 9/28/2022 10:55:00 AM

Hi Tom your Historical rhetoric's are simply breath taking, your research and approach are so picturesquely explained, one thinks the are living in the times. Well done, BLESSINGS,Jennifer
Date: 9/27/2022 7:25:00 PM

WoW! Tom, You are an outstanding storyteller. Your amazing writing had me hook line sinker until the very end. Good rhymes and content. Excellent job.Have good day-Alexis
Date: 9/26/2022 3:37:00 AM

Tom, I can say it no better than others, your narrative writing is superb and I always enjoy the read! A happy week ahead to you!!!
Date: 9/25/2022 10:09:00 AM

Phenomenal with a golden pen! Tis you…Sir Cunningham, you did it again! 5 Star Review!!!!! Hugs from your friend, Panagiota xx
Date: 9/25/2022 8:29:00 AM

In rereading your poem again, outloud to me wife, it brought tears to my eyes. The rhythm and emotions of the story touched my soul. I am in awe of your gift of telling stories / narratives, through your poetry, Tom. Again, here! here! my friend. Bill
Date: 9/25/2022 8:10:00 AM

Your Narrative poems are so well written and rhymed, I always get the sense I'm present. Moving story and beautiful seeting. The picture was a dreamscape to view. I enjoyed reading and reflecting on the beauty and ugliness of the period on history. Thanks for sharing your gift with us my friend. A FAV, for me to read over and over. Bless you for the time you invest in informing and blessing others with you exquisite poetry, Tom. Bill
Date: 9/25/2022 3:25:00 AM

I enjoyed reading this Tom. Your poetic narrative rhymes so well too. Cheers Anne :-)
Date: 9/24/2022 11:31:00 AM

Revisiting the past and yet it is the future, can be disorienting. My childhood road was all broken up and I was like…there was a lake here. Saw someone and he told me the lake was still there…he owned the property and it was fenced now.
Date: 9/24/2022 2:54:00 AM

This is an amazing story. It is so nostalgic. Very well done Tom.
Date: 9/23/2022 1:11:00 PM

A story written by in poetic form. Seems like I have heard that name on a TV program or series before. I enjoyed reading it. Thaks for sharing and for dropping by my page. Sara
Date: 9/22/2022 12:11:00 PM

Such a lovely piece Tom with great rhyme and flow along with nice imagery too. Hope all is well with you, blessings,Gordon
Date: 9/21/2022 6:26:00 PM

Ah, so now I know what the place looks like. I have heard the name before. Interesting story, Tom.
Date: 9/21/2022 1:32:00 AM

Nice one Tom! I've just noticed the date it was first shown: 1981 !!! I didn't realize it was that long ago! I saw one of the BR films but not the latest one. Bucket list for me too. Cheers - Gary
Date: 9/20/2022 8:32:00 AM

Nicely penned and captivating narrative Tom. Linda
Date: 9/19/2022 7:43:00 PM

Alright! Another piece of uncharted territory for me. Thanks, Professor T.C!
Date: 9/19/2022 1:11:00 PM

A captivating poetic narrative that inspires the heart and mind of the reader, my dearest friend, Tom. Excellently done, as always! Be blessed!
Date: 9/19/2022 12:25:00 PM

Tom this is my ultimate favorite of all your Poetry. Your words convey a script that other than the writer Evelyn Waugh could attain in describing and sharing. I would not be surprised to see this Honored as POTD. Your Narrative series is as you were the author of. Magnificent and I sincerely bow my head to you as I read this Narrative of yours. I congratulate you in this fine effort of yours. God bless you and thank you for sharing. Your writing abilities to write this are amazing...
Date: 9/19/2022 9:07:00 AM

Wonderful poetry and a great story/poem of the opening scene of the series Tom… Belle
Date: 9/19/2022 7:23:00 AM

Wow Marmite Man what a wonderfully captivating and interesting tale…you are a masterful story teller! Cheers…Vegemite Girl!! X
Date: 9/19/2022 5:44:00 AM

Wow. I don't know of this, but found your writing interesting Tom. I enjoy your story telling. :)
Date: 9/19/2022 4:38:00 AM

Another intriguing tale and an effortless read, dear Tom: I have heard of this show but not seen it. Will have to look for it now. Have a wonderful day. SuZ
Date: 9/19/2022 4:36:00 AM

Your visit to the old castle and the nostalgic memories it revived in you have found ample space in your beautiful poem. Much enjoyed both the poem and the image projected against a hazy backdrop, dear Tom
Date: 9/19/2022 12:06:00 AM

Well, now of course, I want to see the series and find out all about Ryder's past. You never fail to capture my interest when reading you, Tom.
Date: 9/18/2022 11:17:00 PM

Hiya Tom, Oh this is so good, talk about a flash from the past, i see the picture above, recognised instantly, 'Castle Howard' been there many many times, being raise not a million miles away. Love the story you have here, in fact the flow and rhythm made my journey a pleasure.
Date: 9/18/2022 7:22:00 PM

Tom, you surely have a knack for keeping your audience involved in the story you're delivering. The journey to the castle was full of suspense. Although I'm not acquainted with the Tv series, your synopsis allowed me to get a glimpse of what it's like.  Your poetry is pretty outstanding as always. Blessings my friend
Date: 9/18/2022 1:37:00 PM

- Yes, mysterious and interesting ... but, do not know this television series - Everything is fine here ... hope the same with you, my friend Tom :) - hugs // Anne-Lise :)
Date: 9/18/2022 11:55:00 AM

It was a suspenseful journey to the castle, Tom--you know how to get the reader glued to your story. Not familiar with the television series, but got the glimpse of it through your narrative.
Date: 9/18/2022 11:19:00 AM

Only hints at how miserable life was back when it constantly rained and the only heat was in a pub that closed at 22:00, but enjoyed, Tom (even though Marmite was not mentioned)! Aloha!
Date: 9/18/2022 11:18:00 AM

Hello Tom, I have seen this series on t.v. and enjoyed watching it. Those times were hard times. Enjoy your day my friend.
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