A poem letter about my New Year's Resolution of litter-picking.

Once again, dear residents of

Bishopdown, you may have seen me

Piloting my little trolley

Over your front lawns and pathways,

Peering at the ground and under

Those bedraggled flower-beds that

Just survive beneath your windows,

For I have been litter-picking

With my grabber-stick and trolley,

Gloved and scarved and hatted that the

Arctic airs may not waylay me,

Collecting all the cans and bottles

Youths and drunks discard so freely,

Finding those fragmented pieces

That the Council mower-men have

Blithely motor-slashed much smaller,

Clearing out the weather traps of

This estate of housing, where the

Winter gales have blown the litter

Into likely collecting places -

Hedges, garage-spaces, corners -

Now some twenty sacks are making

Temporary ugliness in

My demesne, awaiting collection,

Ugly, yes, but I am happy

That my New Year's Resolution

Is successfully completed -

I stood much more chance of doing

This than struggling with a diet!


Finally, I'd like to make one

Point and some attempt to prompt you -

Everything which you can see from

Your front window should concern you,

Not just that small square of grass that

Fronts your house, but just as much the

Footway just beyond, that strip of

Grass which grows unto the kerbstones,

And the road which passes by it,

All are your environment and

Can, should you so wish, provide you

With a constant source of pride, for

All you need to do to gain your

Pride is to maintain and love it,

Make communal cleanliness and

Tidiness a prompt to action,

Take that care and pride in where you

Live, and reap rewards so doing -

Also saving me the trouble

Of my annual litter-picking!

Alan Doel,

Neville Close,  Salisbury

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