Xylophone Man Poem

01/01/2001

Poet Rosie Garner remembers Frank Robinson Nottingham's Legendary Xylophone Man


Frank Robinson - The Xylophone Man


The day I heard he'd died,
I wanted to break into the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
and swap all their instruments for cheap toy xylophones.
I wanted to hear nothing all day but
ding ding ding brring!
with a flourish at the end of it
and a shy open smile
because you never heard one
without seeing the other.

I wanted everyone to play xylophones
and nobody to have a tune.
Even the squirrels on the Emmet Clock
with their petals unbending
and their enormous sense of civic pride
I wanted them tapping away on tinny keys,
ting ting ting trring!

And now, at the very least,
I want a tram to be named after him,
and a statue in Lister Gate,
a memorial march once a year,
twice round the Council House
and off to Broad Marsh,
everyone dressed in comfortable
woollen jackets, whatever the weather
and slightly shiny trousers.
A parade of xylophones,
everyone smiling
everyone shaking out their arms
on the final ding.

And I want everyone to know
how that man used to make me smile,
how he can still make me smile,
how I can conjure him up
whenever I need to
and how I wish I'd thanked him
when I still had time. 
 
Rosie Garner 2004

www.diypoets.co.uk


 

Share this article



Ads by Google


Comments


comments powered by Disqus

Share Tools

Go to comments Read comments and make your own

LeftLion Newsletter

Get a weekly dose in your inbox

LeftLion Newsletter
more info

LeftLion on Facebook

 

Event Listings alt

There aren't any tickets available for sale. view all events

Most read this monthalt

  • LeftLion Magazine #62
    With Alan Davies, Ian Culbard, Malt Cross, Anthony Hopwood, UNESCO City of Literature, Hockley Hustle, Nina Smith and more
  • Boardwalk Empire and the Ongoing Battle Between TV and Film
    "HBO are doubtlessly at the forefront of small-screen entertainment, having produced some of the greatest series of all time."
  • The Story Behind the Malt Cross
    Not your regular venue, this Victorian music hall has a pretty colourful history - step inside
  • Brief history of Gunn Crime
    An overview of the criminal careers of Bestwood Cartel leaders and 'Godfathers' of Nottingham gang crime, Colin and David Gunn
  • Aah Ter Talk Notts
    A starter course on the greatest accent in the world
  • LeftLion Magazine #61
    With Will Self, Nottingham: The Game, Jon Collins, Mr Switch, Kagoule, Chris Read, Tom Godfrey, Flesh Season, Ideas on Paper and more
  • Live: Hockley Hustle 2014 - Part Two
    “Did you say Jay-Z The Pope?” “No, it’s like the bus stops.” “Bus Stop Madonnas? But this lot are blokes!” “I’ll write it down for you.” Oh, JC Decaux
  • Five Reasons Why Grandmaster Flash Changed The Game
    The man who introduced the medium of hip hop to the mainstream will grace the stage of Nottingham this Sunday at The Approach
  • A Canadian at London 2012
    "I want to lose myself in the joyous atmosphere of the world’s middle class getting together to cheer on its fastest and best at throwing heavy objects"
  • Mike Bithell
    We spoke to Mike Bithell, whose second game, Volume is based on the Robin Hood legend

Ads by Google