Writings and Witterings

Remember When …


Twiggy in 1967, at the height of her modelling...

Twiggy in 1967, at the height of her modelling career, showing the look that made her famous.

Phew!  The last one.  As aprille says ‘Congrats to us all: we DID it.  Who’d have thought’.

Today’s prompt asks us to write a poem incorporating at least three “I remember” statements. As napowrimo says ‘This invocation of memory seems a fitting way to end our month together’.

I have loved making notes from my memories, thinking about my growing up days and what times were like then.

This poem could go on for pages and pages and then some, and, since I first wrote this, I’ve added a much loved album track to the post.   True to form or my style, I’ve tried not to go overboard in length but know I must write some more, there will definitely be a return to this topic.  I have enjoyed it so much and have plenty more notes for the next in the series.

Remember When …

You’re not supposed to remember the sixties,
If you do then you did it all wrong!
But for the sake of a verse, I did some research,
And here’s the resulting poem.

I remember a time when technology
Was a term unknown to a lot,
When computers were sci-fi items,
And we were shocked by Room at the Top.

I remember sharing our telephone
With the woman who lived next door,
A ‘party line’, they called it,
You don’t hear of them any more.

There were McCall and Butterick patterns,
Oh yes, we sewed a fine seam,
21st birthdays were ‘coming of age’,
Girls had perms, aged sixteen.

I remember bouffant hairstyles,
The ones that gave way to Sassoon,
And I can remember vividly, the very
First steps on the moon.

I recall feminist writing
From Woolf to de Beauvoir to Greer,
Men puzzling what was happening …
Women had children to rear.

Buy British and I’m Backing Britain,
Bailey, The Shrimp, Terence Stamp,
Carnaby Street, boutiques were new,
And Cassius Clay was the champ.

The swinging sixties, the new generation,
Mary Quant and Habitat,
Laura Ashley, Twiggy, Liberty prints,
We wore tights and baker-boy hats.

Maxi coats, mini-skirts,
Bright kilts with pins,
Skinny rib sweaters
Fashionably thin,

Pointy-toed Winkle Pickers,
Hot Pants, bells, boots,
Crimplene, white knickers and
Loudly checked suits.

We slept in rollers,
Painted smoky black eyes,
Drove souped up minis,
Showed much of our thighs!

Peace and love and flower power,
On TV: Hancock’s Half Hour,
Python, Parkinson, Frost and Dee,
With Pete and Dud, Beyond the Fringe was for me!

Hendrix, Joplin, Beatles and Stones,
Donovan, Dylan, protest songs,
‘The White Album’, Beach Boys, The Who,
Procol Harem and Small Faces too.

I remember, I remember, I remember,
All of the above,
And best of all, yes best of all,
Was the wonderful summer of love.

Polly Stretton © 2012


32 thoughts on “Remember When …

  1. You are monumental to finish the challenge (and about half of them were written this past weekend, right?)!
    Nice trip down Nostalgia Lane… I can feel some inspiration coming on… Oh, no, you’ll have me writing another poem instead of what I am supposed to be writing!


    • Of course, because I’m in that frame of mind, I’m now singing ‘Penny Lane is in my ears and in my eyes /
      There beneath the blue suburban skies ..’ Oh, how I loved The Beatles.
      Thanks for visiting Marina 🙂


  2. Beautiful walk down memory lane. Although I didn’t experience all of those things, it certainly made me nostalgic. I wonder if a nostalgic poem of the 80s would be as lovely. Probably not considering those leg warmers, shoulder pads, and puffy bangs. 🙂

    Really lovely!


    • Have you seen it since I’ve added ‘Martha My Dear’? I felt it needed a little lift, and the songs were so important in that era – do take a look and tell me what you think.

      Thanks for your kind words, Carrie, and I’ll bet a trip down the 80s would be just as good – you never know, the next one in the series might just about get into that era!

      Now you’ve got me thinking about ‘Night Fever’ – oooh, those were the days!


  3. Yes, the song definitely adds that travel-back-in-time feeling. Made me want to stand up and do the swim dance. In fact, I’m all alone here. Maybe I will…

    And I look forward to “Night Fever”. 🙂


  4. what a wonderful walk down Memory Lane!..
    Too cool
    I needed a moment of real this morning
    and I now have it
    Thank You Polly….
    Take care…..



  5. Oh boy – I remember them too!!
    Party lines – wow, there’s a blast from the past! 🙂


    • There will be so many people who are wondering what on earth I’m going on about! Never mind, they can ask their Mums and Dads, then they’ll know heh-heh 😀

      Even ‘blast from the past’ is from that era – think Jimmy Saville! Thanks for the memories, Alex.


  6. Love the white album…do more!


  7. Congrats to us all: we DID it.
    Who’d have thought.


  8. LOL – my mother-in-law used to work on the telephone switchboard during those party line days. She said that when kids played pranks on the phone, they had the “howler” that made a loud horrible noise into the phone and that took care of them!

    I saw an article about Twiggy a couple years ago… she’s still around, doing fashion. And she still looked tiny!

    Nice trip thru the memories here.


    • heh-heh – I read this at my writing circle last night and we talked about the party line remembering how if the other person was on the phone we would quietly replace the receiver and try again later – however, there were those of us who recalled that if the other person was on the line for too long we would tap the phone cradle three or four times so that it could be heard to indicate we were waiting (!) Many remembered everything mentioned, one said she’d had a perm at ten years of age and her teacher asked ‘who are you, little girl’ genuinely not recognising her!

      As you see, it raised some interest and many fond recollections. I had to confess that my dad had told me about most of these things (!)

      Thank you for your kind comments, Colette, I have a feeling this topic really could turn into a series of poems.


  9. I remember these as vividly as yesterday ! This is greaaat! WONDERFUL Polly~Sincerely Deborah


  10. I almost missed reading this one. This is so much fun, Polly! 😀


    • Thanks Ann, it had a good reception at Parole Parlate, one of the open mic events here in Worcester UK. Always nice to have some feedback – thank you for yours 🙂


  11. now the summer of love is something to def to remember…lots of nice touches…the 60s were a bit before me but some of it carried over to me as well…smile…


  12. smiles…nice capture of that time…remember the day we got our first color tv…and we were allowed to use our neighbour’s phone..


  13. Very nice, enjoyed that alot!
    Skipping and skimming through all that history with images and impressions, and those last three lines…lovely little envelope.


  14. I remember the 60s, and yes I did it “wrong”. Made up for it in the 80s though; they’re a blur.
    Lots of great memories in this poem. Nicely done!



  15. Now, you are talkin. I remember like 90 percent of this poem, at least! Imagine many of those things will never be remembered again except in some silicone byway somewhere, rarely if ever recalled into service to appeal to the eye. Great memory! 🙂


  16. Lovely! I remember some of those, and some are still quite current! lol


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