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I know I am lucky enough to live in one of the most beautiful areas of Britain, and I don't have to go far from my home to find it, but if you follow the River Wharfe back towards its source from my home, you will travel through breathtaking countryside and arrive at Hubberholme.  I just love the little bridge which crosses the river, which at this point is very small, and on one side is the George Inn serving drink and food to the living, and on the other side is Hubberholme Church, one of the prettiest dales' churches you could find.  I love the smell of "oldness" and the little mice carved on the furniture there.  You can read a little about this via the links above.

Hubberholme Bridge .jpg


By Josie Whitehead

Hubberholme Bridge

I cover with love the chattering waters of the Wharfe.
I snuggle and nestle beneath the high rising fells.
My visitors are the walkers, dogs – lovers of country life.
My residents are squabbling ducks, the trees and seasons. 

At either end of my being lie nourishment for mankind: 
The one bank nourishes the soul and the other the body, 
Both striving to serve essential requirements of human life
In the world in which we live and the world beyond.

One side of my bridge cradles the bones of the sleeping dead, 
Whilst the other sustains those with living hunger and thirst.
My stone arch connects the two – the living and the dead.
I am the convenient conveyer between these two. 

I lie beneath the rain-laden clouds that enshroud my being.
I am caressed in summer by branches of green leaved trees.
I am chilled by winter winds and warmed by summer sunshine; 
I watch migrating birds pass and hear cries of newborn lambs. 

I cover with love the rippling waters of the Wharfe -
Baby young, trickling, tickling a pebble-bellied bed.
I watch my world with joy, far from the city hubbub 
Ensconsed in a natural world of stunning splendour.


Copyright on all my poems


I pricked my left wrist on a rose bush in my garden and almost died because the thorn injected poison into my left wrist.  (A streptococcal infection).  Always wear strong gloves when handling a rose bush with thorns.  Hardly anyone survives this dreadful thing.  Luckily they were able to give me the right antibiotic to kill it, but it had eaten the tendons into my hand.  I couldn't move my left hand or fingers again, but I went into this church and prayed - and guess what?  I'm here typing with all of my fingers to tell you this and I've typed every poem.  God does hear our prayers and, when he has special work  for us to do, He helps us.  I had not started writing these poems for you on that particular day but when visiting children in All Saints Primary School, Ilkley - down the road from me - they asked me to write a poem for them. hmm  Yes, they liked the poem so much (Mickledy-Me) that they kept asking for more and more and more over the 4 years I visited them weekly. 

What I've said above happened about 25 years ago.  My wrist has healed but sometimes it swells a little and there is a feeling of heaviness now, but thank God I can still type because I was a teacher of secretarial subjects and typing with all my fingers (and at about 70 words per minute) is so important to me.  Josie