Yorkshire Folk-Lore Tales

in Rhyming Verse

By Josie Whitehead

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Story of Rombald's Giant (The) - Heading .jpg


By Josie Whitehead

Story of Rombald's Giant (The)

I’ll now tell you a story to cause you some mirth
Of a giant who thought that his strength ruled the earth,
     But, he married a woman from Yorkshire we’re told,
     And under her thumb, was a great deal less bold.

Giant Rombald, one day, returned late from the pub,
And, thumping the table, demanded some grub,
     At which point his good wife drew up herself tall,
     And the meal that was waiting, splattered the wall.

She grabbed her rude husband and swung him round hard,
And the next thing he knew he was out in the yard.
     The rolling pin caused him to flee full of fear,
     And what soon was to follow became very clear.

In a flash he ran out through the yard’s wooden gate,
For to stay was to only invite a sad fate.
     With his she-devil chasing and keen to attack,
     He fled to the moors hoping not to come back.

His feet left their footprints – they’re there to this day -
But Rombald kept running to get far away.
     His wife came behind him and hurled a great stone,
     Which, catching his head, caused an almighty groan.

More stones rained upon him – her wrath was so great.
Then his foot hit a huge rock but, due to his weight,
     It split full down the middle – yes, clearly in half.
     These rocks are today known as The Cow and The Calf.

Well what happened to Rombald?  Does anyone know?
Return to his she-devil?  Well, perhaps he did go,
     But . . .  A woman from Yorkshire is always the boss
     And someone a wise man for certain won’t cross.

Copyright on all my poems

This poem, of course, was one of almost 400 poems chosen for publication by teachers right across my home county of West Yorkshire and I can see Ilkley Moor from my windows, so the Cow and Calf Rocks are near my home.  The five books are in the children's section of Ilkley Library: 1 - The Anthology; 2 - Celebrations;  3 -   Funny Poems; 4 - Nature Poems; 5 - Reflections (AMS Educational Publishers). Would any school in Ilkley like to have an illustration competition for the best picture to go with my poem?  Would any school in Ilkley like to have a poetry performance of this poem and I'll freely visit your performance and meet the children.  Josie  My email is on the main poetry index - or try Linkedin or Facebook.