Revolting Rumplestiltskin

In commemoration of 100 years since Roald Dahl’s birth I have written this revolting rhyme, as partly heard in Hardeep’s Sunday Lunch yesterday.



The tale of Rumplestiltskin tells,

Of how men use their little gels,

To harness some financial gain,

And rid themselves of the dire pain,

Of finding a suitable man,

To wed their daughters. Here’s the plan:

The miller lies, the miller cheats,

“My daughter spins pure gold in sheaths,”

The king heard this as he rode by,

“I need this woman to be my

Treasurer, spin gold, fill my bank,

If she does this, the highest rank,

Of queen, my wife will all be hers

But if he lies she will incur,

My wrath poured out on severed head.”

Thus our heroine full of dread,

Waved goodbye to evil father,

For certain death ever after.

Locked in a room with spinning wheel,

And enough straw for a cow’s meal,

She dissolved into distraught tears,

When suddenly an imp appears,

“My dear,” he said with such aplomb,

(Brought up properly at Eton),

“Dry your eyes on my handkerchief,

What I perform is past belief,”

She sat snivelling in the corner,

Reader, how shall we forewarn her?

For whilst he spun the straw to gold,

His real intention was foretold,

By the smooth leer upon his lips,

Calamitous relationships,

Followed him where’er he travelled,

As quickly his charm unravelled.

Delighted with the pure gold pile,

She gave her necklace with a smile.

The king with pound signs in his eyes,

Places more straw to her surprise,

This time she calls out for her friend,

Who saves her from her sticky end.

With love bursting within her heart,

Her precious ring she did impart,

As a sign of her intention,

He accepts for his deception.

The king is greedy through and through,

And demands one last revenue,

The imp returns, she’s aflutter,

What he demands makes her shudder,

Her first born son is all he wants,

Despite her imploring response.

So now she’s married to the king,

Proud mother to her first offspring,

Imagine her immense surprise,

When imp returns to claim his prize.

You all know the story from here,

Three days for his name to appear,

She gets it on the final night,

His anger drove him from her sight.

What dear reader is never told –

How this encounter made her bold

To leave the king and start afresh,

Caring for children in a crèche,

Where she tells her favourite story –

She triumphed over men in glory!


© Jonathan Bryan

Eye Can Bake

Baking is my favourite pastime, even though I cannot eat because I am tube fed.  Why? All my life people have done things for me; by baking I can make others happy and nothing gives me greater pleasure.

Recently I held a coffee morning in aid of Tearfund, you can read the extraordinary figure I rose in the article below.  Here is a baking poem:

Baking Beauty

Filling, beating, stirring, pouring,

Baking beauty life restoring,

Dripping goodness love in sharing,

Aromatic health repairing,

Pleasant parcels held with pleasure,

Tantalising tastes to treasure.


© Jonathan Bryan


Tearfund article


Inclusive Fun

Recently I was invited to join my primary school class for the week long residential at Oxenwood Outdoor Educational Centre.  With an itinerary including climbing wall, canoeing and mountain biking I was concerned about how included I would be.  I need not have worried, as the centre staff and my mother went above and beyond to ensure I was given every opportunity to experience all activities.  Memories of being excluded the year before evaporated, making way for new.

With a can-do attitude anything is possible combined with the belief that special needs children are worth the extra effort. Half the battle is won in the mind and the other is triumphed with an adaptable and flexible approach to the practicalities as proven by the staff at Oxenwood.

Being included makes me feel loved and part of the team as opposed to different and lonely. Everyone deserves an equal opportunity to experience life in all its fullness.

This is my poem on the residential.

Residential Poem


Activities adapted,

Inclusion at their heart,

Tidal waves of belief,

Esteem growing with my part.


Escaped on bikes; elated,

Hair ruffled in the breeze,

Views absorbed; time stands still,

Free-wheeling downhill with ease.


Friends clapping cheering chanting,

I’m rising to the sky,

Pulling me to freedom,

My ovation soaring high.


Dogged determination,

Proud member of Rhine class,

Great team forged with laughter,

Fantastic friendships last!

© Jonathan Bryan