THE BALLAD OF HADRIAN'S WALL
Now Hadrian's Wall is a nice wee walk,
A pleasant few afternoons' stroll;
At a full week's trek I didn't baulk,
Over crag and beck and knoll.
From Whitley Bay on the mouth of the Tyne,
Through the fort at old Wallsend,
I stepped it out as the path did wind,
To Wylam my way did wend.
By Heddon-on-the-Wall I rose,
Milecastles coasted by,
And blisters appeared on all my toes,
Under Chollerford's clear blue sky.
Climbing steadily up the fells,
Steel-Riggs and Winshiel Crags,
Through Sewing-Shields, up cliffs, down dells,
The track it zigs and zags.
At Housesteads Fort I rest a while,
Vindolanda elated mood,
I pass the mark of forty mile,
And slip downhill to Twice Brewed.
Next day is cold, it rains like heck,
Birdoswald Fort I'm late,
In driving sleet I cross Cam Beck,
Drop down by Hayton Gate.
Past turret and wall and tower at Banks,
Then descending from the ridge,
For clear blue skies I give my thanks,
Near Lanercost's Abbey Bridge.
At Crosby's sheep I smile with mirth,
Then not far to Carlisle,
Another day to Solway Firth,
Marks eighty Roman mile.
Two thousand years have passed him by,
Still Hadrian's Wall is peachy,
"Hail Caesar Romans" do I cry,
Veni, Vidi, Vici!