Lines Composed on the Occasion of John Completing the Pennine Way

He trudged and trudged, all on his own, along the Pennine Way;

However hard the going got, however fair the day.

From south to north, with firm resolve, he set out on his hike,

From Edale and the Yorkshire Dales, by way of Stoodley Pike.

.

Through wooded grove and meadowland, by lake and waterfall;

Across a busy motorway; along an ancient wall.

With map and boots and vacuum flask, he strode across the land.

His feet were sometimes very sore, but still he walked, as planned.

.

He trudged and trudged across the fields, observing all around,

The wonders of the natural world, the contours of the ground.

Amidst the sheep, around the cows, accosted by a dog,

And once, when crossing plains of mud, he fell into a bog!

.

He looked at butterflies and birds, to wile away the hours,

He had his lunch in pretty spots with lots of wild flowers.

He walked through fog, he walked through mist, he walked through wind and rain.

Sometimes he lost the path, but always found his way again.

.

He trudged and trudged across the moors, and thought of passing life.

He thought of work, he thought of home, he thought about his wife.

His footsteps fell upon the earth; his mind dwelt on the past.

His childhood seemed so long ago – the years went by so fast.

.

With ups and downs, and highs and lows, and troubles come and gone,

Just like this winding country trek, existence hurried on.

The clouds one moment covering all trace of aerial blue,

The next abruptly taking leave, to let the sun shine through.

.

He trudged and trudged across the hills, aware of falling night,

But nothing could deter him, for the end was now in sight!

Down the last bleak hillside, across just one more style;

After two hundred and fifty, he now faced the final mile.

.

A challenge met, a goal achieved – and so, with well-earned pride,

He held his head up to the wind, and took the final stride.

He’d trudged and trudged, poor lonely soul, for day on day on day,

Until at last the trudge was done – he’d walked the Pennine Way!

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