The Town Crier

The following poem was written for our friend and Town Crier of London, Ontario, Bill Paul. Bill passed from this life yesterday at the age of 66 and shall be dearly missed. He was a true gentleman and a renaissance man. The poem has been used by Oxford University Press for the past few years in their English as a second language textbooks in regards to the category of communication skills.

God Bless you Bill and God Speed. OY YEY OY YEY !

In the year of our lord
Sixteen Hundred Fifty Four
There were no papers
delivered to our door
No radio, no TV
Media was rather slim
If you couldn’t read or write
then your world was rather dim
One person brought the info
To the masses as he could
For he read out proclomations
Told the people, as he should
“Hear Ye, Hear Ye” he would yell
“Come gather, hear me speak”
“I have the words you need to hear”
“It’s been a busy week”
The Crier came and took his stance
The crowd had come to hear
Their attention captured by his voice
And his bell rung oh so clear
“Oyez, Oyez praise the Lord
Today in the Town Square
An exhibition of archers skills
Take heed, now all be there”
“The King proclaims this Saturday”
“To be a day of feast for all”
“Prepare for this year’s carnival”
“I am sure you’ll have a ball”
The Crier held the crowd at hand
Dressed in the finest coat of silk
Green he was, from head to toe
With a belt as white as milk
For forty years he’d held this post
His father did before
He’d relay all the news there was
And all that had come before
His voice boomed out the words
That the people had to know
He was half a wealth of info
The other half was show
Until the mass production
Of papers and of books
This man was instrumental
In conveying what folks took
To be the truth not fiction
To stop rumours as they spread
To share important messages
From the peoples Royal head
Without the mighty Crier
People would not know just how
Their world around was changing
I think we all owe him a bow
500 years have passed since
The Town Crier is still here
And to most he’s as important
As he was back in that year
They still make their proclomations
Still come forth and hold the crowd
Still yell out “Hear Ye, Hear Ye”
Still yell it mighty loud
Behold the Mighty Crier
Give him the praise that he has earned
For without those before him
Many people would not have learned
I dedicate this small verse
To a Crier for us all
He’s the Town Crier For London
“I present to you Bill Paul”
Dedicated to our friend, and London Town Crier, Bill Paul. Bill has been a fixture on local radio and cable television for 30 years, broadcasting over 10,000 interviews during that time. I was lucky enough to be one of the 10,000. He is a town icon, philanthropist, man about town and entertainer. I have been lucky enough to have known him close to thirty years, having performed in two of our annual Halloween Haunted Houses that his group, The London Laffguards runs for charities every October. I hope you enjoy the verse, and if you have a Town Crier you know and love….share this with them and please comment on my poem.

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