Billy Bennett Poems >>
The Memory Man

I'm Professor McCann; I'm the memory man.
I've a memory no-one would suspect.
I remember things you've all forgotten
And remember what I recollect.

I've answers for every old question;
No question at all puzzles me.
So will somebody ask me to have one,
And see what the answer will be.

How high is the Nelson's Column?
It's as high as a long piece of string;
But the column is higher in winter
'Cos he has his hair cut in the Spring.

Who built the Forth Bridge-I can tell you-
A Scotsman named Abram McGee.
He built the Forth Bridge and the fifth one
After somebody else had built three.

Who'd like to ask the next question?
Now what is it you'd like to learn?
Would I pay back the fiver I borrowed?
Pardon me, Sir. You're out of your turn.

What was the date of the Flood, Sir,
When the whole of the world was a lake-
When Joan of Arc floated a company
And Noah was burnt at the stake?

That was April BC twenty-seven,
April the month of All Fools,
The year that Millwall won the Ascot Gold Cup
Under Marquis of Raspberry's rules.

Who was it discovered America?
That's a hard one, but I'll have a try.
Columbus discovered America, Sir,
But for heaven's sake don't ask me why.

How many miles to Brazil, Sir?
To Brazil, that's a hard nut to crack.
It's as far again as it is when you're half-way,
And it's just twice as far there and back.

Where was Thomas a-Beckett murdered?
Well the yarn that the story book tells
Is that poor Beckett fell on the altar steps
The night he fought Bombardier Wells.

The date of the armistice, right Sir.
I'll answer that question quite pat.
It was what.let me was was then.
No, no, no, it was later than that.

That's the second time you've asked that question;
I heard you the first time-don't shout.
Will I pay back the fiver I borrowed?
Attendant put that fellow out.

What were the last words of poor King Charles?
That's easily answered, I'm sure.
The last words he said-"If you chop off my head
I sha'n't speak to you any more."

How big is the mole out of Zeebrugge-
The mole where we made our attack?
I don't think I'm wrong, it's as broad and as long
As a mole on a chorus girl's back.

What do I know of Napoleon?
Now whose leg are you trying to pull?
What did he mean-not tonight Josephine?
He meant that his programme was full.

I can go back through the ages
When New Zealand mutton was lamb,
Back, back, back until Doomsday,
Back, back to old Alabam.

Who'll ask me another nice question?
What? Where was the Titanic wrecked?
Where was it wrecked? Yes, I've got it.
On the ocean, Sir. Am I correct?

What date did I bob my moustache, Sir?
To answer that's easy enough.
It happened just twelve months ago, Sir-
I've still got the date on my cuff.

How many days hath September?
Now that wants some thinking about.
I can tell you the days of October
'Cos that's when my gold watch runs out.

Who first invented the bull-fight?
Now don't take a rise out of me.
You want me to answer the Spanish,
And then you'll say "Suck it, and see!"

What was the date Cain killed Abel?
Oh yes, I remember the crime.
I think it was Thursday, not certain,
I was only quite young at the time.

The date of the great fire of London?
Well that's a bit hot, I'll admit.
It's the first decent question you've asked me;
For a change I must think for a bit.

Good heavens! My memory's failing.
What time do they close around here?
That's the worst of a rotten bad memory-
I've forgotten the wife's supper beer.
Ooh I won't half cop it!