Rugby grandad publishes father's beautiful poems that went undiscovered for 30 years

“My father died without ever letting family know of his wonderful literary works,”
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

A Rugby grandad discovered his quiet, shy father spent his spare time secretly scribbling beautiful poems.

Alan Jackson has now published two booklets of his dad’s work that went undiscovered for 30 years.

Ronald Alfred Jackson was born in Edgware in 1901.

Ronald Jackson.Ronald Jackson.
Ronald Jackson.
Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The poet, artist, and storyteller lived in Rugby for 34 years, where he died in 1974.

Alan said: “He was a quiet and shy person, who in his spare time was quietly, and secretly scribbling down beautiful poems.

“Myself and the rest of the family, with exception perhaps of his wife Lilly, knew nothing of these poems. Perhaps he kept it quiet thinking it was a bit sissy, and not associated with his working class way of life, who knows.”

Ronald died without ever letting family know of his literary works, and it was only after the death of Alan’s mother, that a bundle of pocket and exercise books was handed to over.

Alan Jackson.Alan Jackson.
Alan Jackson.
Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“This was a somewhat daunting task, in that the poems were often scribbled in ink pen or faded pencil on cheap paper,” said Alan.

"I cast them aside for some 30 years or more. Until due to me now being in my late 70s and in enforced Covid lockdown, I set about trying to decipher the scribbles which was made easier by enlarging the poems to A4 size revealing a world of often beautiful insights into to his life roaming and revelling in natures wonders.

"The descriptive beauty of this bygone world often had me in tears of both pleasure and at times frustration as I tried

to untangled what he was trying to say, and honestly felt that he was somehow putting those missing words into my mind and hands as I typed things down, a weird but pleasant experience.

One of Ronald's poems.One of Ronald's poems.
One of Ronald's poems.
Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Not all the poems are feel-good. Others border on prayer and one piece, called Jack of Dreams, reflects Ronald’s ability to communicate with children through his story telling.

“His stories held us and half the street in wonder as we were weaved into the often scary but exhilarating Christmas tales he told,” his son added.

"After his death my mother revealed to me that he would occasionally tell these tales to the groups of schoolchildren who came visiting the old people’s club, and how he was loved and could still hold them under his spell. In the poem An Evening Idyll, beautiful lines such as;

A rainbow sky from gold to indigo, Wherein the first faint stars do glow,

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Now night with her mantle of stars so deep, Envelops me into her gift of sleep.

"These words paint pictures in my mind, I often read the poems in times of stress, and find them a comforting way of escaping from this, at times stressful modern world.”

The poems have received glowing feedbank and a request for inclusion in Warwickshire libraries.

Alan said: "I decided to put together two separate booklets to simplify home production, in all around 60 copies, these mainly for family friends and descendants.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"With some trepidation I posted these off, and waited for reactions, as like me, they knew nothing of his poetry, I was thrilled when I started to get lovely letters and mail from recipients across the world exclaiming their surprise and pleasure at receiving such a wonderful gift and insight into his world that they knew nothing of.

"Yes they knew him as a storyteller, and artist, but not a poet, and couldn’t understand how it had stayed untold for so long, a fact that I’m afraid I must in part take the blame for.”

The Poetry of a Country Boy is now available in Rugby Library in the local works section.

An Evening Idyll by Ronald Jackson

A late lark sings in the evening sky ascending

From the west the fading sun glimmers gently

His days work now, has all but ended

He lingers there in quiet content

His crowning glory almost spent

Now just an influence of calm and peace

He softly envelops all within a golden fleece

Which falls upon the old oak trees

Casting its golden haze or’ their leaves

All colours now be softly changing

As faster now the day is ageing In the valley long shadows rise

Far out of sight of my fading eyes

The lark now sings out his final song

Then sudden silence tells me he has gone

Like a stone he drops to his place of sleep

Over purple hazed hills now twilight creeps

A rainbow sky from gold to indigo

Wherein the first faint stars do glow

All around now is quiet and still

Just the warm valleys air rising up the hill

Now night with her mantle of stars so deep

Envelops me into her gift of sleep.

Related topics: