29 JANUARY 1921, Page 16



More.—The 4th Gloucestershire Regiment (the Bristol Rifles), whose hon. colonel is •always the Lord Mayor of Bristol for the time being, claims descent from the Bristol Volunteers of 1790.] I.

Down by the Tramway Centre the great cars lumbering slow Ablaze with glass and brass and paint, forever come and go, The arc-lights glare above them, and up from kerb and sky Glitter and wink the flaring signs that bid us try and buy : While not a stone's-throw from the street, tho' changelessly apart (Most like a sailor's rusty knife thrust to the city's heart), 'Neith old St. Nicholas' grey church the harbour rolls its tide Right up to_ St. Augustine's bridge, where deep-sea ships may ride.

Rattle of trams, the motor's hoot, the cargo-derrick's roar, The Newsboy's yell, the tramp of feet re-echo ever more. •

But still the night and dim the light when the old grey ghosts come down,

Slave-dealer, monk, and Venturer who dwelt in Bristol Town. (The King's Press there with hanger on hip, and Rupert's cavaliers, Rub shoulders with Cannynge's prentices and Morgan's buccaneers, They see not Tramway Centre nor the Hippodrome a' glare, Only the Drawbridge and the Gate where loaded pack-mules fare, And where there lay a rusty tramp with wireless gear and steam Lies now The Pride of Bristol with carronades a' gleam, Or with choking stench of human flesh a reeking musty smell A ship for the Plantations sailed back from Port of Hell.


As I linger at times 'mongst the ghostly gossips who cheerily chat round the Centre there, On Ticket-of-Leave from Hell or Heaven, to taste for a moment the Bristol air, I suddenly hear a whisper of music, of phantom brasses and muttering drums, And swinging down by the hill from Park Street through muffled cheering a regiment comes, While the old grey ghosts of the City of Bristol, they fall away to the left and right,

And form in a shadowy guard of honour, packed shoulder to shoulder, to watch the sight.

(" Bare your heads all, in salutation! Doff feathered beaver and laced tricorns, Pilot's nightcap, Alderman's bonnet, or old tarpaulin, greasy and worn! ") While through the ranks winds a snake of khaki bristling with long, blue barrels that sway And ripple all down the marching column to the "Kynegad March," that the bandsmen play.

Ah! how the old ghosts nudge one another, grimly observant, hiding their pride In their kin, the dead of the Bristol Rifles come home to the city for which they died, Home from Italy, France, and Flanders, from the fields of death and of high renown, From the Somme, from Ypres, and the Asiago, to mount their ' guard over Bristol Town.

"Co-eoroco!" 'tis the herald of morning! Brothers, hie back to the shadows again, - All's shipshape wi' the fashion o' Bristol, the lads we begat breed true to- the strain." •

J. H. KNIGHT-ADELY, Captain 9th Gloucesters.