Jam Jars and Fishing Nets – A Haibun

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Jam Jars and Fishing Nets

I was born in London at home and delivered by midwives instead of the hospital.  It was quite common at that time.  We lived in the downstairs half of a house with an elderly neighbor occupying the upstairs.  Her name was Mrs. Philpott and my mother would always refer to her as such because everything was more formal in those days.  My earliest memories are of my older brother and sister setting up a tent in the back garden and we would camp out.  It was like having my own little house. I loved it!

Sometimes they would take me on the bus to a park and we would walk to the river carrying our fishing nets and jam jars on a rope to catch tadpoles.  Once when I was four, I fell backwards in the river and had to ride home on the bus wearing nothing but my Mackintosh.  My brother had to carry my wet clothes in his hands. My mum was upset but let us put the tadpoles and spawn in a big tub and we would watch them every day to see them grow legs 2 at a time until they became tiny black frogs.

We moved from that house when I was six to somewhere bigger and brand new but there was no back garden to speak of and the river was further away.

Special moments live
in a place deep in the heart
Never forgotten
Copyright © 2021 Christine Bolton - Poetry for Healing
All Rights Reserved

Lillian is hosting D’Verse Poets tonight and she has prompted us with the earliest memories from our childhood. Perhaps the house we grew up in or a family event.

  30 comments for “Jam Jars and Fishing Nets – A Haibun

  1. Helen L Dehner
    March 2, 2021 at 5:00 pm

    A delightful tale, memories are so precious!

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:03 pm

      Thanks Helen ☺️

  2. March 2, 2021 at 2:48 pm

    I also remember we had tadpoles… I don’t remember ever catching any, but I remember how they grew into little frogs…

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:04 pm

      Yes, i always thought it was fascinating to watch ☺️

  3. Beverly Crawford
    March 2, 2021 at 12:47 pm

    I was fascinated with your watching the tadpoles grow legs! A science lesson in the bathtub! Great story.

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:04 pm

      Thanks Beverly, as always ☺️💕

  4. March 2, 2021 at 11:31 am

    Oh this really made me smile! Thanks so much for posting. I’ve so enjoyed reading everyone’s response to this prompt…I’ve really been hiking with so many down their Memory Lanes. And many times, dVerser’s memories strike a memory for me as well! “Mrs. Philpott” it was more formal in those days. I’m smiling here because my parents’ friends were always Mr. and Mrs. to me….Mrs. Brooks, Mrs. Jester. 🙂 Yes, things were more formal back then. I did teach my children in the same way (I’m 73)…Mrs. Pittman. Nowadays, no matter your age, seems children uses first names of their parents’ friends. Don’t know if that’s better or worse…it’s just different.
    I also smiled at your recollection of making a tent. One of my fondest memories was taking sheets or blankets and clothespins and making tents by clipping the blankets to chairs, drawers etc. 🙂 Oh the imagination of children!

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:11 pm

      Thank you Lillian fir the most delightful prompt. I think we all enjoyed it. ☺️ I was going through and box of my mothers things that I had kept and there was a letter there from one of her old friends and it was such a pleasure to read it. It was obviously from a long time ago when everyone seemed to have so much more time. The language used was so beautiful. Polite and charming and full of good things and kind sentiments towards each other. I loved reading it. So I think maybe it is all much worse these days with familiarity and cutting corners and of course bastardizing language. I loved your prompt because it took many of us back to simpler times ☺️💕

  5. March 2, 2021 at 7:39 am

    What a nice memory! Thank you for sharing it.

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:05 am

      Thanks Susan ☺️

  6. March 2, 2021 at 7:02 am

    Delightful memories! I used to love camping in the back garden and failing that, making a den with the furniture indoors!

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:15 am

      Oh yes that was always great fun too. Especially when it rained outside ☺️ Thanks Ingrid

  7. March 2, 2021 at 4:03 am

    Your haibun took me back, Christine! My nan used to take me to the Three Kings Pond or Mitcham Common to catch tadpoles with jam jars and fishing nets. She lived next door to neighbours with whom she was friends but always remained formal with them. We made tents out of sheets and blankets in my nan’s garden too! Great memories!

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:07 am

      Thanks Kim! I wondered if my Haibun would resonate with you. It was a much kinder, gentler time, wasn’t it? ☺️💕

  8. March 2, 2021 at 3:15 am

    Christine, this is incredibly sweet.

    And, unlike some, your haiku is entirely stand-alone – it is fantastic in its own right.


    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:12 am

      Thank you David, You are so kind ☺️

  9. March 1, 2021 at 11:18 pm

    Love your haibun. Special memories like these stay with you.. Amazing that you parents let you children go down to the river by yourselves! Very interesting story

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:12 am

      Thanks Dwight ☺️ They were 7 and 9 years older than me so it was OK Dwight.

      • March 2, 2021 at 9:40 am

        Oh, Good!

  10. March 1, 2021 at 11:14 pm

    That sounds like it was fun Christine, thank you for sharinb.

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:11 am

      Thank you Rob. Indeed it was fun ☺️

  11. March 1, 2021 at 10:42 pm

    A lovely memory.

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:11 am

      Thank you Carol ☺️

  12. March 1, 2021 at 10:27 pm

    Things we remember from our childhood are precious.

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:10 am

      Oh so true Sadje 🥰

      • March 2, 2021 at 10:55 am


  13. March 1, 2021 at 10:11 pm

    I remember catching tadpoles when I was young,

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:10 am

      Fond memories Jim ☺️

  14. March 1, 2021 at 10:10 pm

    A lovely story and poem.

    • Christine Bolton
      March 2, 2021 at 9:10 am

      Thanks Regina ☺️💕

Comments are closed.