Everybody called him Willie
it wasn’t his birth name.
He wasn’t William either
although it might have been third of
a trio proceeding his surname.
The first being
Arthur, or Bartholomew, or something like that
after his father, grandfather, grandfather and great-great-grandfather –
the burden of the firstborn.
He was unaffected by heritage
no silver spoon or affectation.
People liked him
and he liked people.
Picked up a few acres after
one of the rich old relatives kicked the bucket
loved anything that grew – planted everything –
melons, squash, tomatoes, peppers, potatoes
and something for himself.
Decided to go abroad for a while
broaden his horizons
washed up in London needing a job –
passed himself off as a town planner.
When told no or met with a quizzical look
he would reply,
that’s how we do it in New Zealand. Got away with it for 12 months
then came back home to growing things.