The Yellow JCB Dragon

The Yellow Dragon

I may forgive you for thinking What on Earth? or exclaiming OMG! when you watch the following brief clip (trust me, it’s very brief) of a JCB road digger. I have shortened it as much as I can. In all honesty who wants to watch and listen (you have to listen!) to a JCB digging up a road? I hope you view it, and listen to the SOUND or why am I bothering? 

The reason I bother is that this vehicle iron monster road digger upper has tormented my life for an entire week! Awful isn’t it? Apologies for wanting to share this tortuous event with you, but sometimes one has just got to have a RANT!

Please don’t feel sorry for me. There has been a reprieve because of the easing of lockdown restrictions my family and I could escape to the hills! We fled to the tranquil shores and woodlands of North Devon (first trip away since before Lockdown March 2020!). But that’s another story. I may tell you about it in my next post. A wander through lush bluebell woods describing Devonshire’s natural quiet beauty peace and bluebells should be more agreeable than ranting on about road diggers!

In the meantime, please allow me this rant—and enjoy my pain! I edited the footage (or should I say inch-age?) into a black and white effect, slowing down visuals and sound (hear the dragon breathe) calming and turning the maddening sound of the drilling into a Slomo moment piece of art.

Is it Art? Sure it is! 🙂

Brief Slomo moment:The Yellow Dragon

“The giant machine is closed; but in repose,
There is meanness in its half-shut eye
Watching cyclists and an old man pass by…

Excerpt from a poem by Lesley Scoble

The Yellow JCB Dragon

Some people may be lucky enough to get serenaded below their window by a romantic. But do I? Oh no. I get a JCB road digger digging up the road for an entire week! Suffering a mental aberration I write a poem about it. Then run for the hills.

A rant of a rhyme: The Yellow JCB Dragon

The Yellow JCB Dragon huffs and puffs, drills and kills
breathing clouds of concrete dust
Over dales and hills (only put in to rhyme and add a touch of Wordsworth)
And just below my window
Whingeing groans of moaning rust
Manic clank clank clanking beast
Farming boulders for a feast
grinding humming hums aloud
In a cloud of smoke (I do not joke!)
The fuming drill-bit and auger piercing proud
Spearing deep inexorable vigour
Sneering clumping snorting drumming jigger jigger jigger
Drrr drumming der de derrrrrrr de drerrrrrrr
Hitting hammering into my brain
Skewering the mind
Unkind insane

What for?
Wires pipes fibre-optics and drain
Digging up roads again and again!
All the time! It messes with my head!
Why can’t they put a lid on the road instead?
Open it up with a hinge?
To put something else beneath the street?
The works belabour our peace so sweet
Digging drilling on and on and on
The attack of slamming thumping feet
Of the iron steely JCB monsterrrrr der drrrrr Dragon

His screeching screech assails the ground
Enjoying disturbing us with his sound

Then comes the time to stop for the day
At last!
In the street since the early morn
The dragon with a rictal yawn
Closes down its jaw, as if to say
 ‘It’s time to go to my cave to sleep’
Once more the street it’s quiet can keep.

The giant machine is closed; but in repose,
There is meanness in its half-shut eye
Watching cyclists and an old man pass by…

Writ with a whopping headache by Lesley Scoble
My poem on TV: Britain’s Worst Roads

Writing this tirade about roadworks has reminded me that nothing has changed from when I last expostulated about the same problem way back in the nineties, when my boys were in primary school. In fact, they broadcast my rant (or should I say poem?) on national TV. Yes! I ranted my poetical tirade on television! It was on a programme by Lion Films called Britain’s Worst Roads (There’s an old VHS tape recording of it somewhere in the attic). They stood me in front of roadworks and cameras on busy Chiswell Street where I recited my great work with passion and eloquence. My poem Hole in the Road got its fifteen minutes of fame. Now here I am writing again on the same awful theme! A worrying trend.

Hole in the Road

Oh no, the digger uppers are back
Drilling and filling the tarmac,
Go and drill some other hole,
Scarper, you deafening mole.
Go elsewhere to do your job,
That hole was dug yesterday you noisy yob.
Driven out from the flat, 
No one can contend with that.
Go and have a coffee break,
Please stop, for heaven’s sake!
Ddee der der drerr derr der in my brain
Drerr der dre drrrr driving me insane
Driving drills drive me mad
Driving cars driving mad
Der der der drrr really bad
Can’t stand any more
Going out the door
Take some Aspirin take some pills
Take away those dreadful drills


Written with a headache by Lesley Scoble

I’m appalled that I have written about drilling and digging up roads not once, but twice! Bit repetitive. Where is the Shakespeare in me? The Keats, the Longfellow, the Wordsworth? They didn’t write about roadworks and NOISE! They wrote about Love and Romance… and daffodils!

It’s time to move house! Somewhere where there is no tarmacadam. Or somewhere that has a cobbled street. I like cobbles. Do they dig up cobbles for drilling? Bring back cobbled roads, I say! There are cobbles close by me in Charterhouse Square… I wonder how they manage to avoid being constantly dug up, laid down, dug up, laid down, again and again, week in week out? 

They don’t dig up roads in America do they?

See you next time in the calm shady woodland glades and rolling hills of Devon.

Keep safe one and all.

Bluebells in a Devonshire woodland

An escape from city noise to wander through quiet calm shady woodland glades and rolling hills of Devon…

6 responses to “The Yellow JCB Dragon”

  1. Creative talent of Leslie Scoble: Ugly,noisey yellow thing repairing roads. Leslie turns ugly,noisey,yellow thing repairing roads into poetry.

    Liked by 1 person

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