Billy Ray Was A Preacher’s Son

In 2008, as a poetry task for a writers’ group that I joined, we had to take a line from a famous song and turn it into a piece of poetry. I ended up writing a number of poems based on lines from two of my favourite songs: ‘California Dreamin’ by The Mamas & The Papas, and Dusty Springfield’s ‘Son Of A Preacher Man’. In the interests of my love of animals, I decided not to post “All The Leaves Are Brown”, as it does involve a level of pain for a particular little squirrel. Instead, here’s the poem based on a line from “Son Of A Preacher Man”. It was written on Tuesday 14 July, 2008, and yes, it is another one of those juvenile poems I so love to write.

For those of you who have no idea who The Mamas & The Papas, or Dusty Springfield were, please, do yourself a favour and Google them. Maybe even buy some of their music – it’s music from a time when you could actually a) understand the lyrics, and b) sing along with the performers . . . you know, real music. And yes, it is another of those silly little poems I like to write.

[‘Son Of A Preacher Man’ (Hurley – Wilkins), from the classic 1968 album ‘Dusty In Memphis’ (EMI Music Ltd), Published by Phonogram Ltd (London), Copyright © owned by Phonogram Ltd (London)]


Billy Ray was a preacher’s son

Stupid in spite of his years

Although terribly good looking

His voice bored me quite to tears

He spoke oft of his love of sailing

What it was like to be out at sea

I simply wished he’d take a breath

So I could go and pee

But Billy would go on and on

Without so much as a pause

Of what the sea meant to him

Now he was landlocked on the moors

It was then I had a brainwave thought

Of how to quiet my dear

I could clock him hard upon his head

While he was drinking beer

I would bury him deep down in the dirt

Seeing only by candle lights

Somewhere right across the moors

Somewhere near Wuthering Heights

He’d not be found for many a year

If in fact at all

I’d say he sailed off far away

Or right into a squall

And no one would question where he’d gone

That dumb ginormous lunk

But they’d feel sorry for little ol’ me

Cause I’d lost my hunk o’ spunk

But getting away with murder

Isn’t really all that easy

Especially with the problem I have –

Blood makes me sort of queasy

So Billy Ray is safe for now

To continue telling sea tales

And the best that I can pray for is

He’s attacked by killer whales!


About Danielle

I like to write. What more is there to know?
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3 Responses to Billy Ray Was A Preacher’s Son

  1. What a cheery poem to begin my week, I found myself singing the first couple of lines and didn’t miss a beat. I remember the great hits you mentioned above, certain songs we will always love.

    Thank you Danni, great fun 🙂

  2. Pingback: Beat Alcoholism 101

  3. Christian Jacoby says:

    Made me laugh out loud. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve sat listening to someone drone on and on and felt something similar. Thank you for sharing.

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