-It makes more sense than a couple of other things.

Mad Aunt Bernards Tortoise Poetry

"The page to come and visit for a fabulously sensible intake of poetry straight from the divinest of inspiration - and it's only a bit tortoisy. A cracking good read if you're under anaesthetic."
Lord Elpus - The Guardian

Saturday, October 16

Madam Bernard's Hedge Dispensary

Winter's coming. Do you suffer from the cold, damp days? Does catarrh plague your every waking moment?
I have been working in my hedge, harvesting ingredients for my 'alternative chemist shop'. I will be dispensing various splendid things to people with hocking, retching, snot-flinging colds and basking in the plethora of compliments that result. This one's a cracker, been using it all week.

Number One - Simple Cold Remedy. This was passed to me in Reims, 1940, by Sardine Gadois. As a member of the resistance, she was always meeting men up very dark alleyways, collecting money and getting colds....at least I think she was resistance. She always wore a shiny black mac.

You will need:
1 cup gunpowder or pyrodex

50 fluid ounces bacardi breezer (melon)

A whole brazil nut

A cup of soil from the rockery of a librarian

Two rooks claws.

Grind in a pestle and mortar, mix with linseed oil and rub on the soles of the feet and the buttocks. Down two stiff gins, run a hot bath and you'll feel much better. If you cannot find two rooks claws, you can substitute them for three marbles.

Next week, I will be tackling impetigo. Not on my blog, but in reality, I have some nasty dry patches developing. Also, I'm working on a cure for lack of feet - Folly keeps blowing her feet off in the garden after Aunt Vom lent her some semtex.

I haven't been able to cure Aunt Mary Jaffa's fear of satsumas, and regrettably she is already distressed with the approaching Christingle service at church this christmas. Oh well, if she passes out, we'll stuff her under a pew.

Still, with hallowe'en on the way, there is festivity afoot. Once again we can annoy the council folk by dancing and singing on the hillside, and worrying people with big bonfires. Glee.

Pip pip, for now, and if you're coming up the hill, don't wear your best cloak.


  1. Oh shame - I always wear a long cloak - it helps to hide my webbed feet. Nice to have you back Aunt Bernard. If your cold remedy doesn't work fast enough, try rubbing a mixture of fresh cowpat and creosote on your chest - works a treat!

  2. Ooh, that sounds lovely. I think I'll try it straight away, and I'm not even stoppered up.

  3. I need your remedies Auntie. Last week i blew a bubble of snot so big it was like a hot air balloon and it floated me off up into the air and stranded me on top of the church steeple when some schoolkids burst it with stones from their catapults.
    Pip pip!

  4. I have in fact welded my feet to my legs in an effort to stop losing them.
    And I remember Sardine from Rheims very well, though, as I recall, there was precious little resistance about her...

  5. I'm thinking a few Bacardi Breezers and you won't need to worry about the cold, or lack of feet. (I wonder if Semtex would give a BB just the kick it needs.)
    Good luck with the impetigo.

    Peadar, did you see "UP"? You could do the sequel, "STUFFED UP!"


  6. Thank goodness you're back. I've had all the kids out searching the septic tanks just in case you'd gone on another perfume hunt and fallen in again. Have you tried a pinch of semtex on a cotton bud? Equally effective for earwax and piles, so I'm told.

  7. Oh, bless you all. I'll pop some in the post for all of you. If anyone has either Scrofula or Laughing Death, don't hesitate to get in touch. I've got a fabulous concoction on the stove which involves, gin, two umbrella handles, flageolet beans, coconut milk, a chicken bhuna and small bits of lego. I'm trying it out on Aunt Gourd tomorrow (she's just gone down with both) so fingers crossed.

  8. satsuma-phobia is more common than is thought by many!

    Aloha from Hawaii

    Comfort Spiral


  9. Absolutely splendid, Auntie! I've already got some on the stove for hubby. He's been a bit slow lately, but after this, I'm sure he'll go off like a rocket. Hope the diahorrea's cleared up. That prickly lady in Iceland seems to have recovered nicely. Messy business that. Pip pip!

    PS: Oh dear! The WV for this comment is 'dionasa'. Do you think it might be a new strain of nasal diahorrea? Perhaps you could come up with a cure.

  10. Cloudia, it's a Christmas problem...psychiatry is a booming profession in the New Year, with thousands of traumatised children who find the horrifying article at the bottom of a pillowcase.
    Weev, the only cure for dionasa is Gin. Lots of it. Unless of course it's the patagonian strain, in which case surgery is needed to remove all bits that are pale and floppy.

  11. Oh dear! Surgery to remove bits that are pale and floppy? Most of my bits are pale and floppy - there'll be precious little of me left. Help, Auntie, help!

  12. Thank you for following Pictures Just Pictures.

    I’ve now used all the allotted space for photos there and have started a new blog so I can carry on. It’s called

    Message in a Milk Bottle

    I’ve given it a different look but its purpose is unchanged - a photo a day.