CHAPTER 4: Dulcimers in the British Isles since 1800 > Dulcimers in the later 20th century

People's responses

It is often remarkable the extent to which individuals identify themselves with the dulcimer, an indication of which may be gauged from our last examples:
  • a valentine (the whole inscription reads: "You can make music on the strings of my heart");
  • and a series of cartoons by Ian Clabburn, who discovered after he had been playing his Dave Williams dulcimer for some while that his grandfather had been a Norfolk player and maker years before.
  • a little poem written after a concert, capturing the various accents and reactions heard in the audience:


Oy knows fer a bloke called Kettlewell
Er lives ower Tisbury nauw.
Gaw, dudn E play them fings Ers got?
All sorts o fings Er plays - the lot!
(Yes, loves he tunes his metal well)
But, may dyahs, such a farefle rahw!


Oy fink they be mosely dollzimmerse:
'N zithererse - oh, 'n arpse.
Squeeze-boxes 'n fings yer blouw
'N thick andle fing - oh, Oydenoh.
(For Art, Polymnia lends him hers)
Dahlings - so many flets end sharps!


Oy racken Ers quoyt a clever bloke:
Collidge 'n that, Oy spe'ck
Oy fink E clecks them fings Er plays
All ower the weld - swod E sayes.
(His Orphean spirit visits folk)
End his beckgraund, Ay fyah, is suspect.


(Pip Potter, 1976)