Poem: Sir Percy “Hobo” Hobart, a 3-parter (audio version)

These are recordings of my reading of three linked poems on the British Army WW2 General, Sir Percy Hobart . They were written to be spoken. The work is, I hope, in the rather straightforward narrative tradition of English poetry. It is certainly not high-flown poetry. But I hope people will feel that it certainly isn’t prose either. The Trilogy is in text form in the RDN site’s Poems category.


Part 1: Hobo: Man and commander,

This first poem  concentrates on the story of the man and his spanning of warfare from ponies to tanks, from the North West Frontier, via WW1, to WW2, and the many switchbacks in his military fortunes, as he battled with Whitehall and – quite often – the British military establishment. It runs a little under 22 minutes.



Part 2: Hobo: Man of design and fabric

This second poem tells the story of Hobart’s love of heraldry and design in cloth as he marks the creation of his armoured divisions in the 1930’s and WW2 and his own feeling for family and history. It runs a little under 23 minutes.



Part 3: Hobo: His generation and their books

This third poem tells the story of Hobart’s reputation calibrated against those of his fellow WW2 generals, in their words and his own. It includes an account of his remarkable production of The Story of the 79th Armoured Division in the ruins of Hamburg in the summer of 1945. It runs 18 minutes 21 seconds.

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Publication date

18 May 2016


RDN's poems