Tag Archives: Matlock the hare

Goole, in tribute to a lost genius

By Reverend Davies

He was a rare and remarkable being, and it may for once be fair to say ‘we shall never see his like again’.

The first time I encountered Goole, I had gone to the sea, feeling a personal need to shout the names of the lost, at the water. There are so many whose fates remain uncertain, and I find those so much harder to bear than the ones I am able to properly bury. I was deep in grief. And then, there came to me a most remarkable sound. A song of hope and aspiration, of determination, underpinned by a willingness to take joy in whatever small goodness this cruel world offers. It stopped me in my tracks.

Goole later told me that this is because I had experienced a ‘showstopper’. I’d not heard the term before, but it will live on with me, and keep me alert to those rare, precious moments when life itself pauses in this way.

That he was some sort of bird never seemed that important. That he spoke with human dignity mattered far more to me. That he was there on those days of grief when all I could do was shout at the sea. There have been many such days. How many times did his generous songs lift my battered soul on its wings?

We lack for beautiful music here. Rare indeed is the voice that can move me, or the song that can penetrate my heart. He had those. I will miss him dreadfully. In the end he died a pointless, foolish death, caught by a gust of wind and dashed against the cliffs. In his final moments I heard him call out ‘oh, here we go again’.  The incoming tide took his body. I will shout his name at the sea.


(Goole came to Hopeless from the magical dales of Matlock the Hare. Reverend Davies is the only sentient being ever to have appreciated Goole’s singing. Find out more about Matlock the Hare here – https://www.matlockthehare.com/

Peffa Oidy Witches sighted!


Conventional wisdom suggests the sight of a squadron of over 200 airborne witches roaring out of the fog on bright-red, burning vroffa-brooms might make for a most ‘twizzly’ sight. But as this is Hopeless Maine, here we must remember that all convention mostly slithers slowly back into the murky seas of logic that surround the island like an ominous tentacle disappearing under the slooping waters…

The reality, were you ever to be perched on a jetty by the shoreline, your ears pricked by the throbbing hum of the approaching horde – would of course, be arguably different from your expectations.  And here, I’m assuming that you’re rather like the witches in question – a visitor to this most peculiar place, keen to encounter its many irregularities whilst trying your best not to be drowned, eaten – or worse….

So, with these pretexts aside, let us look up into the swirling mists and search the fluffing-white for the witches themselves…


You’ve missed them!

Whole coven just flew right passed you!

….for these black-hatted sisters are far from ‘ordinary’ too. These are the ‘peffa-oidy’ witches from The League of Lid-Curving Witchery’ in Winchett Dale – and like you, they’ve come for a holiday to this most curious of places.

A holiday? Witches?

Listen, it’s not easy being a ‘peffa-oidy’ witch. First, there’s the whole ‘peffa-oidy’ thing – ie: being ‘very small’. Most are little larger than a mouse, some occasionally might rival a small kitten – but only in stature. They’d stroff the kitten, obviously – but probably only after teasing it for a ‘very long time’ in order to get their own back on felines, generally.

Their brooms are often little more than twigs, their hats the size of thimbles – so really to have 200 fly past in the fog and miss them completely is quite the most normal thing to expect…even in a place as tangled and tentacled as Hopeless Maine.

Oh, and if you do see them (most likely settled in a flock upon the boughs of an obliging tree in night’s early hours) back away slowly…peffa-peffa-slowly – for they never sleep, they only pretend…

(If you need more Peffa Oidy Witches in your life – and we think you do – then have a look at Phil and Jacqui Lovesey’s work over at http://www.matlockthehare.com/)