Intruders – Poem (Based On A True Story)

I went to my drumming the night before last
Our group was small, but the beat was fast
I played on the bass and the conga drum
It’s a casual group, and we have so much fun

Someone on cymbals; another played chimes
The latter helps us to play in time
The tambourines made a jangling sound
We played together; the music profound

Passion abounded as we played out our hearts
And before we knew it, an hour had passed
Time to stop for some snacks and a brew*
Then, in walked three men that none of us knew

I was really frightened; who were these men?
Walking amongst us like familiar friends
They sat themselves down like they belonged there
I wanted to run, but I was too full of fear

They said not to move as they carried knives
So there was no way we were risking our lives
Sitting silently, hoping they would go
Was this a nightmare or a horror show?

They started to damage our instruments
Our fear and anxiety were so immense
Drunk off their faces but high on cocaine
We thought we’d never get out again

One of our group took out their phone
It got grabbed and onto the floor it was thrown
Then they suddenly left; every single one
It was over as quickly as it had begun

We called the police but they couldn’t come
Too busy, they said; we sat feeling numb
They’d call round to see us the following day
Asked if we were hurt and were we okay

We picked up the pieces; couldn’t wait to get out
What the hell was that all about?
I came home still shocked and went straight to bed
Will this ordeal ever leave my head?

*A brew is a common British word for a pot or mug of tea.

(Image – Google free images)

Author: Ellie Thompson

Writing my memoirs, musings, a little fiction and a lot of poetry as a way of exploring and making the most of my life ... ... Having had a break from writing my blog for more than three years, I decided to return to write my memoirs, some day-to-day observations, views and feelings. My passion is non-fiction poetry. I have a disability and use an electric powerchair called Alfie and let nothing get in the way of living life to the full. I believe that you can never do a kindness too soon and should give credit where credit is due. A smile or a kind word could make the difference between a good or bad day for a person - we never know what's going on for another soul. Those little things, perhaps, practised daily like a mantra, could mean so much to someone else. Thank you for visiting my blog and reading a little more about me. Please, make yourself at home here. You are very welcome. Ellie x 😊

70 thoughts on “Intruders – Poem (Based On A True Story)”

  1. Umm… and this wasn’t a metaphor? How horrifying. The beginning sounded so fun and upbeat, just like the music played, but then things went downhill. Yikes! Has this really happened two days ago? How are you?

    1. Hi, Sam. No, this isn’t a metaphor. The drum circle is always a lot of fun. We’ve only been up and running for a few weeks. It happened on Wednesday night and was truly terrifying. I was very shaken up, upset and shocked. We had a debrief on Thursday afternoon, so we are gradually being able to get back to normal. However, if the drum circle runs next week, I’d like to go, but I will be full of trepidation, as I expect the others will be, too. Two of the guys who usually come along weren’t there this week but are definitely going to be there if we go ahead with next week. They’ve both said they’re prepared to stand at the door in case these vandals come again. We’re also going to phone the police to see if we can have a police officer there with us, just for next week. Hopefully, if they turn up next week, a police presence will put them off coming back again. Thanks for caring. X

  2. Whoa, that’s weird. Like you said, what’s that about? Do you drum in a public place or had they actually broken in somewhere? Eli and I used to do a drumming circle, I can’t imagine anything like that happening there. Everyone is so mellow, and then these psychopaths come in. Glad no one was hurt.

    1. It was certainly very weird, Jeff. We still can’t fathom their point other than to wreck our instruments. There is over £2,000 worth of equipment there! I don’t know if the facilitator has them insured or not. I think vandals don’t care what they damage. We practice and play in a church hall, so the back door is usually open in case any church members want to come in. You’re right; drum circles do tend to be really mellow, as we are. It was all such a shock. I’m just very thankful that none of were injured. It could have turned out so differently. Thanks for caring, Jeff.

      1. I honestly was hoping that it was a fictional story! That’s such a freaky thing to happen! Very scary!

    1. Our group is always a happy, relaxed place to be, and we really enjoy being part of it. This was so scary, and I will be very nervous about going back next week if it’s on then. I can definitely recommend joining a drum circle if you ever find one near you. I was still in shock yesterday, but am beginning to feel a bit calmer today. Thanks for asking, Kate Xx 💓

  3. Do you know if the police followed up the next day? Will there be another drumming session? How are you doing? Will you be going back, or has this ruined drumming for you?
    I cannot believe this happened to your group. Feel free to tell us how you are feeling.

    1. Apparently, the police went to see the facilitator the day after it happened but said there was nothing they could do as no one was hurt. The police are so understaffed that they barely have time to turn up to a person’s house about a robbery, let alone to deal with a few vandals and, considering they were no injuries, just damaged equipment. I’ve got nothing against the police; they just don’t have the time or officers to deal with minor incidents like ours, not that it feels minor to us. I’m hoping the drumming circle will continue, although we will be very wary the first time back. I’m still shaken up, although slightly calmer than on Thursday and Friday. It feels almost like a personal assault. It’s not something I’ll ever forget about. We met at a cafe on Thursday afternoon to discuss what happened, how we could prevent anything like it from happening again and how we were all doing. I think I was still in shock on Thursday, as I became tearful in our meeting just talking about it. I’m hoping the shock and distress will wear off a bit more over the next few days. Thanks for caring, J.

      1. Your government needs a few lessons in what is important to its voting citizens. Another blogger talks about the shortage of teachers and other school staff, while a third talks about hospitals being short-staffed. So where is all your money going?
        Politicians’ salaries? Pay-offs to financial supporters?
        And yet they keep getting voted back in! There is something sadly wrong with the state of affairs in Great Britain.

        1. I totally agree, J. All the things you’ve heard about the UK’s issues are true. You’ve probably heard about all the strikes happening here, too. The country is falling apart while the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. We don’t have anywhere near enough nurses, doctors, hospital beds, teachers, teaching assistants, NHS dentists, etc. And Brexit didn’t help, either, but don’t get my started on that one! Our government pays exorbitant amounts to politicians and MPs. I hate to think how much Rishi Sunak gets paid (I’ve just researched that and he and his wife are currently worth £730 million ($844 million!). It’s unbelievable that so many British people continue to vote for the Conservatives time after time after time. I’ve never voted for them and never will. They are a party for the rich and not for the underdog or working man or woman. They’ve been in power over here for 12 years now. Too long! Far too long. I think if the Tories get voted back in again, I’m going to ‘up sticks’ and emigrate!

  4. This is chilling. I’ve had experiences where reality seemed to suddenly and inexplicably slip sideways. It’s scary how thin the veneer of normalcy can be in our lives. So glad to hear no one was hurt. I hope you can resume your drum circle soon. I have a brother-in-law who owns a drum shop and he leads a drum circle each week (he loves it). 🙂

    1. I know exactly what you mean, Mike. It was a really surreal experience. It almost feels like a nightmare now. It’s one of those things you would never even dream of happening. One minute, we were blissfully playing our instruments, and the next, we were all frightened out of our wits. We were fortunate that none of us got hurt. I’m so thankful for that. Drum circles are wonderful places to be. We hope to resume next week but will have two of our guys, who weren’t there last week, standing at the door. We’ll also ask if we can have a police officer present, just in case these vandals turn up again. Whether or not we get that support from them remains to be seen. It’s good to hear your brother has a drum shop and a drum circle group. I expect you to know how expensive drums and other instruments can be. Our drums are worth over £2,000. I don’t know if the facilitator has them insured or not. I’m hoping so. Thanks for caring, Mike.

  5. I’m glad you are ok, that must have been terrifying for all of you!! It’s awful the police couldn’t send anyone, wtf!! It’s good that writing can help you deal with stuff like this and calm you down. Take care.

    1. Thank you, Redtractors1. It was truly terrifying for everyone in our group. The police here are so understaffed that it’s difficult to get a police officer to come at short notice when the vandals had already gone and because none of us was physically hurt. My writing is what keeps me sane. It’s the way I’m able to express emotions and experiences. All my readers, including you, are so supportive and wonderful people, many of whom have become friends. Thank you for caring.

    1. It was an extremely unfortunate and frightening experience, Mick. I love our drum circle but will have to pluck up the courage to go again next week if it’s held as soon as that. Drum circles are such chilled, warm places to be. No one could have seen this one coming. The police went to see the facilitator but said there was nothing they could do. It was an isolated incident that hopefully won’t happen again. These days, you’re lucky if you can get the police to do anything about a house robbery, let alone about vandalism – not that I’m against the police at all, They are very understaffed. Thanks for caring, Mick.

    1. Thanks, Granny. It was an awful experience. These days, the police rarely have time to go out to someone whose house has been broken into, let alone to pick up a couple of vandals, who would be gone by then. At least none of us were hurt, even though our equipment was damaged. It’ll cost a lot to replace those things. I don’t know if the facilitator has the drums insured or not. Thank you very much for caring, Granny. Love you, too. Xxx 💜

    1. Yes, it was so frightening at the time. I’m okay; gradually calming down a bit more now. I think I’ll be very anxious about going again, just in case they come back. I’m not going to let it stop me from going forever, though. Thanks for your comment, Margaret. X

  6. Thank you very much VIdah. It was a terrifying experience. We’re hoping to be able to meet again next week, but measures will have to be put in place to prevent the vandals from coming back in again. It’s all quite scary at the moment. Xx 💕

  7. This sounds awful! I am glad you are unharmed. It must have been a horrifying experience! 😪 I hope giving it words has been therapeutic for you. This narrative poem is incredibly well written.

    1. Thanks so much, Aaysid. It was absolutely terrifying at the time. I’m very glad that no one was injured. I’m gradually calming down now. Writing about the experience did really help me to process my feelings about it all. Xx

    1. Thanks, Richard. You could be right. We were really lucky to come away from an experience like that unharmed. I’m hoping we can meet again. It will take courage. Precautions will have to be put in place once we get there.

          1. Yes, you are right – that’s exactly what she would have said. We will be very careful next time we meet there. It’s a shame there isn’t anywhere else we can meet instead. We will take careful precautions next time, though. Thanks for caring, Richard. It’s much appreciated.

    1. This was on Wednesday evening at about 8 pm. We were practising in a church hall when they walked in. I doubt very much that they’ll ever be caught. The police are understaffed as it is, and they don’t go looking for criminals/vandals even if you’ve had your house broken into. Fortunately, none of us were hurt, but the drums were damaged. The facilitator contacted us all last night to say the drum circle will be going ahead soon, but we will have two men at the door so that no strangers can come in. We’ll not let this incident put us off from drumming permanently, though.

      1. People really suck sometimes. I’m so glad you and the rest of your group were not harmed, physically. That is traumatic stuff though. Praying you are able to heal appropriately and recover fully.

  8. It sounds truly terrifying and just so random. I am so glad that they were just up to no good and did not harm anyone there. I hope that you and your group are able to get up and running again so that they ultimately do not win. I have never been but I have heard how powerful these drum group therapies can be. Thank you for sharing.

    1. It was genuinely terrifying, Tommy, and totally unexpected. It was rather a shock, too. We have now put in some more safety measures for the next time we drum. We won’t let it put us off drumming. It’s so enjoyable when we don’t get intruders. The drum circle is such fun, as well as needing to concentrate on staying in the beat. I’ve never been to a drum circle until this one – it’s very powerful and a good stress relief, too. Thank you for reading.

  9. Such a shocking event! I’m so sorry this happened to you and that the police wouldn’t even come and take a statement. What a huge violation of your sense of safety. I pray the feeling doesn’t linger within you for a long time, as it was probably an isolated event and isn’t likely to be repeated again. I’m glad you could work through some of the feelings through this poem, but I imagine you have a lot more.

    I’m sorry I haven’t emailed you back, but I’ll do so soon. I appreciate your kindness and reaching out to me. You deserve to feel safe.

    1. Thank you so much, Bridgette, for your kind words. It was a very frightening situation. The drum circle players got together the following day to share our feelings and work out what we could do to stop it from happening again. I was still feeling very shocked and vulnerable at that point. The drum circle meets again this evening, but I feel a bit safer knowing that there are precautions put in place to prevent this from happening again. I’m looking forward to going, although I’m still a little hesitant.

      Please don’t worry about not getting back to me yet. I understand totally – you have so much going on in your life. Take your time. There is no hurry and I’m not going anywhere. Hugs Xx 🤗💖

    1. Thanks, Andrew. Yes, it was terrifying at the time. It won’t put me off going along again. The drum circle is on again tonight, but we have now put extra security measures in place to prevent strange people walking in. We would all be so sad to lose this get-together. Fingers crossed there won’t be any trouble tonight 🤞.

        1. Yes, it was, thankfully, Andrew. We had several people not turn up, which was a shame. I think some of them had been put off coming after last week’s experience. Hopefully, with the new security measures in place, they will return again.

    1. Hi Devang. Yes, it was very frightening at the time, but when I went along to the drum circle on Wednesday, we had no trouble at all, which was a huge relief after last week’s experience. I think you’re onto something there, my friend; kung fu classes would be a good idea 😉! 😊

  10. A true story? The horror! Sounds surreal. The out of touch realms people on drugs go to. How could they live like that?!
    I am sad this is a true story. Shame on those mean men. Sorry this happened to you. Hope you recover swiftly from this one, dear Ellie. Please be well. You are loved and in a safe place now. Stay sweet. Bless you.

    1. It was absolutely true and a terrifying experience. I don’t know where they came from or how they knew we were practising there. They were really nasty characters and frightened the life out of us at the time. Fortunately, there are new security measures that have been put into place so that it can’t happen again. We had our drum circle again this past Wednesday, and thank goodness, all went well this time. Sadly, some people were so frightened that they didn’t come this week. Hopefully, when we’ve had another couple of groups where all goes well, they will feel more confident about coming again. Thank you for your kind and affectionate words, my friend. Xx 🌼💛

  11. Oh my days, Ellie! My heart was in my mouth reading about those scary intruders to your beautiful drumming session 😦 You must have all been so scared!!! I can’t believe the Police didn’t show up!!! OMG!!! I’m hoping you are all okay now and that you will all have more security in your next drumming lessons/sessions. I wonder if there is a way to get alarms and cameras fitted? Can you have a personal pepper spray thing? I am so worried and just want to keep you safe xx

    1. Thanks, Janet. I was terribly scary. We were all frightened. The police rarely come out for burglaries, let alone intruders, who would have probably got out quickly if the police had turned up. Our police are so run off their feet these days; there are not enough of them to attend every crime. We’re all okay now and have had another two undisturbed sessions since then. We have put further security measures in place so they wouldn’t be able to enter the building at all if they ever think of doing it again. We couldn’t have cameras or similar installed because we are using someone else’s building. I feel sure the incident won’t be repeated, so that we can drum in peace. Xx 🥁💞

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