I have two appointments tomorrow:
Death and poetry.
Death is a memorial service
for father and son.
no songs sad enough
no hugs comfort enough
no wine strong enough
to suture those wounds in
so short a time.
Poetry is a Festival,
a celebration of words and life
where many trackers
of image and metaphor
will unspring their traps of ink
letting their quarry
enjoy new leases
of life and freedom.
I am stretched between these two poles.
Some will still try to knit a god
from the jumbled loose ends of tragedy
and because I am English and manners
always trumps truth in social situations
I will hold my tongue.
Do my best to be
song, hug and wine
in short snatches of conversation.
I will drive from one to the other
with thoughts of daughter and mother
shadowing the sunshine to come.
I don’t know if the magnetic field of grief
weakens with distance, perhaps
I’ll find out. One question will be my
companion through the next three days:
how much truth can both stages bear?