Barry Tebb

Years

There is no way to bridge the chasm
Between the living and the dead.
Two years on you came in a dream,
Mute, expressionless, dressed in blue
Just as you were when I first met you.
Desperately we tried to speak
But our lips refused to move
As your image faded.
I Was Heathcliff bereft
Crying into the wind.

The Divine Pity
In memory of Brenda Williams (1948-2015)

For Alan Morrison without whose encouragement nothing would have moved and
for Daisy Abey without whose support nothing would have begun

The grief from your death is beyond measure
My closest friend for fifty years.
Remembering the rivers of hours
That passed between us, your early years
A harvest of sadness, only at the end
Had we worked through the nights you spent
At your mother’s side, walking the winter nights
To avoid your father’s rage.
We took those years apart
Nightmare by nightmare
Fear by fear, his steps towards the door
His threats, his flailing,
The hands of the clock
As the time drew near.
Your sister and brothers in bed
As eldest you must bear
Your mother’s fear
And be a shield
And still a child endure.
No longer here
You can mentor me
No more or catch
A doubtful metaphor
Or make coffee
While I explore
Your shelves to find
Delmore and his despair.
I have none of your cats
To caress and share
Piggy especially
Who would sit by your side
And adore.
I had a phone for you alone
And a second elsewhere
Our conversations metered
By the hour and every year
There would be more
I never thought to keep the score.
Joining the shards,piercing the shades
Through the lens of fear
Making clear the memories
Far and near.

Barry Tebb © 2017