Barry Tebb


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