Heaven Has No Fences – dedicated to the memory of the 800 migrants who died this last weekend

this poem was written six years ago, but, in the light of the tragic events of this week, has a renewed resonance for me. Rest well.

Heaven Has No Fences

In our world……

The sky is blue bolted and stilled,

spring washed and not yet

summer stilted.

I lay in the garden

gazing across the Bay,

a chiff chaff summoning, bell like trilling,

unwittingly willing to add thrill to

a Sunday evening revelry.

Earlier, we walked along the Nevern,

woodlands pin pricked by wood anemones,

bolstered by wild garlic

and the first blue bells creeping skywards.

Nothing untoward until

an owl, a tawny streak,

chased by a furious blackbird

disappeared, chastened perhaps

into the green tented, splintered tree tops. 

In your world…… 

Dawn, presumably, could not come too soon

as you fought your way to the side,

galvanized by the hope a passing cargo ship

might provide.

The Mediterranean, at one point

a moonlit, blank canvas,

the next moments, a swirling scramble,

angry abstract patterns, peopled by those

in extreme, ultimate, unimagined distress.

And beyond…… 

I must confess,

a shared sense of hopelessness,

the frustration that our two worlds can be

so far flung, heart strung,

devastatingly beautiful

and one almighty mess.

The awfulness of what drove you on

the headlong rush to emigrate

is likewise tough to contemplate.

In part, I too must bear the burden

for these casting votes of carelessness.

Life, the casual combination of magic and loss,

toil, sweat, leisure, excess

the daily, weekly, yearly struggle,

the explosion of the senses.

Can leave my mind muddled, confused,

my values and principles

shadowed, huddled

assaulted by the restless flow of news.

But one thing, for me,

remains as clear as morning dew :

heaven has no fences.

Mediterranean migrants


Migrants rescued 10-17 April


Feared to have died attempting the crossing so far this year

  • 35,000 Migrants have arrived from North Africa in 2015
  • 218,000 Estimated to have crossed the Mediterranean in 2014
  • 3,500 Migrants died attempting the crossing last year

Source: UNHCR

8 Comments on “Heaven Has No Fences – dedicated to the memory of the 800 migrants who died this last weekend”

  1. joymoore123 says:

    Marc you have described so well my feelings about this awfulness. Joy x


    • Thanks Joy
      it is somehow unimaginable and yet all too real, had to write something
      hope you are both well? Think of you often and hope to come and visit one fine day
      love Marc and Helen x


  2. helen carey says:

    This is an amazing poem – so sad and yet so beautiful.


  3. LifestyleswithLia says:

    Thank you for sharing this poem. What a terrible tragedy this week as well that’s continuing to happen.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Briony Patten says:

    A beautiful and very truthful poem Marc. Thank-you for sharing it and enabling me to stop and think about other people’s lives which are so different to mine and the people that I know.


  5. stew1e says:

    Brilliant, Marc. Wish I could do topical poems like this!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Deborah says:

    Beautiful, heart wrenching and poignant. A poem like this comes from a beautiful soul.


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