A poem for St David’s Day

014August and sept 2015 034 

My angels were singing : a poem for St David’s Day 

This poem was written a few years a go now – and I have shared it previously. I wondered about ‘recycling it ‘ but (rightly or wrongly) I love this poem, and, given that St David’s Day is an annual event, well….here’s to him, to Wales and the Welsh, and ultimately ; to us all!

Ddiwrnod da ac yn flwyddyn wych I ddod.

 

I stood near the house

where Grace once lived,

My angels were singing.

 

I watched as birds

and daffodils dived.

My angels were singing.

 

It’s spring and the sun

bursts fat and alive.

And my angels were singing.

 

Old crow, silhouetted against Carningli rock,

purple shadowed on blackened burnt bracken,

gorse and heather reeling :

the after shock.

But my angels were singing, still.

As seagulls wheeled across the bay,

catching sea breezes,

tumbling at will.

 

The Irish Sea lies beneath

becalmed and silvered blue,

and my angels were singing.

 

Wales’ favourite saint remembered

the new season breaks forth, springing,

flowers dancing, church bells – ringing.

His angels – singing.

 

Seasons, people, live and die,

here and now is for the living.

But remember those you love or loved –

do try.

And let your angels be singing.

Let your angels be singing.

 

 

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Poem for Armistice Day 11 11 2014

Remembrance Sunday.

What would you have had us remember?

As you mustered in the trenches,

Around the gun emplacements.

As you hopped into the cockpit

And flung yourself skywards,

Or plumbed the depths

Submerged and submarined?

Should we remember your bravery?

Your mockery? Your cynicism in the face of duty?

Your gut wrenching anxiety,

Your fear, your mortal pain,

As you were killed and wounded,

Again and again and again?

 

Do the flags, the parades,

The preachers, the cavalcades,

Act as sufficient homage?

Or would peace, justice, equality

Be more deserving of your patronage?

 

But whichever,

It is true.

We must continue,

To remember you.

 

(This poem, and lots of others, to be found in  my collection, ‘Marcism Today’)


One hundred years ago – a lesson

August 4th 2014
My love lies sleeping in France
Whilst I walk the ancient parish boundaries here
Allegiances, ancient, modern too
Avowed.
Revelling in the
Summertime sun dance,
Though
The sunset tonight
Settles westwards
Muted by low cloud.

As the lights in our small seawards town
Were subdued
Laid down,
The ghosts of a century
Long passed
Screeled and swirled,
Banshees twisted
Twirled
Sighed amidst the chatter of the Information Age,
Which rolled and frolicked,
As noisy as any machine gun clatter.

The Last Post
Omnipresent,
Poignantly abundant.
Peace talks now,
As then,
Redundant.

37 days in 1914
26 in Gaza
Just gone by
How many more on the roll call
Of desperate days?
The disgust,disdain
Shellburst, rocketed, tanked
Agony and pain.
Libya, Syria, Iraq, Ukraine…
And what hope
Can possibly remain?

I could go on,
But am not that strong.

So little learned
Or so it would seem
In the 100 years between.

Obelisks and gravestones
Commonwealth war graves
For uncommon people.
Hymns are sung
Poems proclaimed
Sermons delivered
Other homilies.
For others
Unmarked furrows
Scarred the blistered earth and
Poppies flamed the surly skies.

Lest we forget?
Indeed so.
And yet,
We do not appear to be equipped to remember that
War is
Even now
(Sterilised and remote as we might try to make it)
Savage, relentless, unforgiving and
Ultimately
Pointless.

As so it was
One hundred years
And oh so many millions of tears
Ago.


A poem for my father in law

Poem for Derek Beazley. 16/7/24

 

Ten years on

You are remembered,

Cherished memories.

Perhaps ethereal ?

Substance, somehow , immaterial.

Yet,

Your cairn still stands solid,

The view sweeping Nevern, Newport Bay and into the great blue yonder.

The gorse whispering,

Catapulting

Honey dripping scents

Across mudded marsh,

Rocks streaked and grey,

And heather

Impervious to grazing

Imperious with weather.

Ever the day,

The green backed mountain

Bowling skywards away.

 

The sea stumbling over Cat Rock

Cat calling gulls

Wind wards sailing.

Larks rising in harmony,

Carningli too,

Cloud ridden and proud.

The ghosts

Iron aged

Must have gazed in wonder

When you emerged

Uphill riding

November misted

Your dogs, ponies

Unerring horse sense,

Picking your way along the paths

The bridle way swarthed and steep.

And now?

No more miles for you

” Before you sleep, before you sleep.”

 

Sometime farmer, gardener

Mountain man and guide,

Hotelier, meeter, greeter

So much more beside.

Husband, companion,

Fond father with the Laconic film star drawl.

Startling grandchildren by

Jumping

Wolf like

From behind the wall.

You were Everyman

Welcome friend

And “Speed the parting guest”

Now departed, yes

But ever shining steady

Amidst

The brightest

And

Amongst the very best.


Veterans ( 6th June 1944)

 

 

70 years before…….

Young men stumbling into the shell bound surf

Silver flying fish

Stunned

The boys, wading on and in

Falling, camouflaged no more

Booming, battling forth

Whistling bullets, the siren song of war

Deafening the ocean’s unerring roar.

 

Years ago

in Juneau

I watched ‘Saving Private Ryan’

With Pete Bibb

Self appointed ‘old timer’

Who left the movie house

“Cannot watch this, have to go”

he muttered

As the faux machine guns

Cinematically stuttered.

 

This D Day morning

The robes of priests, clustered

The coat tails of politicians

And hats of royalty

Fluttered

As the bemedalled veterans

Mustered

Attendant, attentive,

Old men now

Memories shared, perhaps, despairs

Some stood and stared

As the peace yearning prayers

Were uttered.

 

In the fields at home

The buttercups, the thistle heads

Were bowing in the stiffening wind

That blows across the Channel

Westward, ho!

The clouds scud seawards

A breath of memory passes

Back across to France

Where death gleaned a mighty harvest

No respect for rank, for officer classes

 

The flags and flowers

Half masted

The crowds lost

Perchance

In collective trance

Subdued respect, even awe

For

Our veterans

 

And own them all, we all surely must

Those alive

Others sand blasted,  dust

Their debt, in full, is met

Our account

Ever owed

To remember

And not forget.

 

Marc Mordey 6/6/14