for Bruce Dawe

God speed Andrew,
may the sun be at your back.
The leaves have dropped and
winter chills your three score
years and more.

It's some months since the hospice rang,
dissolving forty years.
'It should have been me'
you told the dead telephone.
You held her hand and promised.

A nice young couple bought the house.
'Have you lived here long? '
'Thirty-five years, ' you said.
'It's lovely, ' they told you.
You had to walk away.
'Sorry if we've...'
'It's alright, the agent reassured,
he's just a bit upset.'

Settle in thirty days?
Sooner if you like?
Thirty days is fine,
there are a few things.
We understand.

The agent rang,
the cheque's arrived.
One more walk around the house.
He thought he heard the children laugh?

What's left?
Check the list.
Tell the neighbours.
Warm the engine.
Don't forget to shut the gate.
It's a long drive to the sunshine coast.
Take it in easy stages.

'See, I didn't forget my glasses'

God speed Andrew,
may the sun be at your back.

Matt Johnston 24 September 2008

This poem is poignant, but unlike with other poets who try to convey suffering, I do not suffer for this art do to sentimentality. Enjoyable.

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Greenwolfe 1962 18 April 2008

This was a special piece of writing because it took the reader along with the writer. That is hard to do. I must pay tribute to it by giving it a good score. GW62

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Nimal Dunuhinga 12 November 2007

Sentimental & sad penning from a soft heart.

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Alison Cassidy 05 November 2007

Oh Jerry. This could only have been written by someone with a surfeit of years on this planet and the emotional openness of a woman. Andrew is agonizingly sad, partly because you never descend into sentimentality in telling his story. A sublime poem. love, Allie xxxx

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Sally Plumb Plumb 10 February 2010

Your writing reminds me of Lee Crowells style.

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Quin Faas 01 November 2009

this is nicely penned...I enjoy the beginning/ending lines as they allow this piece to radiate warmth..

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Patrick A. Martin 08 October 2009

It must have been tough to see a mate leave- hope you keep in touch with him. 10

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Jacqui Thewless 03 September 2009

You write so well about death and loss and the dying, with such uncluttered empathy.

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Naidz Ladia 22 May 2009

this is nicely written..hope this is not written in teary eyes and trembling fingers..i like the flow tho it shows sadness..time to say goodbye...the hardest words to express..naizz

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