Wednesday, May 14, 2008


Rating: 5.0
Three photos in an black-paper album:
the schoolboy (sharp) in the family group,
the youth (blurred) playing tennis,
the student (faded) on the bridge;
the rarely-spoken story of your death,
in a boat,
out of a boat,
weeks to find the body;
and a clock in the library with your name on.

Not many clues to fill in the gaps:
did you laugh?
did you love?
did you live?
Time muffles your voice
and hides your secrets
more securely than did the water -
for photos fade,
memories fail,
clocks break,
while numberless descendants die with you
and the brightest branch of the family
will be for ever fruitless.

(in memoriam Richard Emrys Thomas 8 July 1930 - 22 February 1951)
Wild Bill Balding
Ivor Hogg 16 July 2008
Faded photographs stimulate memories of times past but as you know we can't rely on fickle memories We edit them, sometimes even change the cast Into a form thats sure to please Though its not true it suits us to alter the things which we recall Though what suits me may not suit you. What does it matter? not at all
0 0 Reply
Paul Hansford 15 May 2008
This is a touching and well-observed piece, with some lovely imagery (photos particularly, and the clock) , final couplet very striking. What a contrast to Coup de grace - this shows a poet who can do more than just rhyme. Well done!
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Lynda Robson 14 May 2008
A very poignant piece Bill, I can relate to this, when my mother-in-law died we inherited all the family photo's and it was their life story in a shoebox, but some of the photos were of people we didn't know, well penned, Lynda xx
0 0 Reply
julesx 64 14 May 2008
Hugs for the family and their loss of Richard Emrys Thomas, So many dreams unlived by him. A wonderful tribute to him, that you remember his light this way. x
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