Mary Angela Douglas


Even Late In The Day It Was Comforting To Think - Poem by Mary Angela Douglas

for Ray Bradbury in memorium (August 22,1920 - June 5,2012)

Even late in the day it was comforting to think
You were still out there in California
Holed up in your toyshop basement
Writing another sheaf of them

Golden, amber, green or blue
Radiant royal blue or violet
Scarlet rarer than rare.

Oh send me down a dandelion wind
I don't want to think that this has ended.
Surely some mistake was made.


He died quietly last night his publisher said.
Why didn't we wake up and stop him?
Don't go Ray, we'd plead holding his
Lovely shadow back as if he were Peter Pan.
Don't go yet.
Tell us another story

Like children cranky before bedtime;
That's why it happened when we were asleep.
Besides, the angels have story-times, too.
They needed him longer.
I'm sure they brought him ice cream.
That did it. I'll bet it was cherry-vanilla…

Venus in transit was seen from Tahiti
The radio said linking it in the next breath to
Bradbury's gone.

(Is he on Venus? In Tahiti? I thought like
One of his stories unfolding…
Myself. By myself. Oh, gone…)

At 11: 02 I was at home
Drinking coffee peaceful and dreamy
Halfway listening to radio news.

The author Ray Bradbury has died at 91
I heard at 11: 03 a.m., it's Wednesday, June 6th.
I couldn't believe it. D-Day for all the writers now
Left still on earth and the dear readers too.
Why couldn't we hear the trumpets?

Oh I would like to break off my sprig of lilac
For you like Whitman for Lincoln
But I am only I and can't stop crying
And I don't want to say goodbye.

How will the Summer survive?
Having lost the one who loved her most sincerely.
If only we had those magical tennis shoes to follow
You where you are now…

But we must wait like you, for Appointed Times…
Or stories…for the wings of clouded poems
To arrive, oh are you listening?
Did you arrive yet. Why are the skies so grey.

Here is my sprig of lilac anyway.
Is that you passing by?
Did you come back for your files?
The ones you kept for years bursting open at the seams and
perpetually sprung-open with ideas
For stories to come.

For the stories to come…

We are bereaved.

Green trees in the rain touch over the antique streets
Green trees in the rain can't stop weeping

And Venus in transit stops for a moment, overcome-
And the simple stars - sing-

mary angela douglas 6 june 2012

Topic(s) of this poem: Poets


Poet's Notes about The Poem

This is what I was doing and feeling when I heard Ray Bradbury died.

We were so lucky God sent us such a writer. For me, what I felt in every story even the ones about Mars was the unmistakable nostalgia for home.

Now he's home. But we miss him on earth. Don't we...

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, June 7, 2012

Poem Edited: Wednesday, July 30, 2014


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