The month of remembering -
the lines of men in the stubble fields
the hideous scramble over a muddy
parapet, the cringing death in the
eye’s blink - this month recalls
wars past and wars still trailing
death and mutilation in their wake.
But not just that.
This month of remembering
lines up before our wavering prayers
the souls of Saints, the souls
of our beloved dead, guttering
like candles in the fitful
illumination of our faith.
The tears come, yes -
but do we weep for them, or do we
shrink at the sudden blinding glimpse
of our too frail mortality?
We who live trudge on to where
our companion dead are waiting
among the red flowers at the years’ end
in that land to which we go.
This owes its conclusion to a fraction of an idea from R.S.Thomas, whose words tend to haunt my subconscious and of whom I will always be in awe.