WITHOUT THE WHEREWITHALL by Barry Tebb
To Thushari Williams
Dear Thushie, the six months you spent with us
Will never be forgotten, the long days you laboured
In the care home, your care-worn comings home
To sit with Brenda Williams, poиte maudit sang pur,
Labouring together to bring to light poems buried alive
And turn them into a book, the living text
Proof enough of your divine gift as muse
And enchantress of both word and screen.
Now in far Indonesia you strive to strike a bargain
With an uncaring world, webmaster with magic fingertips
You engrave the words of us, careworn poets of our age,
In blue and scarlet on a canvas alabaster page.
Simulacrum more real than reality itself,
Should reality exist in cyberspace.
My Prйvert, my Nerval, I never thought to see
So handsomely orthographed, like Li Po scrolled
In Chinese water by a blue pagoda.
Indeed if anyone could write in troubled water
It would be you, my dearest daughter.
Whether this world will grant you a living
Only time’s indifference and your subtle craft will tell,
Artists like poets live on other’s bounty, as you know so well.