LETTER FROM KIRKHEATON by Barry Tebb
I have no camera but imagination’s tinted glass
I cannot pass this crumbling dry stone wall
Without a break to catch the vistas of the chain of Pennine hills
That splash their shades of colour like mercury in the rising glass.
The June sun focuses upon the vivid grass,
The elder’s pale amber, the Victoria Tower’s finger
On the pulse of past shared walks, Emley’s mast
And the girl from there whose early death
We somehow took the blame for: her reach from the beyond.
Still troubles us, the only ones to mourn you, Chris,
Your corn-gold hair splayed like a longship’s mast
You sailed to Valhalla through a sea of passing loves,
The deceits of married men who took your beauty
For a moment’s gift then cast you with your seven year old son adrift.
The sun has gone but birdsong blunders on
As I take courage from the gone, the waving grass,
The sculptured pylons of my shadowed past.