I thought I could write a poem of all the things I love, have loved before
and will love to come. I thought of God and then I thought my Mam now
long dead, remembering her in her warm kitching, hugging her with my
arms around her legs and smelling the flour on her apron. Counting
pennies with Dad when he brought home the takings after world war two, I
learned the British kings at the table, stacked them in dozens to make
shillings, heads of: Queen Victoria, King George the Fifth, Edward the
Seventh and George the Sixth, but Queen Elizabeth not yet crowned,
a royal princess, next in line, no Prince of Wales, no male heir.
I loved my brother Don, and my little sister who ran around in her
nappies under my guardian care. It was my task to run upstairs
when she cried for her dummy, tell her stories till she fell asleep
chomping at that rubber nipple. There are so many things left to tell
of the ack-ack girls behind our house, who tracked with RADAR the
raiders who carelessly threw bombs over our town dispensing death
and if not death the fear of death. They showed me how to apply
lipstick, how to pull on nylons and fasten to suspender belts, a fond
innocent memory. The softness of their bosoms as they poured out
their longings for their own little boy. It was a good time. I loved
Uncle Don in his captain's uniform, from the 101st Airborne, he left
me a tent, I loved that tent. Made for two officers we squeezed in
five boys and camped out in the Brecons, the Black Mountians and
the Gower peninsular. I love all the girls in my life, my wife, my
sons, my grandsons, why did God give me such beautiful offspring.
It is like the dew of heaven that came down on Aaron's beard and
flowed down to his ankles. I loved the scouts as a boy, my
apprenticeship how enabling for life, I loved rock 'an roll, my lie lit
up with Elvis, the Everly Brothers, Buddy Holly... and all the others
so many to list, it was like the light of the sun coming out of the
clouds when we steamed into Gibraltar, after the dark years of the
war we ate chicken every Sunday, a whole chicken with gravy and
roast potatoes, carrots and Yorkshire pudding.
And suddenly I realise I cannot list them all, all the pages in
the world cannot contain the love that God has bestowed on
me, nothing but good all the days of my life, and finally I will
see Mam again with all the saints, all my loves will be there
and I will dwell there in the house of the Lord for ever.
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