Friday, 13 February 2009

Homer's Boat (For Don Maclennan)


"Hello Shorty" is how Don used to greet me. Anyone who knows me will appreciate the humour. There was something infinitely consoling about knowing that there was Don out there in the world, someone I could picture in his study and kitchen, house and garden, drinking a cup of tea, pulling a book from a bookshelf or a fig from the tree, sharing a joke with Shirley, and always tending words and thoughts in his poetry. Don was my best friend's father, he became my friend and mentor too. Till the last, offering me generous and incisive comment and encouragement in painting. Returning to visit Don  became something of a pilgrimage, and also a coming home.

Salaam Alaykum, dear Don

Possession and loss

After last night's heavy rain
the street is covered in a coat of cadmium flowers 
shed by the trees.

For them it is no
struggle to let go.


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