For my Grandad a hundred years on : the First World War centenary

 

With much love for my Grandad, Thomas Clarke, born 1896, who fought with the Sherwood Foresters, Nottinghamshire & Derbyshire Regiment 1914-1918

 

Show me a greenhouse

and I catch my Grandad’s face

turning, as he bends to his plants,

his calm back rounded away

from trench war and toil.

I recall his gentleness,

the pungent hothouse smell

of tomato plants and the soil

quick with growing.

 

Kindness itself, he was always quiet,

would sit smoking, stare into space.

A survivor. How was it to return, to carry

those memories to the end of your days?

He never spoke about it, except to say that

the pack-mules had to be attended to first.

He was sent home with trench fever,

which saved his life.

 

At the eleventh hour the guns fell silent –

on the eleventh day of the eleventh month.

My Grandad’s birthday.

 

 

Rose Cook

Rose will be reading as guest poet of the Fire River Poets on October 4th

 

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I will be performing as guest poet of the Fire River Poets on National Poetry Day at 8 pm on the 4 October 2018. There will also be an open mic session. Fire River Poets contact details: enquiry@fireriverpoets.org.uk Website: http://www.fireriverpoets.org.uk
Venue: Creative Innovation Centre CIC, Memorial Hall, Paul Street,Taunton TA1 3PF
01823 337477 info@creativeinnovationcentre.co.uk

 

photo Rose Cook