Thursday, December 29, 2011

Carols in the care home.

A wet December day, dark with dusk.
A ring of armchairs rimmed the room;
carol sheets stirred like sleepy butterflies, 
nestling in the laps between the wrinkled hands.

While shepherds watched their flocks by night

One by one the carols came.
Crotchets and quavers filled the air like festive snow,
settling in the snow-white hair as voices,
bass with age, sang songs of ancient joys.

Away in a manger

In a gap between the songs I heard a sob.
"He can't have gone" she said, shaking her head in disbelief.
"He'd never leave me here alone".
"He's back tomorrow love" they said but 
though the arms were quick to hold and 
voices gentle to assure
nothing could be said or done 
to mitigate this moment
of fearful lucidity.

Oh come all ye faithful

She was not his wife the way she used to be.
On good days she'd remember him and cry when he left.
On other days she'd not know who he was.

In the bleak midwinter

(c) A McN

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2 Comments:

Anonymous Susannah said...

Poignant and beautifully observed.

Happy new year Alistair. x

10:12 AM  
Blogger alistair mcnaught said...

Thankyou Susannah, sorry it took so long to spot the comment !

12:55 PM  

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