I come each year to where my father lies
And read again the polished granite stone,
Which tells me that he died on such a date,
At such an age and may he Rest in Peace.
The formula is bare, so much unsaid,
And with each year becomes more indistinct
As images I hold become concealed
Behind eroding lichens of the mind.
Pines stood like these
Along the windy ridge
Where we so often walked
And much in love
Discussed a time to wed.
Beneath the trees
On those October days
So distant now
Our plans much favoured Spring
Until we said,
As of one heart and mind,
Why wait till then?
At Christmas let it be!
And so it was!
17 May 1985 On seeing a drawing by John Constable “Fir Trees at Hampstead, 1820”