On 3rd April 2015, my beloved Stepfather, Harry, Hannah’s Grandpa, passed away.
13 weeks and 3 days later, my Mum let go, and went to join him.
He was the love of her life and she couldn’t live without him.
My mum’s devotion to her Christian (Anglo-Catholic) faith never faltered despite the anguish she faced throughout her life and she was extremely talented in many ways…but always (very annoyingly!) self-deprecating. I’d read her (mostly religious) poetry over the years and pestered her to share them with others. I’d even offered to take them to a publisher, but she vehemently refused and only shared them with Harry and I.
The first thing I searched for after her death was her book of poetry…and, thankfully, I found it!..and it will be cherished forever.
So, Mum, wherever you are, as often was the case, I’m being defiant and sharing some of your poems and thoughts with the world…because that’s EXACTLY where they deserve to be.
It makes me sad to read her words, but equally it makes me reflect with fondness how she’d recite what she’d written…but she’d put her “posh” voice on just for that. Oh mum, I never realised how much I’d miss you.
I can do nothing for my mum or stepdad now; except lay flowers on their grave. So I’m adding this to my blog in memory and honour of them both.
Thank you to both of you for EVERYTHING.
I hope with all of my heart that you’re together.
“Over and out” my Darling Harry.
Please ask permission before copying
Reflections on I.Y.D.P. (International Year of Disabled People)
Young soldier in wheelchair passing by,
“It wasn’t my war” was his anguished cry,
Small child with a caliper on her leg,
“I want to dance” was her innocent beg,
Surely God never meant it this way,
That some of his children would have to stay,
Imprisoned within this infirmity.
Yet Christ Himself knew suffering too
And even then, there were only a few
To help in His disability.
So, Christian love must embrace all men,
Help blind and lame to feel whole within.
Together, we’ll strive for infinity.
M.W. September 1981.
Anguish written upon his face,
One of his followers in disgrace
Was it he who sat by his side
That very first glorious Eastertide?
Hung on a cross for all to see,
Suffering with great humility,
He talks of a father, love and Heaven
And dying that we might be forgiven.
Who is this Jew, with so gentle a mother?
Betrayed by a man he had loved as a brother
“Rabbi or radical?” hear the crowd say
“Release unto us Barabas today”
Darkness is over, the sun has shone
Gethsemane is empty, for now he has gone
The linen lies barren within his tomb
His lifestyle a query from the time in the womb
Nailed yet each day, pierced still his side
Through each man’s greed, hate, lust and pride
We, who do not deserve such devotion
Loved by this God of earth, sky and ocean.
M.W. 30th November, 1981.
For Mothering Sunday 1982
Humble young girl in a faraway land,
Smiled at her child as she took his hand,
How would he grow, what would he do
Perhaps like His father, a carpenter too?
No, there must be more for this son,
All too soon, away from his home.
Brothers and sisters left far behind,
A more rugged path was His to find.
Thirty years old and fully grown
The dearest son this mother had known
Carrying out His Fathers command
Taking the message all over the land.
Waiting at home for news of Him,
Just how soon would the trouble begin?
Knowing the sorrow she would soon gain
Through helping her son to suffer his pain
All over now, his passion is passed
This eldest son has breathed his last
Taught by her to love and be kind
A shining example he left behind.
Thinking of all her life might have been
Would she have changed one single scene?
A simple young girl, like any other
Expecting no more than to be wife and mother.
Humble young girl, from a far eastern land,
Selected by God and obeyed His command
To her be then honour, praise, love and glory,
Mary most gentle, Mary most holy.
M.W. March 1982.
Angry waves on Galilee
Darkened sky beholds them now
Nets are cast out o’er the side
Would there be a catch this night?
Storm arising, boat a’ rolling
Men frustrated, sweat from toiling
Gentle voice amongst them saying
Cast your net on the other side.
Fish a’ plenty now are netted
Sea is calm and sky is clearing
Peter hears the master saying
“fish for men, if thou loves me”
Ministry, Peter now must take
To all peoples in all lands
Tell the good news of his Lord
Submit to all of Gods commands
M.W. June 1991.
For my mum
Because you loved hymns so much,
Because I loved you so much.
All hail Great Majesty
On earth to set me free
Born in humility, my precious Lord,
Born just for me to die
Hung on a cross so high
So, I might be redeemed, to be received above.
What can I do for thee?,
Your love has set me free
Your death at Calvary promised me life,
I must pass on the news
All men can then just choose
To follow Jesus Christ, my saviour and my Lord.
Give to all men on earth
The news of Jesus birth
That he loved me so much, he gave his life.
Selfless unto the end,
On Him I can depend,
Jesus, my Saviour-Lord, master and friend.
Brothers, we all must be
In Christian unity
No more divisions, at one with our God.
Recognisde that He came,
All might receive His name
Jesus the promise of, eternal life with God.
The light of Heaven shines clear and bright
Upon a cold, cold winters night
To Beth’lem, shepherds make their way
To find the straw on which he lay.
Astronomers from lands afar,
Are guided by the brightest star
They bring Him gifts, including gold,
For prophesy has aforetold,
The King of Kings awaits their stay.
Directed all by David’s star
They came from near and from afar
To kneel before a child so small
Boy King and Saviour of them all
The Christmas child, once more on earth
Son of Mary’s Virgin birth.
Born of God, who gave his son,
Redemption there for everyone
Come and worship Him today
And in the New Year, do not stray
Live as Christ did, just for you
For He loves all, not just a few
Let love for Him shine clear and bright
As His love on that star filled night.
(Mum dedicated this to her husband “for unconditional love”)
M.W. December 1992.
Holy Babe, at sunset sleeping
Safe within Our Lady’s keeping
Gift from Heaven to man below
Sent, so we our God might know.
M.W. November 1997.
Hail thou resurrected Lord
King of all creation
By your sacrifice on earth – peace for every nation?
Help us all to be as one, each to love his brother
Finding Christ in all we meet – “The Way” – there is no other.
M.W. Easter 1999
Bright Angels attesting
The shroud and napkin resting
Behold – the stone is rolled away
And Christ the Lord
Is risen today.
We, with holy church unite,
As is both meet and just and right
In glory to the king of light.
M.W. Easter 2000
Holy Christmas, time of gladness,
Yet o’er the world there is much sadness,
Persecution, children hungry, greed,
Repression, people lonely,
All eyes a hollow stare.
Yet, Virgin Born, came one example,
Following Him, there should be ample
So give a crust, a smile, a hand,
Show the peoples of the land,
There is no need for emptiness.
Man live like Christ,
God each will bless.
The art of marriage
A good marriage must be created.
In the marriage, the little things are the big things. It is never being too old to hold hands. It is remembering to say “I love you” at least once a day. It is never going to sleep angry. It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives. It is standing together and facing the world. It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family. It is speaking words of appreciation and demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways. It is having the capacity to forgive and forget. It is a common search for the good and the beautiful. It is not only marrying the right person, it is being the right partner.