The funeral

Gather at your house on a crisp May dawn

From far and wide they come to mourn

Tapping your coffin as you lie in state

Left with questions they thought too late
The cars arrive and it’s time to go

Cuddle your widow rocking to and fro

Hope is gone call off the search

Fill up the pews of the local church
The first hymn plays; a boy starts to cry

Wringing his fists and asking God why

Son, you’ll find no answers in the divine

Take my hand now; I’ll make your tears mine
Travelling down indifferent roads to the crematorium

The final journey from man to memoriam

Through the curtain you slide away from the crowd

And into the breeze drifting through the clouds
Head to the club for cold sausage rolls

A party on the precipice of a black hole

Sit awkwardly and smile through long conversations

With well-meaning, unknown, distant relations
Return to your house staring over the sea afar

As your daughter accompanies an acoustic guitar

Listen to the wind outside howling in anguish

As the flags flutter from here to Machrihanish
Night sets in and the mourners sleep

Seeking sanctuary in dreams, their sorrow steeps

I leave, for me, its time to go back

Through fields and hedgerows carved from the black
Search the darkness for the right words

To put into context what has occurred

What is the sense in the senseless?

Why take a man who defends the defenceless?
I say: Forget the priest and his empty words

Forget those that talk just to be heard

Forget the speed and intensity of the cancer

Forget the surgeons without an answer

Remember the man and what he stood for

Love, respect, and the rule of law

Live like him with class and endeavour

Do this and his spirit will live on forever
He may have gone on that crisp day in May

But his words still echo from yesterday.

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