7th September 1940

I write this in pencil on thick khaki paper

So I would not forget later

My fear as the bombing started.

And walking slowly in a crocodile to our cellar

School friends for ever

We were never parted.


10th September 1940.

It could not be true; So I put my hand to my breast

And heard the bomb swizzle down to our nest

And closed my eyes.

Had I slept? Maybe but my time was kind and blessed

To help me forget the body that I caressed

In the dust where we died.


3rd September 1986.

Did I ask you to be born today, or even arrive at all?

You are a part of me, and you will be tall

But I did not ask for you.

I am told that I have a son, who I never see.

My sister says he now looks like me

And has no news of what you do.


4th September 2018

I know you walked through ghosts on the Mile End Road in Bow

Treading heavily and waking the entombed below

The chewing gummed stone.

She is still there, her skeleton fused with another.

I wonder if her last words were ‘I am your mother’

And mine will be ‘ I am your father’, but I am alone.

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