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We know not whither, but we all must go

Wednesday, 13 June, 2012

We pause now to pay our respects to the beloved father of Mrs Rainy Day, a man who cherished the mountains of his native Tipperary as much as the plains of his adopted Midlands. In the coming days, a sincere life will be remembered with tears and laughter and prayers fraught with pain as we acknowledge that we must all bow in turn to the passing of Time.

Prayer

Some days, although we cannot pray, a prayer
utters itself. So, a woman will lift
her head from the sieve of her hands and stare
at the minims sung by a tree, a sudden gift.

Some nights, although we are faithless, the truth
enters our hearts, that small familiar pain;
then a man will stand stock-still, hearing his youth
in the distant Latin chanting of a train.

Pray for us now. Grade 1 piano scales
console the lodger looking out across
a Midlands town. Then dusk, and someone calls
a child’s name as though they named their loss.

Darkness outside. Inside, the radio’s prayer —
Rockall. Malin. Dogger. Finisterre.

Carol Ann Duffy


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