Friday, 15 November 2013

Death of a President

22 November 1963

Friday evening, that time when
Tea was out and father was in
And the coal fire cracked
And the ash wood spat
And the flames danced
in the hearth of that living room.

The valve radio muttered mysteriously in the corner
Brown and brooding and beaming 
News over the air

I  once looked inside its sinister side
Valves humming and hawing 
Not quite tuned

It snatched the news and spat it out

The President has been shot

I adjusted the woggle of my scarf

I eyed the time
Time for Scouts, hair combed
Shirt pressed, shoes polished

And I dreamt of long-shadowed horses

And a gun-carriage hearse
And a widow and sons black and bowed
On a bright, Washington winter morn
When the world changed forever.

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