19 Mar 2012
I just had my routine OTL (Observation of Teaching and Learning) for the internal standards review at the WEA (Workers Educational Association) where I teach creative writing and poetry.
I scored Grade 1, outstanding. I worked hard preparing for it and enjoyed gliding serenely through the OTL process.
The following photo has nothing to with anything except happiness. And I really did make them all myself, although not to celebrate this particular occasion.
15 Mar 2012
For Catherine - and for all of us
Just because your best friend’s gone
it doesn’t mean she’s really, really, gone.
It’s just like when, the first time you hear a new song
and it’s something great -
it resonates, switches awake, vibrates,
tunes in to your own soul,
leaps up a dance to your inner base beat,
sweetens the air that you breathe, reaching soul deep:
and something, in you, changes.
And the song ends but its influence remains,
and we are never the same again.
Just because your sister has gone,
it doesn’t mean she won’t still there in a long walk over
the moor, or the seashore, and that still lights memories inner eye
with sunrise - sunset - sunshine – skylines,
shaping the soulscape of who we have each become
in her fine company: and with whom we could so easily belong.
Just because your ally, your pal, your wife, your chum,
your beloved-companion-confidante, your daughter, your mum
my schoolfriend - the one who listened as deeply as she spoke,
and who broke our hearts with her parting -
has gone -
it doesn’t mean that the spark of her wit,
not one wicked guffaw
not one belly deep bellow of it
will ever leave us -
nor the wise advice that she spoke to the rise of a slowly boiling kettle.
Nor the mettle of her! Nor her easy propensity to bliss.
Nor her ease with the abstract, or ridiculousness,
nor the sense of her own sense of justice
has gone -
because – just because –
Catherine knew how to live her life in tune
with those who loved her.
And somewhere in the shape of the ache for her,
her song plays, still resonates,
and we are never without her music -
no: never. We are never, the same again.