No Blue Plaque


NO BLUE PLAQUE

No blue plaque here
but
in that house
in that room
I was conceived.
In the same house
in the same room
then I was born.

First child
Only child
Undistinguished house
undistinguished room
undistinguished birth.

But blessed with
the Conquering
Blood and Fire
General’s name.

It had to be that way.

Aren’t all births
distinguished only by their
unglamorous spectacle?

Not something I asked for
nor desired.
No regrets
but there were
Consequences.
Oh, yes.
Eighty years
of consequences.
My history
My responsibility
My river’s ride
through childhood rapids
to maturity’s turmoil
and turbulence.
Becalmed now
in dispiriting dotage
its stillnesses
its infirmity and nostalgia.

What follows
eventually
as I merge
with the looming ocean
waiting
to receive me?


Memories fade for me

Yet I know
some continuity remains
where these same images
 have been handed on
to those loved ones
who will remember.

But now
in moments of tranquility
my responsibility
for my past
presses hard
until those times when
 my love surges
to outweigh my guilt
and again
for good or ill
my scarred soul
returns to its past
and wonders.


… and time treads on
as I stare at the window
the nets shielding its secrets.
Now
just as they did then
So long ago.

Photographs … WHB – Yorkshire (2016) and Sussex (2009), UK

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