Tuesday, 16 February 2010


Jackie Hayes 1936-2009

I see her clearly
In the Secretary’s chair.
She has been
Through the minutes
With her usual quiet dignity
(No rowdy comments
From the floor
At this Society’s meetings).
She reminds us
That it is to be an evening
Of members’ poems.
We are seated in a three-
Quarter circle,
Faces lifted, attentive.
Jackie reads ‘Slow Dusk Fading’,
Perfect diction
For a perfect poem
And quietly, so quietly;
Unbullied we listen.
She sweetens the words
With tincture of honey.
The fit is perfect,
Polished and even
Like the granite blocks
Of the ancients.
Past the last word we listen
Into silence
Into warm and distant echoes.
Jackie could bring a stone to faith.

Martin Domleo

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