This made me think about Dave Alway, whose memorial gathering I was unfortunately unable to attend a couple of weekends ago, which in turn brought to mind this wonderful poem by John M. Ford, which was recently referenced on a newsgroup I read.
So here’s a poem on World Poetry Day, in honour and memory of Dave.
by John M. Ford
The worm drives helically through the wood
And does not know the dust left in the bore
Once made the table integral and good;
And suddenly the crystal hits the floor.
Electrons find their paths in subtle ways,
A massless eddy in a trail of smoke;
The names of lovers, light of other days—
Perhaps you will not miss them. That’s the joke.
The universe winds down. That’s how it’s made.
But memory is everything to lose;
Although some of the colors have to fade,
Do not believe you’ll get the chance to choose.
Regret, by definition, comes too late;
Say what you mean. Bear witness. Iterate.