Once... he wrote a poem...

Sorry. It's been a while again, and I haven't forgotten my promise to return to look at the vexed question of forgiveness among other things flowing from the event at Skainos "Listening to your Enemies," however, I've been extra busy this week with a couple of training days and a wedding (making a pleasant change from the multiplicity of funerals I have been conducting recently).
One of the training days was in conjunction with the new inter-churches Suicide awareness programme "Flourish" established to help address the epidemic of suicides we are experiencing in Northern Ireland at present... an enemy which is in danger of claiming more lives than the troubles in half as many years.
In the light of that I thought I would share this short poem I came across a few days previously in John Julius Norwich's miscellany "Christmas Crackers" which, as he says, seems like "grim fare" to include in a such a book. But it was written by a 15 year old boy a full two years before he took his own life, and as John Julius Norwich comments it deserves to be better known...
 
Once. . . he wrote a poem.
And he called it ‘Chops’,
Because that was the name of his dog, and
that’s what it was all about.
And the teacher gave him an ‘A’
And a gold star.
And his mother hung it on the kitchen door,
and read it to all his aunts . . .

Once. . . he wrote another poem.
And he called it ‘Question Marked Innocence’,
Because that was the name of his grief, and
that’s what it was all about.
And the professor gave him an ‘A’
And a strange and steady look.
And his mother never hung it on the kitchen door
because he never let her see it . . .

Once, at 3 a.m. . . . he tried another poem...
And he called it absolutely nothing, because
that’s what it was all about.
And he gave himself an ‘A’
And a slash on each damp wrist,
And hung it on the bathroom door because he
couldn’t reach the kitchen.

 
Selah

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