I'd be pressed to say exactly where
it first set in
the idea of his dying.
It may have been his back and buttocks
which seemed to have lost their nerve.
It may have been the swimming eye of the nurse
or possibly the friends who stayed away.
It could have been his feeding the dog
croissants - "she was begging in French"
Or the saucers of snow falling outside the window.
Sue Rylance lives in S.E. Northumberland. She studied an MA in seventeenth century social history at Durham University using family letters from that era. She writes a daily journal as she believes that the replacement of letter writing by emails no longer preserves details of our daily lives for future historians. She explores creative writing through poetry and short stories. She is a Tibetan Buddhist. She has four grandchildren who join her on imaginative voyages.
Sue says that the "Where and When" poem grew from a time when her husband Tony was dying of cancer. They lived in a 17th Century ferryman's cottage beside the river Tees. The dog in question was a black Labrador.
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Where and When © 2014 Sue Rylance: used with permission.
Copyright of this poem remains with the poet: please do not download or republish without permission.