THE CRUST OF MEMORY


(Written to commemorate Armed Forces Day, November 2016)


Memory, molten like gravy

Can burn through concrete:

Old soldiers and bairns

Ages bonded, in a crust

Holding safe the taste

Of goals and heartbreaks

The uniform embrace of

blues and whites, khakis

And the respect of history

Circling stands, together

Settling in to seats, proud

They cheer together behind

The eleven uniforms, with pies

Programmes and processions

Through generations, tuned

Into remembrance, a symbol

A quiet red flower, a doorway

Into the past, a soft light on

The present, on the chests

And in the hearts of Saints

Beyond the final whistle

Emptying into darkness

Never to end there, brave

Legends with arms linked

When we all go marching on