On The Path

In the last month, our family has lost three close friends, although none of them died from corona virus illnesses. Here is a short poem I wrote about grief.


Passing a stranger, silent, on the towpath at Barnes, 
I feel moments later something akin to grief,
wonder if once we had met.
Perhaps after turning I shall
see him again coming back.

I try to find words for what was familiar in his face.
An absence of belief -
not doubt -
an absence of the need for belief
and the absence itself;

find words for his effortless progress,
the lightness of his tread.
As if in the end
we could ever be anything but
absolutely sure.

Published by davidcookpoet

I am a husband, father and grandfather. I retired from a busy working life as an adult psychiatrist in 2014. My interests are in literature, philosophy, modern jazz and horse racing. I might represent those four fields by Shakespeare, Kant, Charlie Parker and Lester Piggott. Like nearly all of us, I can identify a number of formative experiences, one of which was a psychotic episode in my first year as a psychiatrist. This reinforced an already established interest in mystical experience, and a sense of how little human beings know. My intellectual bugbear is reductive materialism, and I am surprised at the lack of moral imagination of those who promulgate such views. It seems to me they need to consider ,perhaps by exposure, just why totalitarianism is so horrific.

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