He lives in the north of England, but his words reach round the world! John Lavan, known here for A Birth,
has been writing life-spun poems for a number of years. They are, as
you would expect, based on John’s own day-to-day, and his son Andrew is
the actor, theme, and inspiration for a great many of these poems. Read
more of these eloquent elements in the life of a writer at John’s blog,
and keep company for a little while with this poem, which John tells us
was inspired by Wordsworth’s famous Tintern Abbey. This is a lovely
upside down of a realization, a startle and a shock as this writer
takes us inside limitations and stretches the horizon of capability and
By John Lavan
Electricity in a barren hotel
Last week, my first son shone brightly
but now I can’t perceive his light. He’s gone.
It’s a pang to not connect
by levels unbeknown like
eyes, hands, laughter, song, touch.
Bring it on,
a spark, a gleam, magnetic pole;
isn’t that what we came for:
to feel for spots of warmth in icy caves?
Isn’t that the lesson from a special boy
who doesn’t buy the goods of business, husband, father
and rather would play one part here?
A seer into embers,
melting stone, turning ice to tears of light, laughter
wielding nothing more than natural magic.
My trick is to carry the joy
in memory, because that helps
to lift the mechanical world, Newton’s physics,
boring cause-effects and all mentality
into the poetic, philosophic, myth and extraordinary.
I never am with anyone all the time
or really with myself all the time,
I am a handicapped son.
But there are spots in space and time
when it’s OK,
when a heart is strong and tender,
when iron runs red,
when ice melts
and flows like