A group of writers in Chichester coming together once a month for inspiration, collaboration and sensation
‘Neil Armstrong has passed away’, or so they’d said
– Almost an afterthought, it seemed: a thing of passing mention
Should we be grateful then, for their condescension?
Or refuse to believe, never having been there, that he’s really dead?
It was an age away, like their long journey, yet so clear in mind
That I remember, as a boy, history’s great event
Despite my mum’s concern, so off to bed she’d sent
My body. And yet I still bore witness, in spirit, if not in kind
What was it really like, for him, to tread that step, alone?
Actually to be there, upon another world, so pristine and so pure.
To be the very first to lay a kiss upon its marvellous allure.
And then, to return, to survive, and for those words, atone.
He was, in truth, the bravest of men, and the most modest, too
He had the right stuff in spades; without doubt the steady sort,
To land a starving Eagle on a lump of cheese, or so we once thought,
Until his like showed us what it really was, in its more marvellous hue.
More precious than a dragon’s tooth, rarer than eclipse
That giant leap should have led us to a sweeter life
If only blind fools had tried to put an end to strife
And follow brave Apollo with much bigger, better ships
So now, departing Earth, for this, the one last time
To journey far beyond the moon, and never to return
Perhaps, he’s flying now, through stars, attempting to discern
Much stranger truths that dance forever, to another rhyme.
Farewell, Neil Armstrong. I wish I’d shook your hand
And as you leave, you take a piece of me, from kinder days
We’ll think of you from time to time, as we look up and gaze
Upon the smiling moon, as from this lovely Earth, we stand.