Love poems from the heart

On a hill in a land so far away

The love of a grandchild for his grandfather and father. The poem was read at a funeral.


Addressed to my nephew, Peter, on remembering my grandfather's grave in Dumfries, Scotland, January 1972


On a hill in a land so far away,

I see a grave-mound, hard with clay,

On a raw and gusty winter's day.


My grandfather, Jimmy, lies beneath

the Celtic Cross, the purple heath,

and on the clay I place my wreath.


He was a dyer, tall and lean.

His eyes were soft, yet Celtic keen,

and nothing in his heart was mean.


His soul had throbbed with Celtic strains:

the love of books and leafy lanes,

and songs of Scotland in his veins.


His memory is evergreen

in my land where he'd never been,

this kinsman whom I've never seen.


My father had his father's eyes,

adventured to Australian skies,

and in this southern land he lies!


And now he's dancing in your eyes,

I hear his laughter in your cries,

his silent moments in your sighs.


If these men bequeathed the strains

that pulse and sing within your veins

who dare say but dust remains!


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