Events That Stay With You

There are events, deeply personal, that stay with you. These may be rather insignificant to others, but to you they are pivotal. A tiny prompt such as a snippet of a song or a chance fragrance on the breeze may call to mind a first kiss, an award, or a million other things may fill your nostalgic heart with joy. The darker emotions too can be raised as well, and anniversaries of the death of a loved one, or other personal tragedy may come unwanted at intervals into your life. These each are our individual but shared lot

The shared impact of mutual experience also stays with us collectively. There are those “where were you when?” moments that seem to unite us. In my life there have been several. I was alive when JFK was assassinated, though I was too young to actually recall it. I do however remember the death of ML King and the unrest that followed; the space shuttle Challenger explosion and the shock of it on the faces of those around me; the death of Diana and the rush of several of my friends and family to London to be part of the collective loss. I can recall vividly my headteacher coming into my classroom to tell me of the 9-11 attacks and the television images of a world in horror. Now, today tens if not hundreds of thousands of people, many of whom have queued for nearly a full day will gather for the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II. Her death is one of those defining moments as well, an event that stays with you.


When A Nation Grieves

When a nation grieves and a people mourns

When there is an upset to all accustomed norms

We must stop and take a breath

To ponder what has changed with that death

A chapter ended, an era passed

We shall always to the memories hold fast


The photo of the statue of the late queen in Newmarket is one I took some time ago. As I was approaching it today, I was contemplating whether it would be appropriate to lay flowers on it. It was almost at that exact moment that the traffic slowed, and I was able to see dozens if not hundreds of bouquets already at its base, and a fairly steady stream of people bringing more. The traffic was such that I could not stop to take a picture, nor bring flowers myself.