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The Church Hall

Milky tea and fudge, warm hands and hearts

in this cold little hall; shiny buttons

on tired navy sports coat sleeves,

handed in with cardies and heavy belts.

Those with least gave most; always do,

and crave no recognition. A garden, too.

This is where they dispense love:

it comes in a cup, on a best plate, and

when they lean in close to listen, when

you can smell the charity and the cakes,

feel a working man’s hand on yours and see

the veins jump; see the frayed cuff.

Come here to learn the art of charity;

come here to see what a man grows

after raking and tumbling the earth.

Come here to hear the floor creak,

to feel the little heater’s warmth,

to see a hug and the power wrought

3 thoughts to “The Church Hall”

  1. Lovely, John, that gesture of the hand on hand, and the closing ‘little heater’s warmth’ rhyming with the ‘power wrought’, you eye is true as ever. As Sommer writes ‘capturing the scene’ and the heart of the scene with it.

  2. “come here to see what a man grows/
    after raking and tumbling the earth.”

    some powerful and beautiful observations, John. In your poetry I can see the detail that journalism as added to your writing. You’re quite brilliant at capturing the scene.

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