I was saddened to hear of Mark Strand’s death today, but happy that he spent so long with us writing his wonderful words. I posted one his poems ‘Eating Poetry’ – a favourite of mine, only four days ago, and now here is another, one that felt fitting to me, after a quote of his that I liked –

“I haven’t met God and I haven’t been to heaven, so I’m skeptical,” he said. “Nobody’s come back to me to tell me they’re having a great time in heaven and that they’ve seen God, although there are a lot of people claiming that God is telling them what to do. I have no idea how God talks to them. Maybe they’re getting secret emails.”

The End


Not every man knows what he shall sing at the end,
Watching the pier as the ship sails away, or what it will seem like
When he’s held by the sea’s roar, motionless, there at the end,
Or what he shall hope for once it is clear that he’ll never go back.

When the time has passed to prune the rose or caress the cat,
When the sunset torching the lawn and the full moon icing it down
No longer appear, not every man knows what he’ll discover instead.
When the weight of the past leans against nothing, and the sky

Is no more than remembered light, and the stories of cirrus
And cumulus come to a close, and all the birds are suspended in flight,
Not every man knows what is waiting for him, or what he shall sing
When the ship he is on slips into darkness, there at the end.




“In another time What cannot be seen will define us and we shall be prompted to say that language is error and all things are wronged
By representation.The self we shall say can never be
Seen with a disguise and never be seen without one.” –  Mark Strand