Brian Patten

7 February 1946 / Liverpool / England

In Tintagel Graveyard

Who brought flowers to this grave?
I, said the wren.
I brought them as seeds and then
Watched them grow.

No, said the wind. That's not true.
I blew them across the moor and sea,
I blew them up to the grave's door.
They were a gift from me.

They came of their own accord,
Said the celandine.
I know best. They're brothers of mine.

I am Death's friend,
Said the crow. I ought to know.
I dropped them into the shadow of the leaning stone.
I brought the flowers.

No, said Love,
It was I who brought them,

With the help of the wren's wing,
With the help of the wind's breath,
With the help of the celandine and the crow.

It was I who brought them
For the living and the dead to share,
I was the force that put those flowers there.
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