Clive James embraces death with a poem

THE terminally ill Australian author, critic and raconteur Clive James has detailed his revelations of life and death in an emotional poem.

Japanese Maple

Your death, near now, is of an easy sort.

So slow a fading out brings no real pain.

Breath growing short

Is just uncomfortable. You feel the drain

Of energy, but thought and sight remain:

Enhanced, in fact. When did you ever see

So much sweet beauty as when fine rain falls

On that small tree

And saturates your brick back garden walls,

So many Amber Rooms and mirror halls?

Ever more lavish as the dusk descends

This glistening illuminates the air.

It never ends.

Whenever the rain comes it will be there,

Beyond my time, but now I take my share.

My daughter’s choice, the maple tree is new.

Come autumn and its leaves will turn to flame.

What I must do

Is live to see that. That will end the game

For me, though life continues all the same:

Filling the double doors to bathe my eyes,

A final flood of colors will live on

As my mind dies,

Burned by my vision of a world that shone

So brightly at the last, and then was gone.


2 thoughts on “Clive James embraces death with a poem

  1. I have been with a few people who are dying and they sometimes have a goal they want to reach. For Clive it is the Japanese Maple. For my father in law it was to see his last grandson and for my mother to see her first grandchild.


  2. Yep, death is inevitable. And I thank God that CliveJames and Charlotte had the chance to say their goodbyes and prepare as best they could. Some don’t get that chance, like little William Tyrell. 😥


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