No More Bother To Him

Poem - <em>In memoriam Paul O'Flinn 14/3/2001</em>

The red kites are very red this morning,

caught by the spring sun as they swing high

over Nuneham Courtenay, and in town

a wintered-over flycatcher skates out,

trying to keep his footing on the air.

So things are looking up at last it seems:

the floods receded, and the long winter's cold.

But on the eastern skyline, out past Bicester

a black pall hangs above the trees

where the cattle are burning, pyres no doubt

that we will see tonight replicated

over Tetovo on the News. There is

cause then for these red eyes all round,

light as Paul would have made of mourning him.

This article first appeared in the 09 April 2001 issue of the New Statesman, Duel for the Tube