Dancing Dust

Poems by Mollie Caird (1922-2000)

Bladon churchyard

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Quiet the yellow-lichened headstones stand
Leaning awry against the rough hill-side,
Rubbed names remembering those who fought and died
Forgotten wars ago, or tilled the land
In this green place, or served with head or hand
The Palace folk across the elmy ride;
Forelocks were pulled, knees crooked: the great divide
Yet lay between the humble and the grand.
Here are no conqueror's bays, but churchyard yew,
No oratory but the lapwing's cry,
No flags but cheerful washing hung to dry
On cottage lines; here without pomp or state,
The Commons' side of Vanbrugh's gilded gate,
Lies the greatest of the happy few.

Bladon churchyard, near Blenheim, is the final resting place of Winston Churchill.

Undated, but presumably written in 1965