Tribute to a Sheffield Life

(and a tribute to the loss of special friends)

The threads that join two loyal hearts
will span an ocean of time,
from moments of forgotten art,
the echo of hearts’ rhyme
transcends the avalanche of pain,
that severed threads beget,
as sure as golden leaves shall fall
this love shall not forget.

© 2012 John Anstie

[This poem was prompted by a combination of effects. The first of which was Eden Baylee’s usual ‘Music Monday‘ post, which was rather more mournful than usual, because she recently lost a long time friend. The second prompt was Joe Cocker’s song itself, “You Are So Beautiful”, which is my favourite song from this man, not only because of the song itself, but also because of the way he delivers it.]

About PoetJanstie

“Life is short and art long, the crisis fleeting, experience penniless and decision difficult” ~ Hippocrates. As a young man, John enjoyed being fit and sporting. It was then as much his recreational therapy as a cappella harmony singing, music, walking in the hills and writing is now. Playing Rugby Union for over twenty years, encouraged in the early days by a school that was run on the same lines as Gordonstoun, giving shape and discipline to a sometimes precarious early life. This fitness was enhanced by working part time jobs in farming, as a leather factory packer and security guard, but probably not helped, for a short time, by selling ice cream! His professional working life was spent as a Metallurgical Engineer, Marketing Manager, Export Sales Manager, Implementation Manager and Managing Director of his own company. Thirty five years spent, apparently in a creative desert, raising a family, pursuing a career and helping to pay the bills, probably enriched his experience, because his renaissance, on retirement, realised a hidden creative talent as a writer of prose and poetry. He also enjoys music, with a piano and a forty-nine year old Yamaha FG140 acoustic guitar. He sings bass in three a cappella harmony groups: as a founding member of a mixed voice chamber choir, Fox Valley Voices and a mixed barbershop quartet. He is also a member of one of the top barbershop choruses in the UK, Hallmark of Harmony (the Sheffield Barbershop Harmony Club), who, for the eighth time in 40 years, became UK Champions in 2019. He is also a would be (once upon a time or 'has been') photographer with drawers full of his own history, and an occasional, but lapsed 'film' maker. In his other life, he doubles as a Husband, Father, Grandfather, Brother, Uncle, Cousin, Friend and Family man. What he writes is sometimes autobiographical, often political, sometimes dark and frequently pins his colours to the mast of climate change and how humans are trashing the Earth. In 2013, he published an anthology of the poetry (including his own) of an international group of poets, who met on Twitter in 2011. He produced, edited and steered the product of this work, "Petrichor Rising", to publication by Aquillrelle. His sort of strapline sort of reads: “ iWrite iSing iDance iVolunteer ”
This entry was posted in melancholy, poem, poetry, sadness. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Tribute to a Sheffield Life

  1. Jamie Dedes says:

    Touching. Tender. True … and the more powerful for its brevity. Nicely done.


  2. So beautiful John. There are those special people that come into our lives that are not only friends but artisans that made our lives so blessed.


  3. eden baylee says:

    John, for some reason, I thought this was a poem from your catalogue of poems that you pulled out for the occasion of my friend. I didn’t realize you just wrote it.
    I wish you could see how stunned I looked when I hopped over here from my blog. It’s been an odd day of reflection, sadness, and thanksgiving.
    If I haven’t told you how lovely you are, let me say it here for the record — You Sir, are a superb human being.



    • PoetJanstie says:

      Eden, I don’t know how to follow this comment, except to say that this wasn’t planned; it just happened, as so often they do! It was a combination of the song and the sombre mood I detected in your post that prompted it. I am rewarded by your response, Eden, for which I can only say thank you, thank you very much.


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