The Pew – in memory of John Betjeman

The Pew

I hope this is the pew where once the poet sat                                    1-p1030185
1-p1030400having enjoyed his breakfast of burnt toast
sitting in his morning chair looking out to the graveyard
where his great grandfather is buried
drafting a letter then leaving his acorn
papered eyrie to saunter out of Cloth Fair1-p1030188
in his heavy coat and wide brimmed hat.

I hope this is the pew where once the poet sat
listening to sacred music from the deep throated organ
wafting through ancient pillars up to the ornate ceiling
looking up at the famous altar painting stored in Wales1-p1030099
during the war and now with daylight flickering
on the angel with the chalace in Gethsemane
offering strength and courage to The Son of God 

I hope this is the pew where once the poet sat
next to the Wesley window that was not his favourite
near a memorial to someone’s much loved daughter
and not far from the detailed deliberations
of Dame Anne Packington (widow) who in her will
in 1595 tried to devise ways to ensure her estate
would help the poor in perpetuity.

I hope this is the pew where once the 1-dsc06872poet sat
singing the hymns and half listening to the sermon
as thoughts of the letters he still had to write
and the women that he loved passed through his mind
having time to later wander to his favourite memorial
where it implies that it is not a man’s ornate plaque
but the good deeds he accomplished that count.                         1-p1030178

In memory of Sir John Betjeman 

One of the poems written as the poet in residence for
Open Garden Squares Weekend  in Postman’s Park
in the City of London 2016. 

The Church is St Botolph’s in Postman’s Park

More of my poems at



This entry was posted in Brighton - out and about, Cheer yourself up on a dull day, Famous places, Out and about in London, Photography, Poetry - Creative Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to The Pew – in memory of John Betjeman

  1. TheBigForest says:

    Love the poem and love Betjeman too. Stumbled across some of this TV programmes on YouTube on a rainy summer afternoon and they are so good.

  2. ann perrin says:

    So pleased to hear from you, miss your wonderful blogs but glad you liked the poem and had some interesting rainy afternoons.on YouTube!

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