SONNETS OF REMEMBRANCE
(I wrote this for a family reunion in memory of my
great-grandfather Rory MacRae)
Midi is "Mist Covered Mountains (Smile in your Sleep)" arranged by Jim McLean and sequenced by Barry Taylor

                  REFLECTIONS OF THE PAST

Wise babbling brook, your repertoire's so grand,
And yet you brood and sing so plaintively;
Betrayal weighs on you mercilessly.
Amid the ruins, where once a Pheidias hand
Took wood and clay and sculpted all the land,
Sit naked windows, useless planks - ghostly
Reflections from another century -
Time's cruel stroke no masterpiece could withstand.
Dear brook, in times of deepest solitude,
Reflect on the joyful times in the past -
Grant life its changes - time, its ceasless march -
The soul sings on. And so, with fortitude,
Rise with the morning sun and with its last
Dying embers, rest in peace by the larch.

           AN EXTRAORDINARY LIFE

The human mind needs nurturing to grow,
No vacuum of conformity will do;
As life's watchful student, you overthrew
Archaic philosophy - tried to show
How man could mould his universe. And though
No cowl was worn and those who graced the pew
Belied your reverence, the privileged few
Saw daily walks with God in the meadow.
Leather tanned, each shoe was made to measure -
Each violin carved with great love and skill;
Some hand-crafted skates fashioned for the clan
Live on and are now a family treasure.
Did the friends who gathered 'round your grist mill
Know that you were no ordinary man?

PASSING OF A CAPTAIN OF INDUSTRY

The stars in their courses befriended you
And by some sacred universal law,
Your dreams, more original than most, saw
Their fulfillment. Genius' bright light shone through
Your mills and orchard. The mountain lakes knew
You by name. All of nature watched in awe
As harnessed waters ran the mills and raw
Materials became goods of value.
The silver cord broke at three score years and ten
When God reclaimed his favourite masterpiece.
A noble spirit left, but not its strands.
Rest in peace, we think about you often;
You've taught us well, so let all worries cease -
The future of the world it in good hands!