Father of Africa: In Memoriam Nelson Mandela 1918 - 2013

Nelson Mandela
Nelson Mandela

It was in music

many first heard his name.

Mark Niel

Mark Niel

Radio sang for his freedom

while the rest of us caught up.

Catch up we did, to his dignity,

humanity and most of all, forgiveness.

The larger the offence, the bigger the man needs to be.

Nelson was a giant.

Perhaps that is why we were

so reluctant to let him go.

The prayers and good wishes of the world

nursing him through ill health so many times.

Now we can remember,

the where were you whens and

Do you remembers

will be our classroom.

In the missing of him,

the talking of him,

the memories of him,

he will live on and let us make him proud.

The best and worst of his past

milestones for our future.

Mark Niel

Milton Keynes’ Poet Laureate

December 2013