About Otwituaries

I started tweeting these poetic obituaries via Twitter on the death of Ernest Borgnine in July 2012. After a while a friend asked if I would gather them together, so I have created this blog as an archive. New Otwituaries will appear here as well as being broadcast via Twitter and Facebook.

All the Otwituaries are written very quickly on the day their subjects pass away, so are clearly lacking in polish or the insight that only comes in time, but they are all from the heart. They represent the people who have, in some way, touched my life - actors, musicians, sporting figures, TV personalities, writers, explorers and assorted others of note.

We live in an age where people are celebrated for the most modest of achievements - news and media ensure that seemingly everyone gets their five minutes of fame if they stick around long enough. It may therefore seem a little morbid or even self-serving on my part to write about the recently-deceased (few if any of whom I have actually met), but these people already enjoy some degree of immortality through their celebrity, and therefore don't need a poem from me. I hope you enjoy reading these short poetic sketches all the same, in the spirit they are intended.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Keith Harris - d. April 28th 2015

What was left
when the act was over?
A voice offstage,
like yours but not yours,
a green feather 
in the beam of the follow spot,

Read about Keith Harris here

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Percy Sledge - d. April 14th 2015

So many lay claim
to the crown of soul,
yet so few 
spent their last dime,
gave up all their comforts, 
slept out in the rain.

Monday, 13 April 2015

Günter Grass - d. April 13th 2015

From the shamed pen
of a nation that lost its head, its tongue,
came a voice needing to be heard again,
singing Vergangenheitsbewältigung.

Read about Günter Grass here 

Viv Nicholson - d. April 12th 2015

Millions are cold-pressed
from sweat of the potless,
but the only life harmed 
in the making and unmaking
of your fortune
was your own.

Read about Viv Nicholson here

Friday, 10 April 2015

Richie Benaud - d. April 10th 2015

Benaud c&b De'Ath 84
Rarely caught, stumped or leg-before,

though Wisden prefers to note that
numbers don't show 
the straightness of the bat.

Read about Richie Benaud here