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.

Monday, 29 June 2015

Chris Squire - d. June 27th 2015

Yes, you were a visionary;
those fervent souls who listen
through every album,
every track, every solo,
already know
the meaning of eternity.

Read about Chris Squire here

Friday, 26 June 2015

Patrick Macnee - d. June 25th 2015

Though the gent/agent 
is long into a pension
his image still falls
from unfurled umbrellas,
upturned bowlers,
suave as a bottle 
of Penhaligon's.

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

James Horner - d. June 22nd 2015

We knew the news was bad
when the orchestra
accompanying your life
fell away
to a dark rumble of cellos,
the sustained bass notes of loss.

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Ornette Coleman - d. June 11th 2015

A trumpet cries,
not for the bird 
that is caged
but for the soul
finally released,
free as jazz.

Read about Ornette Coleman here

Ron Moody - d. June 11th 2015

A man's got an art, hasn't he?
I saw too little of yours,
but a hand, a voice, a song
absorbed in childhood
picks the pocket of memory.

Read about Ron Moody here

Christopher Lee - d. June 7th 2015

On the skyline
his body is burning;
not a sacrifice
but a gift to the soil.
You'd better be.

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

James Last - d. June 9th 2015

No more the crushed-velour strings,
the silken-underwear rustle of brass,
the low-mixed drums, the classical gas;
he now arranges higher things.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Charles Kennedy - d. June 1st 2015

Some politicians
are damned 
by the flaws
in their politics,
others redeemed 
by the flaws
in their hearts.