My task is to set the scene, provide ambient atmosphere,
I am a lonely, solitary figure, seated on the organ stool,
The stops on either side of me, my only companions.
Anticipating the arrival of the first mourners,
Fingers gliding Legato-style over heavy keys,
I perform appropriate and expected voluntaries…
Another Rite of Passage,
Another Season been and gone,
Ebony and ivory, successively depressed, trigger a chain reaction within
And bellows’ breath hauntingly escapes from the throats of silver pipes,
Long and short, deep and shrill,
Standing to attention like a battalion on military manoeuvres.
As I sense and feel close family approaching front lines,
Acutely aware of a wall of pain and disbelief advancing ahead,
My heart wells up with empathy and compassion,
Hands playing the gentlest of airs on the Swell.
Hymns are sung, prayers are prayed,
Life stories spoken, anecdotes recalled.
Stiff upper lips and lips of trembling tremolo,
All partakers in this Ritual of Departure,
Life’s last Coda.
Goodbyes and farewells,
Regrets and ‘if only-s’…
Alleluia and Requiem.
The dull, grave ache that has taken up residence
In every cell, every fibre of existence,
And like a ton weight threatens to annihilate
The grieving souls struggling to accept
The vast, empty chasm stretching out before them.
One last meaningful melody, Swell coupled to Great,
All pipes at the ready, all stops pulled out…
As the coffin is lifted up and carried out and on to it’s final resting place.