RESOURCES DEATH: scroll down for poems
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Workshops Coming up
WORKSHOP FOR MEN
FACING THE FOUR HORSEMEN: Exploring Male Mysteries Through Times of Change and Crisis
A Residential Workshop for Men with William Ayot & Simon Roe
EarthSpirit Centre, Nr Glastonbury, Somerset.
February 26th 2023 – March 2nd: Sunday – Thursday
Facing The Four Horsemen
OTHER WORKSHOPS click here for dates and info, such as
- Anger Rage and Relationship with Sue Parker Hall
- Working With Shame with Sue Parker Hall
- Boys – For Therapists Working With Clients Who Have Troublesome Boys Age 2-12 with Lucinda Neall
- Lives of Quiet Desperation: Therapy for Men with Simon Roe and Lee Stagles
- Go Tell It On The Mountain: Storytelling for Healing and Change: Michael Harvey
- Attachment Informed Couple Therapy with Nicola Jones
- Working With Couples – 6 modules that can be taken individually, or do all and get a Certficate in Couples Therapy with Nicola Jones or Julie Newberry
- Pesso Boyden Personal Development Workshops with Juliet Grayson
PURCHASING BOOKS BY WILLIAM AYOT AND JULIET GRAYSON: SPECIAL OFFER
Recordings of other webinars you may be interested in
Resources mentioned during the Talk
Talking to the Stranger:
Death as a Natural and Normal Part of Life Part 1
A Necessary Conversation
BOOKS MENTIONED IN THE TALK
Facing Death and Finding Hope by Christine Longaker
Listen, How to Find the Words for Tender Conversations Kathryn Mannix
With The End In Mind– Dying, Death and Wisdom in an Age of Denial Kathryn Mannix
“I Am, I Am, I Am: Seventeen Brushes with Death.” by Maggie O’Farrell – below is an audio version of this book
Death Cafes https://deathcafe.com/
An Article by Ram Dass: Dying is Absolutely Safe https://www.ramdass.org/dying-is-absolutely-safe/
I Have Seen Enough of Death
[Nos Calan Mai]
I have seen enough of death
To know that the cruelties and petty slights
Of its coming are no more than distractions,
that the true grief of parting is ours not theirs.
For no matter what the outward appearance
of struggle may be, the soul makes its choices
and knows when to leave — it was time.
Let us then sit and hold each other
In the tender gaze of our bereavement
And sing — sing the praises of our dear friend.
Let us swear that we will never forget
And, even in the given of our forgetfulness,
Know that they’ll be with us till our very end.
Let us laugh, and smile and raise a loving glass
to what we admired, and what we held so dear,
Cherish them, and bless them, then let them go
And add them to our loving — until it be time.
© William Ayot
Nos Calan Mai
(May Day Eve)
On the Green
They were rare enough in them days,
once in a while to the Manor or the Vicarage,
but on the Green you might never see a telegram
from one year’s ending to the next —
until that morning after Passchendaele.
It was late in the year and a mist hung over the village,
wreathing the ponds and the giant elms. A tank engine
was panting by the halt, while down at Water End
the very last otter hereabouts lay pining for her mate.
I don’t know how it fell to him, but the Vicar carried them,
all of them. Maybe the Post Office tipped him the wink,
though it could have been his sense of service,
so many unable to read a word, telegram or no.
I was boiling an egg. My Albert, and his brother Wilf,
had sent my sister Ellen and I an egg cup each from Arras:
silver plate with a little coat of arms. We’d taken to
boiling an egg once a week — religious like, for luck.
I turned the timer, and saw the Vicar leaving Mrs Wackett’s,
moving sharpish for such a big man. I could have sworn
he was up to no good, but he was doing his duty, by his lights.
Next it was Queenie, whose Ted was so good with sweet peas
and dahlias. Then Alice, who dropped him the prettiest curtsey;
Mrs Saul the gamekeeper’s wife; Edie Potter, Nellie Weaving,
poor old Annie Englefield; Mrs Wren whose red velvet curtains
were drawn in mourning before he’d left her gate;
Mrs Jeeves who offered him tea because he looked so poorly;
and Dolly — Dolly who let the side down,
who howled like a vixen and tore at her clothes.
The Vicar worked his way round the Village Green
cottage by cottage and woman by woman: wives, mother’s,
even sweethearts: a vicar always knows who’s sweet on who
I was frozen like Alice, still stuck in her curtsey,
when he turned and walked up our little brick path.
By the time he got to Ellen, he was whey-faced and puffing.
I wanted to say something kind but it wasn’t a time for
Who’d a thought it, I said by way of conversation,
a whole village in one morning.
My egg-cup’s brass now, the plate’s wore off with wear.
Albert loves his eggs — with soldiers — eats one every day,
but Ellen’s is as silvery as the day Wilf sent it to her.
Two things my sister won’t have in her house: the first is eggs — she just can’t abide them — the second’s any talk of God.
© William Ayot
The buzz saw snarled and rattled in the yard
And made dust and dropped stove-length sticks of wood,
Sweet-scented stuff when the breeze drew across it.
And from there those that lifted eyes could count
Five mountain ranges one behind the other
Under the sunset far into Vermont.
And the saw snarled and rattled, snarled and rattled,
As it ran light, or had to bear a load.
And nothing happened: day was all but done.
Call it a day, I wish they might have said
To please the boy by giving him the half hour
That a boy counts so much when saved from work.
His sister stood beside him in her apron
To tell them ‘Supper.’ At the word, the saw,
As if to prove saws knew what supper meant,
Leaped out at the boy’s hand, or seemed to leap—
He must have given the hand. However it was,
Neither refused the meeting. But the hand!
The boy’s first outcry was a rueful laugh,
As he swung toward them holding up the hand
Half in appeal, but half as if to keep
The life from spilling. Then the boy saw all—
Since he was old enough to know, big boy
Doing a man’s work, though a child at heart—
He saw all spoiled. ‘Don’t let him cut my hand off—
The doctor, when he comes. Don’t let him, sister!’
So. But the hand was gone already.
The doctor put him in the dark of ether.
He lay and puffed his lips out with his breath.
And then—the watcher at his pulse took fright.
No one believed. They listened at his heart.
Little—less—nothing!—and that ended it.
No more to build on there. And they, since they
Were not the one dead, turned to their affairs.