‘The Last Days’ a video poem by Marie Craven & Lucy English


The Last Days –  from The Book of Hours film poetry collaboration project.
Film-maker: Marie Craven 

Poem & voice: Lucy English 

The Last Days
by Lucy English

Go to sleep little boy.
Tonight there will be no gas attacks or bombs.
We will hide in the basement and I will sing to you
about the flowers in my Mother’s garden.
Do you remember we used to play there

in the grass with your sister?
Do you remember how tall the grass used to be?
Do you remember your sister?
She used to say you were not brave enough.
Go to sleep little boy.

I think I will try to sleep too. Before you were born
you were so small. You were like a little fish
and you slept safe in my sea cave.
I wish we could go back in time
then you would be safe and I could hold your sister.

Your father would pat my belly and be proud of us.
Perhaps I could go back further still
and sleep in my mother’s sea cave.
Where all I can hear is her heart
and not the scream of these fighter jets.

Go to sleep little boy.
Do not grow up and learn to hate.

Marie Craven called Melbourne home for most of her life, before relocating to Queensland in 2002. She has been making short films for over 30 years, exhibiting extensively at international festivals and events, and gathering several awards. Over the past five years she has released over 60 video poems, often made via internet collaboration with poets and other artists around the world. At the end of 2018, she judged the Atticus Review Videopoem Contest, an online event based in the USA. Her current major project is curating and managing Poetry + Video, a touring program of video poems from Australia and around the world. (https://pixie-guts.blogspot.com)

Lucy English was born in Sri Lanka and grew up in England. She is a spoken word poet and novelist, and a Reader in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University. She is one of the organisers of the ‘Mix’ conference in digital writing, and co-creator with Sarah Tremlett of the poetry film organisation, ‘Liberated Words’, which curates and screens poetry films. Lucy’s digital project, ‘The Book of Hours’, is a re-imagining of a medieval book of hours in poetry film format. It contains 48 films, collaborations with 27 film-makers from Europe, America and Australia. Lucy’s poetry from this project was published in book form by Burning Eye Press in 2018. (https://thebookofhours.org)