Sudden Emptiness 

was written on 14/6/17 about Grenfell Tower

Reuben has kindly published it here.



Sudden Emptiness by Nina Lewis

I go to work,
think of all the people
trapped in that tower.

I watch the four year olds,
how little they know of this.

Children in West End schools
will have focused awareness,
Kensington assemblies, prayers.

I think of the man at the window,
the memory of twin towers,
the split screen bulletin
staples that connection.

I discover at lunch time
how much the redevelopment cost.
Six have died.

I think of the Fire-fighters
running to rescue –
engulfed in black smoke floors.
The baby thrown ten storeys to safety
into the arms of a stranger.

The blazing heat of this summer’s day.
Streets empty of cars as parents
walk their children from school,
thanking their blessings
beneath the thrum of a police helicopter.

The evacuated,
clutching what they could grab.
Screaming flames and sudden emptiness.
They were told to stay put,
every flat a fire resisting box.

Amongst the hum of emergency services,
silent prayers catch the breeze as news
of loved ones comes, or doesn’t.

I arrive home.
Children are still missing.

A local woman
opens her home to victims,
crews are expected to remain
for another 24 hours.
There’s nothing but love here.

© Nina Lewis Worcestershire Poet Laureate 2017 – 2018



May 19th 2018

BBC church

The Tone is Set


In one smile 
she shows the world
her dreams have come true.

Gentle songs meander 
towards strong speeches –
Fire and Love.

The Prince and nearly Princess 
absorb their connection,
fingers entwined.

A mother sits alone, 
closes her eyes in prayer
as the choir trills the space.

Words invite
the congregation to think 
of the shape of love.

‘Think about the time 
you first fell in love
in any form.’

The smile widens
as tears are wiped from cheeks,
hats bowed in thought.

‘We were made 
by the power of love.’

A moment of almost silent 
sign language is shared,
as lovers do. Before ‘I do.’


A_101640493_d25a7344-d7af-4bba-9863-46659f9264bf bbc  © BBC


With words from the Bishop’s Address Bishop Curry 

bbc curry© BBC

© Nina Lewis Worcestershire Poet Laureate 2017 – 2018

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