`Yes', the undertaker says, `I don't need a tape';
`I can measure them standing up or lying down'.
He looks me in the eye then reels off a set of figures.
I am bemused.
Nobody dresses better than the undertaker.

I had just told Charles I preferred a country churchyard.
`Gray's Elegy', he said,
`I've dug up dead cats,
`The worms! Horrible.
`They're going to burn me'.

Andy, the little Welshman with the pretty wife,
Died yesterday. Daft on rugby and golf.
And Dave found his father Brian dead this morning.
The wake has continued all day. Practising.
We are a shrinking band.

One day we won't be here anymore.
There will be an empty space, silence.
That is why I put myself into my poems,
I want to survive.
Death wasn't made for me.

Douglas Clark /Coffin/ Benjamin Press, 69 Hillcrest Drive, Bath BA2 1HD, UK/