Wally And The Angels

Written by: Keith Bickerstaffe


...inspired by a Dylan Thomas short story


A breezy day, and two boys biking down the lane 
past meadows green with envy, soft as spring. 
Picnic-packed and ready for the day's adventure. 
They passed hikers who cried "Hey, lend us yer bikes!"  
The lads whizzed by, not giving them a second thought.

"I bet them's fire cows," Jimmy said, (he had a wild 
imagination.) "Nah, them's Holsteins, don't be daft!" 
said John. The air was full of magic, and the sky
alive with seagulls. The ocean glinted to their right,
sparkling like the twinkle in a young girl's eye.

They hurried to their destination, breathless with
anticipation, hurtling to a Neverland they'd mostly
seen in pictures, a rocky outcrop, pounded by
the waves, a fearsome confrontation with the sea,
a playground where imaginations flourish.

“I bet there's dragons in them caves,” said Jimmy,
"and trolls and such, with fangs and fiery breath!"
“You're crazy!” countered John, (he read the Bible),
“'sides there's Jesus, He will shelter you from death
for now, make sure you're well and in good health." 

Skittering on slabs as slick as ice fields, 
tottering like lambs who've found their legs;
they played until the frigid water beckoned,
then splashed and frolicked, ducking from the heat.
Opening their back packs now, they settled down to eat.

It was then, the first time they'd discussed it,
Wally, Jimmy's brother, gone to God;
dead from cancer barely two weeks prior,
disconnected, laid beneath the sod.
Their tones were sullen, conversation somber.

“Is Wally with the Angels?” Jimmy questioned.
“Yes he is,” said John, “and safe at rest.”
They cycled home in silence, friends forever,
and settled in their beds, forever blessed,
the moon endowed their dreams, a welcome guest.