The Justice Bell

26Apr16

A schoolboy holds a leather ball
In a photograph on a bedroom wall
the bed is made, the curtains drawn
as silence greets the break of dawn.

The dusk gives way to morning light
revealing shades of red and white
which hang from posters locked in time
of the Liverpool team of 89.

Upon a pale white quilted sheet
a football kit is folded neat
with a yellow scarf, trimmed with red
and some football boots beside the bed.

In hope, the room awakes each day
to see the boy who used to play
but once again it wakes alone
for this young boy’s not coming home.

Outside, the springtime fills the air
the smell of life is everywhere
viola’s bloom and tulips grow
while daffodils dance heel to toe.

These should have been such special times
for a boy who’d now be in his prime
but spring forever turned to grey
in the Yorkshire sun, one April day.

The clock was locked on 3.06
as sun shone down upon the pitch
lighting up faces etched in pain
as death descended on Leppings Lane.

Between the bars an arm is raised
amidst a human tidal wave
a young hand yearning to be saved
grows weak inside this deathly cage.

A boy not barely in his teens
is lost amongst the dying screams
a body too frail to fight for breath
is drowned below a sea of death

His outstretched arm then disappears
to signal 27 years of tears
as 96 souls of those who fell
await the toll of the justice bell.

Ever since that disastrous day
a vision often comes my way
I reach and grab his outstretched arm
then pull him up away from harm.

We both embrace with tear-filled eyes
I then awake to realise
it’s the same old dream I have each week
as I quietly cry myself to sleep.

On April the 15th every year
when all is calm and skies are clear
beneath a glowing Yorkshire moon
a lone scots piper plays a tune.

The tune rings out the justice cause
then blows due west across the moors
it passes by the eternal flame
then engulfs a young boys picture frame.

His room is as it was that day
for 27 years it’s stayed that way
untouched and frozen forever in time
since that tragic day in 89.

And as it plays its haunting sound
tears are heard from miles around
they’re tears from families of those who fell
Who now can hear the justice bell.

© Dave Kirby

Dave Kirby’s poem “The Justice Bell”, first appeared on the 13th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster, and poignantly illustrates why the fight for Justice continued.

I updated “13” years to “27” and changed the last line.

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