I find it hard to watch documentaries about the Titanic due to the footage they always show of the ship's broken carcass lying on the ocean bed. The thought of such a large vessel rendered so tiny by the vastness of the ocean depths seriously freaks me out. And the same goes for the thought of seeing a large ocean liner sink in the way the Titanic did, sticking straight up into the air - the unnaturalness of it all, its giant propellers turning vainly in the sky. And then the thought of sitting in a miniscule life raft on top of the rolling surface of an ocean extending to the horizon in every direction. Clearly I'd be of very little use in an emergency at sea.
I mention all this as a preamble to a poem about the disaster that I found in a book I bought this lunchtime (Oxfam again), Dear Blue Peter, a collection of letters, mainly from children, to that fine programme. Despite the almost mindnumbing terror that the whole Titanic scenario threatens to induce in me I was reduced to tears of laughter by the poem, which I share with you now:
So many screams and cries
Why did it have to happen?
All they wanted was a peaceful holiday
Nobody likes getting killed
So much pain
So much history
As the people watch in horror
Lots of people died
It really is a very lovely book.
53 minutes ago