It has been a long haul to leaving
And there is a strange kind of regret
For damp classrooms, store cupboards with Tetris trays
For graffiti, stains left to fester over time
For the foolish laughter of a distant child.
Pathways worn to dust, bare as old slippers
And the secret mysterious places
The cobweb filled, derelict greenhouse
Full of melancholy and long dead things.
With the last flick of the light switch
A pacing backwards into light, a sorrow descends
Almost as thick as grief, grief for the rooms
For the long, silent, empty corridors
For the time that slipped away, lost forever
For the raucous shrieks, the vulgar cat calls
For working late, besotted by the twilight
Twenty years of muted conversation
And, best of all-
On the days when rain thrashed the windows
Grief for, the heads down, quite contented
Steady hum of silence.