The Door of the Ark

Noah was 600 years old

When he fumbled his lines.

He said it was the ark of the door

He was going to open

But he turned the handle

And found he'd flipped his lid.


Was it dementia - Alzheimer's,

Or just sheer tiredness,

Responsibility for a family

For more than ten months

Confined with two of a kind

That had multiplied to unbearable overcrowding?


He seemed almost drunk

With his classic faux pas.

Confused by the crowd

Dazzled by the lights

Inverting the syntax

Erupting into laughter and applause.


Yet the arc over the door was there

Starting to form

In the brilliant sunshine

Of an overhead projector

As yellow, red and blue

Stand out eternally above error.


The children walk out chuckling,

Launched into their second century

Disgusted with age

Sparkling with hope,

Liberated across their threshold

Beneath a semi-circle of promise.


During the Upper Norwood Centenary, and at the end of the production 'Get on Board, Children', Noah inverted the phrase 'the door of the ark', much to the amusement of children and the audience.


May 1987