ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Manchester - A Poem

Updated on November 7, 2017
Greensleeves Hubs profile image

This is one of several pages of original poetry, prose and reflection by this author which comment on many aspects of the human condition

The Background to This Poem

On Monday 22nd May 2017, the singer Ariana Grande performed at a pop concert at the Arena Concert Hall, Manchester, England. Her fan base is young - very young - and so the majority of the audience for the concert were children and teenagers - mostly girls. Many had no doubt excitedly looked forward to seeing their idol for months in advance. Because of the logistics of organising a concert like this, some fans would have received their tickets as Christmas or birthday presents as long ago as last year..

At the end of the concert, children and teenagers began to gather in the foyer, no doubt in a state of some euthoria, having at long last seen their idol perform. In some cases parents (or grandparents, older sisters, brothers or other relatives) had accompanied them to the concert, but in other cases the parents had stayed away and were now arriving to collect them and take them home. And so the foyer was crowded with people of all ages.

Then, at 10.30 pm, a suicide bomber detonated a device. Twenty two died. Nine of the twenty two were aged between fourteen and nineteen, and eight of those were girls. The youngest victim of all was just eight years old. Many of those twenty two were accompanied by family members who lived, but they had witnessed the devastation. Afterwards the stories of community support, the selfless actions of local people, and the professionalism of the emergency services.were all in stark contrast to the story of the bomber.

Yours Truly
Yours Truly | Source

I'm not a poet. I've written very little poetry, and so I make absolutely no claims at all for this piece which combines free verse and rhyming verse. But it did seem the best way to try to commemorate this event.

This poem therefore is my attempt to express as best I can, some thoughts and feelings after Manchester.

The Concert

Children, broadly smiling, fantasising,

sparkling eyed and idolising,

and crowds of happy adolescents

with vital vibrant effervescence,

and sons and daughters, sisters, brothers,

childhood friends and teenage lovers -

all had made their fateful way

to the concert hall that day in May.

And mothers and fathers with delight

also came that way that night

at the concert's culmination,

to savour their childrens' high elation

and share the mood of celebration.

The music finished, and the evening done,

the parents, the young, and the very young

all together. In unison.

All together - except for one .....

The one who chose to end the fun.

The Bomb

In an instant.

A bloody blast, a moment's silence - and then the screams

to herald a lifetime's nightmare, and end the familys' dreams,

as mothers cried for their children - and children for their mums,

and brothers for their sisters, and fathers for their sons.

Families torn asunder, bloodied, broken, cut to pieces

a loved one's life now ebbs and ceases.

In an instant.

The Aftermath

But just one instant later.

Though families had been broken, the people came together,

forged by bonds of unity more durable than ever.

Police and paramedics, and the people from the street,

came to here from far and near to do their best to treat

the wounds of utter strangers ..... and simply offer to share

a shoulder on which to cry, to show the people care.

And thus from one vile germ of gross and cruel Insanity

was spawned one thousand shoots of pure and good humanity.

Just one instant later.

The Future

Will anything change? For better or for worse?

In our country? In our community? In the peoples' souls?

Our country will stay open

and our community stays close.

Our speech will stay free

and our love will stay dear.

Our lives will go on

and new life will take off.

Nothing changes, as the world continues .....

The children will become teens,

the teens will become parents.

And the parents will become grandparents of children and of teens.

And they'll still all go to concerts.

Nothing changes.

Except .....

Some children will never become teens,

and some teens will never become parents.

And some parents will never again have a reason to live.

Whatever was the point?


Please feel free to quote limited text on condition that an active link back to this page is included.

© 2017 Greensleeves Hubs


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)