“New Probate Referral”


I work in an office of professional executors. We ensure that people’s Wills are seen through once they pass. Recently I encountered a new matter, which for some reason was referred for my particular attention. 



Who would have thought,

That this year, he would die aged twenty-two

And require an executor.


They placed no file on my desk, no

Bundle of personal effects and papers:

Instead, I heard by email.


He died in service, leaving a small pension

– a pension, provision for a future

which was entirely untouched in value –


And a savings account which had a

Nil balance. Could we go through probate

For the lad. No family to do it for him.


I read the message twice in case

It was instead, some minor error,

A misplaced number and not


Grievous insult: but no, there it was,

A death certificate was readily available,

Signed by the registrar, all correct.


Signed by the registrar. I felt my age,

Synonymous with his, the same

Youth in my veins, twenty-two, as I typed


Further legal requirements and

Sat at my desk, to my entire shame,

Somehow rendered vulnerable.



One thought on ““New Probate Referral”

  1. Dear James This is such a heart rending poem. Pain in the simplicity of it. And as always your poems throw images into the mind of the reader. I see, feel and listen. Thanks, Gran

    Sent from my iPad

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