On the 20th March 2011 my Mum lost her 5 year battle with cancer. She was aged just 65 and died 2 weeks before her 66th birthday.
In her final weeks i found myself compelled to go to a place where i have always felt safe and secure. My thinking place. My bolthole for when i am feeling sad and need to be alone.
This place is the Cornwall Colisseum at Carlyon Bay, St Austell. Originally built as a 'sports complex on the beach' by request of Prince Edward on one of his visits to The Carlyon Bay Hotel with Wallace Simpson, the Cornish Riviera was gradually turned into one of the biggest entertainment and leisure complexes in the South West. All the major bands fought to play in the concert arena, Tears for Fears, Blondie, Saxon, Ultravox, The Mission, Alice Cooper (that was such an amazing gig-but i digress).......the list just goes on and on. In the year 2000 the men in suits closed it down and decided they would turn it into a luxury resort with apartments right on the beach. The building was made derelict and work stopped when they found out they hadn't done their homework properly. Today, the building still stands as it was left 10 years ago.
Initially, while i sat in the car park surveying what is left and remembering it as it was i was compelled to write an essay. With the writing challenge entitled 'Brutality' this has morphed into the following poem. It is still in quite a raw state, i have a suspicion that i am too close to the subject to view it objectively, therefore constructive criticism will be appreciated.
How the Mighty Fall
The waves crash on the deserted beach
The buildings broken windows continue their eyeless stare,
Laughing; mocking the audacity
Of the fledgeling waves bravado.
Rearing to their highest peak
So much better than those who crested before
"We are young,
We know the answers,
They were nowt who matter no more."
The seagulls perch on broken rafters
of dereliction made by mans own hand.
The walls which rang of music and laughter
Now stand, abandoned, haunted by ghosts of yesterday.
A decade has passed since the architects came
Laid waste the vast Colisseum,
"This is old,
It's had its day.
Knock it down, we'll build so much better.'
As my mother lies dying in her hospital bed,
I return to the bolthole of my youth.
As the waves crash and the seagulls chatter,
Memories, bereft of time, seek to flood my mind.
A once magnificent complex, the vision of a Prince of England,
Torn down, destroyed, left to the ravages of Mother Nature.
Caused by a new generation
full of education and ideals.
The ones who really should know better.
The Cornwall Coliseum as it stands, March 2011.