One more Hackney summer

I’m not sure why but the seemingly endless drive across Spain; through the snow dusted mountains of Asturia, the vast arable deserts of the plains and the barren granite hills that lead down into Portugal’s forests took my mind to a friend that I lost a few years ago. I’ve wanted to write about him for a while but the whirling in my head always confuses my hands as they reach for the keyboard.

Another good friend of his found these words for all of us…

One more Hackney summer

I thought, maybe, if you could have one more summer.

Just one more stinking hot Hackney Summer; cold beers in London Fields – beers and grass and crisps, sitting in a circle, shaded in the trees, watching kids and pitbulls running, then maybe it would be ok to say farewell.
If you could have a full year messing about on your boat like Ratty – cap, mustard waistcoat ‘n’ all, teas and rollies by the stove, worn Turkish carpets on the floor, your legs crossed in that gangly Mark way, in your fireside chair, then maybe it would be ok to say farewell.

If you could have more contentment, more happiness, more time, then maybe all the people who love you would find it alright to say goodbye.

But it’s never ok, of course

and as the time approaches, it’s so fucking hard.

Mark you are so loved and you will be painfully missed.

(Meredith T. Mora)

I miss you Marky. I miss our endless disections of the Universe. I miss your drunken phonecalls in the early hours. I miss not having someone like you to tell when I really miss a friend like you…

I didn’t surf today.


  1. Holes left by people we love who’ve gone ahead do feel especially painful and empty sometimes. I second Daisy…touching words you and your friend have written for Mark.

  2. Great photo of Marky Bish …… he looks like a really bad tempered beatnik ….. oh, that’s right he was!!!!

    I suppose I’ll never get that fiver back now ….. oh well.

    [Don’t forget to pick up those paintings of his on your next visit]

  3. There’s a quote on the front page of his ‘tribute’ website (which he specifically asked people not to create) which says “I can’t think of anything funny to put on the front page”.

    One of the last things he said to me was something along the lines of “for fuck’s sake – don’t let them put a bench in the park for me”.
    I recently got an email with a googlemap for his memorial bench in London Fields… 🙂

  4. I have never lost a friend of comparative years (have seen a hellva lot who are older)& I really dreading that inevitable happening.

    Mora’s poem of that ‘one last’ brings home to the fact we should never be complacent in our friendships or indeed family
    Christina Rossetti’s poem ‘Remember’ says it all to me .. I guess Mark had the same ethos

    Lovely post .. and big hugz as you remember him

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