The Man Who Saw (For Ray Bradbury) While all around him sat inside Locked houses with their screens, He walked, Looked, observed and understood, Smelt flowers, spoke their smell With words no-one had ever heard; Their smell emerging from the page Bubbled and sprang, where all The pictures on the roof-high walls Could only flicker and then fade. At times, summer bounced forth from his words, Aloft and adazzle with colour of life; And when he spoke darkness, it sizzled With the truth of deep heart-fear; If he spoke too gravely, the time and its idols Gave weight to his speech. When he gathered His prophets in the cave to join his voice In the chorus of true words, Their surroundings sang and lifted Us somewhere further than a grave. If, at times, he saw too much grey When there was white; if he spoke Only half the way to the truth, We pause and know him as but a speaker, Not the speech. If he knows now of summer Which is never farewelled, if now he sees The light which sometimes blinded, Then his speech is made complete. Though it is not, can never be, all. But for his sight, and for his words, And for his dreams of summer in flight, We, in our walls of glass and screens, Are grateful. And so we dance with Clarisse, And rage with Guy against the fire, Walk with Leonard the silent streets And pray, in hearts, the words which dream Of days when streets are full to brimming With life set free from walls torn down And sight made holy, eyes made whole, And all our dreams of summer full.