I met Josiah outside a pub seven years ago. He was wearing a long trench coat – a little ostentatious for an eighteen year old – and gave me a chip dipped in baked bean juice. We discussed Marillion for some reason: each of us knew one song by them and the conversation led Jos to fall so deeply in love with their back catalogue that he became the world’s most well researched Prog Rock fan to have spent less than a year in the actual Nineteen Eighties.

He is one of my best friends and I am finding it hard to write about him without it seeming too cloying or ‘gushy’. Suffice to say we have shared many beautiful moments: we have swum at night in the bioluminescent sea during a thunderstorm on a Cambodian island; we have attended a Secret Cinema event (Prometheus) in which we became so emotionally invested that, during the ’emergency evacuation’, we feared for our other friends lives; we have scarfed a four pack of Carling outside a sofa shop in a retail park before an Elton John gig at Wembley Arena (which Jos sobbed throughout).

Here is a poem I wrote for his 25th birthday.

Emily x

street art Cambodia
Graffiti in an abandoned hill station – Bokor Hill, Kampot, Cambodia. 2014.

For Josiah, when in doubt

The road well-travelled
Is the safest.
Signposts kindly guide the way.
But I would never expect you
To choose the path where footprints lay
Most heavily.

No, not for you are ‘best of’ lists,
Or Lonely Planet Choices.
I love you for your strength of mind
To shun those tempting voices.

Please never feel that since your route
Is not well Trip Advised,
That it is any less your route,
Or you any less wise.

On the boat to Koh Rong Samloem, Cambodia. 2014
On the boat to Koh Rong Samloem, Cambodia. 2014

2 thoughts on “Josiah

  1. I like it. Simply expressed but evocative nevertheless. It displays a lovely picture of a man who goes his own way x

    Sent from Samsung Mobile


  2. You’re the best! I like this poem lots. It reminds me to believe in myself. And thank you for the dedication 🙂

    I’m behind on the How To Live Forever story! I’m going to go and catch up now and see what I’ve missed!

    Lots of love xxx

    Liked by 1 person

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