About Otwituaries


I started tweeting these poetic obituaries via Twitter on the death of Ernest Borgnine in July 2012. After a while a friend asked if I would gather them together, so I have created this blog as an archive. New Otwituaries will appear here as well as being broadcast via Twitter and Facebook.


All the Otwituaries are written very quickly on the day their subjects pass away, so are maybe a little lacking in polish, but they are all from the heart. They represent the people who have, in some way, touched my life - actors, sportsmen and women, TV personalities, writers, musicians and explorers. These people are already immortal, and therefore don't need my help, but I hope you enjoy reading these short poetic sketches all the same.

Monday, 29 May 2017

John Noakes - d. May 28th 2017

So many ways to go;
the unopened parachute,
the mangled bobsled,
the rogue elephant.
Instead, the fading steps
of a man, following his dog.

Read about John Noakes here

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Roger Moore - d. May 23rd 2017

I was unwilling to be
persuaded of your death,
believing the final bullet
would be yours,
that you would always
keep the British end up.

Read about Roger Moore here

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Chris Cornell - d. May 17th 2017

This morning brought me no euphoria;
the sun off sick with melancholia.
A voice I thought to be unstoppable
tails off into the superunknowable.

Read about Chris Cornell here

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Geoffrey Bayldon - d. May 10th 2017

You were 
my brother-in-magic,
stepping out 
of a pre-electrick age,
hiding out 
in the tower 
of my childhood.

Read about Geoffrey Bayldon here



Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Robert Miles - d. May 9th 2017

I’m in the queue
for a club called Dreamland. 
Dancers a thousand deep, 
blissed out and young again,
wait for the piano, 
the eternal breakdown.

Thursday, 27 April 2017

Leo Baxendale - d. April 23rd 2017

When the bell rings
and it's time to go

I will remember you;
a crafty smirk, 
a smoking nib,
a style that was
never too cool 
for school.


Read about Leo Baxendale here

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Jonathan Demme - d. April 26tth 2017

In close-up
no-one blinks.
In close-up
the twist is always out of shot.
In close up
it starts making sense.

read about Jonathan Demme here



Monday, 17 April 2017

Clifton James - d. April 15th 2017

In this Parish,
everybody needs
to breach the peace
once in a while,
cut and run,
churn up the bayou
and that means you, smartass.

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

John Geils Jr. - d. April 11th 2017

Eventually
all blood runs cold,
and phantom rockers
may behold
their cloud-girt angel
as God's centrefold.



Saturday, 8 April 2017

Brian Matthew - d. April 8th 2017

This was our old mate, 
foot-tapping and avid till the end, 
inverting the old cliché; 
if you don’t remember the 60’s 
you could still go there. 

Read about Brian Matthew here


Monday, 3 April 2017

Ikutaro Kakehashi - d. April 2nd 2017

101 reasons to mourn 
303 basslines unfolding
606 sequences bleeping
808 rhythms still looping
909 years from now

Read about Ikutaro Kakehashi here

Monday, 27 March 2017

David Storey - d. March 27th 2017

Your words were tough 
as a throat-high tackle;
fable of the Northern man,
floodlit, frostbit,
bundled into touch,
face ground into the mud,
try-line nowhere in sight.

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Colin Dexter - d. March 21st 2017

The Wagner, the crypticisms. Clever,
complex as the pint roiling on the bar.
We are not the sum of our endeavours
unless, of course, we are.

Read about Colin Dexter here


Martin McGuinness - d. March 21st 2017

Yes, journeys need a map, 
but knowing when
the one-way street’s a cul-de-sac
is not enough; then
seek the courage to divert
and not look back. 


Sunday, 19 March 2017

Chuck Berry - d. March 18th 2017

The chapel bell tolls
for a riotous muse.
I heard Tchaikovsky wept
when they told him the news.
So long rhythm,
here comes the blues.

read about Chuck Berry here

Monday, 27 February 2017

Gerald Kaufman - d. February 26th 2017

I could not concur
with every syllable,
each ardent principle,
yet still, here is myrrh
for leaderless causes,
for fatherless houses.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Bill Paxton - d. February 25th 2017

So you found a way
to get out of 
this chickenshit outfit.
But how to say this?
You're dogmeat, pal,
game over.

Read about Bill Paxton here

Friday, 17 February 2017

Peter Skellern - d. 17th February 2017

The world is full
of romantic fools,
but anyone who falls
for a song must know
at the end of the show
onto the empty streets
we go.

read about Peter Skellern here









Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Tara Palmer-Tomkinson - d. February 8th 2017


In certain places‬
‪no-one normal goes 
-‬ Klosters, The Ivy‬ 
I hear your name‬
‪still works the room‬
...such a shame...
...life and soul...

Read about Tara Palmer-Tomkinson here


Alan Simpson - d. February 8th 2017

Stone me,
what a life!
All we did
was sneak inside
a totters yard
or bedsit 
at the wrong end
of a cul-de-sac
to seek the souls
of desperate men.