In Memoriam - Conversations on a Bench
Made for 4 Extra. Daljit Nagra introduces In Memoriam: Conversations on a Bench – sharing stories of loss. From 2014.
Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive and selects In Memoriam: Conversations on a Bench.
Anna Scott-Brown hears stories of love, loss and hope from the strangers and friends she sits beside on 'Rosie's Bench' in a park in Oxford. The inscription, Rest Awhile and Remember Happy Times Together, draws out reflections and revelations which Michael Symmons Roberts weaves into a poem, specially commissioned for the programme.
Gradually, the story behind the inscription is revealed by Rosie herself as she remembers her husband Chris, whose life the bench commemorates. The experience of others, mixed with her own, turns Rosie's tale into a heartfelt and emotional acknowledgement of the need to stop and communicate with people around us, as life rushes by.
Hidden lives are revealed and common threads recur as Anna Scott-Brown's gentle - but insistent and sometimes extremely direct questions elicit poignant and profound responses from those sitting on the bench to 'Rest Awhile'.
Producer: Adam Fowler
An Overtone production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2014.