Isaac Lowthian Bell (1816 – 1904)
In that stern, expensive portrait
he may have hung centre stage
just above his mantelpiece,
he is staring back at the world
like a founding father.
Self-contained and righteous,
he is the one who pays
the piper. Like it or not,
for your own good, you’ll dance
to the tune he’s called.
His name is Isaac Lowthian Bell –
industrial magnate, MP,
and twice elected mayor.
Should any fool forget it, hearken:
he is Sir Isaac to you.
His own children and theirs
have always called him Pater,
never risking Grandpapa.
Acclaimed by all, his greatness
is planetary, cold, austere.