Helen McCrory’s voice filled out the stage last night when Damian Lewis, her husband closed his eyes. He clasped both his hands and squeezed them shut.

He was 52 when he lost his beloved wife, Harry Potter actress and Peaky Blinders star, nine months ago.

This was Lewis’ first public appearance as a Homeland/Wolf Hall actor.

Damian Lewis with Helen McCrory in 2012. It is nine months since he was robbed of his wife, the late Harry Potter and Peaky Blinders actress, who died from breast cancer aged 52

In 2012, Damian Lewis and Helen McCrory. Nine months have passed since Damian Lewis was robbed from Helen McCrory in 2012.

He was accompanied by their 15-year-old daughter Manon and 14 year old son Gulliver at the National Theatre.

A night of poetry was held in his honor to remember his beloved wife, of whom he had 14 years. The evening received rapturous applause.

The 900 strong audience applauded once again when a clip was displayed of Lewis reading poetry during an event. Lewis kept his eyes closed, listening to her, and then he sat down, trying to absorb her words.

He said, “This evening is dedicated for her, and it’s perfect because Helen loved National Theatre,” Helen McCrory is the one person to whom thunder will not be stolen.

Lewis read the final piece of verse, Everything Is Going To Be All Right, by Irish poet Derek Mahon

Lewis read the closing verse of Derek Mahon’s poem, All Is Going To be All Right by Lewis

Lewis wrote a touching tribute to his mother’s ‘fearlessness’ and ‘wit, curiosity’. He also shared that he’d never known someone so able to live life to the fullest.

He also said, “She’s leaving our children too young. But they’ve been ready for everything.”

She exhorted us all to be strong and courageous, not afraid. She repeatedly told the children to be courageous ‘…. She has encouraged us all to live. “Live fully. Take opportunities. Have adventures.

Lewis (50) presided last night over an hour-long performance that was filled with sorrow, joy, reflection, and, according to Allie Esiri, ‘the general absurdity of life’.

Damian Lewis joined Allie Esiri on stage at the National theatre to launch her new anthology of poetry A Poet for Every Day of the Year. Both the book and the event were dedicated to Helen McCrory

Damian Lewis was joined by Allie Esiri at the National theatre for the launch of her poetry collection, A Poet to Every Day. The book as well as the event were dedicated Helen McCrory

Sometimes the auditorium was full of laughter. This included Spike Milligan’s funny four-line poem “You Must Never Bath in An Irish Stew” and Carol Ann Duffy’s Mrs Icarus about a wife who watched her husband prove to the entire world that he is a Grade A pimp.

Many of Miss McCrory’s close acting friends and colleagues recited poetry in her memory.

Simon Russell Beale and Lesley Sharp read poems with Lewis. Fay Ripley, Danny Sapani, Fay Ripley, Fay Sharp, Fay Ripley, and Fay Sharp.

Mrs Esiri explained that the evening was dedicated to Helen. Damian did a couple of words. But, we wanted to keep the show going.

‘It’s what she would have told us to do – “OK, enough already, get on with the show!”

“She was a poet and would be happy to share her poetry with us. It felt right.’

Miss McCrory is one of Britain’s best-known and most popular actresses. She was well-known for her role as Narcissa Malfoy, the evil witch in Harry Potter movies, and Aunt Polly, the matriarch in Peaky Blinders. The final series will be aired soon without Miss McCrory.

Lewis on stage at the National Theatre. Some of Miss McCrory's closest acting colleagues and friends recited poems in her memory last night

Lewis at the National Theatre. Yesterday night Miss McCrory’s most close friends and acting associates recited poetry in her memory.

She was awarded an OBE for her services to drama in 2017 New Year Honours.

Lewis married her in July 2007.

Mrs Esiri stated that Helen and Damian really helped poetry reach people.

People have found that poetry is a great option when you’re stuck at home reading Covid, but are unable to take on a novel.

“Tonight, we selected poems that should have resonated with people who’ve been through much over the past two years.”

Then she spoke to the crowd, “Learning from adversity” was something that many have witnessed over the last two years of the pandemic.

“Everything will be okay” has been my mantra through this time of difficulty.

Lewis was able to then read Derek Mahon’s final verse, “Everything Is Going to Be All Right”, which was the last piece of Lewis’s poem.

The theatre was silent as he read the lines: ‘There will be dying, but there is no need to go into that…The sun rises in spite of everything…Everything is going to be all right.’

The evening ended with Miss McCrory’s video reading Wild Geese from Mary Oliver.