Saturday, 27 April 2013

Upside down angel!

and something beckons, calling
"you! It's you!" and then
vanishes into the distance,
leaving things humdrum.
Humdrum and happy.

Friday, 19 April 2013

Mud clings

Parent becomes
has always
been child.

Child grows
into parent.

Somewhere a dog barks.

Somewhere else
a fox
runs up the road,
illuminated in the

(and the bins have to go out)
(and the sun shines)
(and another day comes)

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Shadows and light and life

Horse at the gate
It was late, tonight, when I stepped out to walk the dogs. A guilt walk - they'd been in their pen outside all day, and we were only just home. I took a torch, but after a while, I realised I didn't need it. Light enough to see my way without.

It was late, and still warm - so strange! I walked without a coat or a hat or a scarf. And the quarter moon lit the sky. A black shadows of dogs raced down the road. And a faint orange glow in the distance showed Dublin, over the mountain.

A horse in his coat still stood by the gate, pulling at hay. Somewhere in the distance the squeal of a small animal. Shadows and light and life. And as I turn back in the drive, Andrew's sitting in the porch in his pyjamas, waiting for me to come back before he'll go to bed. Shadows, and light, and life.

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Sitting beside a windmill, a little girl, the photo sepia yellow. Short white dress and blonde hair.

Sitting in a chair, an old lady. Grey hair, making decisions about where to live.

What passed between?

A life.

Friday, 12 April 2013


Yes - we hear
your request.
But please,
be a little
more precise.

Tell us the
exact nature of
your complaints.
Tell us the
exact circumstances of
your calamity.

there's little
we can do.

Or not do, maybe,
until we run out
of not doing.

Thursday, 11 April 2013

On the day Maggie came to power

I was oblivious to what it would mean. Sixteen. At school I fought with the teachers and tried to avoid the O-levels looming just ahead. And in the evening, we went to Barbarella's. To see Iggy Pop. Crunching over broken glass, and lifting feet stuck to carpet with beer and ash. Broad Street before it was redeveloped. No go canals full of trolleys and dead dogs. A ragged dirty city, where men tumbled out of The Antelope on a Saturday night and threw up beside bus stops where grannies in their Sunday best would stand on their way to church the next morning.

We took the night bus home - May 4th, - and sat upstairs, smoking, joking, as people stumbled their way off the bus. Tight drainpipe jeans. Men's jackets from Oxfam. Remembering Iggy Pop pulling down his trousers to his knees and waving his penis at the crowd.

Monday, 8 April 2013

One, Two Magpies

April evening
One magpie, right to left,
Flying low across the road.
One for sorrow.
Moments later, another,
Right to left again.
Two for joy? Or one sorrow
After another?

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Ready to spring

Between Holywood and Wicklow Gap at 7pm on the 5th of April
A cold spring. More like winter, really,
with a bitter wind, biting at your face
and hands. But spring it is, and the
day still bright at seven in the evening, and the first daffodils bunching forth alongside hedges on small country roads. Spring. And the coat-tails of winter still clinging to the mountain tops.

Thursday, 4 April 2013

10pm exactly

It's 10pm exactly and
the day roars through my ears,
and all that was done,
and all that was undone
fly past,
as I sit, listening
to Ruth playing the piano
and sit waiting
for Andrew to come home

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Welcome Felix

Suspended like a dew drop,
at the very tip of a blade of grass
bent towards the earth,
Felix slips into this world,
and into his mother's heart,
and into his father's heart,
and into their arms.

Sweet baby boy.
after love
after love
conspiring to bring you here,
as you slide gracefully
to take your place
in this world.

(7lb 9oz, Felix arrived at 7.22 today to my darling cousin Janina)

Monday, 1 April 2013

Siena morning

There's a man hanging washing in the small garden under our window. He's wearing white trousers, a jacket and a flat cap. He slowly pegs a black shirt onto the line, then turns and goes inside. Small leaves and pebbles crunch under his feet, as the sun works hard to break through the clouds. The black shirt flaps gently in the breeze, and small leaves drift around the garden. All is well.