Monday, July 30, 2012

The Charmer

Working in the same vein as a magician, with hope
To deceive and delight with the same stroke,
To entrance and to invite into a new dimension
Whomsoever finds themselves distracted
By the intricacies and the trickeries in the craft,

To conjure images and evoke emotions,
To hide what's sitting right before the eyes
Behind patterns of words, flicks of the wrist,
Telling whole stories while sending subtle hints,

Convincing one of truth in a false reality and
Another that what they see may yet become
Much more than how it first seems,

Balancing the weight of wisdom with the
Passionate unpredictability of unknown possibility,

Baring all to an audience that is almost blind,

To those who find it easier to question the art
Than to meditate on the meaning in its works,

Maintaining the illusion of control and confidence
While struggling to sate a torn, confused conscience.

Prism Don tSolas

A bhláith tar chugam
Is múin dom do rúin,

Tóg ó shuaimneas
Is ó shíocháin mé
Arís is go minic

Is taispeán dom
An spleodar agus
An spraoi atá le fáil
Sa neamhghnách,

San ildaite 's
Sa choimhthíoch,
Sa chathair seo
Atá úrnua dom shúile,

Las ionam an splanc
Nár dhóigh le tamall
Agus cuir tús le ré

Rómansúil gheal chorraitheach
Agus aontas breá taitneamhach.

Friday, July 27, 2012

A Timely Find

A pair of old love letters
Fell from the front pocket
Of my bag this afternoon
As I prepared to pack to move away,

Still folded as I'd left them
Over five and a half years ago,
Totally forgotten in the dust
And debris of everything since,

But still crisp and clear and
So full of feeling that I had
To catch my breath and stop myself
From cursing out loud in the name

Of every emotion I can imagine,
Her voice still full of life as I read her words,
Our unfulfilled promises flooding back
All together and then blurring before my eyes.

An Trua Is Mó

N'fheadar cén trua is mó, a stór,
Is muid ag dul ár mbealaí éagsúla,

An tuiscint go mbeidh mé brónach
I do dhiaidh fad is atáimid scartha

Nó an tost pianmhar seo, aineolas,
An cosc atá orm a choimeádann dúnta

Mo bhéal is nach ligeann dom
Mo scéal a insint duit i gceart,

An mearbhall searbhmhilis, masc sonais
Fad is a bhreathnaíonn tú orm

Agus súile chuig na flaithis nuair
A shiúlaim uait sa dorchadas.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Music Night In The Curragower

Sitting in a front row seat, 
Probably the best table in the house,
Trying to smile and sing along
To the band who stand so close,
And safely surrounded by friends,
Black velvet refreshment in a cool glass
Stains the wood by my right hand,
I watch the foam on the water pass
As it drifts over the falls and beyond,

But still not quite contented as 
I ponder the poetry of the music,
Wonder at the wisdom of the lyrics,
Long to stand at the centre of the song.
I day-dream of leading the chorus,
Stepping from the safety of my seat
And taking to front of the stage...
For that is where I want to be.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Dancing Eyes

One of these days
I'll look you in the eye
And hold your gaze
And stop searching
The walls and floor
For words that will not come,
For the words that have
Evaded us for far too long.

For those are words
That we don't really need,
Not right away at least,
Just more distractions,
Just second thoughts
And barriers to actions,
The food for doubts
That make me look away...

One of these days
I'll step to close this space,
To meet your eyes and smile,
And bring your lips to mine.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Grá Rúnda

Ba bhreá liom gan 'bheith
Chomh aineolach is atáim
Ar scéalta ársa eipicí
Na laochra is a naimhde
A deirtear go mhaireadar
Sa tír seo fadó,

Go mbeadh tuiscint agam
Ar na n-aibhneacha 's na sléibhte,
Ar na n-oileáin 's na lochanna,
Ar turasanna thar na dtonnta,
Ar chogaí idir fórsaí
De bharr ghrá idir beirt nó triúir,

Ar an ngrá rúnda féin
Is ar chonas gurb fhéidir
É a rá is a scaoileadh
Nó é chrá is a éalú.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Delicate Fox

There is a simple kind of joy
In driving late at night
When all the roads are quiet
And the peace is rarely broken
And the darkness offers cover
For the wandering and prowling
Of the slight and delicate fox.

I see them sometimes
Gently pawing at the grass banks
Along the otherwise deserted tar
Or hunching low and slender
And rushing from the avenue
To hide in shadows around the estate,

But it pains me all too often
When I find in harsh daylight
The broken, dust-stained pieces
Of their once bright, fiery coats
Battered and abandoned on the roadside.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Pigeons

As the resident musician
Plays to the regular crowd
That fills the courtyard,
My companion's pointing finger
Draws my attention above
To a spot in the shadows

Where two pigeons sit, staring,
Trapped after the canopy
Was drawn to keep out the rain,
Perched on the speakers
And all the while observing
The unsuspecting dancers,

And after a few drinks
I let my mind wander,
Wondering if a similar vision
Inspired Poe or Hitchcock,
The power and horror
Of something so small,
The mundane put out of place
And into the darkness above.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Extras: Part 3

The simple wonders
Of artificial moustaches,
Powdered hair
In icing-sugar tubs,
A box of gels and razors
And a rainbow display of
Combs and scissors,
Brushes and sprays,
Brightly lit mirrors
And flowing dark aprons,

All the tools of transformation
At the hands of artists,
Experts in the preparation
Of groups raggle and eclectic
For careful placement
Side by side on screens
For education and entertainment.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Do Phóg, Mo Mhanna

Ba mhaith liom tú a phógadh arís,
A Aingil Dhuibh mo bhrionglóidí,
Is tú a tharraingt chugam
Chun go bhfaighfeá suaimhneas
Gar dom chliabhrach mar a tharla
Sé an t-aon oíche amháin sin,

Do ghruaigh mar bhlaincéad síoda
Dorcha ar mo ghualainn dheas
Is do leicne bánna chomh bog
Faoi bharra mo mhéaranna
Is gur mhothaigh mé mé fhéin
Ag titim i dtreo na n-aislingí

Agus eagla orm nach gcreidfí choíche
Mo chur síos ar d'áilleacht,
Macallaí ag teacht chugam ón tseanfhilíocht
Agus fonn orm tú féin is mise
A chur le chéile uair amháin eile,
Lá nó oíche, is anseo i bhfocla na síoraíochta.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Extras: Part 2

The fine young man
Was not impressed
To have his curls
Dark and a-tress
All cut away,
Severely dress
To suit the costume
And the set,

But those who saw
Him had to smile
For even though
Now ranked and filed,
His hair scattered
Along the tiles,
Comparing himself to
A Communion child,

He stood there then
A man of style
After his best cut
In a long, long while.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Extras: Part 1

The button-holes are worn
And the seem inside the leg
Is frayed and splayed out
Like the bobble of a woolly hat,
With a little safety pin hidden
In the waist-band just in hope
That it will look like it still fits,

On these old costume trousers
That by now, I'm sure, have seen
Too many scenes and rails and hangers,
Too many extras and actors
In period costumes under
Old-fashioned hair-styles and spot-lights,

But yet look perfect put together
With the right old shirt and jacket in
Weather typical of Ireland in any era.

Monday, July 16, 2012

A Poem For C&H (teen discussion forum)

To C and H I make with haste to read of all and sundry,
This wondrous forum being home to great minds of the country,
In knowledge safe that here I'll find the widest range of discourse
Of quality that's praise-worthy and deserving of sweet verse.

A noble tale it is to tell of this fine forum's naissance,
Its seed the posts of dazzling folk, its water months of patience.
No text-speak blight could quell the roots, nor cynics wielding axes;
They scoffed that we, being but teens, could not produce strong branches.

And yet a garden grew and grew, being tended most ably
By three young mods who, from the sods, pruned weeds away most gayly.
To Piste, to JC and Squigloo, I bid thee raise thy glasses
And cheer in toast that we could boast such crafts-folk in our masses.

But hark! there is much more to say, there are more names and fables,
For here we see community beyond keyboards on tables,
Computer screens, laptops on knees, D4RK ONION may deem portals,
These looking-glasses, not for Alice, but for we young mortals.

From late in two thousand and eight and right up to this moment,
An oak has grown and banter flown, like rafts upon a current
To keep us bouyed, or over-joyed; whatever life throws at us
Can wash away or soundly stay like strong boards in a tree-house.

We've seen it all! Young Jizzler's call for MILFs to sate his urges!
Nialldeman's pleas for recipes for tea! The desperate virgins.
To monumental threads of lore, such topics had us thinking
As Life's hardships and politics and responsible drinking.

We've seen the "Sex Discussion Thread", a most successful mission,
"Here's One That I Made Earlier", kaleidoscopic vision,
The "Soundtrack To Your Angst", a many-spleandoured music medley,
And "What Do You Find Beautiful?" is always bleedin' deadly.

From Kate's bright cakes to ones we make in cups within three minutes,
To "b00bs!" at half four in the morning after too much Guinness.
From Midnight's car to me, the bard, to Deise_Monster's stalking
Of young hurlers and 1Direction, no end to the talking!

From challengemaster logging in to laugh with randylonghorn,
To Noel pretending he's a girl (don't say that you've not been warned!)
We've played at Ultimate Face-down and posted up the pictures,
We've had much fun and then lamented sleeping right through lectures.

The Den, with ever-changing name, somewhere 'tween Aaaarrrgghh and Yaaahh threads,
These bases always busy even when the rest may seem dead,
Debates on God, on pregnancy, and the financial crisis,
Pictures of dresses, drums and drink, complaining about the prices,

From early days and posters who, though no longer oft' seen here,
Impressions last of great chats past, foundations for the future,
Aisling(",), Mushy, Crumble Froo, phlegms, Cautioner and cHaTbOx,
They might pop by from time to time, though leemur has changed his spots!

When Dublin froze young Daysha rose to Keyboard Cat the slipping,
That city also venue to our first meet-up, day-tripping.
But Cavan, Cork and Galway too, and Donegal and Sligo,
Tipperary, Clare and Limerick, a Brummy Tom with banjo,

All places and locations become one when we do post here,
And twice we've celebrated with awards at end of the year.
With Jackobyte and Jumpguy, Aoibheann, Oopsy and Konata,
Davidius, Pygmalion, science, maths and data,

Fad and Craguls, Neon-Circles, extrasupervery,
Ultimate Chin and bythewoods, Jay P, sarcasticfairy,
Monzo, Arcade Panda, Sligo Brewer and degausser,
Almostnever, Namlub, unknown, DingosAteMyBaby,

Mavis Davis, Atavan-Halen and EuropeanSon,
Cows Go µ and Colm! too, but Hitlersson is gone,
There's Lawliet, there's SarahBeep! and IHeartChemistry same,
Agnostic Mantis, I Have Questions and Shacklebolt with new name,

Screaminmidget, conorstuff, Mollikins and YourTextHere too,
Banjo Fella and Flyswatter, seriousfizz and **Timbuk2**,
Ginja Ninja's modding now, and Almighty Cushion visits,
And if your name is not within apologies I missed it!

From books and 90s Babies and to nightclubs and being a genius,
From worst pain to guilty pleasures, we have all of this between us,
So join me, if you will, and celebrate the best of forums.
Cheers to this bizarrely named place! To Clearasil and Hormones!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Love Bites

I'm lying in bed and looking
At the marks on my arms,
The polka-dot pattern of
Four days old insect bites,

The likes of which I have not seen
Since after that infamous night
Almost two years ago when
We struggled to set up our tent
For the night at the end of
My friend's big back garden
Near the woods, without a light,
Swarmed by midges from the ditches,

Before the late evening heat
Faded and icy cold came in,
And I held you close at dawn
To try to stop you shivering,
And even though there is no mark
To show it I can still feel
Your soft cold cheek against mine
Long after we last embraced.

Saturday, July 14, 2012


I see bright purple flowers
Growing through the cracks
Of the wall along the river
By the road towards the bridge,

On that side of the water
Opposite this city centre
Underneath the hanging branches
Of the chestnuts near the benches

Where I used go to sit and think,
To pause and try to breathe in peace
While out for walks in fading evening
On the wall's safe side, behind the flowers.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Lost In The Falls

I met a girl who said she liked
To sit and stare through windows

Just to watch the rain,
To see it drop, trickle and flow,

To pass away the hours
Thinking thoughts only she knows,

And I never thought to ask if ever
She looks above to see the rainbow.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

To Tea!

A careful first sip,
Gentle pursing of my lip,
Tasting the sweetness
On my tongue
But not taking
Too much too soon,

The hot cup held up
Just close enough
To wet the tip
Of my nose,
Exhalations steaming
Up from the surface,

I dry the drips
And let out a
Satisfied and smiling sigh
As soothing warmth
Spreads down my throat
And through my chest,

I sit back and
Slip deeper into the cushions,
Breathing slowly
As I drink.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A Strange Reunion

It was certainly not what one
Would call a typical reunion,
Embracing in the dark outside
The hotel, hours after midnight,
Before strolling in to the residents bar.
You insisted on buying me a drink.

We thought of how long it had been.
Too long, we agreed through smiles,
You after an evening celebrating
And me after beer for one at home.
Blame absolved and inhibitions already
Bypassed with our conversation barely started,

Talk of all of our mistakes and old, yet
Still remembered desires to the fore,
No fear at all of bringing up
The way things were with us before,
I listened and let you tell me
Everything, all the details I had not known.

All was for sharing, every
Minor confession and every big deal,
Every part of you and me
As was practical in such strange
And coldly public circumstances,
Even allowing for the darkness and the hour.

What more is there to say about it now?
We each have plans in places far apart,
Each different dreams and ideas,
Though neither of us knows for sure, of course...
A strange reunion, yes, too long delayed.
But no mistake and no regrets, we'll say.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Move On

It would be
So much easier
To move on and
To forget the things
That happened
Between us
If your latest lover
Did not bring up
Your name
In conversation
And ask for
My opinion
Of you.

I still remember
The words I spoke,
The highs and lows
In those few
Short sentences,
The suggestion that
There may be wisdom
In avoiding one
Most beautiful
But who'd only
Break his heart.

It is too late now
To ask that I keep
My honesty
To myself,
Though now at least
You have
My side
To balance out
The story.

But I'd rather not
Think at all
About you
Any more.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Críoch An Chiúnais

D'fhanthas im' thost go ró-fhada,
Osnaí á ligeant uaim
Nuair a bhuaileadh smaointí mé
Seachas dánta a scríobh
Nó óráid a rá,

An teannas ag méadú
Sna ghualainne orm
Seachas mo chorp a chur
Ag croitheadh nó mo
Chroí ag buaileadh le gliondar,

Leathannaigh folmha bánna
Snug idir a gclúdaigh
Seachas marcanna phinn
Scaipthe ina scrapanna
Ar urlár an tseomra,

Ar eagla gurb i laige
A thit mo ghuth,
Go dtí gur sháraigh mé
An t-uaigneas i m'intinn
Is thógas ón scabbard mo chlaíomh.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

A Note To S. (A Friend)

I thought of you this afternoon,
Memories triggered by a song
That used to be your favourite
And one of several that I'm sure
I heard for the first time
In your kitchen or bedroom,
Part of the soundtrack to our
Adventures and experience,

From sleeping over with the lads
And watching films we didn't understand,
Sharing plates of sausages
In the morning before a match,
To cycling around the estates
Figuring out how to talk to girls,
Asking the DJ for goth metal
And the pop and soda local disco,

Or weekend afternoons at the
Internet café in town and
Hours wasted on teen chat-rooms,
To forums and the friends miles away
Planning parties and eventually
Travelling half-way up the country
To spend time with those strange
And beautiful people you introduced to me,

From gigs and that one festival
With cider and sour apple liqueur,
To nights we stayed up talking late
And drinking silly measures of Jager,
The hook-ups and the breaks-ups
With all the drama and secrets
Of a badly written teenage soap-opera,
Pretty characters included,

And even after you left Limerick,
Gradually returning home less and less,
You started writing and I read
And was prompted to follow suit,
The pair of us depressed in different places,
You planning to travel the world
While I just tried to traverse
The tangled paths inside my head,

Even though I only see you now
And then at scattered points
Across the busy calendar,
I still remember with a smile the fun
We've shared throughout the years,
I think of sad times not mentioned here,
I think of you, my friend, these afternoons
When listening to our old favourite tunes.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Ag Staidéir San Oigheann

Cúis ioróine is ea é domsa,
Fear gan creideamh is mé
Anseo trí lá i ndiaidh
Domhnach Cásca,
Go mothaim go bhfuilim faoi ghlas
In Ifreann éigin ar domhan
Sa leabharlann seo gan tost,

Na diabhail go léir im thimpeall
Ag spalpadh bladhmanna cainte
Is ag ligint pléascanna uathu
Gach aon uair a bhogtar leathannach
Is pé ama a osclaítear mála,
Is gan aon aingeal coimhdeachta
Chun suaimhneas a chothú.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Just Coffee And A Chat

Ah, Café On The Row.
It's been a while.
I've been here only once
In two years,
Twice if sitting outside
With a smoking friend
Counts as a visit.

Today's too wet and grey
For taking chairs outside,
And neither of us smokes,
So sitting in the warmth
And colour inside suits us.
It hasn't changed at all,
Our old favourite place,

Parisian aspirations in the décor
More than in the menu,
Although the brie goes well
With Limerick ham and
Red onion marmalade,
And a garnish of
Bitter-sweet memories.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Pub Poetry

This pen and note-book combo
Is about as out of place
In here tonight as any
Artist's tools could ever be,
The order of these lines and
Careful placing of this ink
At odds with groups hap-hazard
Between tables and the bar,

And yet as I sit writing,
Avoiding parties, dance and smiles,
These words come to me through the noise
And pen meets paper easily.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Basking In the Madness

Basking in the madness
Of a bar at midnight,
Band in full swing for the
Four hen parties in the one place,
A camera flashing every moment
In one corner or another,
Everyone a star aglow,

Posing for the local paper,
Table reservations for the VIPs,
Shots and cocktails over-flowing,
Shouting orders though the din,
Singing along with the favourites,
They shuffle and sway off the beat,
Basking in the madness.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Your Brilliance

I can't write proper poems to you yet.
I do not have the words,
The years, the wisdom,
The grim experience.
This absolute finality
Is such that I have not
Within my mind or heart
The reason nor the wish
To accept that you are gone.

Years ago your smile was my delight
And I kept a picture of
Your stunning eyes.
Such eyes will never smile again,
And only memories and pictures
Hold your brilliance within.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Cast Yourself Adrift

I keep trying to shut you out, dear girl,
And yet you try again to slink back in
With softly spoken words and messages
And hints of thoughts of times best left behind.

I feel stronger when I don't reminisce
About the nights when we first danced and kissed,
Sleep better when you are not on my mind.

What might have been I'd rather not imagine.
I'd sooner tell you let your sails unfurl
So you might drift away and not be missed.

But, such a thing to say would be unkind,

And so the dark and winding passages
Are still haunted by pictures of your face
And bitter memories of your embrace.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Where I Lie

Waking for the fifth time
In one morning
With all sense of order


In fretful thoughts
Of missed appointments
And all the scattered


Of dreams and faces
Still imagined in
Clothes piled


Around bags and shoes
And books and glasses
About the bed where I