Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The Goalkeeper: Part 7

I made the mistake of diving
One cold January Sunday morning
On frozen mud in the mouth of
The goals to catch a rolling ball,
Too enthusiastic to pay heed to
The good advice of my team-mates,
Too eager to show off my skill,
To stop the ball hitting the net,

Ignoring all the warnings and 
Rejecting all the memories
Of awkward landings and bruises
In matches all the winters previous,
Trying to hide my wincing face,
Too proud to let them know my pain,
Then stalling on the stairs to grip my
Swollen knee and hip the following day...

Such feelings return in hot July,
Lessons still not learned from pains gone by.
A heatwave hardens goal-mouth mud to clay
And we play two cup matches in three days.
No time to fear for slightly damaged knees,
The second game's a draw - it's penalties!
But injured joints don't seem to feel so sore
When an opposing striker fails to score.

Friday, July 12, 2013


Níl a dhath ar an domhan
A chuireann mo chroí
Ag bualadh chomh bríomhar
Is a bhí sé ar an Satharn
Sin ar chósta san Iarthar
Théis dhá uair a chloig
Ag rith na mbóithre is na
Sléibhte roimh thús thonn teasa
Agus gaoth fhuar ag séideadh
Go cneasta ar mo dhroim

Ach d'aghaidh gheal ag
Taitneamh fé ghruaig órga
Is do rosc glas ag breathnú
Díreach im shúile féin,
Do lámha amach chun mé
A fháiltiú chuig do bhaclainn
Ag deireadh rás timpeall an oileáin
Nó ag deireadh lae i seomra an óstáin.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Cé Tú Féin? (Eanáir 2013)

Dá gcuirfí an cheist orm inniu
Is mé im' aonar sa leabharlann,
Seangheansaí rugbaí an choláiste
Á chaitheamh agam d'ainneoin an
Cárta as-dáta aitheantais im' phóca,

Leabhar as-cló filíochta os mo chomhar,
Peann dubh leath-fholamh im' lámh,
Leideanna na málaí gorma fém' shúile
Ar aghaidh nár bhraith faobhar an rásúir
Ar feadh seachtaine fhuar fhada,

N'fheadar an ndéarfainn gur file mé féin,
Nó múinteoir nua, nó fós i mo mhac léinn,
Cúlbáire gan cúl, amadán, leaid saonta óg,
Nó smaointeoir tuirseach ina shuí i liombó.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Where I Lie Again

There is a shameful temptation
At times like this
When I survey the mess
Of my bedroom floor
And try to make some kind of sense
Of all these scattered things,

To justify it all
As the manifestation
Of great internal chaos,
A tangible metaphor
For the torment of my soul,
My haunted psyche,

In my guise of stubborn artist.
But alas! I yield to truth.
It's no interpretation
Of some great creative madness,
Nor any lovesick sadness,
But my disordered life's accumulations.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

In Security

He bid me a good day
And crossed the road
Through a gap in the traffic
To hand out an armful of leaflets
To the strangers gathered waiting
At the bus-stop by the park,

His shirt un-tucked, half-buttoned,
Perhaps once of a similar colour
To the uniforms at the shop tills inside
But now faded and stained and hanging
Over ragged baggy tracksuit bottoms
With keys and chain banging at his knee,

And two security guards stood
Shouting and laughing by the shop doors,
"He's totally loopy in the head!"
And pointing their warning fingers
At the poor retreating madman,
Menace and malice in their smiles,

Clenched fists insisting that he stop
Taking leaflets from their shop,

Or else.

Friday, March 15, 2013

In Anticipation of Dessert

With favourite recipe, time to perform!
Occasion calls for flavour and romance,
Ingredients for colour, taste and charm,
For energy and passion in the dance.
With seasoning, perfume of spice and herbs,
The sizzling of oil within the pan,
The heat and tender meat, some gentle words
To tease between later and present calm,
Attentive watch to see that nothing burns,
A deft flick of the wrist and skilful hands,
A tasting bite delights a waiting tongue
Impatient to satisfy its demands,

The plates are filled, the first course of our feast,
To be left bare, to be enjoyed, a treat.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Agus Scátháin

Gheallaigh solas bán guthán mo charad
Tráthnóna inné is muid inár suí
Os comhar scáileáin sa choláiste seo
Gan smál ar imeall chathair Luimní,
Tweet ag fógairt go raibh cinneadh déanta
Cé go mbeidh ina nua-phápa
Ar na 1.2 billiún caitliceach
Ar fud an domhain, de réir na nuachta,
Is muid ag féachaint ar 'Cré Na Cille',
Ag léamh guíonna na nguthanna marbha,
Ag gáire faoina sean-traidisiúin,
Deatach bán os cionn na Róimhe
Fiú tar éis gach saghas fidléireachta.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Piercing Thoughts

A sentimental thought
Struck me today
As I pondered on
The topic of piercings,

Reading, as I do,
An eclectic selection
Of Sunday articles
And weekend discussions

Of great import and none,
Of meaning incalculable,
Bridges from past to
Present and more to come,

Or, more likely, not to
Between me and you.
Because although I see
In memories the flash

Of metal on your tongue
I can no longer recall
How it felt to kiss you,
Or if it made a difference.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


This irrational
On the border
Of outright panic,
Trembling limbs
And shallow breath
And racing mind,
Every grim idea
A potential reality,
Every move delayed
In fear of fault
Or failure,
Shyly shrinking back,
A quiet coward,
Imagining the worst
Instead of asking
Simple questions,
This irrational
Comes and goes,
Returns and
Fretfully flows
As I forget to breathe,
As I try to find the words
To ask such
Simple questions
Instead of dreaming
Awful answers.