This unforgiving landscape
of hill hedge and stream
are my oceanic waves
breaking now and then
on whin bush dotted like descansos.
Winter holds shadows here
things not fully alive emerge
without warning then follow you
a theurgy of a sort happens
like a song in the heart space.
After a steady climb
the villages of Omagh, Fintona
and Dromore shine like beacons
in the valley below caped in
the rugged terrains.
Grief calls through time here
pilgrims pass by safeguarded
by the wilderness as they follow
the path to Patrick's purgatory
there they lay their faults
Connecting again to this
ancient sky and earth to raise
ones own sacredness on the
Poem translated into Italian also.)
Pollnagaght mountain (Pigeon Top) is located three miles
from the county Tyrone town of Omagh.
First Published in Boyne Berries Spring 2014
Between two Worlds
When sister Agnes, for my own good
I felt i knew better than the dark nuns
I see the robin most seasons
but its in the winter it displays
its wily spirit.
Frost has caught the branches
in various places as if someone
had daubed it with white paint
Today he came back, my red one
layered in winter taking berries
that like him have returned.
Of course he's not mine
he belongs to us all and to nature
a feisty little one, seeing off
a group of sparrows arriving.
Three thirty strikes the courthouse clock
the steep hill begins to fill with school kids
blues, browns, blacks and navy
like shoals of fish networking the street
carrying window shoppers off in an air
of chatter as the currant of human traffic
reaches Bridge Street.
Brave buggy pushers attempt to run the
gauntlet, retreating hastily into shop doorways
then like mysterious UFO's the tidal wave of youth
vanish. An army of ants, tasks done
they make the journey westward and home
First published in thefirstcut #6
The English Ones
I always sensed as a child
stirrings about the home when
the English ones were about to land.
You’d start seeing the need for
new mats, lino or curtains
your excuse to show off.
Dad would have to paint
the scullery first, then the stairs
and shure the bathroom,
give it a lick of paint too.
All for snobby aunt Breda who
Mother said was the brains of her family.
And don’t start me about cousin Claire
always she took what wasn’t hers
my ball baring roller skates
my boyfriend Michael!
over my shoulder
the creaking door -
no one to be seen
After the rains
slugs take over ~
Through the pitch of war
my northern land ~
has peace all over it
Songs I’d left long ago
now come back ~
like ghosts on parade
a swallow soars up and down ~
just like my heart
cranefly wanting in
attracted by lamplight ~
we both shudder
moth caught in web
slowly its wings stop beating ~
no escaping now
perfect pink cloud
dips behind lammas hills~