No Rhyme , No Reason

“I can do the alphabet”, I said
“I can spin any word rhyme,
from A to Z”
and so I could.
Any word you care to share,
funny, the boys always want ‘Duck’

And so on.

Funny, they always lost interest at F.
And, I’d be bereft
My rhythm, broken,
my spin unspun,
when I'd just begun.

As, giggling and laughing on the floor,
because of F
I scolded them, 
“Stop acting like children!” 

but they are children,
our children,

For forgetting,
shame beats me, 
red rushing up my neck towards my cheeks,
“How could I forget their innocence?

How could I forget the innocents?”

How long is it now? 
how many years?
since she’d gone,
a hot summers day, 
a child, whizzing around and around and around.
in mummy’s red dress.
“I want this when I grow up, keep it for me mummy, so I can dance and spin around and around and around,
like a grown up”

Except, she never did grow up,
with with neither rhyme or reason still, I spin, 
around and around and 


Looking for the light


We had to hoke through the cupboard,

Pulling out all the old flex

Old flex


And old biscuit tin full of out of date drugs

Amongst the oxidised coins

Strewn through a graveyard of batteries

that may or may not hold a charge

and balls of  wool and lengths of string

that need unraveled or maybe knot

Spiking hands on long discarded spools that sport a tiny sword

Buttons, still bright, like the pins

Oddments, assortments, bits and bobs

Spilling, filling nic-nac boxes

adding to the hoard


then, at last

the feel of waxy skin

As a nail stick in

It’s just a stump

Half burned light long since extinguished

Wick charred from countless prayer

Or power-cuts


A fumble with the damphead matches

Light Fizzles out

Strike again

Catching light

In your eyes


I’m in the dark

No more




The Old Grey 

Listening to the sounds of our teenage years
on a TV channel
That didn’t exist
Now a retrospective.
Making me feel lived in.
Hearing this now
I’m there,
With you.
We owned it then.

Just like 
Our parents owned it when we heard
their music
in our teenage years.
And we got it, 
we did,
we were too cool to say so.
Now, I’m quietly proud when my boys sing along
a song, we sung along to, 
I know that
it will not be long, 
before they are also singing to 
a different tune.

What goes around
Comes around
In music, in life, in love,
in hope,
that we will always be
always in the loop.
At least, enough to know.



My Word


My Word

Was open

On the desktop

Blinking blue in the tool bar





enticing me to

flex my digits to

type in perfect key

blinking words in the blue bar


this is my page

this is my canvas

and the word is

I’ve nothing more to say



Home in Autumn


In June, he said we’d go down the road

But summer came and went

Before we had the time.

Then the 5 of us crammed in,

the back jam packed

I, stuck in the knowledge that the case would

continue to stick in my side the whole trip,

a jagging reminder of all the things I forgot to pack

But seldom have time to unfold.

I always take too much

It’s not as if we go anywhere when we get there.


We’d have to stop at the halfway point,

To break the distance

Lulled by the sun into a false sense of season

Our breath betraying her glistening deception

there’s a definite nip in the air,

the dog barks frantically

The boys are driving him wild.

 “Are we there yet?”

How long was that before we heard the universal cry

of kids with no Wi Fi?


Finally, the rolling hills gives way to mossy purple and leafy brown

And the sight of tuft already stooled for harder months

strikes a poetic note, that’s not just the reserve of Heaney.


I know we’re nearly there,

Just past the old house, Just past my old school

Just round the corner,

And as through the eyes of generations before

We behold the Lough lapping the shore .

They’ve fixed up the old bridge

It looks unfamiliar now

No longer part of my childhood landscape

A lost I briefly mourn

But sometimes some things just have to give

It’s just a bridge,, I’ll get over it.


Before we pull up on the gravely drive

Behind the house

In certainty

I know that he’s not too far away,

I know I’ll see her standing at the kitchen window

Arms up to the elbows in a basin of suds,

She’ll slowly dry them as she comes out to greet us all

Smiling through her eyes

Whilst the kettle begins to boil.


And then we’d all pile out

For the while.




Remember Moon child?

Eyes wild as energy


Short, sharp, electric shocks,

Things were clear,

Things were disguised

Don’t touch me

You may be charged


Fizzle, fazzle, frazzle,

Dazzled with glittering glimmering gluttony

Eat with your eyes

Before your blinded

With alliteration


Nonsensical, moments bringing moments of lucidity

as all becames clear again


Too soon she’s gone

Once more

Sharp focus becomes a blur


Now, I stumble along the path

Through the knowing trees

To an ancient moonlit dell

I glimpsed her. then, every once in again


Tripping up on old words

That fail to define me now





The Moss

Though city lights are bright

 It's the stars

in the sky

where the lough meets the shore and herons fly

right past your path,

on an early morning walk

that never fail to stir

the essence of the childhood years.

Here, the heavy heady Heany years

Continue to live on in our souls.


Yet all is change and change is all,

gone the sod, the hoe and plow,

 as mechanical monsters dig into our past,


consumption, consumed, consumerism



The quiet rest of eons 

I hope they sense the times they unearth,

I hope they Feel

The soul of the sod,

They disturb

So brutally

As skeleton trees from a tropical age,


an Ireland we know no more.




A sad shot of sun


I was once a kid, so good at juggling, the judge loved my balls

Then I dropped them.

Life after that lost it’s bounce


I flat lined at 29


Sparkly hue in silver clouds, floated past me,

I stood still





Stifle the

scream unheard,

as desire turns in on itself


for the fell of pain

raging scornful

as red sees only red,

running bloody in turblent torrents

as in incarnate anger.

She plots her revenge.


Always careful

Always maintained

In her eyes at least…


Ancient forebears dominate the voodoo sky

As darkness and curses flash in sharp black eyes

Old hurts, resentments and fears yield wildly

smothering, suffocating, strangling silence,

before plunging into the pits

and there lost she lies.


In silence….

Til a new day dawns.

Then from the depths of a hollow well,

a whisper, a voice, a prayer grows

In momentum,

As clawed talons unfold

grasping for a certain foothold

Gasping for first breath



And at last the heavens will find the chlld.




On the Face of it

I looked again

I saw

I was not happy
 at strangers joy.

Not quite strangers,

I knew them once,
a long , long time ago

reminds me of I song I once knew, 

they knew my friends, 
then they were my friends

Where are my friends?

Are you my friend?



But I did not need their happiness

did not need to know

every detail
 of their retail

or breakfast

or worthy cause






Sometimes I need to Know