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My heart has beat
a thousand time, a space of minutes
on tomorrow’s eve – this night.

Jealous Amor, will I see him
tonight? Who inited that beast
with that ignoble heart.
The one whose presence
instant one knows.

Or shall my dancing companion
be one of Lust?
The girl with the eyes,
so large, no room for a heart.
To see her dance one could
assume so pure – but after
the midnight gong he ride
turns wicked, her ribbons down

Shall I dine tonight with Monsieur
Grá? The one whose fluent tongue
entraps the public all?
Stare through candle light,
darling guest of the ball.
Who intervenes all the guests,
who urges mother to pull up
daughters’ shawls.
That feeds the embers of jealous rage,
The one whose wand turns men’s whispered
to quiet rage.

He’s great friends to all mentioned above,
though oft times, slandered
as well as by all.

If he sit across dining table,
I’ll treat him truly, and
honour him above all.



The most pussy he got
was from his cats –
and even one of them
preferred the neighbours.

How’s that for ‘family friendly’-
Did it get past the watershed?

But the truth I saw,
the truth, I must!

If that was his life then better
off the women he didn’t touch.

23 February 2017

Swell of the Liffey go,
and away my soul within its waves go.
Tobacco sour turns into tobacco nice
Wave my hair down days
later and I smell it still as I go.
Tobacco smell and North Beach
sand do not leave easily,
and nor would I grant them easy leave to go.

To Dublin City where I met my one,
To Dublin North to consecrate
the meeting of joined words.

Liffey swell
and Nicotine sing.
Shared drinks unite
locked in with trad band and we.

His greyed hair.
Mine blue eyes.
Alone he sits,
with thoughts within.
Dublin man, Dublin true.
Chasing current politics from
de Valera and Collins,
fifty year on
since tainted treaty.

Centrist right governments, Dublin
man says. To my left he sits and
thinks of changed governments.
He’ll vote now Sinn Fein but Adams,
he says, has got to go.

Fifty years of Liffey swells,
of broken hearts and thrown rings in its
beds does it keep.
Fifty years of same Fáill and Gael.
But Dublin stays and so it goes,
with my troubled Dublin man and I

5 February

Do I prefer the ink-stained fingers
to a purple-blue heart?

Little will I care to share.
Little less will I care to know.

Behind covered eyes + quickened pulse
my act never brought me close to this
collapsed heart.

Will I never look up to see God’s command?
Forever will I sit head fitted against
songs of freedom

only made from a purple-blue bruised

My hand grows nicer by the night.
Alone, sit, to this detention of heart’s desire.
‘No not yet’ St Andrew whispers.
‘No not yet despite your heart’s desire.
Trust in me, will you fellows see.’

Listens the beggar beyond belief.

For whom the bell toils

Quieted audience
patty-cake they played and won with
themselves. Their thighs wearing soldiers marks
from a soldiers tune march.

They all would away from Jungle and play
war until their deaths. Saved by the Western world,
ill thought of their graves.

Life to them, saved by faith, was of childish wonder
and even more childish taste.

To those I envy behind my wooden scowl.
To those whom God blesses in his prayers
before he rests.

To those who away and anger by all who didn’t
pass the test.

For whom the bell toils, it ain’t for all. God’ll
only know.

For whom the bell toils, send my regards from this
godforsaken foreign soil.