Monthly Archives: November 2013


Excuse me (1)
The other day, a Wednesday
Was it last week, or this,
I found myself approaching
The edge of an abyss
I peered down in the darkness
There was nothing there to see
I felt an awful feeling
I desired to cease to be
There was blackness, only blackness
There was no other choice
No good shouting questions
No one to hear a voice
I teetered on the brink awhile
No strictures and no kiss
It occurred upon reflection
I must give this a miss
Behind someone was calling
Come back and get your tea
There are chores to be attended to
More things for you to see
So now I’ve had my little peek
I will embrace a short reprieve
Try to live like a simpleton
Wear my heart upon my sleeve
And what I’ve seen or didn’t see
Or think or speculate
Right now, before the darkness
It’s time to love, or hate.

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For Aine

Her skin is alabaster
of finest china bone
her hair a darker crimson
than any ruby stone
Paler than Nicaragua
gaze of Valparaiso
I speak now as a child
Whose wonder is unblemished
And pure and undefiled
For no words I have learned since then
Can even part convey
What beauty this girl bestows
Upon the light of day
And somehow yet more exquisite
More fetching even, still
She bears O’Reilly blood in her
You trifle, she will kill.

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For Sophie



969341_10151740543139211_375133161_sophie profile1 sophie

We lit the fires on Formal
They burned across the brae
And left the hillside blackened
Now Sophie’s gone away
There’s a stillness and a sadness
In the air here left behind
The place is all in mourning
The flowers to earth incline
Their petals and their blossoms
For they are lonely too
Now Sophie has taken flight
Away into the blue
But soon she will return again
And when that day arrives
The flowers will raise up their heads
And the hillside come alive
From the ashes of the bracken
Like the phoenix bird of old
The green shoots will spring forth anew
As the strays rejoin the fold.

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For Justin


When Justin was a baby

he could see between the skies

oftentimes a dreamy gaze

would infiltrate his eyes

But now that he has found his Maebhe
and made himself a plan
I’ve got to say the girl has turned
the boy into a man

And there will be time for dreaming
Somewhere, farther down the line
And I know he will recall again
Back there, and that nice time.


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Australia needs a leprechaun

Ruth, I hear you have the longest main st in australia 12k. We hear all in lisnacree . I get all the lowdown online to follow your tells me there is maybe a social experiment going on in mildura with so many races thrown least they have a golf course and a pool.good that you met some nice folk on your travels.planted some garlic in january and the shoots are about a foot high and should .just be ready for your practiced skills in september. And some tomatoes too .do they grow many spuds.ha ha..good character  building stuff with a little italian thrown in.but the weeks will fly by and you will look back on these days and smile. Maeve binchy died only last year she was a native of south dublin not what you might call a serious writer but popular and very successful.she used often be on talk shows promoting her latest novel and she could talk for ireland.have been reading some of your books from the university bookshop sale,irish writers too james clarence mangan and william trevor.happy people on earth possess a sensibility like the folk from the west of ireland.i came across a great poem written by anthony raftery for mary hynes who was thought to be the most beautiful girl in the can see liam clancys version on u tube .we”ll just change her name to ruth. sarah has a monopoly with the mourne observer and she and kirsty have taken to pounding the pavement around the mill road. sophie has caused a minor eruption in attical if the tooting of car horns past our gate is anything to go by.young and old alike are reassessing their existence and her casual remarks are repeated as gospel. she got me two corporate tickets for balmoral show at the maze.justin is ambling around canary wharf for a few weeks and has threatened to take me golfing on his return.he bought a new set of clubs and can really clout a ball.but i will take his money.ella lost her bank card but has a number of accounts, fortunately. liverpool has worked wonders and she is progressing on all fronts if she can only survive the hazards of british airways.she will be home again about the time you have worn out your first pair of overalls.(sorry, couldnt resist).i knew you wouldnt need all those bikinis .

spring has arrived this week.i saw the first swallow on the21st and the hens are laying.the banty is sitting on nine eggs in her little nest.i expect they will all be hens as i came upon a fairy up in the forth in march. among the several secrets he made known to me was how to sex eggs.i believe a man in china made a great fortune in the 15th century from this singular skill.but i crave not wealth.
some other wondrous revelations i am forbidden to reveal except under strict conditions.they can be conveyed only in a whisper,face to face,to someone i love,, in the company of john jameson,a cold beer and some didely-didely music in Rostrevor.a bientot. papa

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For Christy Hennitty

 You could see his mighty forearm
From off a long long way
It was forged to lift a fetlock
Back in older days
He was quick of wit and temper
His knuckles were of iron
It was foolish now to cross him
But that’s a lesson learned
Boy he could swish the rapier
And he could crack the whip
Many a long toiling day
He’d shorten with a quip
He could throw the fifty-six
And likewise wield the scythe
And undisturbed about him
Few sleeping dogs would lie
And yes, a fly was dangled
For every passing trout
From any fool who took the bait
The mick was relished out
But all that said no furrow
Was ever straighter ploughed
With pride and care and love
And art and skill endowed
And humble, even gentle
That’s handed down some way
But sure, it’s only natural
His mother was McVeigh
And there in an old photo
I  see that same forearm
It was Peter and some others
When still the forge was warm
It’s timeless now, that  forearm
That impudent half smile
For feathers must be ruffled
As the rasp will smooth and file
And the mare will stamp her hoof afresh
And trot off now, clean shod
Here’s a quick up, edge, slow down salute
Aye, that was  some day, by God!

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Firteen I reckon(her 21st)

10385494_10203200586952032_5813325432739389926_ella bella

Little Ella bella she sure could yella yella

you could never tella was she poor or wella

Or just a bit rebella mad at oh!, any fella

who stole her pink umbrella

or spilt her sweet paella

made her scratch her left patella

She could raise a high fandango

or stomp a stroppy tango

the party could go mango

inducing some crossa bada lango

never heard in wild Durango

hells bells! English-Irish slango

Ah!, those days.But now,such pleasure

she’s transformed into a treasure

entertains us all at leisure

grace and beauty beyond measure

with laughing eyes,green ,hazel,azure

folks are bereft about Rostrevor

they love her,as do we,forever

she might have been a fella

love Ella,bella Ella

,bella,bella, Ella.

Little Ella bella

  1912177_10203396164361345_5805563150108458153_n ella bella

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9833517_1chirico mystery-and-melancholy-of-a-street-1914 

Di Chirico( he liked Nietzsche)


Calvino said it beautifully
We sat around a sink
Then Mother Nature she arose
And poured us all a drink.
Then we got up and squabbled
Like pebbles on a beach
With things that command desire
Hung just beyond our reach.

Impelled by space and substance
Too much to understand
Like waves spilling from the sea
And singing on the sand.
Dissonant and jumbled
A melody sublime
Echoes here at present
Escaping out of time.

And then a silence gathers
Within and all around
Is it just the tide has turned
To an ancient order bound
Or are we overtaken
By a rushing universe
Remote, cold, indifferent
Or more plainly, just perverse.

And offered up in sacrifice
To a unity undefined
That we, now, being part of it
Cannot ourselves divine
By accident or purpose
This world ,still, spins so swift
So little time to wonder
To ponder Nature’s thrift.


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For Joe

joe's pic
Them high old Rocky Mountains
they think they’ve seen it all
but they’ve never seen Joe Ireland
rise up to fetch a ball

So right it was, in passing
to shout up and let them know
that compared to Mourne’s mountains
they have still some way to go

They have weathered ice ages
succoured the grizzly bear
smiled content as Sitting Bull
lured Custer to his lair

But know not of Gaelic football
never heard of County Down
are ignorant of a Kingdom
that wears a Celtic crown

Their heartbeat never quickened
as the ball was thrown up
when St. Louis’ gallant schoolboys
fought for MacRory’s cup

Where under Donard’s shadow
by Bignian’s craggy height
they might have caught a glimpse
of young Irishmen in flight

A flight that honours Indians
and madmen from the ‘Stone
and boys from Ballymartin
even lads from far Tyrone

And win or lose,no matter
they learned to play the game
to try to win with style and grace
if they lost,to do the same.

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