Sunday, 27 March 2011

2011 - The God Complex

















The God Complex

Don’t ever contact me again
knights on their horses
kings and queens in their castles
they don’t belong here

Poncing out on the town
a band-aide to cover the wound
crushed under the weight of the sword
you can’t leave behind

Falling into the pool of inflation
money can never satisfy
perfume coffee and china tea
abandoning nothing to nothing

Fighting dragons is no cause for you
cuddle up and enjoy the treasure
drunk on yourself once more
believing you’ll never die

A kick in the head might work
but only for a while
life becomes that party again
shaking and breaking in style

Saturday, 26 March 2011


Omey Island

Lying in the hollow
the church hides, on flowers
amongst rabbit burrows 
a human bone exposed

Horses express the power
of ancients, as people
strain and pay, toy
guns express the mood

The tide a reminder of

a lost boat form Cork

The Island 

Collecting cowries like gems on the
golden beach, the spit separates the island
out across the nectar of the sea to a
land obsessed with its distance

People isolated and invaded offer
painted stones, in a museum of memory
King Conought stops the tide,
childhood games take on the universe

A tense freedom of difference, tax-less cars
and planning oddities ignore Cromwell’s fort
time is not ours as we loose ourselves,
Kings of the castle for millennia

Searching for treasure under the Dolman
the carnivorous bog clams another victim,
as sundew waits amongst sphagnum
ready to create and dress another wound

Youth creates heroic fantasies of scaling
the world, escaping to higher realms
knowledge becomes the hero of age
knowing you were always there

The island centers our focus
placing us in the cosmos, as dust
collects in the wind and the jetty
disappears under the sea


The Lake 
The lake like a kidney
cleaning the world
lies hidden in the hollow
yearning to become a bog

Hummocks erupting at
its edge encroach with
their own desires
while lily’s lie

Hiding beneath the
goats beard, ready to
suck you in, a minefield
of pools await

The Mountain
The trees are not blowing in the wind or washed by the rain
they are floating in the currents of the tide
moving in and out hundreds of feet above our heads
rich, green seaweed swaying in murky heights

Clouds cling to the peeks of waves made of rock
like ciphers clinging to the belief in their importance
when they are no more than a passing shadow
to conservatism, millions of years old

Aspirations of grandeur rolling down their sides
like waterfalls crashing in a cave
fears built and acted out while we sleep
senses filling the gap to a fragile reality

A mindless game of power and control
exerted by the weakest, leaving us breathless
subtlety lost in an endless soup
we are our hero’s traveling into the sunset

Emotions like rain, a desire created and impossible
the dysfunction of existence acted out
in a cesspit of jealousy - lost in the mountains
a storm threatening and mesmeric locks us in

The castle is merely half a wall and yet it holds
the promontory, seeking attention
disappointment palpable before you reach the top
delusions running away with the wind

Sink your millions into neglect,
guilt etched stones expose the skeleton
through a skin of bog the race is on
charming the other side of chance



The trees are not blowing in the wind or washed by the rain
they are floating in the currents of the tide
moving in and out hundreds of feet above our heads
rich green seaweed swaying in the murky depths


Athasel Abbey

Cuban tobacco
beside the stone wall
cigar smoke rises
to the gray sky

a spoiled water-colour
a lost brush 
-don’t fall or get eaten by the cows-

gray ash and stone
cloisters sitting in a field
as our brave knights
protect us

Father Matthew

the large hand slips to
another minute
on the face of the clock
above Patrick Street
inside the TV-3 bus

broken celtic cross at
the feet of Father Matthew
stretching out his hand
to touch an imaginary
child on the head

- the millennium is gone -
a chair scraping
across the floor
concrete slopping
in the truck

On a gray silver day

-you can’t think when it’s too hot-
I wouldn’t believe a word he says
hundreds of 2000’s across the floor 
in the midst of Tipperary

mail carts at Limerick Junction
grease spread down the track
a pink florecent luggage bag
on a gray silver day


sodden bedding
burnt out chairs
red and white strips
on a work-mans tent

gloves and socks
hanging on a hedge
breakfast laid out
beside the road

silver mist creaking
through the trees
beside the hot pavilion

down the blue tunnel
a hedge in the room
and a dress of sparkling lace

grass frosted like sugar
a broken hair dryer
the ragged edge of a torn out page

Skeleton in the cupboard

The house was full of broken things
holding on to childhood dreams

the skeleton in the wardrobe
might be needed one day

a false sky reflected in the mirror
the breeze snaps off a branch

a tiny graveyard in the middle of the field
frost melts as we head for Cork

a couple with an Eason’s bag
it has nothing to do with age

The back of a truck

on the back of a truck
at the foot of Shandon
I am sitting on a couch

steam rising from Murphy's
a rich smell of malt
driving through the streets

the radio switched on
water fills the bridge
cleaning her teeth in the car

The Cottage

through the pine forest
to the bridge
where the water
is carved in the wood

be a child roll in the hay
with mud churned
by the horses hooves

a tiny jade tree
on the window sill
and sun glistening
through the leaves

Take away everything that’s not the elephant

take away the scaffolding
from the back of the house
next to the largest selection
of furniture in Munster

pink plastic rocket
on the Watercourse road
glistening roofs cluster up the hill
tar machines hiss by

-Jesus was not a woman-
white polka-dots on the window
red and yellow stars
lights above the street

scrambled eggs sausages
hash brown English muffin
clutching her white hands
to her chin  long black coat
huddled in a doorway

The snowman

I saw an umbrella floating
up the mountain side
a cannon stuck in the pavement
on Grand Parade
trees tracing a black lace-work
against a pink sky
a snowball hiding in
the freezer
searching for a snowman
up in the clouds

Friday, 25 March 2011

July - December 1999


the glowering hill hides the cove
with only sheep and horses for company
round smooth stones turquoise water
slowly creeps across the sand
cutting off the buried church

- that’s the shadow of the boat -
running sports football car-racing
complaining crabs hiding in pools
islands till the tide comes in
the boat’s stuck in the sand
- I’ve a wedding to go to today -

Shadow on the earth

yellow luminous fields
turn red as the sun goes down
bright sunshine fades to dusk
in the middle of the day

stopping the car along the road
to sneak a dangerous look
I punched a hole in a piece of paper
the darkness deepens

the birds are gone
a momentary night
reflected on the ceiling


sailing races in a dead calm
the fog horn sweeps through the mist
put your armour on and go down town

ten mini doughnuts for a pound
lunch at cafe Gar
a boy looks at the flowers
on the cover of a news paper

cling to the candy floss
cover your ears
the back end of the train
goes flying off the rail

February - June 1999

 A little rant 

To think I thought I had to write
about grand things about the
meaning in every glance
reality running out the door

Cork is slimy full of thoughts
water sitting like cling-film
on the streets mud on her legs


Quiet familiarity, melancholy mood
packs of youths patrolling
territorially the streets and park
hanging on the corners

Tuesday nights 7.30 the top ten
rugrats bay-watch and the Simpsons

Gone from that place where the
shadows and the play of light hold
any meaning, all illusion
no seduction is worth it
walking on thin air,  inside it all

Don’t kid yourself it’s all a gimmick
simple pleasures of trees in the wind
shopping or stirring the soup
antibiotics steroids and inhalers

Dry dusty art space

TV aerials falling trees
subsidence lost keys
debris removal professional fees
there’s surprisingly little interest
in our new credit card

Saturday Sunday buyers select
home insurance fees and charges
- why should I suppress my feelings -
this is your chance to participate
in the future of telecom

Fairy Tale  

as the light fades
the windows mirror us
in the walls of the house

like a fairy-tale
from a children's book
ice tipped peaks
growling bears
notes like feet fall on the stairs

Iron Shamrocks  

Iron shamrocks up above Henchy’s
Lyons and Mulcahy Co.
children flocking in the play ground
clouds hanging high and wide

shaking hedges buses houses
churches and fields beyond
tyre marks on the road
broken trees mud and marsh

- that’s a nice piece of stone walling -
24 hour leisure centre
no more pylons
make a decision
pin it down and hold it fast

write yourself out of this one


The Crescent

gray water through the spruce trees
rounded trunks brown and textured
tops of houses broken fencing
wind caught in her skirt as she
catches a quick glance at the view
that poetic feeling takes hold again

not just a practical matter
what time is it? what kind of day?
immersed the same thing
a backdrop for beauty to stretch time

two-faced slipping into the bath
water slopping around her legs
dreaming of the cross-river ferry
- is this the son and heir? -

an old man steps out gingerly
on to the pavement head stooped
regarding each other as
I step around him

The house is empty     

sitting against the toilet wall
at the back of the church
lying back to take some sun
- we’re only following Europe -

sun on the cut hedge
wind blowing the grass seed
poetry days are like gold dust
walking the tunnel

for sale no offers no time
wasters this is my show
he gave me his poetry book
clouds sliding sideways

dogcat fighting over one brain
you could be in the country
turn on tune in crash out

Bryne Cox Corr and Burke
deal with the business have
you got the right papers?

- this green is so healing -
ugly carpet flies on the rose bush

The North Mall  (Cork)

we share a vision of hours and dates
dreaming together of moss
on the river wall and cement
swinging high above the road
of cobbles dumped on the river
bed and bikes rotting like
carcasses of great fish

railings buried in the pavement
holding out as I go by trying
to avoid eye contact with the
drunks so as not to inflame some
deep-rooted grudge and seagulls
reminding me there’s more air
than ground

The world is turning  

a page in history  the start of a book
clouds unstoppable melt into the glass
launching rails buried under the house
- why should I subsidise her hair cuts -

burnt out shacks tip in the wind
asbestos slates dumped on the shore
broken bricks like giant pebbles
crushed smarties on the pavement

butter wrapper stuck on the bus stop
looking in at the football window
star buy deal sharp video CD player
casio diary Sony play station
£60 pounds the lot

Poetry up to 1998


Donovan the melancholy
sings his true songs
by age sorrow memory or happiness
amongst pictures and walls
amongst ears

wishing for his comeback
to the present
but all are going back to their past
a memory brought forward
remembered not lost
time cruel and final as ever

Strawberry Ladies  

- O! it’s fantastic wonderful superb marvellous-
not sure what
the new gallery? -marvellous wonderful fantastic-
the light? -superb wonderful fantastic-
the hotel? -wonderful superb marvellous-
lost my mind goes blank
our sense of ourselves goes out the window
across the sea we ignore

the view? -superb wonderful
a picture you could paint-
indolent insolent angry board
I become a child
the day? -marvellous fantastic superb
no one paints like that any more
shame shocking sad
each to their own -

The Child 

Have a child
for sentimental reasons
those soft sensitive
demanding creatures

We are shadows next to them
ourselves driven out
we become sentiment
hidden behind closed doors

The Crying Woman 

The dead have arisen
because they were never laid to rest
soulless and spiritless
children who never grew up
she is mad
backing down and bowing out
she cannot be upset

Hard done by lazy
you fantasise
your reality doesn’t exist
tact prevail play the game
whatever you say
absolutely only you could know
don’t antagonise be silent
the crying woman


Greenberg and Ortega still fresh in the air
-its a stitch up- we both agree
and sneaking from the baby to our bed
in the afternoon of a Good Friday

walking the streets of Cork
with the forgotten taste of you in my mouth
you talk to the air
saying things which will not come about

the fog horns like whales
calling to each other through the mist
with the steel works grinding
in the back ground