'Darcy and O'Mara' is a novel by Arthur Cronin.
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Thursday, May 25, 2006


What's My Name?

He likes doing things.
  Doing things, he does.
Like getting mild electric shocks,
  And saying 'bizz' or 'buzz'.

And then in his accusing voice
  He'll say, "Who is to blame?"
They'll say it's him. "Yeah, me," he says.
  He's forgotten his own name.

He reads from story books for kids,
  In his wizard hat.
And wizard cloak and wizard beard.
  He says, "Now who is that?"

Or 'who is this?', he'll say to them
  While pointing at himself.
The kids all say 'it's you' to him,
  And 'do you have an elf?'.

He explains that owning elves
  Is not like owning dogs.
And elves are not the ones who live
  In Holland, wearing clogs.

The least that they could do, he thinks,
  Is tell him who he is.
He forms a plan to shock himself
  And then say 'buzz' or 'bizz'.

But no, scrap that. He remembers now.
  He's done that one before.
But it couldn't hurt to try again,
  Maybe just one more.

It can and does his fingers hurt.
  He says 'buzz' with feeling.
He tries to think of what comes next.
  He looks up at the ceiling.

He tries it all again with 'bizz',
  But answers aren't forthcoming.
He thinks and all the time looks up,
  But down it is he's dumbing.

He sighs and says, "That's that, I s'pose,"
  Resigned to being nameless,
Remaining just an 'I' or 'me',
  To always being aimless.

But even if he knew his name
  He'd lack variety.
He'd just be bored. He'd wear his beard,
  Trying to pretend to be

Someone else who has a beard.
  But that would bore him too.
If he knew his name he'd know
  He can't be me or you.

Walking down the street he meets
  A friend who says hello.
And after talking for a while
  His friend says, "Goodbye Joe."

After going home again,
  And plugging in the kettle.
He makes a cup of tea, pours the milk
  And sees it settle.

And suddenly it dawns on him.
  His name has just been said.
That little word that left his mind
  Is home in his own head.

All is well. He knows his name.
  A little dance, he does.
Unfortunately he seems to think
  His friend said, "Goodbye Buzz."

Thursday, May 18, 2006


The Cat in the Lighthouse

This peculiar cat sits in that particular lighthouse.
  It likes to think its paws are really hands,
Even though they can't open bottles or doors.
  And it needs all four when it stands.

And it likes to think it's better than the house with the light,
  Because the lighthouse doesn't have hands at all.
The cat often counts them and it always wins four-nil.
  The house can only boast a single wall.

And the cat also thinks that it has four legs,
  The same ones as the hands, as far as I can see.
And it likes to think it's really a 'she' and not an 'it'.
  Even though the cat is really a 'he'.

The lighthouse thinks of itself as an 'it',
  Since it became unmanned ten years ago.
In the days when it was manned, the chances are it thought
  Of itself as a 'he' but I don't know.

Although in the end it was manned by a woman.
  And her name was Barry or Baz.
The cat prefers it now. It likes to roam around
  And think of all the arms and legs it has.

Thursday, May 11, 2006


My Moustache

Someone once dared me to grow a moustache.
I didn't know how but I gave it a bash.
My tache started growing in three shades of green.
With traces of white and gold in between.

I said that maybe I'd done something wrong,
As big a mistake as my Frankenstein song.
I started again, and this time I read
A book about all types of hair on your head.

The book said that ants might be causing the colour.
Or else it's dry rot. It's not a sea gull or
A fire in my car -- of that I was glad.
Fires would be bad in the car I then had.

So I set about killing all ants in the house.
I beat every ant but I lost to a mouse.
I took from the house every inch of dry rot.
My painting of monkeys in hats, I did not.

This kept me busy for most of a week.
I found an old coin, a tin can and a leak.
Sure that no unforeseen error I'd made,
I looked in the mirror and that's where I stayed.

I know that this story's already been told,
But I had a moustache of green, white and gold.
I looked at the book on the desk by the wall,
And no, it wasn't about hair at all.

(Yeah, slight confession about all that.
I know it was in the papers and everything,
and Gerry Adams wanted to shake my hand,
but I just dyed it green,
with the white and gold too,
but mostly green.
It was just a joke,
but it sort of got out of hand.
Sorry about that).

Thursday, May 04, 2006


It'a a Mad, Mad World

Life is loud and fast these days.
So many means and many ways.
There's little hope of ever knowing
Where this winding road is going.

No one now will say they know.
Noah knew which way to go
When he set out on Noah's Ark.
It bore his name and dogs that bark.

And things that screech or howl or sting.
And owls in shirts. There's no such thing.
All at home on Noah's boat.
And all they had to do was float.

God be with those days of yore.
Cats and cows can be a bore.
But at least you'll have the company
Of the one and only he or she.

The opposite of the one you are.
Alone in the back of Noah's car.
And the only thing you have to do
Is re-populate the human zoo.

But that would probably get annoying.
You do your thing. I do my thing.
But not back then. One thing to do.
And there's no point wondering where or who.

It's not that bad not knowing what
You need to do or what you've got,
Or what that word means in your text.
You never know what's coming next.

Like just last week, while on a walk,
With no one there to hear or talk.
No voice mail on the mobile phone.
Standing in a field, alone.

Far away from anyone.
All I had to do was done.
The one and only thing to do,
Apart from breathe and listen too,

Was stand right there and stare ahead,
And stay there till it's time for bed.
Which I did. When it got dark
I heard the stray dogs howl and bark,

The sound of owls and other birds
Who sing instead of using words.
I went home and fell asleep
After counting fourteen sheep.

Oh yeah, that's right. I forgot again.
Nothing really happened then.
Losing all my marbles, I'm.
I'm thinking of another time,

When something happened. I don't know how.
I can't remember it right now.
I'm sure it's something very mad,
Like a bad pint of stout I had.

Very Slight Stories

Henry Seaward-Shannon

The East Cork Patents Office

The Tree and the Horse


Words are my favourite noises

Previous Poems

Poems from 2004
Poems from 2005



Gizmo's (Non)sense

Pretty Cunning

The Dossing Times


Cruiskeen Eile
Kevin Myers' blog (sorry, Colonel Kevin Myers).

The Chancer

Sinead Gleeson



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A Walk in the Rain

 | poetry from Ireland

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