'Darcy and O'Mara' is a novel by Arthur Cronin.
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Thursday, July 26, 2007
The Jig-Saw Puzzle of Truth
Look at things, and learn,
And yearn to fill your mind
With the bits of information
And the knowledge that you find,
The pieces of the jig-saw
That you'll slowly put together
During silent contemplation
While out walking in the heather,
Or in the noise of night clubs
Or while drawing on your face.
Two pieces of the jig-saw
Will fall neatly into place.
The pieces of the puzzle
Have been scattered far and wide.
Some are found in libraries
And other pieces hide
In articles in magazines,
In music, film and paintings.
Some are merely common sense.
Some lie beneath insane things.
Some are found in nature,
In animals and plants.
Many jig-saw pieces
You will come across by chance
In boxes, fields or caravans,
In cuckoo clocks that bark,
In pointless conversations
Or in churches after dark.
Some are high on mountains.
To find them you will need
To avoid the trained assassins
Who would love to make you bleed.
The pieces come together
And a picture will emerge.
You'll get a glimpse of truth.
Electricity will surge
Through all the mental pathways,
The connections you have made.
Your brain is now as sharp
As a shiny, deadly blade.
Things will fit together
Like a warm, well-fitting boot.
You'll see into reality,
A fundamental truth.
For decades now I've studied things
And gathered information,
Sometimes from the lab I built
In my imagination.
I've gradually been fitting
All the pieces in their places.
I've used the lab's facilities
To fill in empty spaces.
I started with the corners,
The foundations of our knowledge.
I worked along the edges
Over many years in college.
And now I see a picture
In the jig-saw in my head.
It's a kitten in a hat.
The hat is kitty's bed.
I feel the electricity
As knowledge starts to flower.
My all-embracing theory
Will endow me with great power.
Admittedly, I've yet to work out
All the implications.
Some might say my theory
Has some minor perforations.
But the kitten in the hat
Will illuminate the answers
To all of life's great questions,
And eliminate the chancers.
Thursday, July 19, 2007
He whistles, hums and talks a lot.
He spent a fortnight as a Goth,
But he got bored of keeping quiet
And looking like a moonless night.
So he became a punk and let
His feelings out. The world was wet
With spit that came out with his words,
The tiny airborne jelly birds
That stung like jelly fish in seas,
Without the style of bumble bees.
His words alone would sting the minds
That hid behind closed doors and blinds.
He was there to shout the truth
Through megaphones, and use his boot
To smash the doors and trash the place,
Releasing vicious words that chase
All the pet beliefs away
From fireside cushions where they lay,
Leaving just the truth instead,
Removing decor from each head.
But he got bored of shouting things
At hapless, helpless, harmless dings,
And calling people 'dings' and 'twats',
And seeing them as pigs or rats.
So he became a hippy then,
And felt love for his fellow men,
And women too -- he loved each one.
The hippy life was much more fun
Than being a hate-filled punk or Goth,
Unhappy with his meagre lot.
In hippy clothes he danced on hills,
Dispensing with life's pointless frills.
But when the frills were cast away
There wasn't much to do or say.
He got tired of dancing and
Writing 'love' on his left hand.
He wanted to write 'hate' instead
In big black letters on his head.
He left the happy hippy herd
And took up living as a nerd.
He didn't like being mocked each day.
The jelly birds came out to play.
His fellow nerds enjoyed the lack
Of fun and sun and song and craic.
He tried to live without a creed.
At last he felt his mind was freed
To feed his mouth with words that bite.
They loved to growl and bark at night.
Or words that flew like butterflies
And brought a sparkling glint to eyes.
He fought with friends and bought them drinks,
With fireworks every time he thinks.
Every day's a small explosion.
His gift horses are all Trojan.
He's free to talk to trees and plants
And leave them in a state of trance.
His new moustache is much admired
By those whose fashion is inspired
By styles preceding World War Two
And those who like to sniff the glue
That holds their fake moustache in place
In the garden on their face.
But his is real. To help it grow
He had to scare away a crow.
He's started doing magic tricks.
He's formed a band called Truthabix.
They play his twenty-minute songs
On drums and tins and saws and gongs.
He applauds and takes a bow.
He's his own role model now.
A tall male riddle dressed in red,
In harmony with his own head.
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Jim met Estelle on a speed date in June.
They spoke for ten minutes. It ended too soon.
She told him her favourite colour is beige.
Her favourite holiday spot is Liege.
She toured this great city on two fine weekends
When travelling all around Belgium with friends.
The weekends were bookends to their Belgian trip.
The bits in between proved to be a slight dip.
His personal knowledge of Belgium is null,
But people who've been there suggest it's quite dull.
He doubts very much that the place has been slandered.
The main football team in Liege is called 'Standard'.
"Standard Liege," he said with disdain.
"'Standard' would be their supporters refrain,
With European bureaucrats filling the stands.
They all dress in grey and hold in their hands
"A clipboard and pen. With their steady gaze
They monitor every match the team plays,
Ensuring compliance with their regulations
Applying to football in all EU nations.
"They'd hate to see Standard Liege relegated,
But being crowned champions is equally hated.
They'd like nothing more than a mid-table finish.
Losing or doing too well would diminish
"Their faith in the team. They save their applause
For the forgettable, dull nil-all draws.
If they had a choice they'd avoid playing games
Against all the teams that have interesting names.
"Like Rapid Vienna or Viking of Norway.
Wanderers wander around Bolton or Bray.
Not far north of Bray is Bohemians' home.
You'll have to go south to see Cobh Ramblers roam.
"Zurich has Grasshopper. Berne has Young Boys.
Dynamo fans can generate noise
In Kiev or Moscow on cold winter nights.
They sing and wave flags underneath the floodlights.
"The true Standard-bearers in Belgium avoid
The songs that would start an emotional tide.
They prefer standing in silence to singing.
The players will stop when they hear a phone ringing."
She nodded and said that she's eager to hear
All about him, the things he holds dear,
His dislikes and likes, his loves and his hates,
His hobbies and his personality traits.
He paused for a while, gripped by self-doubt.
He'd nothing of interest to tell her about.
A grey Sunday afternoon ruled in his brain.
Other men were as intriguing as Spain.
Some men were more like Brazil or Japan,
With whole populations contained in one man.
He told her he's into collecting sea shells,
And also on weekends he rings the church bells.
He noticed a smile and a glint in her eyes,
Suggesting to him that she'd just found her prize:
A man who'll blend into her beige-coloured days,
Adding a varied array of light greys.
He'll talk to her dog, spend time with her friends,
And help her to shop for antiques on weekends.
All of these signs seemed to light up and tell Jim
It's time to accept he's as boring as Belgium.
Thursday, July 05, 2007
Billy's New Look
Billy has spent half his life far from home.
The sea has instilled a compulsion to roam,
Drinking and fighting in faraway ports,
Occasionally waking to face local courts.
But then he meets Eve and he sees it's now time
For settling down. With her he will rhyme.
His needs a new look. Of that there's no doubt.
He won't win her heart when he's smelling of trout.
He found an old book, a guide to good fashion,
The looks that would lead to ignition of passion.
He reads it and heeds its advice on his clothes,
His glass eye is beautifully tinted with rose.
He thinks his new look is unlikely to fail.
His new mullet hair style resists a strong gale,
With a must-have moustache, just like Magnum PI's.
His shirts are so bright they make visual noise.
He hopes to impress her by wearing white trousers.
He gives up his theories on life to espouse hers.
He says that she's right to say angels surround us.
With their advanced sense of smell they have found us.
Leprechauns hide an abundance of riches.
Electric light switches are small little witches.
Saint Patrick prevented the wildlife from speaking.
Her first cousin Anthony only goes streaking
To make a bold statement on life as it is
In these modern days. It's losing its fizz.
She believes garden gnomes talk late at night.
She witnessed them smoking and flying a kite.
All of his efforts deliver rewards.
His new enhanced presence plays beautiful chords
In the unique concert hall in her head.
Her presence hums a sweet tune in his shed.
But there's one last hurdle to them being together
That makes her like chalk when he is the cheddar.
She's been engaged for a year to a man
Who used to proclaim he's her number one fan.
But recently she started feeling some doubt
About the expressions of love that come out,
Straight from the word-shop inside of his brain.
The elves working in it sound tired and in pain.
And some have been fired. He's saying much less.
The last time he made a remark on her dress
Was three months ago, before they had dined.
Hugh wondered if the dress-maker was blind.
Most of his comments are laden with bile.
She used to react with a motherly smile.
She thought he was innocent, sheltered from bad,
And ignorant of the effect his words had.
But now she suspects that he's full to the brim
With bitterness, anger and everything grim.
Very few dudes can do feuds like he does.
Life has its fizz; he gets a great buzz
From shouting and fighting and being a menace,
Delighting in beating his brother at tennis.
His brother is twelve. He once won a set.
Hugh broke his racket in two on the net.
She goes to see Hugh. She tells him the truth,
That, in effect, he's getting the boot.
She's leaving him for someone else, someone who
Doesn't make fun of her cat, unlike Hugh.
She thinks he'll be glad that their knot is untied.
He'll cast someone else for the role of his bride.
Open auditions should keep him content.
He's free to go mad after fasting in lent.
But he vows revenge on his luckless replacement.
He's looking unhinged, as if in his basement
He's set up a lab where he'll gladly go mad,
Advancing the science of all that is bad.
Hugh thought he'd meet this man, then watch him flee,
But when he confronts his new arch enemy
It feels like he's facing a human-like rock,
Or a door made of oak and he's too scared to knock.
The door has a peep-hole in Billy's glass eye.
It gives Hugh the feeling that darkness is nigh.
He wants to escape, but he has to save face
And hope it's not scattered all over the place.
He says he just wanted to shake Billy's hand,
To show that he's holding no hard feelings and
He hopes they'll be friends, and Billy agrees.
Hugh's mind is filling with loud killer bees.
Fighting would normally let the bees out.
Sometimes they ride on the words from his mouth.
But now Hugh is stuck with a mental bee hive.
He forces a smile and the killer bees thrive.