'Darcy and O'Mara' is a novel by Arthur Cronin.
Click here to buy the paperback or download the ebook for free.
Thursday, October 25, 2007
The A to Z of a Small Town
A will meet B on the road out of town.
They'll walk to the top of the hill and look down
On houses and fields and horses and people,
The man who refuses to leave the church steeple.
C is alone. Three is a crowd.
Some people believe that she is too loud,
But all on her own she's as quiet as a mouse.
She feels less alone when she exits her house.
She's glad to be C when a bee attacks A.
There's nothing to D till the end of the day.
The gold E of evening brings people outside.
The old gold bald eagles still seek a young bride.
They polish their heads and they wash both their feet.
They put on their suits and they strut down the street.
They love nothing more than the thrill of the chase.
They're fully aware that they're last in the race.
To win once or twice would be nice, they concede,
Or having the feeling they're holding the lead.
What counts most of all is that they're taking part.
The heart-breaking losses are good for the heart.
All the young F-ers will gather together,
Discussing the state of the arts and the weather,
And let words of abuse at all passers-by
Instil metaphysical doubt till they cry.
The G's are the guys who dangle their heads
Over oblivion in their garden sheds,
With their experiments involving explosions,
Enough to take out a large horse for the Trojans.
H is a house full of song and self-tanning,
Of dreaming and scheming and plotting and planning.
Nothing but banning could stop them from being
A world-famous R and B band who are freeing
Millions of minds from the modern world's trance.
Asses will follow and start a new dance.
They've already played in the pub near the bog,
Where they freed the mind of a three-legged dog.
'I' up to 'U' are all watching TV,
With plates of ham sandwiches to go with their tea.
And V has been blindfolded, tied to a chair,
As style-conscious burglars discuss what they wear.
'W' represents Siamese twins.
One looks uneasy. The other one grins.
They look down on X. It's marking a spot.
Within a few seconds or less, it will not.
If G has his way, it soon won't exist.
It's only a bog so it won't be much missed.
All the pub's drinkers will come out to see it.
Hundreds looked on when he blew up a Fiat.
Y is alone as he looks at the stars.
The road where he walks is deserted of cars.
But then he meets C and they walk on together.
Company makes them feel light as a feather.
The small 'Z's of sleep are like bees or like flies
That fly round their heads with a faint buzzing noise.
They bat away 'Z's with their hands and walk on.
The last light-blue traces of daylight have gone.
Thursday, October 18, 2007
I fell in love with Stacey.
It was never meant to be.
She loved the bad impression
That I did of Mr. T.
We had so much in common.
I thought she was the one.
My memories of long days with her
Are filled with light and fun.
We went for country walks
And we danced the night away.
Having someone else was fun
When rolling in the hay.
To stop the flood of tears
I would need to use a sandbag.
She had such beautiful eyes
But she kept them in her handbag.
I don't know where she got them.
She had at least eleven.
She thought their former owners
Wouldn't need their eyes in heaven.
Thursday, October 11, 2007
The Funny Side
I'm sick of playing snooker
Coz I keep explaining why
When I tried to do a trick shot
The cue ball hit my eye.
I didn't see the funny side
But all my friends insisted
That the funny side existed.
They said I must have missed it.
But I can't believe in it
Till I see it for myself.
They've never seen a troll, an orc,
A goblin or an elf,
But they believe in all these things
And many more besides.
They live in fear of bright full moons
And haunted fairground rides.
And they believe in ghosts
But they've seen a lot of these.
They've tried to build a trap
But the ghosts won't go for cheese.
One of them saw Santa
But he knows it wasn't real.
It was just a ghost, he says,
Who came at night to steal.
I believe in gravity
Even though it can't be seen.
If gravity wasn't there
There would be no Mr. Bean,
No waterfalls, no skiing.
There would be no pancake-tossing.
We wouldn't fear the danger
Of an Alpine mountain crossing.
I'd believe in poltergeists
If lights began to break,
If the furniture would move
And the chandelier would shake.
I'd believe in funny sides
If they could make me laugh
When I tear a snooker table
Or make a social gaffe.
I drifted down the river
In a row boat built for three,
But there were only two.
I played the part of 'me'.
And a woman played herself
As we staged 'Just Me and You'.
Three would be a crowd.
One would be too few.
She had strong religious views.
She believed the funny side
Was essential to her soul.
She held these views with pride.
Her parents were believers.
All her life they had been strict.
The funny side's existence
No one dared to contradict.
I pretended to believe.
I told her I felt blessed.
My effort-fuelled forced laughter
Seemed to set her mind at rest.
When my new shoes got wet
On embarking from the boat.
We laughed for many minutes.
The effort hurt my throat.
And when a bee attacked me
As we picnicked near a tree,
Laughter was my only
Self-defence against the bee.
But when a passing spaniel
Tried to steal a small cream cake,
My well-maintained pretence
Seemed at last to crack and break.
I pulled a gun and pointed it
Right at the doggie's head.
The spaniel changed his plans
And he very swiftly fled.
She didn't see the funny side.
She stared with ice-cold eyes.
She'd never be my laughing bride.
We just exchanged goodbyes.
Thursday, October 04, 2007
She's good at performing the long lazy Sundays.
They're much more mundane than the nine-to-five Mondays.
It's never unwise to unwind on the weekends,
To sit in the garden or go out and seek friends.
Unwind after whirlwinds of work on week days,
Being wound round a bend or just lost in a maze,
While some fellow workers are gathering moss.
It's not always wise to be rude to your boss,
But truer and fairer to some little Führer.
Phrases like 'Go to hell' often will lure her,
But she'd end up poorer and deeper in stress.
She keeps it all in and just lets out a 'yes'.
Sundays are there to unwind and erase
All of the stress and unease of weekdays,
With thousands of ways to do nothing at all.
She sits in the garden and watches the wall.
The best place to be is your base, your own home
In Limerick or Galway or Paris or Rome.
It's always the same, unlike the unknown
In Galway or Limerick, New York or Athlone.
But sometimes the same things will bore her to tears
And make her face up to her worries and fears.
On holidays Daphne will dip a big toe
In places her fears wouldn't want her to go.
Exploring the depths of the jungle in Kerry,
Taking the Tarbert-Killimer car ferry,
Traversing the Burren, a vast limestone land.
The uniform grey might at first sight seem bland.
It's full of wild flowers, exploding with life.
It eases away all the stress and the strife.
She starts to relax with the rocks' soothing grey.
The world of her work seems a long way away.
All the big questions come into her mind.
The answers are never as easy to find.
Does God exist and what is life's point?
If God made the universe, is he a giant?
If a tree falls in the woods late at night
And no one is there to say 'Dear God!' in fright,
Will it emit a sublime aural treat?
And how do I get to Sesame Street?
"Can anyone tell me?" she wonders aloud.
These questions all come with a dark mental cloud.
Anxiety always invades when it's calm.
Work will provide the appropriate balm.
She loves to return to the small fears and stress,
The little boss Hitler who wears a bright dress,
The practical questions with straightforward answers
That light up her life and help keep out the chancers,
Like 'If an old tree falls on me in the woods
Will anyone hear me from under their hoods?'.
When she has her phone she feels safe around trees.
Her screams won't need to be borne by the breeze.