'Darcy and O'Mara' is a novel by Arthur Cronin.
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Thursday, February 26, 2009



Morning is a time when I think clearly.
Questions seek the answers they desire.
Memories of where I put my beer tree
Emerge from underneath my mental mire.

Thoughts are entertained inside my mind's house.
I wonder why do cats and kittens purr.
Should a farmer's wife attack a blind mouse?
And how could three blind mice run after her?

I wonder why my musical went badly,
And why it got such terrible reviews,
Even though its star, a man called Bradley,
Was shown with sawn-off shotguns on the news.

Uncle Andy looks uncannily like Aunt Annie.
I wonder if the two are really one.
And can my local golf club really ban me
When my misdeed was having too much fun?

A brandy in the hand is necessary.
The mental side of golf can be too much.
This attracts the scorn of Mrs. Berry.
But she objects to playing with a crutch

Because a crutch would damage golf's aesthetics.
It would be a stain on their golf course.
That sort of thing might be fine in athletics
Or sports where cavemen shout until they're hoarse.

So I don't value Mrs. B's opinion.
Brandy is a most distinguished friend.
There's nothing wrong with playing golf with Jenny an'
Her best friend Sue who laughs for hours on end.

Golf can be as hard as treks through canyons.
Bunkers can provide a place to rest.
There's nothing wrong with playing with companions
Who play well when they're partially undressed.

The weather is eternally in turmoil.
Jenny always wears an overcoat.
Wearing much beneath it isn't her style.
Shocking people keeps her mind afloat.

Whenever Jenny blends into the background.
She'll come back to the foreground with real flair.
She can't endure a round of golf that lacks sound.
She'll make sure that her songs pollute the air.

She sings some songs by Schubert and by Mozart,
With lyrics that suggest we should relax.
As songs approach their climax, overcoats part,
And those who've stayed to watch fear heart attacks.

I don't believe our actions were uncalled-for.
For forgiveness I refuse to beg.
Mrs. Berry says that we appalled her,
But she was once offended by an egg.

Thursday, February 19, 2009


A Good Wall

It's evening in a garden
  Full of people holding drinks.
Words have been abandoned.
  They're replaced by nods and winks.

The people there are happy
  With this fine day's peaceful end,
Forgetting the beginning.
  Bad memory's a good friend.

If I remembered everything
  I wouldn't do a thing at all.
I'd ask the question 'Why?'
  And wait for answers from the wall.

And yes, I do a lot of that,
  But it's not all I do.
I'm very good at chopping wood
  And getting colds and flu.

The wall is a good friend of mine.
  It hardly ever says a word.
Most of what you hear is useless
  And dangerous, or so I've heard.

Strangers meet in happy times,
  And sad times follow soon.
You'd struggle to avoid the pin
  That bursts the red balloon.

The future's representative
  Will often hide behind
The garden shed or hedges.
  You'd have to be quite blind

Not to see through their disguise:
  A red wig like a clown's,
Clown-like tear-soaked make-up,
  And beer-stained wedding gowns.

Some people will ignore them,
  Pretend that they can't hear
The sobbing from behind the hedge.
  They'll shut the door on fear.

But fear can be a useful force.
  My friend the wall agrees.
Its silence can express assent
  And faint despairing pleas.

Shades of silence come and go
  As evening enters night.
Other worlds are visible
  In bright electric light.

The night is full of dangers.
  Fears are warning signs,
Undermined by clown heads
  But dressed up to the nines.

Twilight on suburban streets
  Brings people out to play.
Some things are just beginning
  As we near the end of day.

Old street fighters like the sound
  Of crickets after dark,
A gleaming sword in one hand.
  In the other hand, a shark.

Wielding weapons for the fight,
  A trip down memory lane,
An old suburban avenue
  Where clowns are in the drain.

You'll see their wigs through metal grills.
  They're saying 'stop and think'.
You're fighting an old lady
  Who is wearing her best mink.

Her coat's alive and full of teeth.
  Your shark will be afraid.
Her many layers of clothing
  Will soon repel your blade.

Run away into the night.
  Fade into the dark.
Run away with stray dogs
  Who'll leave behind their bark.

You'll hear the bark at midnight
  But the dog is miles away,
Dozing with a pleasant dream
  Or acting in a play.

Five or six street fighters
  Will join forces in retreat.
They'll end up at a party
  And they'll stare down at their feet.

Failures are forgotten,
  Humiliations gone.
Minds erase the many words
  That follow 'Dear' and 'John'.

Even when the clowns arrive
  No one sheds a tear.
The end of day's a perfect time
  To take a break from fear.

I'll be there with drink in hand,
  Forgetting all I've done,
Or haven't done and will not do,
  Remembering all I've won.

Or haven't won and will not win,
  But winning is for losers.
Languishing in last place
  Is the choice of clever choosers.

Taking part's important.
  There's glory in each fall.
And all you need to take part
  Is a sympathetic wall.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Holly and Billy

Holly and Billy left home at half-eight
  And they sailed away on the ocean.
The vast sunlit sea helped to empty their minds.
  They threw over-board every notion.

They sailed to a peaceful and beautiful land
  Where liquorice dogs lived in trees.
The dogs spent their days chewing old walking sticks
  To stop them from eating their knees.

They met an old man on a tiny green lawn.
  He sat there recounting his troubles.
His legs required threats and entreaties to move.
  His eyeballs kept bursting like bubbles.

He had to inflate them fifteen times an hour
  By breathing in through his left nostril.
The right one was cluttered with all kinds of junk.
  He looked there for coins and his lost drill.

His wife wouldn't let him eat liquorice dogs.
  She said that to eat dogs was wrong.
She made him eat lambs made of lettuce instead
  And blue butterflies made of song.

Holly and Billy walked on down a path.
  They listened to butterflies fly.
Never before had they heard music like
  Those symphonies played on the sky.

Holly and Billy reluctantly left
  This land they were starting to love.
When they arrived home the blue sea had gone black
  And stars filled the sky up above.

They couldn't help smiling as they thought about
  Their trip on the boat and their walk.
Their smiles didn't fade as they slept and they dreamt
  Of a cold dreary day in Dundalk.

Thursday, February 05, 2009


Jessica's Cat

Jessica's cat was afraid of the moon.
A full moon would give him the shivers.
And he was afraid of being fried at high noon.
He thought great white sharks lived in rivers.

The cat's name was Puddle. He hated white clouds,
The monsters who dressed up as sheep.
The fat ones would dive and devour entire crowds
And spit out the shoes that were cheap.

Mice made him nervous. He'd seen Tom and Jerry.
He wore his ear plugs after dark
To keep out the sound of the mice getting merry
As well as the neighbours' dog's bark.

He'd cower whenever the clock struck the hour.
The cuckoo seemed slightly psychotic.
He feared that the clock possessed some secret power.
Its ticks and its tocks were hypnotic.

Jessica noticed the way that the clock
Could transfix the cat in a minute.
And he couldn't move when the speeches of Spock
Were read out by her brother Kenneth.

She thought it might help to take Puddle to see
A hypnotist who was well known
For working with cats. Puddle would be
A feline Sylvester Stallone.

This was the promise the hypnotist made.
The promise was certainly kept.
The new improved cat was no longer afraid
Of losing his tail while he slept.

He stood on the shed and swung claws in the air
To ward off the clouds in the sky,
And he apprehended a lone teddy bear.
The bear's owner started to cry.

The cuckoo seemed sad. He wore a black hat.
Beneath it his small head was wrapped in
A bandage he needed because of the cat
Who seems to enjoy being called 'Captain'.

Puddle responds when he's called 'Captain Kirk'
But 'Jim' or just 'Captain' will do.
He's caught all the mice and he's put them to work.
He seems to think they are his crew.

The mice all respect him, but maybe it's fear.
Some humans fear him as well.
Never speak Klingon when Puddle is near,
And never laugh at his hair gel.

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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