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look outside yourself
for twenty minutes,

breathe in the creation
find some inspiration.

not content to sit idly by
while the world speeds past:

green and grey and beautiful -
sodden with yesterday’s life
dropping off leaves and
into open collars.

leaky futures flood across
the backside of our minds.

cascade -
gently at first:

a trickle, a dribble,
a hand to hold.

lay down those sweaty palms
dry the crease of your smile,
for the world is full of wonder
if you stay for a while.
ó ag siúl abhaile inné
Terry Collett Aug 2018
Magdalene lay beside Mary
on her own bed
as Magadalene's parents
were out shopping in town
wonder what
Sister Luke'd say
if she saw us here
like this? Mary said
exhaling smoke
from the cigarette
she held away
from her lips,

probably have a fit
or wet her bloomers
in the middle of Mass
Magdalene said
before she inhaled smoke
from her cigarette
and going red in her plump face
she'd mouth out
half a dozen Hail Marys
Magdalene said
through a mouthful of smoke,

what'd your Da say
if he saw us now?
Mary said
bet he'd take to your behind
with his big hairy hand
and mine too
she added laughing,

Magdalene hadn't put on
the record player
so she could hear
if the parents returned
and they could
vacate the bed as quick
as they could and dress,

are you still seeing
the Brady boy?
Magdalene asked
as I saw you talking to him
the other day
and you were making him laugh,

wouldn't give him more
than a smile the big loon
nor let him near my *** ***
nor lick my skin Mary said,

they turned to face each other
having stubbed out
their cigarettes
in the ashtray
beside the bed
and embraced
for the last time
before dressing,

they had just dressed
when the downstairs door opened
and they could hear
her father's voice
and so left the bedroom
and went downstairs
acting all innocent
and pure as angels
and lied about what
they had been doing,

the parents greeted Mary
in half smiles and lowered voices
and were glad when she left
and moaned at Magdalene
for bringing her home,

just played records and talked
Magdalene lied
sensing the kisses
which had stayed
and dried.
Éire,
The beauty of a broken land,
Where each and every man
Took up his own fight
And fought it with all his might
. I really should keep learning Gaeilge (irish language)
Maria Monaghan Jul 2018
The sun sets on Ireland,
patchwork fields illuminated by the august light of
abiding memory.

Misty hues spilling
over the mountains,
glimpsed through a mist of tears
fighting not to be shed.

The last sunset
of a brief glimpse of manic happiness
and friendship
and love.

The fields flash by,
each one transforming into a rose-coloured memory,
and a tsunami of melancholy threatens to
knock me down.

Heavy sighs and
knowing looks and
held-back tears and
one last caress of your sun-kissed skin.

The sun sets on Ireland
And opens into a bright new tomorrow.
Terry Collett Mar 2018
Magdalene dries
her hair. She got
caught in the storm
and rain and drenched.

Her wet clothes lay
limp in the bath. Mary
was drenched too
and was at home
drying out like herself.

They'd met after school
and walked to the park
and shelter and kissed.

None saw. Just as well.

The nuns at school kept
them apart with an eye
to danger of that terrible
sort. They got caught in
the rain on the way home.

Thunder and lightning
and down pour of rain.

Her hair is dry. She now
brushes it out. Her bold
mirrored self stands naked.

If Mary was there. They
could if she were and if
they had time or they dare.
Terry Collett Sep 2017
Dona nobis pacem,
the priest intoned.
Harry stood in the third pew
from the back with his wife.

A girl two pews ahead,
had long brown hair
over her shoulders,
had a trim figure
and a well rounded behind.

They knelt as the priest
intoned more Latin.

The girl's head was bowled,
hands together in prayer.

I wouldn't say no. If the old *****
in front would move her large
carcass to the right, I'd have
a better sight. His wife nudged
him with her pointed elbow,
raised her eyebrows, signalled
with a finger for him to close his eyes.

He closed his eyes, allowing thin
slits of sight to peruse the girl's
head and shoulders, as the old
***** had knelt low into the pew.

The priest lifted up the host
and muttered Latin with raised
eyes above him. The old *****
removed sight of the girl from view.

He shut his eyes for real, imaging
the girl's rounded behind, reaching
out with pretend fingers like one blind.
Harry in mass in Eire .
Terry Collett Sep 2017
Martha stared at the crucifix
in the convent chapel after school;
she was alone,
other kids had gone home
and the nuns were in church
for Vespers.

You look tired Lord
hanging there.
Your  arms must ache
in that one position.

The five wounds.
How bloodied they look.

I want to Your bride
and be a nun
and be able to visit You anytime
of the day or night.

I want to tend
to Your wounds,
kiss Your aching limbs,
place a finger in Your side.

Want to whisper
in Your ear
my every woe,
my sins and sense
Your arms about me
when I am low.

The chapel door opened
a nun stood there.

Martha Maguire
what are you
doing here?
Be off with you girl.

Martha gazed at the nun
with her big eyes.

Just talking
to the Crucified,
she said.

Off you go,
the nun said.

Martha went
cursing the sister
inside her head.
Girl in chapel in Eire in 1963
Terry Collett Aug 2017
The house was quiet
Magdalene's parents were out
her da was away on the farm
and her ma was out
visiting a friend.

Mary was lying
beside Magdalene
on her single bed.  

Do you want to?
Magdalene said.

Have we time?
Mary replied.

To be sure we have
Magdalene said.

She kissed Mary's lips
quietly she moved back
on her side
and gazed at the girl.

You can kiss better
than the Kelly boy
Mary said smiling.

They lay gazing at each other
shall we undress?
Magdalene said softly.

What if your parents come
and find us?
Mary said.

They'll belt your ****
Magdalene said jokingly
come on.

Mary listened out for sounds
birds sang from the garden
a cow mooed
from a nearby field.

On your head be it
Mary said.

They got off the bed
and began to undress
each watching the other
remove clothing.

They piled their clothes neatly
on the dressing table
and climbed into bed.

Your hands are cold
Mary said
as Magdalene touched her thighs.

Let me warm them
Magdalene whispered.

They kissed and hugged
then after 5 minutes
there was a knock
on the front door.

Who the **** is that?
Magdalene said
getting out of the bed
and looking out
the window
at the front door below.

Who it is?
Mary asked sitting up
holding the sheet up
to her small *******.

The fecking postman
Magdalene said.

She grabbed her
dressing gown
and went downstairs.

Mary got out of bed
and stood gazing out
the window.

The postman said something
and the door closed.

Magdalene came back
up the stairs
parcel for me ma
best get dressed in case
me ma comes back sooner
Magdalene said
disappointedly.

So they got dressed
and went down stairs
and went in the kitchen
and made tea
and sat at the table.

A few minutes later
her ma came in.

You are back early
Magdalene said.

My friend
didn't show up
her ma said
what you two girls
been up to?

Nothing just having tea
and a chin-wag
Magdalene said
keeping images
of her and Mary
naked in bed
locked up
in her head
TWO GIRLS AND THEIR LOVE IN EIRE IN 1963
Terry Collett Jul 2017
And Magdalene had taken
down the crucifix above
her parents' bed and dusted
it off with a yellow duster

and got the cobwebs off  and
looked at the Christ nailed
there through hands and feet
and a crown of metal thorns

about his plaster head and she
remembered how Martha her
school friend had a fixation
with the Crucified as she called

him and once took a crucifix
to bed with her because she
wanted to be a bride of Christ
and her mother had told her off

for it she took the Christ over to
the window to see better in the
daylight and the Christ looked
old as if it had been around many

centuries she blew over it blowing
away minute particles she carried
it back climbed on to the bed and
put it back settled it straight then

stood there and bounced on her
parents' double bed a little she
wished she could bring Mary on
it wished they could make love in

it that would be a thrill the thought
that it was her parents' bed and they
might be home at anytime and be
caught she climbed off the bed

carrying the thought with her the
Christ looked down at the bed
hanging there how great a love it
must be to have your son nailed

there and still have the ability to
love mankind she mused something
she herself would not have or refused.
A GIRL IN EIRE IN 1963.
Terry Collett Jul 2017
Martha stood
on a wooden chair
to reach the crucifix
on the wall
of the old chapel.

She was dusting
with a yellow duster
(brought from home)
to wipe away
the dust
and cobwebs
attached to the crown
of thorns
of the Crucified
and those about
His beard.

Waaat are ye at?
Martha
a nun said
behind her.

Oi'm dustin'
Martha replied
looking around
at the nun.

*** down
dis once
the nun said
pointing
a thin finger.

But our Lord
is dusty an' full
av cobwebs
Martha said
turning her head
back to the Christ
wiping about
His beard.

Oi said nigh
the nun said firmly.

Martha sighed
and stepped off
the chair
which creaked.

Discipline
is the first tin'
if yer want
ter be a nun
Sister Luke said.

Martha looked
at the nun
yer Lord looked
so sad dare
covered wi' de webs
she said.

Enoof
av yisser blather
the nun said
on yisser way
ter class.

Martha looked
at the Christ
then walked out
the chapel
leaving the nun behind
musing on being a nun
it turning over
in her mind.
A GIRL IN AN SCHOOL IN EIRE AND THE NUN IN 1963
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