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Alex Jan 2019
On the hills of old Dublin the wind blows from the east
On the hills of old Dublin we gather for a feast
On the hill of old Dublin stands a village with ladies so fair
On the hills of old Dublin the priest stands in prayer
For we are the chosen...
For we hold the crest
For the solders of old Dublin will always be oppressed
On the hills of old Dublin we lay them to rest
On the hills of old Dublin forever will they be blessed
The brave sons of Dublin whose voices are gone
The brave sons of Dublin with battle lines drawn
The brave sons of Dublin whose courage is known
The brave sons of Dublin who stand as stone
A cheer to the fallen...a cheer to their name...for the solders of England is who are to blame. A sip of old whisky... a sting in the throat...for every glass emptied is another line wrote.
Westley Barnes Dec 2013
Bright windy November
with the slap of cold sun sending frowns
and the absent rain not beating down
choleric substitutes of alcohol withdrawal
and spatial omissions of home fires stoking
empty remembrances of faded potential and
misplaced amorous regret
Haunted by the lingering smell of the souls of
last night's GUINNESS intake staying swell in
the nostrils which is in reality the gulf breeze blowing
gullshit down the river Liffey giver of life.

...And here I am Dublin pillaged and funded
en route to the hour-rate slog
shiny white commerce bleaching out of
windowsills distracting from rooftop
Chiaroscuro  serenading a sky
which old ****** forgotten Sons and Daughters
will die under.

Boots tapping mock-goosestep to the ground
past a girl who speaks on her IPHONE to someone
who presumably not only wants to be seen speaking
to someone on their IPHONE but who also cares enough
to listen as the girl announces to all-and-sundry
human dodging on Bachelors Walk this fateful morn
that "I realised what my problem is Now! People
think i'm saying N when I'm really saying M!"

.....quite an existential crisis you got there, EH DOC?

("This girl's SITUATION belongs in a scenario in the TV show GIRLS which young
Woman Europe-wide have embraced as their spiritual saviour in an era of Consumer
impulse control. By placing the mundane generalities and perceived social failings
interpreted by young American female comediennes as instead representing a means of
self-forgiveness and attempted new-wave soft-core feminist self-celebration young American
actresses are inspiring a new generation of young woman to speak openly in a more in-depth level about everything that usually happens to themselves or some girl they know"-From "The Post-New Male Gaze: Interpreting Critiques of Stereotypically Feminized Pop Culture in Westley Barnes's "Notes on a Rant: The "Took Me Up To Dublin Where It's Famous" Notebook
:2013
)

This is the new white noise.

White Irish Male Critiques perceived socially-announced problems of White Irish Female over White Technology on a white morning in a grey city.

A grey city which subliminally stinks of shame and left-over guilt and of spending too much money on tecno-toys and new-improved nullifying debauchery and even rent during a significantly rough stretch of fiscal years. After a lot of years of white nonsense, really.

But this is where I took myself, and this is what happens once you take yourself here and this is where its famous for it.
Dublin,
Once Monto-based FUNDERLAND for the rich and royal turned over-waxie infested tenement slum district and second city of an industrialised economy waiting for the rest of the world to pay its way.
Dublin,
capital of green and squeaky saviours of the third-world who made some money and forgot about everyone else they used to know back home. Mr Poverty, Mr Humbleness, Mr Sense of Catholic Shame.
Until the rents got too high and they had to move home again.
Dublin,
no matters what it achieves, always putting itself down.

But I can adapt.
I've lived in Rathmines and Portobello before living in either was a
really hip decision to make.
I can find somewhere else before its gets gentrified
(after I find some job that's not worth complaining about
or I eventually leap into becoming to middle-class
to complain about it.)
enough that its a headache living there, too many men wearing the same winter
jackets. Too many packed restaurants and your local actually preparing the tables
in the run-up to the Rugby game on Saturday.
The less of all that, the better for me.

I used to day dream about all of the above, honestly, but I
somehow managed to regain my innocence by living through it.

As for the girl who discovered self-realisation on her (through her?) IPHONE?
She'll be alright. If that's how she starts wading through the floodwaters of relating
herself to the world, misunderstood syllables, name-fails and all, this time in twenty
years, she'll be laughing. Don't worry yourselves, she'll adapt with the times.
Sure, Dublin's famous for it.
Ormond Aug 2013
In rows like crumpled paper set,
The way one might design a brooch,
There sets a sparkle down so purely
Capital, beyond reproach and sure
She is the blackest flea who sits
Upon an old green dog, now should

You query, her name's a pond.  In Gaelic
It's pronounced: Baile Átha Cliath—
But in Irish she's plain, mightily named,
Dublin.  Where broods the dove, linnet
And swan.  Now take them pi'jons, they got
Dank habits and linnets lament the silent

Stones.  Sure, the goose gave out and took
To the air, but the swans, they've landed,
To roost, enchanted as 'Children of Lir,'
And so becomes a changeling child's
Fair city, for in her anointed proximity,
Gracious white birds do bathe and molt,

Supplied as I can tell, she looks black-
Pooled in clusters, long side her creases.
Stout nectar flows in near every nook
And cranny, but yer man, he's never
Busy, that malty fish, daftly avoids,
Swimming spirals round like buggies

Do on petals, he'd rather grace gardens
By drinking their dew.  O Dublin town,
She wends her ways and rows her houses
Round-a-bout on cobbled shores in tribute
To sprite, deary and fey, Anna Livia—
Who like a stem of blood, stabs right

To the heart of Dublin Bay— and proud
As a crowned thorny, who once had reeked,
She's bloomed large, into one grandeous
Beauty, like a céilí so finely fiddled—
A sandy, spirited, bombastic beach-
Flower, she is, a flag so fitting upon

The doons.  In dream, I flocked to her
Like the wild geese and saw her coy'd
Repose and there I spied, from mackerel
Skies— one monstrous, Irish rose!
Baile Átha Cliath is the Irish Gaelic (gaeilge) for Dublin (the capital city of Ireland). Translated into English it means The Town Of The Hurdled Ford (Baile = Town, Átha = Ford, Cliath = Hurdle).

Anna Livia, Anna Liffey, The Liffey (An Life in Irish) is a river in Ireland, which flows through the centre of Dublin.  The river was previously named An Ruirthech, meaning "fast (or strong) runner".  The word Liphe (or Life) referred originally to the name of the plain through which the river ran, but eventually came to refer to the river itself.  It was also known as the Anna Liffey.

In modern usage, a céilí (pronounced: Kay-lee) or céilidh is a traditional Gaelic social gathering, which usually involves playing Gaelic folk music and dancing. It originated in Ireland and Scotland, but is now common throughout the Irish and Scottish diasporas.
FIRST DAY

1.
Who wanted me
to go to Chicago
on January 6th?
I did!

The night before,
20 below zero
Fahrenheit
with the wind chill;
as the blizzard of 99
lay in mountains
of blackening snow.

I packed two coats,
two suits,
three sweaters,
multiple sets of long johns
and heavy white socks
for a two-day stay.

I left from Newark.
**** the denseness,
it confounds!

The 2nd City to whom?
2nd ain’t bad.
It’s pretty good.
If you consider
Peking and Prague,
Tokyo and Togo,
Manchester and Moscow,
Port Au Prince and Paris,
Athens and Amsterdam,
Buenos Aries and Johannesburg;
that’s pretty good.

What’s going on here today?
It’s friggin frozen.
To the bone!

But Chi Town is still cool.
Buddy Guy’s is open.
Bartenders mixing drinks,
cabbies jamming on their breaks,
honey dew waitresses serving sugar,
buildings swerving,
fire tongued preachers are preaching
and the farmers are measuring the moon.

The lake,
unlike Ontario
is in the midst of freezing.
Bones of ice
threaten to gel
into a solid mass
over the expanse
of the Michigan Lake.
If this keeps up,
you can walk
clear to Toronto
on a silver carpet.

Along the shore
the ice is permanent.
It’s the first big frost
of winter
after a long
Indian Summer.

Thank God
I caught a cab.
Outside I hear
The Hawk
nippin hard.
It’ll get your ear,
finger or toe.
Bite you on the nose too
if you ain’t careful.

Thank God,
I’m not walking
the Wabash tonight;
but if you do cover up,
wear layers.

Chicago,
could this be
Sandburg’s City?

I’m overwhelmed
and this is my tenth time here.

It’s almost better,
sometimes it is better,
a lot of times it is better
and denser then New York.

Ask any Bull’s fan.
I’m a Knickerbocker.
Yes Nueva York,
a city that has placed last
in the standings
for many years.
Except the last two.
Yanks are # 1!

But Chicago
is a dynasty,
as big as
Sammy Sosa’s heart,
rich and wide
as Michael Jordan’s grin.

Middle of a country,
center of a continent,
smack dab in the mean
of a hemisphere,
vortex to a world,
Chicago!

Kansas City,
Nashville,
St. Louis,
Detroit,
Cleveland,
Pittsburgh,
Denver,
New Orleans,
Dallas,
Cairo,
Singapore,
Auckland,
Baghdad,
Mexico City
and Montreal
salute her.



2.
Cities,
A collection of vanities?
Engineered complex utilitarianism?
The need for community a social necessity?
Ego one with the mass?
Civilization’s latest *******?
Chicago is more then that.

Jefferson’s yeoman farmer
is long gone
but this capitol
of the Great Plains
is still democratic.

The citizen’s of this city
would vote daily,
if they could.

Chicago,
Sandburg’s Chicago,
Could it be?

The namesake river
segments the city,
canals of commerce,
all perpendicular,
is rife throughout,
still guiding barges
to the Mississippi
and St. Laurence.

Now also
tourist attractions
for a cafe society.

Chicago is really jazzy,
swanky clubs,
big steaks,
juices and drinks.

You get the best
coffee from Seattle
and the finest teas
from China.

Great restaurants
serve liquid jazz
al la carte.

Jazz Jazz Jazz
All they serve is Jazz
Rock me steady
Keep the beat
Keep it flowin
Feel the heat!

Jazz Jazz Jazz
All they is, is Jazz
Fast cars will take ya
To the show
Round bout midnight
Where’d the time go?

Flows into the Mississippi,
the mother of America’s rivers,
an empires aorta.

Great Lakes wonder of water.
Niagara Falls
still her heart gushes forth.

Buffalo connected to this holy heart.
Finger Lakes and Adirondacks
are part of this watershed,
all the way down to the
Delaware and Chesapeake.

Sandburg’s Chicago?
Oh my my,
the wonder of him.
Who captured the imagination
of the wonders of rivers.

Down stream other holy cities
from the Mississippi delta
all mapped by him.

Its mouth our Dixie Trumpet
guarded by righteous Cajun brethren.

Midwest?
Midwest from where?
It’s north of Caracas and Los Angeles,
east of Fairbanks,
west of Dublin
and south of not much.

Him,
who spoke of honest men
and loving women.
Working men and mothers
bearing citizens to build a nation.
The New World’s
precocious adolescent
caught in a stream
of endless and exciting change,
much pain and sacrifice,
dedication and loss,
pride and tribulations.

From him we know
all the people’s faces.
All their stories are told.
Never defeating the
idea of Chicago.

Sandburg had the courage to say
what was in the heart of the people, who:

Defeated the Indians,
Mapped the terrain,
Aided slavers,
Fought a terrible civil war,
Hoisted the barges,
Grew the food,
Whacked the wheat,
Sang the songs,
Fought many wars of conquest,
Cleared the land,
Erected the bridges,
Trapped the game,
Netted the fish,
Mined the coal,
Forged the steel,
Laid the tracks,
Fired the tenders,
Cut the stone,
Mixed the mortar,
Plumbed the line,
And laid the bricks
Of this nation of cities!

Pardon the Marlboro Man shtick.
It’s a poor expostulation of
crass commercial symbolism.

Like I said, I’m a
Devil Fan from Jersey
and Madison Avenue
has done its work on me.

It’s a strange alchemy
that changes
a proud Nation of Blackhawks
into a merchandising bonanza
of hometown hockey shirts,
making the native seem alien,
and the interloper at home chillin out,
warming his feet atop a block of ice,
guzzling Old Style
with clicker in hand.

Give him his beer
and other diversions.
If he bowls with his buddy’s
on Tuesday night
I hope he bowls
a perfect game.

He’s earned it.
He works hard.
Hard work and faith
built this city.

And it’s not just the faith
that fills the cities
thousand churches,
temples and
mosques on the Sabbath.

3.
There is faith in everything in Chicago!

An alcoholic broker named Bill
lives the Twelve Steps
to banish fear and loathing
for one more day.
Bill believes in sobriety.

A tug captain named Moe
waits for the spring thaw
so he can get the barges up to Duluth.
Moe believes in the seasons.

A farmer named Tom
hopes he has reaped the last
of many bitter harvests.
Tom believes in a new start.

A homeless man named Earl
wills himself a cot and a hot
at the local shelter.
Earl believes in deliverance.

A Pullman porter
named George
works overtime
to get his first born
through medical school.
George believes in opportunity.

A folk singer named Woody
sings about his
countrymen inheritance
and implores them to take it.
Woody believes in people.

A Wobbly named Joe
organizes fellow steelworkers
to fight for a workers paradise
here on earth.
Joe believes in ideals.

A bookkeeper named Edith
is certain she’ll see the Cubs
win the World Series
in her lifetime.
Edith believes in miracles.

An electrician named ****
saves money
to bring his family over from Gdansk.
**** believes in America.

A banker named Leah
knows Ditka will return
and lead the Bears
to another Super Bowl.
Leah believes in nostalgia.

A cantor named Samuel
prays for another 20 years
so he can properly train
his Temple’s replacement.

Samuel believes in tradition.
A high school girl named Sally
refuses to get an abortion.
She knows she carries
something special within her.
Sally believes in life.

A city worker named Mazie
ceaselessly prays
for her incarcerated son
doing 10 years at Cook.
Mazie believes in redemption.

A jazzer named Bix
helps to invent a new art form
out of the mist.
Bix believes in creativity.

An architect named Frank
restores the Rookery.
Frank believes in space.

A soldier named Ike
fights wars for democracy.
Ike believes in peace.

A Rabbi named Jesse
sermonizes on Moses.
Jesse believes in liberation.

Somewhere in Chicago
a kid still believes in Shoeless Joe.
The kid believes in
the integrity of the game.

An Imam named Louis
is busy building a nation
within a nation.
Louis believes in
self-determination.

A teacher named Heidi
gives all she has to her students.
She has great expectations for them all.
Heidi believes in the future.

4.
Does Chicago have a future?

This city,
full of cowboys
and wildcatters
is predicated
on a future!

Bang, bang
Shoot em up
Stake the claim
It’s your terrain
Drill the hole
Strike it rich
Top it off
You’re the boss
Take a chance
Watch it wane
Try again
Heavenly gains

Chicago
city of futures
is a Holy Mecca
to all day traders.

Their skin is gray,
hair disheveled,
loud ties and
funny coats,
thumb through
slips of paper
held by nail
chewed hands.
Selling promises
with no derivative value
for out of the money calls
and in the money puts.
Strike is not a labor action
in this city of unionists,
but a speculators mark,
a capitalist wish,
a hedgers bet,
a public debt
and a farmers
fair return.

Indexes for everything.
Quantitative models
that could burst a kazoo.

You know the measure
of everything in Chicago.
But is it truly objective?
Have mathematics banished
subjective intentions,
routing it in fair practice
of market efficiencies,
a kind of scientific absolution?

I heard that there
is a dispute brewing
over the amount of snowfall
that fell on the 1st.

The mayor’s office,
using the official city ruler
measured 22”
of snow on the ground.

The National Weather Service
says it cannot detect more
then 17” of snow.

The mayor thinks
he’ll catch less heat
for the trains that don’t run
the buses that don’t arrive
and the schools that stand empty
with the addition of 5”.

The analysts say
it’s all about capturing liquidity.

Liquidity,
can you place a great lake
into an eyedropper?

Its 20 below
and all liquid things
are solid masses
or a gooey viscosity at best.

Water is frozen everywhere.
But Chi town is still liquid,
flowing faster
then the digital blips
flashing on the walls
of the CBOT.

Dreams
are never frozen in Chicago.
The exchanges trade
without missing a beat.

Trading wet dreams,
the crystallized vapor
of an IPO
pledging a billion points
of Internet access
or raiding the public treasuries
of a central bank’s
huge stores of gold
with currency swaps.

Using the tools
of butterfly spreads
and candlesticks
to achieve the goal.

Short the Russell
or buy the Dow,
go long the
CAC and DAX.
Are you trading in euro’s?
You better be
or soon will.
I know
you’re Chicago,
you’ll trade anything.
WEBS,
Spiders,
and Leaps
are traded here,
along with sweet crude,
North Sea Brent,
plywood and T-Bill futures;
and most importantly
the commodities,
the loam
that formed this city
of broad shoulders.

What about our wheat?
Still whacking and
breadbasket to the world.

Oil,
an important fossil fuel
denominated in
good ole greenbacks.

Porkbellies,
not just hogwash
on the Wabash,
but bacon, eggs
and flapjacks
are on the menu
of every diner in Jersey
as the “All American.”

Cotton,
our contribution
to the Golden Triangle,
once the global currency
used to enrich a
gentlemen class
of cultured
southern slavers,
now Tommy Hilfiger’s
preferred fabric.

I think he sends it
to Bangkok where
child slaves
spin it into
gold lame'.

Sorghum,
I think its hardy.

Soybeans,
the new age substitute
for hamburger
goes great with tofu lasagna.

Corn,
ADM creates ethanol,
they want us to drive cleaner cars.

Cattle,
once driven into this city’s
bloodhouses for slaughter,
now ground into
a billion Big Macs
every year.

When does a seed
become a commodity?
When does a commodity
become a future?
When does a future expire?

You can find the answers
to these questions in Chicago
and find a fortune in a hole in the floor.

Look down into the pits.
Hear the screams of anguish
and profitable delights.

Frenzied men
swarming like a mass
of epileptic ants
atop the worlds largest sugar cube
auger the worlds free markets.

The scene is
more chaotic then
100 Haymarket Square Riots
multiplied by 100
1968 Democratic Conventions.

Amidst inverted anthills,
they scurry forth and to
in distinguished
black and red coats.

Fighting each other
as counterparties
to a life and death transaction.

This is an efficient market
that crosses the globe.

Oil from the Sultan of Brunei,
Yen from the land of Hitachi,
Long Bonds from the Fed,
nickel from Quebec,
platinum and palladium
from Siberia,
FTSE’s from London
and crewel cane from Havana
circle these pits.

Tijuana,
Shanghai
and Istanbul's
best traders
are only half as good
as the average trader in Chicago.

Chicago,
this hog butcher to the world,
specializes in packaging and distribution.

Men in blood soaked smocks,
still count the heads
entering the gates of the city.

Their handiwork
is sent out on barges
and rail lines as frozen packages
of futures
waiting for delivery
to an anonymous counterparty
half a world away.

This nation’s hub
has grown into the
premier purveyor
to the world;
along all the rivers,
highways,
railways
and estuaries
it’s tentacles reach.

5.
Sandburg’s Chicago,
is a city of the world’s people.

Many striver rows compose
its many neighborhoods.

Nordic stoicism,
Eastern European orthodoxy
and Afro-American
calypso vibrations
are three of many cords
strumming the strings
of Chicago.

Sandburg’s Chicago,
if you wrote forever
you would only scratch its surface.

People wait for trains
to enter the city from O’Hare.
Frozen tears
lock their eyes
onto distant skyscrapers,
solid chunks
of snot blocks their nose
and green icicles of slime
crust mustaches.
They fight to breathe.

Sandburg’s Chicago
is The Land of Lincoln,
Savior of the Union,
protector of the Republic.
Sent armies
of sons and daughters,
barges, boxcars,
gunboats, foodstuffs,
cannon and shot
to raze the south
and stamp out succession.

Old Abe’s biography
are still unknown volumes to me.
I must see and read the great words.
You can never learn enough;
but I’ve been to Washington
and seen the man’s memorial.
The Free World’s 8th wonder,
guarded by General Grant,
who still keeps an eye on Richmond
and a hand on his sword.

Through this American winter
Abe ponders.
The vista he surveys is dire and tragic.

Our sitting President
impeached
for lying about a *******.

Party partisans
in the senate are sworn and seated.
Our Chief Justice,
adorned with golden bars
will adjudicate the proceedings.
It is the perfect counterpoint
to an ageless Abe thinking
with malice toward none
and charity towards all,
will heal the wounds
of the nation.

Abe our granite angel,
Chicago goes on,
The Union is strong!


SECOND DAY

1.
Out my window
the sun has risen.

According to
the local forecast
its minus 9
going up to
6 today.

The lake,
a golden pillow of clouds
is frozen in time.

I marvel
at the ancients ones
resourcefulness
and how
they mastered
these extreme elements.

Past, present and future
has no meaning
in the Citadel
of the Prairie today.

I set my watch
to Central Standard Time.

Stepping into
the hotel lobby
the concierge
with oil smooth hair,
perfect tie
and English lilt
impeccably asks,
“Do you know where you are going Sir?
Can I give you a map?”

He hands me one of Chicago.
I see he recently had his nails done.
He paints a green line
along Whacker Drive and says,
“turn on Jackson, LaSalle, Wabash or Madison
and you’ll get to where you want to go.”
A walk of 14 or 15 blocks from Streeterville-
(I start at The Chicago White House.
They call it that because Hillary Rodham
stays here when she’s in town.
Its’ also alleged that Stedman
eats his breakfast here
but Opra
has never been seen
on the premises.
I wonder how I gained entry
into this place of elite’s?)
-down into the center of The Loop.

Stepping out of the hotel,
The Doorman
sporting the epaulets of a colonel
on his corporate winter coat
and furry Cossack hat
swaddling his round black face
accosts me.

The skin of his face
is flaking from
the subzero windburn.

He asks me
with a gapped toothy grin,
“Can I get you a cab?”
“No I think I’ll walk,” I answer.
“Good woolen hat,
thick gloves you should be alright.”
He winks and lets me pass.

I step outside.
The Windy City
flings stabbing cold spears
flying on wings of 30-mph gusts.
My outside hardens.
I can feel the freeze
deepen
into my internalness.
I can’t be sure
but inside
my heart still feels warm.
For how long
I cannot say.

I commence
my walk
among the spires
of this great city,
the vertical leaps
that anchor the great lake,
holding its place
against the historic
frigid assault.

The buildings’ sway,
modulating to the blows
of natures wicked blasts.

It’s a hard imposition
on a city and its people.

The gloves,
skullcap,
long underwear,
sweater,
jacket
and overcoat
not enough
to keep the cold
from penetrating
the person.

Like discerning
the layers of this city,
even many layers,
still not enough
to understand
the depth of meaning
of the heart
of this heartland city.

Sandburg knew the city well.
Set amidst groves of suburbs
that extend outward in every direction.
Concentric circles
surround the city.
After the burbs come farms,
Great Plains, and mountains.
Appalachians and Rockies
are but mere molehills
in the city’s back yard.
It’s terra firma
stops only at the sea.
Pt. Barrow to the Horn,
many capes extended.

On the periphery
its appendages,
its extremities,
its outward extremes.
All connected by the idea,
blown by the incessant wind
of this great nation.
The Windy City’s message
is sent to the world’s four corners.
It is a message of power.
English the worlds
common language
is spoken here,
along with Ebonics,
Espanol,
Mandarin,
Czech,
Russian,
Korean,
Arabic,
Hindi­,
German,
French,
electronics,
steel,
cars,
cartoons,
rap,
sports­,
movies,
capital,
wheat
and more.

Always more.
Much much more
in Chicago.

2.
Sandburg
spoke all the dialects.

He heard them all,
he understood
with great precision
to the finest tolerances
of a lathe workers micrometer.

Sandburg understood
what it meant to laugh
and be happy.

He understood
the working mans day,
the learned treatises
of university chairs,
the endless tomes
of the city’s
great libraries,
the lost languages
of the ancient ones,
the secret codes
of abstract art,
the impact of architecture,
the street dialects and idioms
of everymans expression of life.

All fighting for life,
trying to build a life,
a new life
in this modern world.

Walking across
the Michigan Avenue Bridge
I see the Wrigley Building
is neatly carved,
catty cornered on the plaza.

I wonder if Old Man Wrigley
watched his barges
loaded with spearmint
and double-mint
move out onto the lake
from one of those Gothic windows
perched high above the street.

Would he open a window
and shout to the men below
to quit slaking and work harder
or would he
between the snapping sound
he made with his mouth
full of his chewing gum
offer them tickets
to a ballgame at Wrigley Field
that afternoon?

Would the men below
be able to understand
the man communing
from such a great height?

I listen to a man
and woman conversing.
They are one step behind me
as we meander along Wacker Drive.

"You are in Chicago now.”
The man states with profundity.
“If I let you go
you will soon find your level
in this city.
Do you know what I mean?”

No I don’t.
I think to myself.
What level are you I wonder?
Are you perched atop
the transmission spire
of the Hancock Tower?

I wouldn’t think so
or your ears would melt
from the windburn.

I’m thinking.
Is she a kept woman?
She is majestically clothed
in fur hat and coat.
In animal pelts
not trapped like her,
but slaughtered
from farms
I’m sure.

What level
is he speaking of?

Many levels
are evident in this city;
many layers of cobbled stone,
Pennsylvania iron,
Hoosier Granite
and vertical drops.

I wonder
if I detect
condensation
in his voice?

What is
his intention?
Is it a warning
of a broken affair?
A pending pink slip?
Advise to an addict
refusing to adhere
to a recovery regimen?

What is his level anyway?
Is he so high and mighty,
Higher and mightier
then this great city
which we are all a part of,
which we all helped to build,
which we all need
in order to keep this nation
the thriving democratic
empire it is?

This seditious talk!

3.
The Loop’s El
still courses through
the main thoroughfares of the city.

People are transported
above the din of the street,
looking down
on the common pedestrians
like me.

Super CEO’s
populating the upper floors
of Romanesque,
Greek Revivalist,
New Bauhaus,
Art Deco
and Post Nouveau
Neo-Modern
Avant-Garde towers
are too far up
to see me
shivering on the street.

The cars, busses,
trains and trucks
are all covered
with the film
of rock salt.

Salt covers
my bootless feet
and smudges
my cloths as well.

The salt,
the primal element
of the earth
covers everything
in Chicago.

It is the true level
of this city.

The layer
beneath
all layers,
on which
everything
rests,
is built,
grows,
thrives
then dies.
To be
returned again
to the lower
layers
where it can
take root
again
and grow
out onto
the great plains.

Splashing
the nation,
anointing
its people
with its
blessing.

A blessing,
Chicago?

All rivers
come here.

All things
found its way here
through the canals
and back bays
of the world’s
greatest lakes.

All roads,
rails and
air routes
begin and
end here.

Mrs. O’Leary’s cow
got a *** rap.
It did not start the fire,
we did.

We lit the torch
that flamed
the city to cinders.
From a pile of ash
Chicago rose again.

Forever Chicago!
Forever the lamp
that burns bright
on a Great Lake’s
western shore!

Chicago
the beacon
sends the
message to the world
with its windy blasts,
on chugging barges,
clapping trains,
flying tandems,
T1 circuits
and roaring jets.

Sandburg knew
a Chicago
I will never know.

He knew
the rhythm of life
the people walked to.
The tools they used,
the dreams they dreamed
the songs they sang,
the things they built,
the things they loved,
the pains that hurt,
the motives that grew,
the actions that destroyed
the prayers they prayed,
the food they ate
their moments of death.

Sandburg knew
the layers of the city
to the depths
and windy heights
I cannot fathom.

The Blues
came to this city,
on the wing
of a chirping bird,
on the taps
of a rickety train,
on the blast
of an angry sax
rushing on the wind,
on the Westend blitz
of Pop's brash coronet,
on the tink of
a twinkling piano
on a paddle-wheel boat
and on the strings
of a lonely man’s guitar.

Walk into the clubs,
tenements,
row houses,
speakeasies
and you’ll hear the Blues
whispered like
a quiet prayer.

Tidewater Blues
from Virginia,
Delta Blues
from the lower
Mississippi,
Boogie Woogie
from Appalachia,
Texas Blues
from some Lone Star,
Big Band Blues
from Kansas City,
Blues from
Beal Street,
Jelly Roll’s Blues
from the Latin Quarter.

Hell even Chicago
got its own brand
of Blues.

Its all here.
It ended up here
and was sent away
on the winds of westerly blows
to the ear of an eager world
on strong jet streams
of simple melodies
and hard truths.

A broad
shouldered woman,
a single mother stands
on the street
with three crying babes.
Their cloths
are covered
in salt.
She pleads
for a break,
praying
for a new start.
Poor and
under-clothed
against the torrent
of frigid weather
she begs for help.
Her blond hair
and ****** features
suggests her
Scandinavian heritage.
I wonder if
she is related to Sandburg
as I walk past
her on the street.
Her feet
are bleeding
through her
canvass sneakers.
Her babes mouths
are zipped shut
with frozen drivel
and mucous.

The Blues live
on in Chicago.

The Blues
will forever live in her.
As I turn the corner
to walk the Miracle Mile
I see her engulfed
in a funnel cloud of salt,
snow and bits
of white paper,
swirling around her
and her children
in an angry
unforgiving
maelstrom.

The family
begins to
dissolve
like a snail
sprinkled with salt;
and a mother
and her children
just disappear
into the pavement
at the corner
of Dearborn,
in Chicago.

Music:

Robert Johnson
Sweet Home Chicago


jbm
Chicago
1/7/99
Added today to commemorate the birthday of Carl Sandburg
Ormond Mar 2013
In rows like crumpled paper set,
The way one might design a brooch,
There sets a sparkle down so purely
Capital, beyond reproach and sure
She is the blackest flea who sits
Upon an old green dog, now should

You query, her name's a pond.  In Gaelic
It's pronounced: Baile Átha Cliath—
But in Irish she's plain, mightily named,
Dublin.  Where broods the dove, linnet
And swan.  Now take them pi'jons, they got
Dank habits and linnets lament the silent

Stones.  Sure, the goose gave out and took
To the air, but the swans, they've landed,
To roost, enchanted as 'Children of Lir,'
And so becomes a changeling child's
Fair city, for in her anointed proximity,
Gracious white birds do bathe and molt,

Supplied as I can tell, she looks black-
Pooled in clusters, long side her creases.
Stout nectar flows in near every nook
And cranny, but yer man, he's never
Busy, that malty fish, daftly avoids,
Swimming spirals round like buggies

Do on petals, he'd rather grace gardens
By drinking their dew.  O Dublin town,
She wends her ways and rows her houses
Round-a-bout on cobbled shores in tribute
To sprite, deary and fey, Anna Livia—
Who like a stem of blood, stabs right

To the heart of Dublin Bay— and proud
As a crowned thorny, who once had reeked,
She's bloomed large, into one grandeous
Beauty, like a céilí so finely fiddled—
A sandy, spirited, bombastic beach-
Flower, she is, a flag so fitting upon

The doons.  In dream, I flocked to her
Like the wild geese and saw her coy'd
Repose and there I spied, from mackerel
Skies— one monstrous, Irish rose!
Baile Átha Cliath is the Irish Gaelic (gaeilge) for Dublin (the capital city of Ireland). Translated into English it means The Town Of The Hurdled Ford (Baile = Town, Átha = Ford, Cliath = Hurdle).

Anna Livia, Anna Liffey, The Liffey (An Life in Irish) is a river in Ireland, which flows through the centre of Dublin.  The river was previously named An Ruirthech, meaning "fast (or strong) runner".  The word Liphe (or Life) referred originally to the name of the plain through which the river ran, but eventually came to refer to the river itself.  It was also known as the Anna Liffey.

In modern usage, a céilí (pronounced: Kay-lee) or céilidh is a traditional Gaelic social gathering, which usually involves playing Gaelic folk music and dancing. It originated in Ireland and Scotland, but is now common throughout the Irish and Scottish diasporas.
Ormond Sep 2012
In rows like crumpled paper set,
The way one might design a brooch,
There sets a sparkle down so purely
Capital, beyond reproach and sure
She is the blackest flea who sits
Upon an old green dog, now should

You query, her name's a pond.  In Gaelic
It's pronounced: Baile Átha Cliath—
But in Irish she's plain, mightily named,
Dublin.  Where broods the dove, linnet
And swan.  Now take them pi'jons, they got
Dank habits and linnets lament the silent

Stones.  Sure, the goose gave out and took
To the air, but the swans, they've landed,
To roost, enchanted as 'Children of Lir,'
And so becomes a changeling child's
Fair city, for in her anointed proximity,
Gracious white birds do bathe and molt,

Supplied as I can tell, she looks black-
Pooled in clusters, long side her creases.
Stout nectar flows in near every nook
And cranny, but yer man, he's never
Busy, that malty fish, daftly avoids,
Swimming spirals round like buggies

Do on petals, he'd rather grace gardens
By drinking their dew.  O Dublin town,
She wends her ways and rows her houses
Round-a-bout on cobbled shores in tribute
To sprite, deary and fey, Anna Livia—
Who like a stem of blood, stabs right

To the heart of Dublin Bay— and proud
As a crowned thorny, who once had reeked,
She's bloomed large, into one grandeous
Beauty, like a céilí so finely fiddled—
A sandy, spirited, bombastic beach-
Flower, she is, a flag so fitting upon

The doons.  In dream, I flocked to her
Like the wild geese and saw her coy'd
Repose and there I spied, from mackerel
Skies— one monstrous, Irish rose!
Baile Átha Cliath is the Irish Gaelic (gaeilge) for Dublin (the capital city of Ireland). Translated into English it means The Town Of The Hurdled Ford (Baile = Town, Átha = Ford, Cliath = Hurdle).

Anna Livia, Anna Liffey, The Liffey (An Life in Irish) is a river in Ireland, which flows through the centre of Dublin.  The river was previously named An Ruirthech, meaning "fast (or strong) runner".  The word Liphe (or Life) referred originally to the name of the plain through which the river ran, but eventually came to refer to the river itself.  It was also known as the Anna Liffey.

In modern usage, a céilí (pronounced: Kay-lee) or céilidh is a traditional Gaelic social gathering, which usually involves playing Gaelic folk music and dancing. It originated in Ireland and Scotland, but is now common throughout the Irish and Scottish diasporas.
Ormond Apr 2013
In rows like crumpled paper set,
The way one might design a brooch,
There sets a sparkle down so purely
Capital, beyond reproach and sure
She is the blackest flea who sits
Upon an old green dog, now should

You query, her name's a pond.  In Gaelic
It's pronounced: Baile Átha Cliath—
But in Irish she's plain, mightily named,
Dublin.  Where broods the dove, linnet
And swan.  Now take them pi'jons, they got
Dank habits and linnets lament the silent

Stones.  Sure, the goose gave out and took
To the air, but the swans, they've landed,
To roost, enchanted as 'Children of Lir,'
And so becomes a changeling child's
Fair city, for in her anointed proximity,
Gracious white birds do bathe and molt,

Supplied as I can tell, she looks black-
Pooled in clusters, long side her creases.
Stout nectar flows in near every nook
And cranny, but yer man, he's never
Busy, that malty fish, daftly avoids,
Swimming spirals round like buggies

Do on petals, he'd rather grace gardens
By drinking their dew.  O Dublin town,
She wends her ways and rows her houses
Round-a-bout on cobbled shores in tribute
To sprite, deary and fey, Anna Livia—
Who like a stem of blood, stabs right

To the heart of Dublin Bay— and proud
As a crowned thorny, who once had reeked,
She's bloomed large, into one grandeous
Beauty, like a céilí so finely fiddled—
A sandy, spirited, bombastic beach-
Flower, she is, a flag so fitting upon

The doons.  In dream, I flocked to her
Like the wild geese and saw her coy'd
Repose and there I spied, from mackerel
Skies— one monstrous, Irish rose!
Baile Átha Cliath is the Irish Gaelic (gaeilge) for Dublin (the capital city of Ireland). Translated into English it means The Town Of The Hurdled Ford (Baile = Town, Átha = Ford, Cliath = Hurdle).

Anna Livia, Anna Liffey, The Liffey (An Life in Irish) is a river in Ireland, which flows through the centre of Dublin.  The river was previously named An Ruirthech, meaning "fast (or strong) runner".  The word Liphe (or Life) referred originally to the name of the plain through which the river ran, but eventually came to refer to the river itself.  It was also known as the Anna Liffey.

In modern usage, a céilí (pronounced: Kay-lee) or céilidh is a traditional Gaelic social gathering, which usually involves playing Gaelic folk music and dancing. It originated in Ireland and Scotland, but is now common throughout the Irish and Scottish diasporas.
Ormond Sep 2014
In rows like crumpled paper set,
The way one might design a brooch,
There sets a sparkle down so purely
Capital, beyond reproach and sure
She is the blackest flea who sits
Upon an old green dog, now should

You query, her name's a pond.  In Gaelic
It's pronounced: Baile Átha Cliath—
But in Irish she's plain, mightily named,
Dublin.  Where broods the dove, linnet
And swan.  Now take them pi'jons, they got
Dank habits and linnets lament the silent

Stones.  Sure, the goose gave out and took
To the air, but the swans, they've landed,
To roost, enchanted as 'Children of Lir,'
And so becomes a changeling child's
Fair city, for in her anointed proximity,
Gracious white birds do bathe and molt,

Supplied as I can tell, she looks black-
Pooled in clusters, long side her creases.
Stout nectar flows in near every nook
And cranny, but yer man, he's never
Busy, that malty fish, daftly avoids,
Swimming spirals round like buggies

Do on petals, he'd rather grace gardens
By drinking their dew.  O Dublin town,
She wends her ways and rows her houses
Round-a-bout on cobbled shores in tribute
To sprite, deary and fey, Anna Livia—
Who like a stem of blood, stabs right

To the heart of Dublin Bay— and proud
As a crowned thorny, who once had reeked,
She's bloomed large, into one grandeous
Beauty, like a céilí so finely fiddled—
A sandy, spirited, bombastic beach-
Flower, she is, a flag so fitting upon

The doons.  In dream, I flocked to her
Like the wild geese and saw her coy'd
Repose and there I spied, from mackerel
Skies— one monstrous, Irish rose!
Baile Átha Cliath is the Irish Gaelic (gaeilge) for Dublin (the capital city of Ireland). Translated into English it means The Town Of The Hurdled Ford (Baile = Town, Átha = Ford, Cliath = Hurdle).

Anna Livia, Anna Liffey, The Liffey (An Life in Irish) is a river in Ireland, which flows through the centre of Dublin.  The river was previously named An Ruirthech, meaning "fast (or strong) runner".  The word Liphe (or Life) referred originally to the name of the plain through which the river ran, but eventually came to refer to the river itself.  It was also known as the Anna Liffey.

In modern usage, a céilí (pronounced: Kay-lee) or céilidh is a traditional Gaelic social gathering, which usually involves playing Gaelic folk music and dancing. It originated in Ireland and Scotland, but is now common throughout the Irish and Scottish diasporas.
Turco Dimas Nov 2012
Blueberry lemon juice
Gangly goose
Cruel brew moon
Roam
Soft lovely Mary
Sailor Taylor
Your lord, sinking sored
Vagon Ford
Virginia east coast roast
Most test
Chest, mess
Darling Dublin
Idaho, Ioawa
Cine noir
Lullaby
Mistic bee
Free my blue at the noon
Moaning soon
And the ring mostly seen
Chase my word
Siren fog
Heaven myths
Lick a lip
Ormond Feb 2016
.
In rows like crumpled paper set,
The way one might design a brooch,
There sets a sparkle down so purely
Capital, beyond reproach and sure
She is the blackest flea who sits
Upon an old green dog, now should

You query, her name's a pond.  In Gaelic
It's pronounced: Baile Átha Cliath—
But in Irish she's plain, mightily named,
Dublin.  Where broods the dove, linnet
And swan.  Now take them pi'jons, they got
Dank habits and linnets lament the silent

Stones.  Sure, the goose gave out and took
To the air, but the swans, they've landed,
To roost, enchanted as 'Children of Lir,'
And so becomes a changeling child's
Fair city, for in her anointed proximity,
Gracious white birds do bathe and molt,

Supplied as I can tell, she looks black-
Pooled in clusters, long side her creases.
Stout nectar flows in near every nook
And cranny, but yer man, he's never
Busy, that malty fish, daftly avoids,
Swimming spirals round like buggies

Do on petals, he'd rather grace gardens
By drinking their dew.  O Dublin town,
She wends her ways and rows her houses
Round-a-bout on cobbled shores in tribute
To sprite, deary and fey, Anna Livia—
Who like a stem of blood, stabs right

To the heart of Dublin Bay— and proud
As a crowned thorny, who once had reeked,
She's bloomed large, into one grandeous
Beauty, like a céilí so finely fiddled—
A sandy, spirited, bombastic beach-
Flower, she is, a flag so fitting upon

The doons.  In dream, I flocked to her
Like the wild geese and saw her coy'd
Repose and there I spied, from mackerel
Skies— one monstrous, Irish rose!
Baile Átha Cliath is the Irish Gaelic (gaeilge) for Dublin (the capital city of Ireland). Translated into English it means The Town Of The Hurdled Ford (Baile = Town, Átha = Ford, Cliath = Hurdle).

Anna Livia, Anna Liffey, The Liffey (An Life in Irish) is a river in Ireland, which flows through the centre of Dublin.  The river was previously named An Ruirthech, meaning "fast (or strong) runner".  The word Liphe (or Life) referred originally to the name of the plain through which the river ran, but eventually came to refer to the river itself.  It was also known as the Anna Liffey.

In modern usage, a céilí (pronounced: Kay-lee) or céilidh is a traditional Gaelic social gathering, which usually involves playing Gaelic folk music and dancing. It originated in Ireland and Scotland, but is now common throughout the Irish and Scottish diasporas.
.
Harriet Cleve Jan 2019
"The exploits of Sir Harry Flashman VC as he tries to outwit Michael Collins, assist the notorious Cairo gang, avoid ****** Sunday,charm the Irish ladies, and escape with his skin intact.

A nod to George M Fraser!



Old Harry Flashman stood in Dublin Castle as a monocled spiv eyed him cautiously.' You'll do your duty, sir, by God you will ! or you'll be handed to Collins and his murderous crew of ignorant paddies. His Majesties Government will disown you and abandon you to your fate, if you betray your colours and turn Turk. It will be the gallows for you, as it was for Casement, if a treacherous bone in your miserable hide breaks bread with the enemy. I can reveal to you that one of our agents, Jameson, has just met his maker in Glasnevin Cemetry. Too close to Collins, **** it!, he must have dropped his guard. That won't happen you though, Flashman! You are going undercover, and you'll have an excellent cover story too. Lloyd George wants that despised Irish Organisation infiltrated and destroyed. You will be watched closely by my dear friend Hoppy Hardy. A finer fellow you won't meet. He has kicked some green arses I can tell you, and would we had more of his kind! ****** fine fellow indeed.

I could only stand there, blanching, and my guts turning sour listening to that drivel. I was no spy and those ****** potato eaters were on the warpath! Give them the ****** Country, I thought to myself. Old Harry couldn't give a **** if they flew a Green Flag over Buckingham palace or paraded their colours in Winsor Castle! The Irish had their Irish up and had the Country in a state of terror, and Flashy was to be a go between for King and Country?
I wanted to retch and felt nauseous at the thought. Even as I stood there nodding as my cover was being presented and my arrangement to meet Michael Collins outlined, I could only think of that poor deluded fool Jameson.Lying in the damp soil of Glasnevin Cemetry, of all places!
A bullet in his head and chest for his troubles. Flashman, my boy thinks I, you will shake hands with the Devil and won't be leaving Ireland in a wooden overcoat. Even as that idiotic spiv spoke from his safe leather chair, I was working out my departure plans and Collins could go to Hell. As usual though, it never goes to plan for Old Flashy. I stepped out into a cold November chilled night air as Christ Church cathedral rang its bells. A gun was cocked and an Irish brogue said' Into the side street, nice and easy friend and we'll have a little chat, won't we? My innards churned and I looked for an out but I could see I was well accompanied.

Now Gentlemen, what will we talk about? said I as my mind raced to collect my thoughts. I felt I could brazen it out and was ready to blow my cover if I could save my skin. 'We'll do the talking, friend!' were the last words I heard before I was violently coshed on the head and relieved of my wallet.

***********
When I awoke Hoppy Hardy stood over me and I was safely quartered in the Royal Barracks. My head pulsed with pain and Hardy was rabbiting on. 'Well done Flashman, you held your nerve old son. We had our eye on you all the time old boy! I wanted a taste of your mettle although i didn't expect a blatant attempt on you so soon.Our sources tell me you enjoy a violent engagement with the enemy. Good news for you, the paddy who coshed you is in the next room.'

'We know he's an agent for Collins and you missed all the fun of the shootout when you were unconscious. Come on and have a look at how we run things here'.

As we entered the isolation room, I saw they had given the prisoner a good dose of the discipline stick and the blood trickled from a severe head ****. At least the ******* had a headache to match my own I thought. He was in a bad way and Hoppy gave him an unmerciful boot to the nether regions and let out a scream, which put the fear of God in me immediately. 'Once again you Irish *******! What were you doing breaking curfew with an unauthorised weapon! Who gave you that weapon? This was followed by a stinging slap to the prisoners face. This was pointless in my view as the fellow was clearly incapable of response after the boot he received. It made me think I was in for the same treatment if the Irish boys adopt the same tactics.it was all I could do not to flinch as Hardy unleashed a flurry of blows on the unconscious rebel.

**********

Charlie Dalton was in a rage as he spoke to his brother Emmet. ' One of our lads, Frank Fagan, was taken last night! We were following an English lad, and his bearing was suspicious. A right cocky one parading the streets like a Lord of the manor. We had just coshed him and were about to take him to Crow street when Hoppy Hardy and his thugs made an appearance. We had to shoot it out but Fagan was captured.
Emmet listened and stunned Charlie with his response. 'Fagan's a traitor and has served his purpose for Hardy. Wouldn't surprise me if Hardy kills him with his own hand and dumps him in the Park.
' What are you talking about? Emmet! Would you listen to yourself! How the hell do you make that out ?
' Because I told him ' said a voice and in walked the Big Fellow himself with the bearing of a bull and the shock black hair combed to the side. Michael Collins stood in front of the brothers.
' The Brits are playing silly buggers again and a new agent is in town! I want all our boys to keep a close eye on him and no one harms a hair on his head till we find out more about him. Let's play along with the ruse. I understand his real name is Flashman. The pride of the British Empire. A British Lion is it? We'll make that boy roar when we know more.

******************
Fla­shman was handed a Brandy and Hardy toasted ' Your good health old Boy! and broke into a big guffaw of laughter. Flashman didn't like the black humour and swallowed hard and racked his brains for his next move.

************
The Cairo cafe on Grafton Street was my meeting place with Captain Gunnery who was instructed to walk me around Dublin and introduce me to the City. I could see his nerves were shot and he had the fear of the demented in his eyes.'Welcome to Ireland, sir, he whispered. Watch your back at all cost, trust no one, and treat every approach from any of the natives as a potential threat to your life. 'The Irish are a shrewd lot,as dangerous as a cornered rat.They are also experts at holding a grudge. The mood is treacherous since that failed insurgency in '16.We made a ***** of it executing the ring leaders.The massacre on North King Street is still sour in their mouths.
Cozying up to the Germans after all we did for'em. What did they expect?

I could only nod and wonder if I wasn't already marked for a ticket to the next world. '

'Anyway, we're going hunting now, Gunnery said then, and you and me will be dressing up for the party.'That's right, he whispered with a haunted look in his eyes. 'We're donning the Black and Tan gear and raiding the Mansion House tonight.'

' Are you having a laugh? I blurted and looking every bit as startled as a nun inadvertently walking into the gents. 'We'll be well numbered, said he, and give those green ******* a taste of hardship. I gave him my best manly look ' Do me a favour old boy, walk me to this building, on Dawson Street you say, and let me have a look at the battlefield beforehand eh?

I needn't tell you, dear reader, that I wanted to examine the terrain and take a mental note of my escape routes while I still had my faculties.
Just as we were leaving, a good looking middle aged woman, who I thought was giving me the glad eye, bumped into Gunnery and pulled a gun on him.
No words were uttered as a loud bang floored him immediately and he was on the ground with a gaping hole in his chest. She gave me a look and pointed the gun at my manhood then suddenly redirected it to Gunnery's head and blew it to kingdom come! As cool as you like, out she walked.
I made a run for it and the stupid ***** thought I was trying to get a hold of her. I could se she pulled the gun again and aimed to take a shot at me. ' Sweet Jesus ! I cried and as I made a dive for it, I felt a God Almighty sting in my ****.' You ****** *****! I passed out, as you can imagine with a bullet in your rear flank and still I knew I would be seeing that little ***** again.

***************
A passing patrol of Auxillaries marched down Harcourt Street on their way towards St. Stephens Green. Looking down, from number 6, Michael Collins observed them closely. He knew two of them by sight and smiled to himself.
' Go back to Blighty lads, while ye still can'. Across from him were three members of the Squad; his chosen gunmen for assassinations. Three of his twelve disciples, although he had many more in reserve. **** McKee, looking every bit the revolutionary, with his long leather coat, heavy moustache and proud bearing stood facing the men. He was a Finglas man from North Dublin and Commander of the Dublin Brigade.

' Well ****, said Collins, who took out Gunnery? Who put a gun in that lady's hand?, God bless her! There's not a man here with the nerve to pull off a stunt like that. Find out who the officer was who chased after her and got a bullet in the **** for his troubles.We believe it was Flashman'. A burst of laughter broke out among the men.' Well we may laugh lads, but I believe that gun-woman is an agent for the Brits.Gunnery was a becoming a loose cannon.He couldn't keep his mouth shut.' Didn't we know a raid was imminent on the Mansion House because of him!' 'His own mouth sealed his fate. Let that be a lesson to ye! '

'Now, he said to Liam Tobin, get cracking and find out who that woman is. We could do a girl like that ourselves and if she's still in the Country then I want to meet her.' Yes ****, we'll get the background. I am off to Crow Street now to check our intelligence.

'Intelligence is it ? said **** What about that officer Flashman? Who the hell is he? Why was he with Gunnery. The word is he's no weasel. He took after that Gun-woman quick enough. Flashman, what kind of a name is that? 'The Brits must think we're right gobshites altogether naming an officer Flashman. Let's keep our eye on him closely! He's in the infirmary in Kilmainham. Maybe we can pay him a kindly visit and see he's settling in. Another laugh broke out amongst them.

Right **** said Collins. ' Let me see the list of names we need to eliminate and take out that picture of the Cairo gang. 'Take a good look at lads, we'll be sorting those boys out soon enough. If Lyoyd George wants Ireland that bad then let him see the price he's going to pay! Ireland's not for sale and we won't be tenants in our own ****** Country!

**********

' I was lying comfortable, all things considered, in my hospital bed with the nurses swooning over me. Incredibly that ***** did me a favour. Witnesses reported how I gallantly chased after the assassin without a thought for my safety. Even Hoppy Hardy had called to my bedside and said as much!
'Well done, old chap! Another feather in your cap eh! A pity about the location of the wound though. Don't fret, the official report says wounded while pursuing the enemy.This means you will have to lie low for a month at least. Did Gunnery, the poor *******, mention the Black & Tan uniform to you? He did eh! Jolly Good!

Now Flashman, you are going on vacation to the Rebel County Cork! I knew a chap like you would dive on an opportunity like that. The Irish have formed ' flying columns' and are taking the fight to us in that treacherous City. We'll teach them about ambushes, by Christ, and you Flashman will be right in the thick of it.

I smiled faintly and looked at Hardy with an anguished expression.
'If you don't mind Sir, I'm feeling a bit drained and your news is most welcome. Do you mind If I close my eyes and rest a bit?
' Forgive me Flashman, I've been inconsiderate old chap! You take a rest and have a speedy recovery. You'll need your energy for the Cork campaign!

' **** it already! I thought to myself.I don't need this reckless boys own mentality and nuts like Hardy putting me in the front line. For God's sake, I've never even been to Cork! What did Hardy say? Rebel County!
I felt sick to my stomach and turned over in my bed. I litteraly had a pain in my ****.

Down in Kilmichael, Co. Cork, a young man named Tom Barry was putting his men through their paces.
A nod to George McDonald Fraser creator of the wonderful Flashman books.
Francis Duggan Apr 2010
It's Friday evening from life's cares we'll have a brief leave taking
And lets go to the Basy Pub for hour of merry making
In confines of the Settlers Bar the voice of mirth is ringing
And Pete Atkinson from Dublin Town an Irish song is singing.

The Mckelvey men father and son are talking of horse racing
They know the horses inside out from form and race card tracing
Has Vo rogue gone over the hill, can Horlicks race to glory
Can Almaarad come bouncing back and go down in history?

Phil Cronin go back down the years he flick back through life pages
To friends he knew in Millstreet Town he has not seen for ages
Big Jerry Shea and Mister O, James Manley hale and hearty
And Johnny Sing from Millview Lane the life of every party.

Brave Harry the brave English man the one as tough as leather
You'll only see that man in shorts no matter what the weather
A man of elephantine strength yet gentle and kind hearted
And he has taken life's hardest blow since his son this world departed.

Big **** Kissane the Kerry man he doesn't like Maggie Thatcher
And he feels that for Union bashing that few in history could match her
Still he won't go back to Kenmare to weather wet and hazy
He'd much prefer Mt Evelyn it's nearer to the Baysy.

**** Kelleher and Phil Schofield well into greyhound breeding
They talk of how greyhounds should be schooled and for them proper feeding
Two greyhound trainers and of late their reputations growing
And Millstreet Town keep racing on when others dogs are slowing.

Vin Schofield a Manchester Man he does love Man United
And every time United win he feel proud and delighted
But United not doing well of late of late they're not impressing
And this too much for him to take he find it all depressing.

Galway's Matt Duggan and Westmeath's Sean Fay the hurling game debating
On the first sunday of September who will be celebrating
Can Westmeath make the big break through or will Galway flags be waving
Or will Tipperary still be champs their reputation saving?

And Marty Kerins from Mayo a good and happy fellow
I've never met him in bad mood I've always found him mellow
He love the Bayswater Hotel he say there is none better
And to be kept from Settlers Bar he'd have to be in fetter.

And **** O Shea from Dublin his friends are in the many
And he doesn't have one enemy and he doesn't deserve any
He's given homes to Homeless souls and he's easily moved to pity
And good a man as ever came to live in this great City.

The amazing J D Ellis his name and fame keep spreading
And he has bounced back from the floor and for the top he's heading
Still he is easily stirred up and Garry Carter does the stirring
And el tigre he begins to growl the cat's no longer purring.

It's friday evening from life's cares we'll have a brief leave taking
And where better than the Basy Pub for hour of merry making
In Confines of the Settlers Bar the voice of mirth is ringing
And Pete Atkinson from Dublin Town an Irish song is singing.
Harriet Cleve Sep 2019
Slick Brick Mandini, half Irish -half Italian, was raised in the Dublin slums. Around the corner from Henrietta Street, Europes biggest slum, was the Italian quarter of Smithfield.

Slick Brick knew every stone and alley, every hawker and scumbag, every dark street in the North side of the fair city.

A tall, good looking man with a penchant for riding street horses late at night. Many the harmless vagrant were run over and trampled to death as Slick galloped his piebald down North King street into the early hours. He could turn that horse on a sixpence, with the deft assurance one would normally attribute that skill to an Apache or Commanche warrior from North America.

North America would beckon one day but for now it was the mean streets of Dublin that tried to contain him.

Everyone knew he had a brain and could recite his Shakespeare as well as the Bard himself. In his own mind he was a MacDuff ready to take on the Macbeths and weird sisters of life.

An incident in secondary school which he evaded suspicion of set him on the road to criminality.

Brother Lugnaciois was patrolling the school corridors that fateful day. 'The Lug' as the schoolboys called him behind his back was a vicious *******. A Christian Brother with a passion for violence and intimidation. His leather strap hung from his swaggering hips like a gunslinger from the Old West and many's the hand he welted with pure savagery. Lug's favourite torment though was to pull a young school lads locks and lift them up off the ground in one horror filled moment.

Slick had the misfortune to be returning from the school toilets and was confronted by Lug. For no reason other than the infliction of base terror Lug grabbed Slick by his locks and twisted his ears for good measures.

It was expected from Lug and retaliation meant sustained torment.
Slick pulled a flickknife from his waistband and slashed Lug under his left eye. It took a moment for Lug to realise what had happened.

Stunned at the emerging pain and gush of blood from his face, Lug went into a rage.

That was when Slick's fathers tutelage came to his mind.

'Always remember, Son, a swift kick to the lower nether regions will stop a racehorse'

And Lug became a racehorse in that very instance of thought.

He reared up to grab Slick by the throat when the kick landed to his nether regions.

First he went purple then green then a fury arouse on his countenance. With what must have been a testimony to the power to retain control in extreme pain Lug lunged at Slick for revenge.

Slick knew it was a life or death moment. He deliberately and calmly drew the knife across Lugs throat. Even that was not enough.

From his pocket he took out his pistol. A silencer had been fitted.

The horror with which Lug's eyes met Slick's was one of disbelief.

'You ***** toe rag!' Slick uttered and pulled the trigger.

Lug's head exploded in a spray of red death.

At all times Slick had retained his composure. He had opened the door to the underworld and eagerly walked through.

In time the world would come to know of the foul exploits of Slick Brick Mandini. Only a few close friends would ever know who murdered the ******* Lugs.

Slick would lie low for a while and it would be some time before Dublin was shook by another ******. This ****** would be the one that placed Slick Brick Mandini firmly in the gaze of the police.

For now Slick smoked a cigar of Cuban origin and felt proud of his efforts. He allowed himself a smile as he recalled Lug's terrified and confused countenance.

'You had it coming you *******' he thought as he held his war trophy.
The leather strap which would never again inflict pain on a schoolboys hand.
Walking down the bustling street
Stopping, listening
An old man playing spoons
Liz May 2013
Dublin is soaking,
ink running on sentences, churning on the page.
America is splintering,
(the suburbs specifically, not the nation)
into  leftovers of Ticonderoga No 2.

These streets breathe in and out and
up to clouds illuminated by the Temple Bar,
as people stream through Dublin's narrow straights,
running thick and bright and damp
soaked with the scent of amber,
brimming with warm words like barley and hops,
the world reflected through the half-empty glasses
abandoned to rest stale at the bar.

This boy is a livewire to a madness,
quivering gasps flying to spark on her tongue when
she finds the kiss in the corner of his mouth is
tightly stitched in with the sound of each smile.
Her hand still clings to the smells of sweat and beer
with miles of backtracking ahead.
Edna Sweetlove Dec 2014
People think that Dublin, Ireland's fair capital city
Is a place of merriment, overflowing with craic and whiskey,
Whose narrow streets are filled with poets and singers and also
Pretty girls with wheelbarrows selling cockles and mussels;
A city redolent with history, whose gutters run with half-digested Guinness
After closing time, and the drinkers have been hurled into the gutter
By jovial bouncers who can recite "Ulysses" from start to finish
From memory, and where the Liffey, sweet Anna Liffey, flows peacefully,
With only an occasional splash when a pedestrian topples gaily in.
                  
But there is a darker side to famous Baile Atha Cliath, oh yes,
And the following anecdote is a sad but true indictment of the evil,
The omnipresent evil, which lurks in the black soul of the city.
I was trolling along the banks of the old Royal Canal one summer's evening
With my drinking companion, my Afro cousin, Black Paddy McSpigot,
Pausing only to glance briefly at the copulating couples on the towpath
(We were slightly amused by the small crowd watching one couple
who were engaged in the athletic congress of the ****-backed whale
underneath the bridge by Rose Street, a favourite spot for young lovers),
When a terrible shriek rent the air and a horde of renegade drunken nuns
Poured out of a late night underground folk-music drinking den
(the hugely amplified noise of the massed uilléan pipes was deafening
and had probably driven the poor dears into a religious frenzy).

Seeing Black Paddy, and mistaking his gay rendition of "Skibereen"
For an excerpt from the Satanic Mass, they yelled out polyphonically
"Tis the divil himself, so it is, an' all, an' all, let's get the focker",
And without further ado they leaped on him and ripped him to shreds,
Hurling lumps of his poor, poor body into the crocodile infested canal,
Where they were immediately masticated by the terrifying reptiles
(the mighty creatures had been stolen from the Zoological Gardens
by a group of drunken Animal Rights campaigners out on a ******,
and were the toast of the town in every gay bar in the vibrant city).
I cowered in terror at the horrific spectacle, thanking my lucky stars
I was wearing my archibishop's fancy dress uniform that evening
(it was the only way to jump the queue to get into Davy Byrne's Bar).
Dear God, I'll not visit the dear Emerald Isle again in a hurry, to be sure.
Nashville was never your home
you spoke of Dublin, as if
it were your mecca, your promised land
and now you can run through it's streets once more

Give Anais a kiss for me, you're home
I am at a loss
for words, how to feel
your presence, your poetry
and now I am left with nothing, but

this gnawing in the pit of my stomach

A brief moment, in the sun
but we both bled our lives out
our conversations, our love of poetry
shared in the early hours of the morning

I normally don't feel connected to anyone
but you accepted me for me
and made me feel like
we had been friends for years

and for that, I thank you Suranne
rest well,  I miss you
Marco ASF Couto Nov 2013
"Have you forgotten your ticket... or your luggage?"
Because I wish you did.
I wish we both Had forgotten everything behind, included clothes,
and this bench was a bed, a small bed, so you would have to sleep on my chest.
Tomorrow will be another day. Tomorrow will be another day without check in, without gates, without running, without reading books,
without delays, without waiting queues, without sweat, without planes landing, without the morbid wishes for a plane to crash, without escalatores everywhere, without you.
How I hate airports... How I love airports.
******* Airports... full of their welcome laughs and goodbye tears, their happy endings and melodramatics departures.
The sad concept of living it's all condensed in this place. You are never happy with what you got till you are sad for what you lost.
But I was happy with you. I was happy at the Dublin Airport.
Ruthie Oct 2014
You got your flight to London,
I hope you're still dreaming of LA.
10 thousand miles from Dublin,
You rest your head in Adelaide.
Australia is a little far from here.
Tupelo Dec 2014
My father loves his whiskey,
He tells me it reminds him of his home,
Nights in Dublin and Irish winters,
He danced with my mother under the moon,
Across the rivers and between the cracks,
Father do you drink to remember?
She still loves you all the same,
Oceans divided and still she remembers the barley,
All of the bar fights, and the serenades that sprouted,
Father do not be afraid,
For she still holds your heart
I met him on the Amtrak line to Central Jersey. His name was Walker, and his surname Norris. I thought there was a certain charm to that. He was a Texas man, and he fell right into my image of what a Texas man should look like. Walker was tall, about 6’4”, with wide shoulders and blue eyes. He had semi-long hair, tied into a weak ponytail that hung down from the wide brim hat he wore on his head. As for the hat, you could tell it had seen better days, and the brim was starting to droop slightly from excessive wear. Walker had on a childish smile that he seemed to wear perpetually, as if he were entirely unmoved by the negative experiences of his own life. I have often thought back to this smile, and wondered if I would trade places with him, knowing that I could be so unaffected by my suffering. I always end up choosing despair, though, because I am a writer, and so despair to me is but a reservoir of creativity. Still, there is a certain romance to the way Walker braved the world’s slings and arrows, almost oblivious to the cruel intentions with which they were sent at him.
“I never think people are out to get me.” I remember him saying, in the thick, rich, southern drawl with which he spoke, “Some people just get confused sometimes. Ma’ momma always used to tell me, ‘There ain’t nothing wrong with trustin’ everyone, but soon as you don’t trust someone trustworthy, then you’ve got another problem on your hands.’”—He was full of little gems like that.
As it turns out, Walker had traveled all the way from his hometown in Texas, in pursuit of his runaway girlfriend, who in a fit of frenzy, had run off with his car…and his heart. The town that he lived in was a small rinky-**** miner’s village that had been abandoned for years and had recently begun to repopulate. It had no train station and no bus stop, and so when Walker’s girlfriend decided to leave with his car, he was left struggling for transportation. This did not phase Walker however, who set out to look for his runaway lover in the only place he thought she might go to—her mother’s house.
So Walker started walking, and with only a few prized possessions, he set out for the East Coast, where he knew his girlfriend’s family lived. On his back, Walker carried a canvas bag with a few clothes, some soap, water and his knife in it. In his pocket, he carried $300, or everything he had that Lisa (his girlfriend) hadn’t stolen. The first leg of Walker’s odyssey he described as “the easy part.” He set out on U.S. 87, the highway closest to his village, and started walking, looking for a ride. He walked about 40 or 50 miles south, without crossing a single car, and stopping only once to get some water. It was hot and dry, and the Texas sun beat down on Walker’s pale white skin, but he kept walking, without once complaining. After hours of trekking on U.S. 87, Walker reached the passage to Interstate 20, where he was picked up by a man in a rust-red pickup truck. The man was headed towards Dallas, and agreed o take Walker that far, an offer that Walker graciously accepted.
“We rode for **** near five and a half hours on the highway to Dallas,” Walker would later tell me. “We didn’t stop for food, or drink or nuthin’. At one point the driver had to stop for a pisscall, that is, to use the bathroom, or at least that’s why I reckon we stopped; he didn’t speak but maybe three words the whole ride. He just stopped at this roadside gas station, went in for a few minutes and then back into the car and back on the road we went again. Real funny character the driver was, big bearded fellow with a mean look on his brow, but I never would have made it to Dallas if not for him, so I guess he can’t have been all that mean, huh?”
Walker finally arrived in Dallas as the nighttime reached the peak of its darkness. The driver of the pickup truck dropped him off without a word, at a corner bus stop in the middle of the city. Walker had no place to stay, nobody to call, and worst of all, no idea where he was at all. He walked from the corner bus stop to a run-down inn on the side of the road, and got himself a room for the night for $5. The beds were hard and the sheets were *****, and the room itself had no bathroom, but it served its purpose and it kept Walker out of the streets for the night.
The next morning, Texas Walker Norris woke up to a growl. It was his stomach, and suddenly, Walker remembered that he hadn’t eaten in almost two days. He checked out of the inn he had slept in, and stepped into the streets of Dallas, wearing the same clothes as he wore the day before, and carrying the same canvas bag with the soap and the knife in it. After about an hour or so of walking around the city, Walker came up to a small ***** restaurant that served food within his price range. He ordered Chicken Fried Steak with a side of home fries, and devoured them in seconds flat. After that, Walker took a stroll around the city, so as to take in the sights before he left. Eventually, he found his way to the city bus station, where he boarded a Greyhound bus to Tallahassee. It took him 26 hours to get there, and at the end of everything he vowed to never take a bus like that again.
“See I’m from Texas, and in Texas, everything is real big and free and stuff. So I ain’t used to being cooped up in nothin’ for a stended period of time. I tell you, I came off that bus shaking, sweating, you name it. The poor woman sitting next to me thought I was gunna have a heart attack.” Walker laughed.
When Walker laughed, you understood why Texans are so proud of where they live. His was a low, rumbling bellow that built up into a thunderous, booming laugh, finally fizzling into the raspy chuckle of a man who had spent his whole life smoking, yet in perfect health. When Walker laughed, you felt something inside you shake and vibrate, both in fear and utter admiration of the giant Texan man in front of you. If men were measured by their laughs, Walker would certainly be hailed as king amongst men; but he wasn’t. No, he was just another man, a lowly man with a perpetual childish grin, despite the godliness of his bellowing laughter.
“When I finally got to Tallahassee I didn’t know what to do. I sure as hell didn’t have my wits about me, so I just stumbled all around the city like a chick without its head on. I swear, people must a thought I was a madman with the way I was walkin’, all wide-eyed and frazzled and stuff. One guy even tried to mug me, ‘till he saw I didn’t have no money on me. Well that and I got my knife out of my bag right on time.” Another laugh. “You know I knew one thing though, which was I needed to find a place to stay the night.”
So Walker found himself a little pub in Tallahassee, where he ordered one beer and a shot of tequila. To go with that, he got himself a burger, which he remembered as being one of the better burgers he’d ever had. Of course, this could have just been due to the fact that he hadn’t eaten a real meal in so long. At some point during this meal, Walker turned to the bartender, an Irish man with short red hair and muttonchops, and asked him if he knew where someone could find a place to spend the night in town.
“Well there are a few hotels in the downtown area but ah wouldn’t recommend stayin’ in them. That is unless ye got enough money to jus’ throw away like that, which ah know ye don’t because ah jus’ saw ye take yer money out to pay for the burger. That an’ the beer an’ shot. Anyway, ye could always stay in one of the cheap motels or inns in Tallahassee. That’ll only cost ye a few dollars for the night, but ye might end up with bug bites or worse. Frankly, I don’t see many an option for ye, less you wanna stay here for the night, which’ll only cost ye’, oh, about nine-dollars-whattaya-say?”
Walker was stunned by the quickness of the Irishman’s speech. He had never heard such a quick tongue in Texas, and everyone knew Texas was auction-ville. He didn’t know whether to trust the Irishman or not, but he didn’t have the energy or patience to do otherwise, and so Walker Norris paid nine dollars to spend the night in the back room of a Tallahassee pub.
As it turns out, the Irishman’s name was Jeremy O’Neill, and he had just come to America about a year and a half ago. He had left his hometown in Dublin, where he owned a bar very similar to the one he owned now, in search of a girl he had met that said she lived in Florida. As it turns out, Florida was a great deal larger than Jeremy had expected, and so he spent the better part of that first year working odd jobs and drinking his pay away. He had worked in over 25 different cities in Florida, and on well over 55 different jobs, before giving up his search and moving to Tallahassee. Jeremy wrote home to his brother, who had been manning his bar in Dublin the whole time Jeremy was away, and asked for some money to help start himself off. His brother sent him the money, and after working a while longer as a painter for a local construction company, he raised enough money to buy a small run down bar in central Tallahassee, the bar he now ran and operated. Unfortunately, the purchase had left him in terrible debt, and so Jeremy had set up a bed in the back room, where he often housed overly drunk customers for a price. This way, he could make back the money to pay for the rest of the bar.
Walker sympathized with the Irishman’s story. In Jeremy, he saw a bit of himself; the tired, broken traveler, in search of a runaway love. Jeremy’s story depressed Walker though, who was truly convinced his own would end differently. He knew, he felt, that he would find Lisa in the end.
Walker hardly slept that night, despite having paid nine dollars for a comfortable bed. Instead, he got drunk with Jeremy, as the two of them downed a bottle of whisky together, while sitting on the floor of the pub, talking. They talked about love, and life, and the existence of God. They discussed their childhoods and their respective journeys away from their homes. They laughed as they spoke of the women they loved and they cried as they listened to each other’s stories. By the time Walker had sobered up, it was already morning, and time for a brand new start. Jeremy gave Walker a free bottle of whiskey, which after serious protest, Walker put in his bag, next to his knife and the soap. In exchange, Walker tried to give Jeremy some money, but Jeremy stubbornly refused, like any Irishman would, instead telling Walker to go **** himself, and to send him a postcard when he got to New York. Walker thanked Jeremy for his hospitality, and left the bar, wishing deeply that he had slept, but not regretting a minute of the night.
Little time was spent in Tallahassee that day. As soon as Walker got out on the streets, he asked around to find out where the closest highway was. A kind old woman with a cane and bonnet told him where to go, and Walker made it out to the city limits in no time. He didn’t even stop to look around a single time.
Once at the city limits, Walker went into a small roadside gas station, where he had a microwavable burrito and a large 50-cent slushy for breakfast. He stocked up on chips and peanuts, knowing full well that this may have been his last meal that day, and set out once again, after filling up his water supply. Walker had no idea where to go from Tallahassee, but he knew that if he wanted to reach his girlfriend’s mother’s house, he had to go north. So Walker started walking north, on a road the gas station attendant called FL-61, or Thomasville Road. He walked for something like seven or eight miles, before a group of college kids driving a camper pulled up next to him. They were students at the University of Georgia and were heading back to Athens from a road trip they had taken to New Orleans. The students offered to take Walker that far, and Walker, knowing only that this took him north, agreed.
The students drove a large camper with a mini-bar built into it, which they had made themselves, and stacked with beer and water. They had been down in New Orleans for the Mardi Gras season, and were now returning, thought the party had hardly stopped for them. As they told Walker, they picked a new designated driver every day, and he was appointed the job of driving until he got bored, while all the others downed their beers in the back of the camper. Because their system relied on the driver’s patience, they had almost doubled the time they should have made on their trip, often stopping at roadside motels so that the driver could get his drink on too. These were their “pit-stops”, where they often made the decision to either eat or court some of the local girls drunkenly.
This leg of the trip Walker seemed to glaze over quickly. He didn’t talk much about the ride, the conversation, or the people, but from what I gathered, from his smile and the way his eyes wandered, I could tell it was a fun one. Basically, the college kids, of which I figure there were about five or six, got Walker drunk and drove him all the way to Athens, Georgia, where they took him to their campus and introduced him to all of their friends. The leader of the group, a tall, athletic boy with long brown hair and dimples, let him sleep in his dorm for the night, and set him up with a ride to the train station the next morning. There, Walker bought himself a ticket to Atlanta, and said his goodbyes. Apparently, the whole group of students followed him to the station, where they gave him some food and said goodbye to him. One student gave Walker his parent’s number, telling him to call them when he got to Atlanta, if he needed a place to sleep. Then, from one minute to the next, Walker was on the train and gone.
When Walker got to Atlanta, he did not call his friend’s family right away. Instead, he went to the first place he saw with food, which happened to be a small, rundown place that sold corndogs and coke for a dollar per item. Walker bought himself three corndogs and a coke, and strolled over to a nearby park, where, he sat down on a bench and ate. As Walker sat, dipping his corndogs into a paper plate covered in ketchup, an old woman took the seat directly next to him, and started writing in a paper notepad. He looked over at her, and tried to see what she was writing, but she covered up her pad and his efforts were wasted. Still, Walker kept trying, and eventually the woman got annoyed and mentioned it.
“Sir, I don’t mind if you are curious, but it is terribly, terribly rude to read over another person’s shoulder as they write.” The woman’s voice was rough and beautiful, changed by time, but bettered, like fine wine.
“I’m sorry ma’am, it’s just that I’ve been on the road for a while now, and I reckon I haven’t really read anything in, ****, probably longer than that. See I’m lookin’ to find my girlfriend up north, on account of she took my car and ran away from home and all.”
“Well that is certainly a shame, but I don’t see why that should rid you of your manners.” The woman scolded Walker.
“Yes ma’am, I’m sorry. What I meant to convey was that, I mean, I kind of just forgot I guess. I haven’t had too much time to exercise my manners and all, but I know my mother would have educated me better, so I apologize but I just wanted to read something, because I think that’s something important, you know? I’ll stop though, because I don’t want to annoy you, so sorry.”
The woman seemed amused by Walker, much as a parent finds amusement in the cuteness of another’s children. His childish, simple smile bore through her like a sword, and suddenly, her own smile softened, and she opened up to him.
“Oh, don’t be silly. All you had to do was ask, and not be so unnervingly discreet about it.” She replied, as she handed her pad over to Walker, so that he could read it. “I’m a poet, see, or rather, I like to write poetry, on my own time. It relaxes me, and makes me feel good about myself. Take a look.”
Walker took the pad from the woman’s hands. They were pale and wrinkly, but were held steady as a rock, almost as if the age displayed had not affected them at all. He opened the pad to a random page, and started reading one of the woman’s poems. I asked Walker to recite it for me, but he said he couldn’t remember it. He did, however, say that it was one of the most beautiful things he had ever read, a lyrical, flowing, ode to t
A Short Story 2008
Tommy Randell Nov 2014
The music was spilling out of us
The Guinness was going in
Terry’s octave mandolin
Was riding out in front of him

Like a boat tethered in a tidal surge
Like a young colt backing off the rein
And for each unexamined wreck of a song
He’d let out a little more sail

We were flying

Upstairs in The Taffes Inn
Was an oven of chords
Songs about the famine and
Ireland’s tragedy of wars

And I answered
With an ash-pit tongue of a poem
Showing our Yorkshire wounds
Made by London’s bonds

We were crying

Telling of Fishing, mining and grief
That having no say was having no meat
Coming stumbling and shaking to our common regard
To a Dublin breakfast, a mixed grill of the heart

Where we agreed to our passions
And our histories’ concepts
Where we sat and said nothing when saying nothing was best
That one sausage alone is a very deep subject

We were frying.
One sausage etc is a quote from Ciaran Carson's book on Irish Music and culture 'Last Night's Fun' - A must must read!
Evan Stephens Jun 2019
You live on the canal,
by the little swan
that whittles the sun.
A sudden rush of clouds,
a clatter of sandals -
caprice of Dublin.

I knew of Dublin
and its grand canal
from old books tan as sandals.
I read Yeats for a swan,
Joyce for castle clouds
that yielded little sun.

But you, you were the sun!
You lit green Dublin
from within. Clouds
fled from the canals
of your eye. "Swansies."
And summer's far sandals

were today's sandals:
time shifted in the sun,
took flight like the night swan
through ancient Dublin.
You sent letters from the canal,
letters that divided clouds,

only to calve new clouds.
I've never worn sandals,
not ever, but when the canal
danced in my dreams, the sun
pierced my foot in Dublin.
You were my swan,

my elegant swansie,
killer of cloud,
conquistador of Dublin
in gladiatorial sandal,
herald and avatar of sun,
romantic of the grand canal.

Let me taste unclouded sun -  
let sandals upend the canal -
send swans by the dozen into Dublin.
Canal, swan, sun, clouds, sandals, Dublin
Zuzanna M Nov 2013
We were cleaning each other tears with our hands and kisses,  and today we clean the rests of jam and sauces  from our familiar faces in the comfort of our last moments.
The minutes to the departure which seemed to break us,  never managed to take our sense nor patience,
as when things  are so important that you hardly believe in their logic of attracting with a power that no one has given a chance.
I doubt I deserved this amount of joy.
But they doubted in the ability to take the suffer of what is unknown.
So perhaps we are all mistaken creating uncertainties and leaving too early.
And if there is more happiness on the other side of the gate... Then I only wish we could cross it together.
music to listen while reading poetry ;) https://www.facebook.com/ZuzanMatuszewska
Ormond Jul 2012
At the end of night she bathes in light,
We tussle in the warmth of morning,
The blankets and she are of sea foam
And found shells, whispering lost ocean 
Words.  Our bed is a raft, drifting aloft,
The coffee is brewing with mellow sun,
Her smiles, filling my silly, giddy mug.
Soon, we walk to the pebbled beach,
Her hair is waving at the friendly seas, 
Gulls are circling in the moving skies
Reeling with the slow, slipping tides
And I skip stones with her as our feet 
Sink in the milk of morning sands—
Must we be off to Dublin town?
Today the Irish people witnessed an eclipse in their senses. The morning came over all queer.  Nobody noticed, except the king of bookworms in the book of Kells, and the mice in the Campanile.   I witnessed the eclipse from a windowless room on the 4th floor of the Arts block.  Edmund Spenser's poem, The Faerie Queene,  shall henceforth be named, Long ****, by jury of 5 English Lit. Students and a Lecturer.  Also, Sinn Fein plans to build Jerusalem in Ireland's green and pleasant land.  

Lines written last night over a cup of sugary tea in a public house in North Dublin.
Kay Ireland Aug 2016
The rose petals in my cocktail
Somehow found a way
To colour your romantic young lips;
I longed to match them with mine,
Bloom a field of thorned kisses between us.
Between the half pints, the martini, and the free shot,
The rest of your face is a blur
But I cannot forget the right side of those thin lips
Curving upward as you spoke,
As you listened to my stories
About a land far away,
With your blue eyes locked on mine.
I rambled and you smiled.
You couldn’t understand my love for the city,
But you were glad I chose Dublin that night.
You asked questions and I didn’t understand
The implications until
The morning when I was sober.
The more I drank the more I wanted you,
But they closed down the bar
And your friends disappeared
And my mouth grew dry as we spoke.
The last ones in,
I’d lost track of time and we were out on the street.
I waited for you to ask me along
But they took me by the arm
And I slept in the bathtub of my hotel room,
Never knowing more than your name,
Never remembering more than your charming drunken smile
And the heat of your breath on my neck,
Inches away,
But never touching.
Written the morning after a drunken night in Dublin that I spent with three local lads, one of whom I quite fancied. The night could have ended so very differently but circumstances prevented it.
Patricia Tsouros Oct 2013
FANCY AS ****


I knew something was not right. I went in with a sledge hammer challenged the truth and you put the phone down. Me in London, You in Dublin. One day to our planned London Weekend.

I came in like a wrecking ball
Yeah, I just closed my eyes and swung
Left me crashing in a blazing fall
All you ever did was wreck me
Yeah, you, you wrecked me

I never meant to start a war
I just wanted to know the truth
I wanted you to tell the truth
I couldn’t live a lie; I was running for my life



When you put the phone down on me on Wednesday night Oct 10th followed by a solicitor’s letter the following day, that was abuse. That letter was profoundly nasty. It was all a lie, just like as I now know, the rest of our relationship was. You went to the Garda, anything just so I would not discover the truth.

Your abuse is not without it's consequences. I needed you to tell me to talk to me. I don't feel revenge, anger, hate; I just feel utter shock, used, physically abused and mostly devastation.

But you know what, it hurts like hell, but I will fight back and I will find my way out of this abuse. I find it hard to believe you want me to suffer like this. Now I know you ‘Fancied Me As ****’. Why not just be straight up?  Why all the lies? Why not give me the chance to walk away when I wanted to?
This is more of a story than a poem.
YOU gave, but will not give again
Until enough of paudeen's pence
By Biddy's halfpennies have lain
To be "some sort of evidence',
Before you'll put your guineas down,
That things it were a pride to give
Are what the blind and ignorant town
Imagines best to make it thrive.
What cared Duke Ercole, that bid
His mummers to the market-place,
What th' onion-sellers thought or did
So that his plautus set the pace
For the Italian comedies?
And Guidobaldo, when he made
That grammar school of courtesies
Where wit and beauty learned their trade
Upon Urbino's windy hill,
Had sent no runners to and fro
That he might learn the shepherds' will
And when they drove out Cosimo,
Indifferent how the rancour ran,
He gave the hours they had set free
To Michelozzo's latest plan
For the San Marco Library,
Whence turbulent Italy should draw
Delight in Art whoSe end is peace,
In logic and in natural law
By ******* at the dugs of Greece.
Your open hand but shows our loss,
For he knew better how to live.
Let paudeens play at pitch and toss,
Look up in the sun's eye and give
What the exultant heart calls good
That some new day may breed the best
Because you gave, not what they would,
But the right twigs for an eagle's nest!
December
Ruthie Sep 2014
There's just no escaping you.
You're wrapped in all my thoughts.
Your face in every crowd.
My heart is cluttered with feelings of you.
Adelaide road.
A street in Dublin.
But also your Australian hometown.
Crazy.
And now every day I pass there..
Your face will swim in my heart and my mind.
I bet even if I wanted to escape.
Even if I tried my hardest.
I just couldn't.
i walked the shores of dublin looking out to sea
white horses on the waves rolling wild and free
covering the sand heading to the shore
coming home again coming home once more

there i met a girl she stopped and said hello
we sat down together watched the water flow
stars were shining bright in the sky above
i looked in to her. eyes and began to fall in love.

then i held her hand we walked a little more
with the moon above lighting up the shore
then we held each other i squeezed and held her tight
underneath the moon and the stars so bright.

we looked at the clouds as they were floating bye
all the shapes they made in the dublin sky
tide began to turn to roll away once more
as it rolled away to some other shore

we settled down together raised a family
in love for evermore we would always be
with the girl i met that set my heart a whirl
and forever more she will be my dublin girl

— The End —