Saturday, June 29, 2013

After the Funeral

Image may be Subject to Copyright

After the funeral we gathered

four full-bodied men;

once a clutch of speckled purpose,

now dulled and awkward with grief.

We toe the line that is the parents' death,

and notice with embarrassment,

the scuffed toe cap,

side by side

with the brand new shoe.

This is a time for disentanglement,

and each drawer is trawled,

each picture scanned

for memories to be shared.

We look for clues as

to why an object was cherished

so long, — why an after image

can represent a life.

In the attic I find my treasure tin:           

a horse made of clip-clops,

a ball of stringed ideas,

a soldier stiff backed, with no fear,

a car of squeals and vrooms,

the forgotten pet beetle now hollow,

the conker with a chestnut tree

still inside,

the butterfly painter of meadow's flowers, pinned,

and the skipping stone still waiting for the next attempt.

All these things, that held my life suspended,

since the lid was last pressed down,

now have the strange familiarity,

and distance,

of an overheard conversation.

from Change in the Wind 
©Copyright Niall OConnor

Change in the Wind in Dublin:

The Winding Stair (Ormond Quay)
Connolly Books (Temple Bar)
Scribbles (Drumcondra)
Books Upstairs (College Green)
Santry Community Resource Centre


  1. This is just wonderful in so many ways. (And I wish you'd take out the unnecessary comma after 'lid' in last verse. Then it would be perfect!)

  2. Roisin Keane

    Really like this one Niall O Connor


Comments are welcome . . .