How does an Unbeliever pray?

Not on my knees with head all bound in thorns,
not in a pew prostrate before a god,
not stooped, nor bent, a sinner supplicant,
a poor unworthy man afraid to say:
Like as the eagle soars astride the wind,
like as the river flows from spring to sea,
like as erratic stands upright and firm,
a worthy creature proud to stride the land.

No more a child beset with guilt and shame,
but grown attentive to the joy of light,
humble as dust and underwhelmed by night,
a star that shines and whispers love to all.

We move in prayer, our talent in our verse,
we celebrate in time the universe.

Idaho – Our Provenance

It is illegal to smoke (mince pies) in these premises,

We will re-open (cream) on Friday 28th at 08:26,

W(h)ines by the bottle,

we sell (humour) gift vouchers.

I sat beside the bag lady
preventing her overcoat
from being (whipped) cream.

Richard’s ebony hair glistened
with perspiration, behind candles
that dripped red calcified wax
to a fine point suspended over
pastry laced with sugar water.

His smile reflected
from the surface of a teaspoon
that had never seen a better day
– just as the jigsaw, fixed to the glass
that protected the map of the island,
cast shadow over Cork

– just as the woman of the house
squeezed a clothes-horse
under the reindeer’s bauble.

I’m going to Jackson …
reminded me of Tammy Wynette
and Santa’s brother, last seen
outside Boise wielding a pickaxe and shovel
wanting work whenever women
would watch him waffle on about
“the land of many waters”.

Idaho Cafe is deeper than the Grand Canyon
in affections,
and shorter in afflictions
because bunyons are bound to blush
unseen under square tables.

‘This is forever”, every mince pie,
Esto Perpetua,
there is no Dracula here,
Huckleberries cry.

A locally-owned Breakfast, Lunch, Bapini,
Sweet fix,
with drinks like Idaho
americano, espresso, cappuccino,
marshmallow
– lest you go past the best cafe in Ireland
(voted by aficionados)
without noticing blackboards
full of chalked wines

on the Saturday before Christmas.

My Musical Autobiography

In the beginning …

The start of my musical life – a series of monologues amplified by extracts from music that’s mattered to me
Life began in the 1960s

There’s more to the story …

There’s more to life than the Sixties

My parents helped make me …

The Classicals & the French

The people who have ideas

The people who have ideas
breathe, touch, imagine the best,
the same way eagles fly 
on air blown in streams that flow
over waterfalls, whirlpools, lakes – 
into backwaters,
into oceans.

The IDEAS I met
in the home The Quiet Man built
(alongside the Cross of Cong)
have all come
clad with strings and baggage,
stubble and eau de cologne
from Jo Malone.

A few carried by musical instruments,
some with a stoop,
the odd one with a straight back,
semiconductors
looking for company
Congregation,
and the like.

Ideas encased in characters:
Rewilding man
Heart with a fear of trusting others
Ireland’s first flow consultant
Multi-tasking woman
(who brushed her teeth
and spat into her handbag)

HUDDLING
against the safety of closed paradigms
and spent minds

MINING
for alchemy
and epiphany

TAKEAWAY:
If it’s icy cold,
pee in your pants –
it’ll soon dry out
and keep you warm.

A splash of IDEATION on the road …
near the Hungry Monk.

Heretics listed:
Bureaucracy works
War eliminates fear 
Doing the shagging thing
Stop travelling
Make something useless

The green soup for lunch
began life as an idea
in the mind of a vegetable
(Civil Rights for Vegetables)
before you eat words for ingredients.

THIS YEAR 
the best interruptions were ideas
that would not keep 
behind the Hedge
Desperados
Camerados.




I have no idea

I have no idea
(a poem for CongRegation)

I’ve never given birth to an idea that floated
the wine I’ve drunk, the women I’ve loved,

all permeable membranes that leaked
all blocked arteries 

like clods of hair in a drain.
I’ve had multiple births from embryos implanted

like seeds, into my imagination.
I’m big into cultivation, gestation, articulation

and eradication.
There’s an earthworm casting in my brain.

I’m here to sing a song that longs for Cong.
You can’t go wrong among the throng 

where you belong
with your ideas on yellow leads and purple cows.