Waiting for something to happen 

Waiting for something to happen 

that isn’t 


waiting for something 

that Godot 


Waiting for someone

to hiccup 

more than me.

You see

waiting is (a) creating




Not Farting But Founding… 



The rain fall?

The toilet flush?

The doorbell ring?


The jackdaw land?

The chicken lay?

A pony snort?


That fish spawn?

This hiccup die?

Her tongue melt?

Her wit end?

Her scream echo?


Friday follow?

The poet’s grip falter?

Your journey age?


The albatross be called Wisdom?

My hummingbird depart?

My sign language strike a chord?

Your fingernails warm?

Waiting for something to happen…

A story take on a character?

This ceremony embrace your destiny?

My watch tick?

Tim Miller wake in time 

to catch Godot working?


Waiting for something to happen. 

Ages Apart 

Ages Apart

I was talking to Pytheas of Massilia on Friday.

He was still in the grip of a cold he caught

returning from Thule.

Twas as if the world’s oldest albatross

– whom some call Wisdom –

sang with a bee hummingbird

that fled Cuba from Irma to Cork.

Such was the storm song …

such the Artic bass …

My Greek lapsed as I left the Parthenon,

his Irish, foreign, tinged with Scots Gallic,


We stuck to sign language,

ice on his fingernails.

I put that down to the disgrace

that few believed his stories.

Wrapped in song,

building melody

on staves of flesh,

major and minor,

there was little between us.




Two men with hearts

dependant on blood

lightly to coagulate

in hurricanes predicted to return

(and persist).


I must tell Tim Miller

Pytheas read his poem

in the Shetlands,

despite the middle-aged ‘stupidity’

never learned from pilgrims.

Smiles we made over gin and tonic,

over ice.

We called our chorus

Brothers from Earth’

We are brothers from Earth,

conceived in shadows’ stage,

conjoined and free in birth,

alive in every age.

I’m not creative

I’m not creative,

except in the sense that every human being is creative,

and, if every human is creative,

the word is fairly useless.

I’m not a creative writer,

except in the sense that every writer is creative,

and, if every writer is creative,

the word is superfluous.


I am simply

a person who writes,

a person who writes frequently

a person who writes in a certain style.


(I used to write letters every day and thought my letters were attractive.)


I’m cheesed off by the quantity of left-handed people who are ‘creative’.

I know the word has colloquial meanings –

people with original ideas

people who find brand new ways

artists, designers,

theatre, television, radio, film people

engineers, architects

marketing people

people who get their work exhibited

many more I can’t think of.

(As if dentists & grave-diggers weren’t creatives)


How useful is creative as a distinguishing word?

How often do you wish to say

you’re a creative person, a very creative person

and, by implication,

that person over there isn’t creative,

has barely a creative bone in their body’?

(I like ‘creativity means not copying

Feran Adria from elBulli said that)


When I write something people call creative,

I don’t know what they’d label ‘ordinary’.

I don’t know what criteria people use.

(I fear the lowest common denominator is ‘creative’.)


If I knew what standards people used

to describe a writer as creative

I’d understand.


The one thing I’m sure of,

I don’t dream of myself as a creative being.








Death & Life matter to people who read poetry

A new poetry collection by Paul O’Mahony will be out in time for Xmas.

(Big secret) He has a publisher.

I discovered Paul has a problem he hasn’t solved.

He’s composed the poems.

He’s even compiled a short-list of poems, from which he’ll select no more than 40 (next week).

The trouble is he doesn’t have a title – and “Selected Works” won’t do.

I asked Paul What’s in a title?”

“A theme – and an invitation. The theme determines which poems make it into the book – and how the poems are clustered.”

“For example?”

“‘Rage’ by my friend Patrick Stack [published by Revival Press] suggests you’re offered pretty strong emotions in every poem. But the title doesn’t reveal the poems are about survival of darkness within.

Rage could be about 

the loss of friends and would-be lovers

madness & beauty


or abuse

or something.

The poet used the title to help him decide the order of the poems.”

I asked Paul

 “How is the title an invitation?”

“Only certain people are invited to the book. Not everyone’s invited by ‘Rage’ – the blurb on the back puts many people off. That way the book appeals to a select group of people who don’t fear to buy & read ‘Rage’ – and welcome ‘Rage’ into life.”

 I couldn’t resist asking the obvious question  What’s the name of your next poetry book?”

“That’s the death and life of me.  I can’t decide.  I’m stuck in mixed feelings. It better be better than the last one.”

“Oh… What was the name of your last book?

“Irish Epic Poem in 33 Cantos – wasn’t that a stupid title? Thank goodness my mother bought so many copies.”

I didn’t believe him, couldn’t solve his problem, left him looking blank and wondered which book I’d read next –  ‘Rage’ or ‘Irish Epic Poem’?

If you have any suggestions for Paul, I’m sure he’d gift you a copy if the book sells well.

The gift of life

snowdrop-650894_640 (1)


My little egg,
you precious shell of life,
within you dwells all you need ever grow
into your spirit,
into the finest silk.

My little one,
you petal from a flower
that blooms wherever nectar’s found,
life’s your spirit
along the fruitful way.

My little seed,
you’ll germinate and sprout
so many glorious dreams each day
beyond your spirit.
The gift of life is born.


Special thanks to my good friend Bobby Kountz – and his first grandchild in honour of whom this was written

The total eclipse of Donald John Trump (work in progress)


He looked directly at the sun
and the sun shone back.
He felt the smile flood his Queen’s eyes,
stretch ruddy pink skin,
the slightest suggestion of dimples.

The sun god Ra rose from the bed
A fire in Ra’s eye raged,
falcon’s feathers flowing
in celebration.
This was the day.

This was no ordinary man
Voice of his people
taller than warriors
big in boots
staccato words
Jamaican Infante.

The sun god’s cobra curled …