The Mask

‘When all this is over,
can I take her out at Halloween?’
His laugh was hollow.
Did he catch my humour?

‘I’ll place the mould down, okay?’
Saliva gushed between my teeth,
‘Okay,’ I said.
‘Stay silent. Stay still,’ he ordered.

Soft plastic entrapped me,
she danced upon my lips,
trickled along the bridge of my nose.
Slowly aged and hardened.

I tried to still my beating heart.
Second by second,
she grew more solid,
more cold.

Minutes passed.
I listened to him breathe,
Imagined his eyes guarding, imprisoning.
My mouth became a Sahara.

Did I need to cough?
Christ, I couldn’t!
Mercy, please, wait till it’s over,
when he removes the mask.

Poem: Sunday in the City

The city in the rain
on Sunday morning is
clean, a little less mean.
Heaven opens, sharp showers take away
all of Saturday’s leftover pain.

Gutters flow in rhythm,
creating a gentle melody,
as dirt is hunted
and rinsed down drains.
The streets volume down

a notch but for a lonely beep
of a waiting taxi jeep.
Avenues are dreaming,
all traffic lights green.
Seekers of madness are all asleep.

As it nears seven
a hungover bus engine awakes.

A Masters I yet to Master

In here this face,

In a library where I have nobody

To say hello; to share a story,

or to just say hello.

Just me, my pen and this laptop mine.


My mind munches a thousand thoughts,

The good, the bad, and unmentionable.

All  thoughts created here in NUIG,

In this near mute library, where be

Just me, my pen and this laptop of mine.













IF I Had Cash – Some More Cash!

Once upon a time, long long ago my bank account was not in arrears like it seems always to be these days – damn these days!

“These Days,” I enter an amount to withdraw, and I cross my fingers, and dance if it’s not already in overdraft.

And it’s days like this, days where I come close to splashing some cash that I hate my bank account most; it’s an antagonist to having fun!

And it’s days like this that regret not using my mother’s view: “Spend, Spend, and God will Send.”

Oh I once lived by that saying, but nowadays I have begun to think that God doesn’t work this way.

I suppose I should say why I am ranting, Well firstly, I rant a lot and tis like a hobby. Secondly, I have turned down a night at a Red Hot Chili Peppers Concert…

I’m still calculating the cost of that ticket I’ve been be offered and look somewhat distantly into the distance and Say ” If one did this and that one could maybe, just about afford….Nah I can’t!

After all, I am looking for a room in Galway to do me, Masters! And that ain’t cheap, and even if you have money, it’s still hard to get a “Dacent” place.

Cash can be a bitch, but yet we all want some.



So a good friend ,  a very good friend, is departing our home country, the Emerald Isle, the home of  the Shamrock Shake and all of our country’s great things….Like am…You Know…Let’s just move on.

And of course my friend doesn’t take small steps, she takes gigantic leaps,  it’s China she’s leaving us for!

“Are ya mad Michelle?”  is what I’ll say when I meet her before she takes flight; closely followed by:

“Do we here, your friends, in Ireland, mean anything to you!”

And maybe finish with a : “ Oh so you’re TOO GOOD for Ireland, oh you’re  gone above your station!”

But of course, after some time, I shall say fair frigging play to Michelle! Going working  in a far away country,   a different culture,  is an adventure and a step outside the comfort zone.

See I personally would never be brave enough to take such a step – I’m a home bird without wings or one that can’t fly …I’m an Ostrich.

Yet if asked I would recommend exploring different societies, because there’s so much to see and so little time, plus there is a painted path for a person’s life in Irish society so I admire the increasing number of people which are today taking different paths.

While the thought of traveling to China – a country way, way over there  or should I  simply say far away, is somewhat scary to me, but, I am sure it would be exhilarating, an adrenaline rush and maybe something that I should have the balls to do!

Our planet is remarkable and there are so many  thrilling things to see, places  to explore and enjoy – the good, the bad, and mad!

And, I don’t mean common tourist holidays but like my friend, my brave friend Michelle,  going and staying in a new environment, the other side of  the world, and coming part of another society.

So anyways, I must go make some tea and so I’ll finish by saying once more fair play to my friend and to anyone exploring the world, making new homes and new friends {Remember Us}

Bring us back some good stories Michelle🙂

P.S. And you made good tae too, especially when I was a little grumpy!

One wrong step makes long walks

It was midnight.  The darkness was almost blinding, but the silence  I gently broke with a rustle of the pebbles  as I walked towards her white marble headstone. I was here again, sneaking in, to once more say sorry. Maria Julia Browne died on the 14th July 1996, young and beautiful.

“ I didn’t mean it.”

“Oh you meant it kid, you meant to kill my kid,”  said a voice I once knew well.,

I turned to say I didn’t, that I was a child too, that I didn’t understand, but a bullet hit  me between  my eyes.  

I fell  upon his daughter’s grave. I whispered to her for the final time.

‘‘I’m sorry, through life, through death, I will always be sorry.’’

“Get off her grave you rat, you fucking rat.”


Why do people give a “LIKE” without reading your piece?

This a terrible crime, one which I definitely feel is rampant on WordPress.

I genuinely feel that those who undertaken this sin should be hung – there is still a lot to be said for the medieval era!

Obviously, I am not accusing you of this for you are reading this piece – my release of frustration.

But if you have written a poem or a story and see that it gets an instant like…and the piece takes a least  two  minutes to read you’ll understand my enmity.

Anyways thanks for reading, I do appreciate those who take the time to read a piece or make a comment.

But why do people “LIKE” pieces they haven’t read?


Short Story: Doubting her doubt

treesBloodshot eyes, her pale face and dyed black hair reflect in the holy water which her nail-bitten pudgy fingers slowly sink into. For a moment, she questions all that remains of her sanity, before blessing herself – not once, not twice. Then she steps forward and enters the archaic stone chapel for the first time in twenty-three years.

As Julie steps meticulously across the border she drags down the hood of her sodden Led Zeppelin jacket, and instantly glances up, seeking hope, seeking a miracle…Once inside she hears the heavy echoes of her maroon punk boots reverberate as if shooting this sacred Silence.

Walking down the aisle, she smells a variety of odours: an aroma of decaying wood, burning candles and the slightest whiff of incense. Her eyes, not daring to look at any sacred statue or pious painting, search for a free seat in this empty church.

After some time, Julie kneels down at a row of seats which lay between stations, stations of the cross. She can no longer attempt to hide, for there is nobody to hide from; and yet her brown eyes stare down.

Every minute the scars are a little more inevitable; yet here she feels a sense…Of wonderful loneliness – as if silence is now a friend, someone who she feels may listen. And although all the muscles in her five foot four frame remain tense, she’s comfortable in the emptiness, where she is free, where her fuddled thoughts escape the cage of a loving family. A family which she feels are squeezing, just a little too tight, as if their tender hearts entrap her in an arena of trepidation.

As if on cue, Julie’s phone vibrates, impolitely interrupting the peace. The ringtone launches into: ‘‘I feel good now I knew that I …’’ She swipes the sound away while declaring the action a beauty of technology. She contemplates how better life could be if one could swipe away their fears and troubles – she then looks up, fabricates a smile and swipes across her forehead.

Once more, Julie is in what she deems as beautiful silence. She tries to assemble her jungle of thoughts as if tactically aiming to find clarity in her mind. But she knows that in these thoughts one will always be at the forefront. In this peace she believes she can recognise everyone’s gentle lies; stare for long and all that is true can be seen in those loving eyes, she tells herself.

Julie remembers all the sorrow in the room she had departed. A waiting room where positivity had been crushed, where hope laid in the corner battered, bruised and believed to be beaten. To her it felt as if a shovel lay waiting to carve his grave. John’s grandmother had handed her a set of rosary beads, asked her to pray. Normally, on a normal life, she might have laughed, and maybe say that she’s too old for fairytales but she took the beads and smiled. Nevertheless, she had not prayed, not broken her laws, but simply hid them in a pocket.

Yet an unplanned hour’s walk brought her to Saint Columba’s Church where she was baptised – Julia Kathleen Collins. Today’s entry, of her own free will, she tells herself is not to pray but to plead.

‘Am I yer fool, fodder for the darkness,’ escapes her lips, escapes her prison.

Silence: busy roads, busy lives and a whirlwind of a busy 21st century lay outside while all bar one so placid within these hallowed walls.

Silence: only the sound of Julie’s beating heart, or she questions, is it the rumbling of harrowing thoughts which persecute a sinking soul. ‘

‘Can a soul sink?’’ she screamed; a scream that seemed to echo for longer than eternity.

Julie removes her damp jacket as her mind muses over doubt, death and darkening regrets. Again she stares down at the floor as if blinded by the tranquillity of a winter sunshine that was beginning to timidly travel through parting clouds and the chapel’s stained windows.

A simple wish Julie makes as her mind contemplates her fears of a forever isolation in a forgotten future. All she can think of, concentrate on is John: how they first met, their first kiss – a drunken shift which nears its sixth anniversary…She curses her vanity for thinking is he, in a coma, thinking of her.

The last words Julie said to John are ‘Fuck you,’ their classic duo of words – her truth so often mute, her lies so often loud. She remembers their anger, their happiness, their problems, their fun and their lust.

Julie thinks of the end; and how it is that, as one approaches their end, nobody who loves you remembers your anger, your faults, your failings, all that they remember is your goodness and she thinks this may be life’s final gift.

In the pocket of the jacket which Julie discarded, a few minutes ago, lay the rosary beads that John’s grandmother gave her. Alongside the beads were a two unopened packets of paracetamol. Fortunately, Julie’s headache has eased.  

Yesterday, what happened yesterday? Where had he been, yesterday?  Julie asks herself. However, she knows  yesterday’s forgotten, unlike the torturous memoir that today is building.  She believes in any future, today will be remembered forever.

There is no splash when a tear slides tentatively down her cheek before falling upon the floor,  disappearing immediately. Forever. Forgotten for eternity.

Read my mind, she says internally. … ‘Or is it too late, too long a wait for me to bite your bait?’ she roars out, her voice carrying a vibe of delirium.

All is silent.

All is heard.

The church bells chimes. Julie’s glances up again, her mind questions her mental stability. She remembers her father’s words: ‘Sleep, sleep, rest you need, it is rest you need.’ And then, as if speaking to herself, she hears a murmur of words from….No….. From nowhere, or everywhere.

..Lonely I am ‘til yer sun dies down

and then a miracle is called,

Always a miracle that is called.

Julie buries her head in her hands and asks her mind for a second of peace, for him, for her, for their sanity. She needs… He needs a miracle.

She hears slow footsteps.

So slow,she fears it’s a friend.

Her pulse races,

a thunder in her thoughts,

the sound of steps are all round,

everywhere or nowhere…






She curses herself, her mind crowds with doubt

– until she looks up, to where I do be.

The End

Book Review: Stardust by Neil Gaiman


I was browsing through my favourite Irish Bookshop – Chapters in Dublin City – when I spotted a name, a novelist which I have heard so much about but had never read, that novelist was Neil Gaiman– recently I studied the works of the legend Terry Pratchett.
The novel which I spotted was the 1999 Stardust.

Stardust begins in ” The Sleepy English Countryside….” which is the location of a tiny, serene town named Wall.
The protagonist of the story is young Tristan Thorn who loses his heart and possibly a portion of his sanity, in his attempt to capture the love of Victoria Forester.

Here’s the thing though, Victoria isn’t that keen on Tristan –oh don’t we all know how that feels!

Like so many a person, Tristan is a dreamer and he tells his crush all the things he would do to capture her heart.

And somewhat lightlyTristan tells her that he would capture a falling star for her, and guess what, Victoria, being a little too pragmatic tells him that if he captures the falling star she will give him her hand in marriage.

So Tristan vows to retrieve the fallen star for his beloved.

There was no Tinder in the Victorian era…

So , the classic duo of romance and fantasy, some may frown but there is a good reason why love is such vital part of most fantasy novels…It’s always popular, love is on everyone mind.

Hence, I have no arguments with the simple subject of the novel . However, while Stardust is a beautiful fairytale, it didn’t surprise me. I found the book very predictable – I had no tingly feeling at any moment, no shock!

I did find the start enticing, you know the kind of story that has you reading in the loo! But this feeling did not last.

The early chapters were written beautifully and Gaiman’s vocabulary frequently had me reaching for my dictionary. And the end was amiable But the middle was just a little boring for me and there was no surprising twist, but all was a little predictable.

All in all, I would give the book 3 Stars!

Last words: The story is not unforgettable.

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