Cuirt Annual 21 2006 International Festival of Literature Ireland PD Lyons reading his work from it.

The Cuirt International Festival of Literature is Ireland’s leading festival. In 2006 it’s 21st year the editors Alan Hayes & Maura Kennedy selected one of my poems to appear in the anthology along side such artist as Seamus Heany, Edna O’Brien, Nikki Giovanni, Eoin Colfer and many fine others. So very grateful to have been there. Thank you for watching & reading.

Waltzing Miss Jeanie

The sky barely visible

Gunmetal cold keeps each bit of snow completely separate.

Sounds, most into silence or muffled by a swish and swirl

As my horse moves through.

Imagine sand against a giant hourglass,

Wicked witch of the west,

There’s no place like home…

Nothing else moves,

Rock walls mostly covered

Drainage ditches camouflaged

Snow drifts level the landscape almost beyond illusion.

By memory only we keep to the road.

Imagine being the first to cross this land in winter

And if it were a time before horses…?

Off the open ridge we cut down to where the pine woods

Shelter enough so we can pick up the pace.

Occasionally over burdened snow spills,

Sometimes peeling bits of green, chunks of old ice, thuds magnified by the quiet.

Perhaps an excuse to break monotony

Or some primal memory aroused –

She spooks.

Imagine double barrel blast, a restless dragon, a living legend…

So I talk her through; my voice being a calm place for her to focus.

So I sing, putting the name she knows into the song,

My fathers’ curious choice for a lullaby he used to sing to me.

Imagine not yet five years old, frightened from things that you don’t even have words for.

Things that move only in those darker places in your room,

And then his heavy footsteps,

the weight of his body as he sits on the edge the bed,

his strong steady hands sometimes rubbing sometimes patting

while always singing over and over until finally asleep you couldn’t ask him to again…

We make our way like that now,

Dealing with imagined as well as real risks –

Patches of ice beneath this rising snow upon this rising, winding road


versions of this were published by Hotmetal Press and West47 Galway arts, Inquietudes Literary Journal & erbacce press.

~ some of the most rare and wonderful moments of my life were brought to me by horses ( lovers and acid). i have actually been out in blizzard conditions on horse back albeit in Connecticut and only a few miles to go. Jeanie was a hot little chestnut Morgan mare, she taught me much, broke my heart and a few bones in the process. I am very grateful for having known her.

good luck bye! ~

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