poemimage

Where text meets image. Where the visual intersects the literary. Often posting 1st drafts and editing in (almost) real time.

Tag: Ireland

A Broken Ankle (and Oliver Cromwell)

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At the nine and one-half week mark

Your foot is still swollen

23

Your ankle looks like a loaf of rye bread baked

On a winter night and placed inside a blanket

As winds howl through cracks in the walls.

4

Or something meaty and coarse

Illiterate peasants tear between their teeth

Marching beneath a mercenary banner

15

 Fighting a war for glory and power

Though not their own.

13

The instructions are:

Elevate, ice, and exercise,

Form the alphabet three times a day with your foot.

17

Do not dangle your foot for hours above any battle scenes

Celebrated in embroidered tapestries

Warming cold castle walls.

12

For the last month you have worn an air cast

Made of plastic and plastic fabric

Following six weeks of plaster and then fibreglass

Monstrosities.

1417

 You march beneath the banner of a cane. This is next.

137

 The electricity goes out. You push past a blond woman on a horse

Climbing the stairs. She’s dressed like a fish.

Or so it seems with glimmers of moonlight passing through cracks

In the roof.

1717

You rescue two children.

This is not possible you are on crutches.

2

 Oliver Cromwell’s army is marauding through the streets

Looking for Irish to enslave or decapitate.

16

You tear down a tapestry showing Puritans Arriving in America

And roll up the children.

You put a loaf of fresh bread between them

Dragging the tapestry to the corner of the Great Hall

Behind a counter with pastries, a cash register, and postcards.

1314

 You find your crutches.

Your air cast is light and removable

For a month and a half you wore what felt like anvils

And told yourself you weren’t going crazy.

This doesn’t really bother me you said.

1512

 You tell yourself you won’t be captured.

At the fracture clinic they said you would walk in

On September 8th with a cane and a limp.

16

Your foot fits in your unlaced walking shoe.

Oliver Cromwell is trying on wooden shoes.

Where did he get those?

He laughs a high-pitched laugh.

3

 His Puritan followers board a ship for the Caribbean

Leading captives bound neck to neck.

17

 You walk right through them and shudder with cold.

You limp into the sunshine

Stopping at your neighbourhood cafe.

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In the Streets Beneath the Ocean by John W. Sexton

global revelation

globularist

in the streets beneath the ocean

on her coral chair

the fishes whisper secrets

beneath her seaweed hair

she’s got a tumour in her head

that’s a glowing pearl

she’s a strange strange strange

underwater girl

platinum

bird sea

in the streets beneath the ocean

she combs her seaweed hair

the dolphins bring her children

that have drowned down there

and she makes them coats from sailors’ skin

gives them gold from sailors’ teeth

taken from the sunken ships

wrecked upon the reef

a manifestation

solosolosolo

I caught her in a dream one time

or maybe she caught me

took me from my sleeping brain

into the deepest sea

gave me seven kisses

and seven cups of wine

promised me promised me

that she’d be mine

blue-her-too-2 Read the rest of this entry »

Angel by Eileen Sheehan

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He said, I am old and

everything has a bitter 

taint and besides

I have only these oddments

to offer; things broken, 

unfinished, unused and I’m not even 

sure why it is that I’ve 

kept them so long.

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But she saw how his body

radiated light and he carried

not just a jumble of wheels,

coils, springs but the very

ones she’d been needing to

mend the faltering

mechanisms of her heart.

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vwx

And his eyes were pure

as a child’s

and she knew

xyz

from that moment on

she was his

entirely

ii

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Eileen Sheehan is from Killarney, Ireland. Her collections are Song of the Midnight Fox and Down the Sunlit Hall (Doghouse Books). Angel was first published in THE SHOp: A Magazine of Poetry (ed John and Hilary Wakeman).

dd

I found this love poem very moving, beautiful and rooted in reality. I was intrigued by deeply felt emotions relating to the word ‘Angel.’ The air and thought around the word Angel called for earth and water, both surface and interior, to flesh out the wishes and realizations being expressed and conceptualized. To create several of these images I remixed a photo of waves crashing onto a beach in California uploaded by user Tewy on Wikipedia Commons: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5/deed.en

Fragments…traces… of a mathematical formula by Nikolaos Manolopulos appear ever so faintly, unknowable, perhaps in three images, from my first gestures integrating Wikipedia Commons material with my ink drawing.

 

Lough Ree by Colin Carberry

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blu flame

A trout flares at dusk,
silver scales
in the heron’s ears.

blueish a

new blue

Colin Carberry is an Irish-Canadian poet and translator and the director of the Linares International Literary Festival (Mexico).

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I am struck, reading this haiku, by the heron hearing silver scales. I imagine sunset splashing chaotically on thin, reflective surfaces and the heron’s acute sensors turning and tuning. I remember summers (it seems long ago) driving cross-country, through the night, listening to the radio. Car radios were manually operated. With your free hand you would find the spot where there was no static, bringing in the station clearly. Adjusting the dial frequently to receive the perfect reception. Ambient static would slowly creep back in and you would fine tune again listening carefully. Though, unlike the heron, your aim was enjoyment not survival. Surely our ancestors knew the life and sounds of water, within and without, like a heron. The poet, crafting this poem, brings us to the edge of our deepest memories.

A Coat by William Butler Yeats


I MADE my song a coat
Covered with embroideries
Out of old mythologies
From heel to throat;
But the fools caught it,
Wore it in the world’s eyes
As though they’d wrought it.
Song, let them take it,
For there’s more enterprise
In walking naked.