Forgive

Let me live in the past tonight

I go there alone

No matter where the mind wanders

It can’t hold your hand here

Can’t take your strength

I need to go back

And wander

The rooms of my existence

Before you came

Pick up those memories

Like ornaments to be examined

Look at them closely

Blow the dust that gathers

And increases their menace

Blow it off to reveal

Innocent endeavour misconstrued

Put them down

And move on

And forgive

And in moving through those rooms of the past

Come across,

Finally

A covered mirror

Unveiled

Regard the face there

And finally forgive

That one most blamed by me

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Deadlines

I walk in the town

Where my son lives

Deadlines tie him

With no time to give

I watch at a table a son

And his mother

Laughing show pictures

Have fun with each other

I read in the paper

On coffee shop table

Of mother and son, missing, unstable

A smiling photo, chubby twinkle

Stares out from report, heart sinking

Tears, blur vision, drop in cappuccino

Reservoir dragged, bodies found, final

And the cheeks of the baby

Will never grow slim

To be the man laughing

His mother with him

Or moaning that more notice should be given

To bestow a five minute visit

On a mother unbidden

From grief at my lonely existence

I cry for the boy, his mother, this nonsense

That life takes us all

At one time or another

Casts a knife between

A son and his mother

The story in the news

Deadlines

Lines of dead

It’s November,

That baby didn’t want to go swimming

In that reservoir

All those dreams

Flowing a future in droplets

Of water

Drunk by others into their system

I hope they honour that

Dead Child

Dead child

I am not spinning around in your arms

I am not getting sweets with my charms

I am not playing a puzzle with friends

A bullet and knife is where my life ends

I haven’t known a day without fear

I haven’t felt a family near

I am broken from birth to the grave

Time counted in months was all that life gave

I know you fear me though I am just small

I don’t know you, don’t know you at all

I know you have children precious to you

My mother died crying because she knew

I woke in her arms still safe

Protected from breathing the dust of hate

Her eyes were dull sparkle gone

No answer to Mama?

2, alone

I am not a human to you

I am not a child

To you I am a ticking bomb

About to go wild

Support your own

By rote your favourite saying

What child of ours deserves to be slain

Support, love, universal truths

sperm egg the colour of youth

The future, the smile, the reaching out hand

Stopped in dead children spread over the land

A curse not from my lips will ever come

As blood seeps to earth dried by bitter sun

Remembrance flowers grow from the earth I nourish

Your little plot protected to flourish

I am only a child

I love to laugh

And when I cry

To have a hug,

Mum worried about my chesty cough

But now dead because I am shot.

My eyes stare now I don’t see

Tell me how the world will be

Lying broken, dead not asleep

No lullaby sung and no sweet dreams

EMcGinty 2017

First published in For The Many Not The Few Vol 1 compiled by CT Meek

At Peace



When will we be 

At peace

With ourselves

With the layers in our bodies 

that repel

Against each other

The cancers that eat and the 

Inflammation that takes hold

Or the sadness that debilitates us

And all of those things 

We carry unending war in our DNA

The gene for this 

The gene for that

Like battle campaigns 

We walk the earth

Minds screaming to ourselves to cope

Our cries 

Sirens of warning

Our depths

Silence

Of aftermath

And we grieve

For ourselves and others

Ones we make 

and 

who we make miserable

Whether we knew them or not

And so

The world follows suit

And we are at war

Inside and out