I can see the Sun up high, somewhere beyond those clouds

What is this autumnal rottweiler?

Gnashing in an orange glade

Waiting for me under New Orleans sinuous

Deep, passionate hues

Sure isn’t it terrific?

Ella and Louis

Unintentional storms

Not intended, no, not unintended

How mangled the sentence

How creepy the stalk

How stalked the steeple

Altogether old-fashioned and dusty



The soft giant

You’d think the sadness was over, out of you like some silver icy gust into a November air, or was that January, at twenty-three, your young man tears all over the icy Milltown lawns, all shimmering in ice on the hedgerows beside the Dodder. You’d think that was the last caldera of pain you’d fumble around, lonesomely combing the banks of the Dodder – staring through the dense thicket and waiting to see her silhouette in there, forlorn and scared – but you’d save those big brown eyes and take her in and bathe her, wash her feet and kiss her cheeks.

I thought that would be all for now but her I am at twenty-nine and that feeling of disconnection is still ever powerful, ever searching but yielding nothing except empty traintracks in my mind – no metaphor adequate, just the rain bashing against the Luas, treacling down like the tears of some huge sad and handsome giant in the clouds. But I’d ask him to cradle me, cradle me up there in the clouds you sweet giant, with your benign smile and enormous features. We will share a moment up there, you and I, as we gaze across the smooth plains of Dublin and her little terraced houses, her gardens of suburbia, the little rows of shops in Mount Merrion and Foxrock, and we’ll think about how many other people’s heart’s hurt out there and we’ll cry for them too, if only for a moment, before your soft hand places me back into that lachrymose tram to move along to the next space with a brave heart.


They both stood at the slope beside Teddy’s. She heard the birdsong in the trees in the park and he could hear the foghorn of the Chester ferry in the port. The sky was a deep royal blue. He had to go back to England and she return to her studies in Trinity. He was taking his PHD in medicine and she was taking her MA in Drama Studies. Both were exhausted, worn out, medicated. The sun was waning and its glow fell like maple syrup on the Georgian houses of Sandycove. He scratched his bollocks. “Pint?”, he asked? She looked at her converse. “Ehm, no I don’t think so Rob, it’s like half nine and I have to be in lectures tomorrow.” The urchins in his stomach rumbled and he felt sad. “Fair enough, well, a kiss goodbye?” Her jawline went taut. “Rob, things have to change before I feel comfortable kissing you again.” His breastplate tightened and his heart-rate quickened. “Just give us a few more months, I’ll be back at Christmas after the exams and we’ll sort it out.” “It’s not that, it’s everything, it’s your attitude, it’s your arrogance, it’s your drinking…it’s…..” “WHAT!”, Rob yelled, losing his patience. She paused and looked to the Chester ferry slumbering towards the fading peach horizon. She uttered; “Your cock….your cock is fucking tiny.”

Veal (written sometime in 2010)

Avoca Restaurant – Dreams of Veal



The undulating soggy satin dresses of the morning brunches. The women: “Oh! Where did you get that lipstick, it’s divine?!” “Oh! Where did you get the nail polish?!” . “Oh, those Manolo Blahniks. To die for. I simply must get a pair.” The hooves were banana yellow and she didn’t look all that great to be honest. Sunday Lunch in Avoca yesterday morning. Sandra was there with her thrifty knuckles festooned with winding silvers like asps winding around cinnamon sticks, winnowing through the heady no.5 air like a butterfly wing fluttering – glazed in white syrup, flowing through the ether like intoxicated cherubs wildly flapping through some Corsican forest canopy. The Louis Vitton bag sat limpid beside her, the LV insignia chiming sharply into the June air. Her pieces were modest, simple, yet gushed with all the knowledge and crass know-how of a woman who’s been trapped uncomfortably in a lift with a bellicose Kerryman or two – their rusty, bean bleached moustaches, coated in a phosphorescent, somewhat lyrical smudge of Guinness, cast iron and that sub-human sediment that gathers at the base of the Grand Canal. Sandra’s loins percolated, gushed, thrusting shards of invisible hissing pink and sultry lilacs among the subtle amber trinkets that loomed on the walls of the glass ceilinged oasis: a copper bucket of sybaritic consumption, ensconced between the fossil old valleys of Glendalough and Roundwood. Edward, gazing directly through the hazy tufts of sunshine issuing from Keogh’s farm down by the lane, as the swallows arced and nosedived, as the crepuscular shade tightened around the souls and the erstwhile Rioja bottles, the honey bee landing on the fig compote… Sandra opened her dribbling, moist beak..




Decaying Hollywood Queen engages in relentless reconstructive surgery. She becomes more and more haggard and grotesque with each savage flick of the surgeon’s knife. THE END.


It’s funny how the misery disappears under yet another veil of scars. You finger the contours of your stomach, imagining clutching lumps of rind – you – a pork statue, unhung in your own stench filled abattoir at dusk. The eclipse falls bright on your hemisphere, a cloth dappling moth-light and no-light and then there’s more light but it dims and fizzles and shimmers and quivers again and you fall back into fantasies of the macabre but what if that’s not it? What if that’s not really the end at all and you’re just some infinitesmal simpering sperm-dream trapped inside a simulation and dying would just reboot you, just start this whole damnable programme yet again? Yes, you’re stuck in here. There is no enlightenment only shame only fucking only infection only pain, of all kinds, back, calves, neck, temple, gut – there are wrought iron butterflies wrestling in your gut now – feel them – feel them contort and writhe like pythons in your acid. Your dreams scar you, leave your mind splayed with raw contusions every morning as you hobble back to the bottle – or to the screen – or to have a fiddle with yourself and cry silver tears all over your thighs and you want to transcend but you’re so feeble! So impotent! Where is the mercy! Where is the love in this cold shell!

The Fall

Why would you engulf yourself in porn and whiskey for five years

Sprung from clinics where it’s ascetic and hermetic

Unapologetic like a cold thing

You were waiting all of your life to be happy

You push through the screen

Through the screams

Trying to connect to a childhood dream

When things were about WWF and Leeds United

Not fantasizing about hanging off a tree

Your silhouette bristling in the wind

A damp hallucinatory shadow

I can do it all

I have done nothing at all

I choose to soak roaring in the hall

Five years ago was when it all began to fall


Start a family
In a sooty lung in Inchicore
Have the young’uns
Have their teeth knocked out
At the age of four
You can’t afford braces
Encourage them to stand up to the bullies
“Gummy” they call her
She gives head for nothing now
The lack of friction helps the lads come
Quicker than the fat birds
Who’d do it for chips
A glimpse of ecstasy as they’ve increased the dole by .19c
An extra bowl of sugar
To inject into your groin
As your son picks up another conviction
This time for aggravated assault
Sit in an uncomfortable seat
Saturnine and grey
Read the racing post
Your daughter announces she’s a homosexual
Her girlfriend resents you
You think she looks like a bloated snail
Your wife has long left you
All of those puppy dreams, gone
You sit alone in your damp dungeon
And hang yourself, eventually
With a hoover flex you got in the sales
Last January
Your corpse decaying
Limp in the cold twilight