Sunday, March 6, 2011


And the inertia and the fog and the certainty of confusion
And the loss of control
And poppies grow do poppies still grow
And there was a gene there is a gene
Gene Pitney 24 hours without a drink
Would be a personal best
Georgie Best I spent a childhood in adoration
In the aim of the father and the son and the holy spirit
Uisce Beartha,

Would water by any other name taste as sweet
And I supported Northern Ireland
Because of him, a prize Plastic Paddy In Noddy Land
Red white and oh so blue,odd fish was I without blessed water
And I wore plastic football boots because of him
Bled because of him,
And I never saw him despite hundreds of miles travelled

I wished I was in Carrickfergus
I belonged,I should have been in Clonony
Where the castle looks out for me
I played hurling in the road
Before the big trucks came
Only for nights in Ballygrand
To Old Trafford and to Wembley
Always away was he

And then In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
He was there a lifetime too late in Manchester
Yards from me walking with Rodney Marsh
And I left the van and I ran
While horns blared I didn’t care
It was after the bomb
And I had lived
Still my ears rang racist taunts
And I ran like I had run from school to always just miss his soccer skills
And there he was in the flesh and I ran
And life unwound in every step
And reality tore my lungs and within ten feet I looked and saw and
Turned away
The world fell like scales and everything meant nothing.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
I lay on my back with the radio
Crickets sang
And the sun aglow
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Low lie the fields
Gone are our fields, my fields
Mushroom and thistle cow shite
House ,turf bog, memories in the dust.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
The enemy within
To you from failing hands we throw
He was my cousin my best friend
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We all die and this too shall pass
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
will always grow in Flanders fields.


izzy said...

I love what you have done with the poppies-and confusion.Enemies without and within, surely.Death too and the poppies go on-madness.

Heather said...

Your poem is amazing Peadar - so strong and very moving.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Why do I find this so, so incredibly sad?

Peter Goulding said...

Good Lord, what a whirlwind of a poem. I've read it through about four times now and am quite blown away (poor choice of words) I see it as a searing indictment of nationalism and the blinkered view of life that it engenders. You really should send this away somewhere.

NanU said...

Fabulous, Eejit. So thick and meaty I'll have to come back many times and enjoy this fully. Love the life unwound in every step.
One of your very best!

Niamh B said...

An awful lot in this one,
building up to the crescendo of
"life unwound in every step
And reality tore my lungs"
and finishing off brilliantly from there.

Jeanne Iris said...

And this is why you are our fearless leader. You've taken this week's challenge and have turned it into a masterpiece! I feel blissfully blessed. Thank you!

Is that Master P in the photo? Please give him a hug!

Helen said...

One of my all time favorite poems, McCrae would be thrilled and quite impressed with your creative work.

120 Socks said...

I always feel slightly inferior when I read your poems, like as if jeeewhiz 120 socks you should have done better. Loved the poppies, all the confusion, adoration, sad and crazy twists of it all.

The Bug said...

I agree with Peter - you should send this off somewhere. It's fabulous.

Enchanted Oak said...

I'm with everyone else, Peadar. Your structure and visions reach a crescendo with the small boy racing, racing, to his total deflation. And death, and sorrow. And this too shall pass.
I love coming here to read your work.

Totalfeckineejit said...

Thanks Izzy!The enemies within are the ones to watch!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Thank you Heather!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Probably, simply, because it is rooted in sadness Weaver.

Totalfeckineejit said...

Feck! THanks Pete!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Feckcy feck! Thanks NanU!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Thanks Mrs B!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Thanks Jeanne! Yes,Tis the chisler, I will give him a hug if I can catch the little fecker!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Ah, now, thanks Helen!

Totalfeckineejit said...

THanks your Bugness!!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Thanks Enchanted Oak!You is all being far too generous! Feck! But thanks!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Pah!Feckin nonsense Mrs Socks!But glad you liked the poem, THanks!

Lucy Westenra said...

I agree with both the Bug and Peter. You should certainly send if off somewhere. It's a wow! A real thump in the guts. (Who is Rodney Marsh, though. Has he been read on "Poetry Please"?)

Domestic Oub said...


Karen said...

This is one unbelievably goooood poem, Peadar. My head is spinning but I want to go back for more. Much, much to admire here. If you don't send it out, at least include it in the next Bus Mag!

Titus said...

Stunning, Mr TFE. Your mightiness.

Totalfeckineejit said...

Thanks Lucy, Rodney Marsh isn't a poet, it's a place.

Totalfeckineejit said...

D'OUb. Thanks!

Totalfeckineejit said...

Ah Now now now Titus Titus Titus!
But thanks.

Kat Mortensen said...

Grand. Love, "Carrickfergus". You must hear the clear-as-a-bell Loreena McKennitt and Cedric Smith on the album, "Elemental".

Loved the interweaving with Flanders Fields - excellent stream of consciousness experience. I would love to hear you read this.

Stop by my blog for the daily Irish music countdown to St. Paddy's Day, won't you?