Sunday 24 April 2016

The Quare Fellow

Here is another poem written after the recent loss of a much loved friend.
We grew up next door to each other and travelled those early years on the same path.
Such friends become part of us.
And when they pass the memories bring us closer to ourselves.

The Quare fellow
for Ethna

Your fingers splayed to a full octave
you swing your accordion through a half-
figure of bellow, opening and closing,
gather it in close to your chest;
its huge bulk snug in your hands.

Our play Donal Cam,balloon hunchbacked Donal.
Your role to stick a pin in it,
and he’d walk tall again.
You stuck pins in everything;
egos, balloons, ceremony and pomp.

Pranks were your special subject.
A donation for colour TVs for the blind, Missus?
That cracked you up.
“Expelled for what?
Wasn’t it the altar boys that chased me?”

Crouched low behind moving haystack
sprung like a whippet out of the blocks on the last bend
scattering hay sheaf and disbelief in your wake
beating her by a length in the cross-country final.
Result pending enquiry.

And when the chalk fell in my lap
and we both spent the rest of the class on our knees
wasn’t it the quare craic.
And didn’t I stop

being a square, for one whole day.

Copyright with Cathy Leonard 2015

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