Sunday 29 July 2018

Who do you think you are?

In the Parish of Drumglass
In the Townland of Drumcoo

I scrolled back in time
In search of you.

And found you in Number 10
Barrack Street; Head of house.

Samuel, migrant from L'derry
Self professed foul merchant!

In a 2nd rate house
With a slate roof, not thatch

And stone walls, not mud.
Bereft of fowl house or piggery

Or cow house, store, or shed.
These, the preserve of neighbours

Three doors up
Who kicked with the other foot.

Barrack Street, a medley of RCs
And C of Is and Presbyterians.

Teresa Culbert, aged 73,
The only RC in the row

With a piggery, a turf house
And a shed to her name.

Copyright with Cathy Leonard 2018

Thursday 12 July 2018


Like grass, root-burnt
longing for rain

Or reservoired floods
suppressed and restrained

And sediments damed
that could sustain

My hope is chequered
in heart fist pain

Waiting for pressure
to suspend

Waiting for free-flow
to prevail

Copyright with Cathy Leonard 2018

Tuesday 10 July 2018


Where was my head
when I fell for you

Through marram grass
pinching like sand crabs

down the slip face
of a sand dune

Landing on drift line of
Spring, full-moon tide

Ensnared in flotsam
and jetsam and items sundry

Caught and enmeshed
in bladderwrack

Entangled at uppermost limit
of wave swash

Swallowed and beached
and marooned on your shore

Copyright with Cathy Leonard 2018

Thursday 5 July 2018


for my mother

Already I have forgotten the sound of your voice
Calling out my name

And the way your mouth buckled when you smiled,
Your hand raised to mend it

And you, stately in profile, your Roman nose
Less regal when you fell off a step ladder

Inspecting the paint patch he’d missed,
Taking your own swipe at it

Landing in Emergency. Nose re-set.
The last shot of you together, taken from across

The lake, walking in file, you behind him,
A tree trunk between you, a lake between us

The trunk- a portal you couldn’t pass through-
Three years later the ground opened up for you.