Thursday 29 September 2022

Puppy Love


My daughter has just sent me my daily fare

of Puppy Love via

Puppy meets Butterfly, the title.

It could have been Puppy meets pig or rabbit or snake,

dogs aren't particular that way,

but it's a red admiral this time

and the golden retriever puppy (what else!)

is eroding the red admiral's membranes,

licking the scales off them no doubt,

to the tune of Edward Sharpe 

and the Magnetic Zeros  singing  Home,

 a song about love in the park in the dark 

and moats and boats,which at least rhymes, at times...

But I reckon there's a shot just beyond the frame

of Puppy meets Butterfly

where said puppy is erasing thousands of overlapping scales,

or at least wrecking enough damage to inspire 

a new lyric for the Magnetic Zeros,

something about flying with torn wings perhaps?

Copyright 2022 Cathy Leonard All rights reserved

Monday 26 September 2022

Keeper's Cottage

 I can breathe deep in your house.

Perhaps it's all the windows

mostly sash looking out

on tall buttermilk Pampas grasses

and further back and higher up

on the moss emerald canvas of Dereen Gardens

Or maybe it's the windows within

on the wall over the kitchen sink

an artist's impression of a sash window

a tangle of branch and leaf

scoring the outer panes

Clodagh's Still Life 11

Or perhaps it's the window of your imagination

boundless in its inclusion

infusing everything in Keeper's Cottage

with the promise of possibility

Monday 19 September 2022





In the morning I ate peanut-buttered toast

and worked on a poem

called Bad Night’s Sleep


In the afternoon I washed the bird droppings

from the car and vowed never

to park it under that tree again


In the evening I watched Peatai

the Irish language programme

about pets and vets


And marvelled that I still remembered

the cĂșpla focail as Gaeilge

and vowed to take it up again


But at the moment I’m struggling with Deutsch

 that inflected language and its shifting goalposts

when it comes to articles and adjectives


Determined by Gender and Number and Case

unlike the Romance languages like French & Co

which call a halt after the first two categories


That nominative, vocative, accusative et al saga

that may ring a school bell

if you happened to study Latin


And I’m just hoping that Gaeilge

if I ever do take it up again

has Romantic Case roots…

Copyrigth 2022 Cathy Leonard All rights reserved

Thursday 15 September 2022



In the realm of the Dancing Queen

Sweet Caroline and Don't go Breaking My Heart

we lurch from side to side and sometimes backwards

None of us in sync

Endeavouring to simulate the graceful lunges

of our coach's choreographed benders.

Easy for him on Terra Firma, I might add,

while we, all thirty five of us or so,

and mostly women, have to contend 

with the watery element of the Blue Pool.

Foot slip, side dip, face splash, forward crash-

none of these moves intended-

and where figuratively and collectively

wave upon aquafit wave

Another one Bites the Dust.

Copyright 2022 Cathy Leonard All rights reserved

Pic above is from the Liffey Swim 2019. The 2022 event will take place on Saturday week 24th September.

Wednesday 14 September 2022

In Search of a Theme


In search of a theme 

I read a poem about theme searching

And draw a blank 

as that poet did

Who ranged through various

potential topics:

Spurred affection-

a favourite of mine on a good day

The ruthless and relentless

passage of time

Done by every poet 

from Keats to Collins

The beauty of the ephemeral

be it rose or butterfly

The rise and fall of the Greats

evoking yet again the eternal countdown

So like him I lay down my pen

and listen to the sound of the clock ticking

And get on my knees and pray

for just one more day...

Copyright 2022 Cathy Leonard All rights reserved

Tuesday 13 September 2022



In case you're still in bed reader

I just want to describe

Give you something to dream on...

The Boston Ivy tendrilling the window is shimmering with dew

Stratocumulus clouds drift nonchalantly by

Bee-yellow Black- Eyed- Susans are opening their petals to the morning sky

The fluty baritone of the blackbird and the wood pigeon's lowing

are sounding a growing chorus of bird song

And in the west a waxing gibbous moon is still setting

mirrored reflection of the newly risen sun...

So enjoy your lie-in, reader, and dream on.

I know I would if I didn't have to walk the dog...

Copyright 2022 Cathy Leonard All rights reserved

Monday 12 September 2022



There is the silence of the darkness

of the house before dawn

The silence of the waiting room

before your name is called

The silence in your breath spaces 


The silence of your expectations

of your longing and desire

The silence of the park just after the rain

The silence of the distant horizon

There is the silence of the sun rising and the sun setting

Of the woods before the advent of birdsong

That will break the silence that has been gathering 

all though the night long...

Copyright 2022 Cathy Leonard All rights reserved

Saturday 10 September 2022

On Reading Billy Collins

On reading a poem by Billy Collins

who infuses the everyday

with a dash of magic realism

I contemplate my sticky notes on the wall-

Numeros 1-100 in Spanish,

though I am now embarked on a Deutsche word trail,

And along side them and billowing sideways 

a copy of one of Billy's poems entitled

On Not Finding You at Home

And I'm thinking

I'd never think to write a poem about that-

filling absence with substance 

more potent than presence

But I conjure you up now

a yo-yo strung out and spinning

somewhere in the Irish Sea 

or up the Boyne river,

my finger in the slip knot 

working the axle

spooling the string

that will reel you back home.

Copyright 2022 Cathy Leonard All rights reserved

For some interesting facts about yo-yos see link below

Friday 9 September 2022

The Next Door Neighbour


I live next door to a writer of Crime fiction and last night she launched her third novel Buried Identity in her Cathy Spragg Series

It's set in the Midlands of idyllic Ireland and you'd be surprised at the goings on there!

 But DI Spragg is always on hand to keep things in order....

The book is available from the author but you may be advised to buy her two previous novels if you want the backstory to the main protagonist.

At 35 euro for all's a steal...

And a poem I wrote about living next door to a writer...

The next door neighbour


You would wonder what goes on in there.

For it’s all hush hush

A bit like NASA I suppose

Like she’s about to launch a rival rocket to Artemis.

But you’ve run out of milk or eggs or whatever…


She’s still in the gear when you knock the door at midday-

The writer’s launch suit- PJs, wireless mouse in hand, specs on head

with that far gone look in her eyes

like she’s just stepped out of a space shuttle,

except that she’s not quite landed

and is suspended up there somewhere

between you and a crime scene-


And there’s a killer on the loose

and the plot is unravelling

and whatever hold she had on it

before you interrupted

is about to slip the cursor.


So for x sake

would you ever buy enough eggs

to see you through the week

and stop delaying the launch….

Copyright 2022 Cathy Leonard All rights reserved

Wednesday 7 September 2022

Board Games


This poem was inspired by a very colourful runner boot, titled I like Boring Things, painted by Mira and exhibited at the Millcove Gallery, Kenmare.

The irony of the painting's title led to ....

Board Games


I like boring things like Scrabble

using my boot-print to colonise the board

dispensing counters like grenades

Nur -  a hard knot in wood

Gaw- a trench like depression

News even to me

and to my opponent

who suffers a ten point deduction

for his false charge.


I like to aspire to Scrabble endgame

a seven point strategy worth fifty bonus points

and certain annihilation of the enemy

if only there was a loose C on the board

if only I had a vowel.


The dash for premium territories

with their bonus score values.

The squabble over permitted weaponry

and strategies and ethics and artillery.

I like boring things like Scrabble…

Published in Poets Meet Painters 2022 as part of the Kenmare Arts Festival

Copyright 2022 Cathy Leonard All rights reserved