Blue for the man who has no breath,
For the eyes that watched you fade,
For the sea of shame, the air of blame
As into the water you wade.
Blue for the bruises and ropes ‘round the neck,
For the pale swollen guilt,
For the violet flowers you will receive
And the guards who will watch them wilt.
Blue for the pain of an endless wait
For this Fear Gorm to come home,
For the numbness, the sorrow, will this happen tomorrow?
Red blood on your flag runs cold.
Blue for that badge and that uniform,
For the berries and grapes he will eat,
For the frozen hearts, the poisoned darts,
For the ones we don’t know til we meet.
Blue for the fuel of the great and the good,
For the Dream that never was,
For the frozen feet of the royal elite,
No Irish, no blacks, no dogs.
Blue is for boys and all their toys
For the boxes of tissues we own,
For the ink with which I write,
For the colour of this poem.
I Knew of One Who Passed
I knew of one who passed
Without a crowd,
Who flew and flashed in a hurry,
The worry among us
And the brief flurry to kneel
On our masked grief,
In a pew to bury our friend.
(Was weeping allowed?)
We kept ourselves from keeling over.
Raised a glove
And swayed on the curving wave
Of the Goddamn flood.
We sang I’m sorry through glass.
The final curtain
Revealing steps for a shuffle
On the ceiling.
This was no muffled end,
We’re reeling but not confused.
Sue Walsh (BA English/Music UCC, LTCL Applied Drama, ALAM Acting) has extensive experience as a stage performer and singer. She taught drama internationally for over 10 years and now lives in the historic Shandon area of Cork City with her family. Sue has been writing quietly all her life – Lockdown has inspired her to begin sharing her work.