Dark Matter. Poetry by Daniel Wade

Dark Matter # 1: Pandemic Aftermath; Dark #

Dark Matter

The instinctive hatred of reality is the outcome of an extreme
susceptibility to pain and to irritation, which can no longer endure to be
‘touched’ at all, because every sensation strikes too deep.
– Nietzsche, ‘The Antichrist’

I. Pandemic Aftermath, Draft 1
I’m good at being temporary, having no permanence,
but nothing’s more nomadic here than snow,
nothing’s more fugitive than sea wind or smoke.
They are as accomplished in absence as I am.
The brain dries with the season, thoughts cudgelled
into sense. A new language must be devised for
whatever I am, raw seeds of words doused in saltwater,
to be spat from mouths muffled by face masks:
life and death delivering a collision of testimony
of the thousands dead, and left eternally nameless.

Dark Matter # 7: March Vigilance

The sun was a red orb
rippling g
as heaven halted.
I left the skylight to it,
a glaze of pallid opacity
to cold sweat at dawn.

What happens now, in this cauldron of March?

Stone or bronze, milk
or honey;
all of this lost time
can’t be retrieved for anyone.

I quarantine
in this room
fumigated with sea-salt,
fingers damp
with cleansing acid.
I tumble down
late -night
online rabbit-holes;
has made an amateur
classicist of me

What must happen now, in this cauldron of March?

A jury of eyes
follow without blinking,
clank of hammer
and file deafen me
as I founder on
what I might say
when I see you again…
if I ’ll ever see you again.

What should happen now, in this cauldron of March?

I remind myself of this
whenever I pass the building site
to the Luas stop, as red lights
rig the crane tower
and jib to a glittering,
high-rise skeleton:

frost salts my boots
and smears everything,
even a stainless
steel rail liveried
with warning signs
an d the moon
riding at anchor
in its bruise-blue sky.

What may happen now, in this cauldron of March?


Daniel Wade is a poet and playwright from Dublin, Ireland. In January 2017, his play The Collector opened the 20th anniversary season of the New Theatre, Dublin. His spoken-word album Embers and Earth, available for download on iTunes and Spotify, launched the previous October at the National Concert Hall. A prolific performer, Daniel has featured at many festivals including Electric Picnic, Body and Soul, and the 2019 International Literature Festival (ILFD). In January 2020 his radio drama Crossing the Red Line was broadcast on RTE Radio 1 Extra, and late r won a silver award at the New York Festivals Radio Awards for Best Digital Drama. He is also the author e-chapbook Iceberg Relief, published by Underground Voices. Daniel was the Hennessy New Irish Writing winner for April 2015 in The Irish Times, and his poetry and short fiction have appeared in over two dozen publications since 2012, incl. Cassandra Voices, The Missouri Review, The Agonist Journal, Ink, Sweat & Tears, Live Encounters, Fresh Air Poetry, The Galway Review, A New Ulster, Banshee Press and Zymbol.

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