A night like this. A poem by Daragh Byrne

Sure where would you go on a night
like this. Nature wants you to stay in.
She’s misting a shimmer onto the tarmac
and you’re nervous, rightly, of anything
like droplets, anything pervasive or
penetrating. Skin is sacrosanct, your
boundaries have expanded to fill the
duration of your isolation. Why go out
when you don’t want it to get in? Even
moonlight is impure; air is not to be
trusted. But the bottle shop calls and
maybe it’ll be OK if you wear the mask
and shower straight after. A whiskey
would help with the angst. You don’t
know if your mask makes the cashier
nervous or if he was like that already.
Arriving home you think of all the
surfaces you grazed, if you touched
your face. You soap the bottles you
risked your life for and wonder not
for the first time about your drinking.

I remember dancing in the rain at a
crossroads in Fenway in a midnight
storm – maybe the Redsox had won
we had no need of reasons then. We
jigged off the street as the lightening
struck and thought to ourselves there
are so many ways to die even the rain
is dangerous.


Irish born, Sydney based meditator, programmer, poet.

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