Two poems celebrating Cork locations reminding us of the lost freedom of the city. Jessica Militante is a student on this year’s MA while Christine Kannapel graduated earlier this year.
I remember them rolling recklessly down Western Road
A seagull laughing as I chased after them
This was before the doubt took up permanent residence in my chest
And blamed me for making it hard to breathe
At Mardyke Street, they split away from each other
One sailed into the River Lee
Waving cheekily as it rode away on the waves
I followed the other down the lane
It lodged deep into a crack in the pavement
Just out of reach
Each attempt at rescue sent it deeper
Before it disappeared
The seagull tilted his head to the side
And I walked home without them
A man is singing in the city centre
by a park with apple trees. I sit lost
in an orange room of pale light, typing softly
his rhythm, listening, to know it better.
When I am grey and nearly stone, I wonder
will I too sing – but this man will out live me.
From his corner, he’s seen all there is to see
of autumn incensed night and flat skied winters.
It’s not autumn yet, but summer is old
and I thirst for years of my life, for song
to appear on the street, to share my soul
like drum beats. I find the man wary, amongst
piles of newspapers that couldn’t be sold.
“Echo!” he sings – a pitch for sale, all day long.
TOMORROW: “The Turning” by Rachel Andrews