I have emptied
All the boxes,
A lifetime
Of belongings,
A collection
Of customs,
Combined together
To become a whole,
A who,
A human,

I have emptied
All the boxes,
Found other shelves
To place the memories,
Other drawers
To store the scenes,
Other cupboards
To carry the clutter,
Other colours
To paint the walls
With shades
Of what is yet
To come.

I have emptied
All the boxes,
I am moved,
I have moved,
I will move again
When the moment
Into the next
And the next
And the next

But for now
I am here,
I have emptied
All the boxes,
All of my belongings
And belong…


All Words and Photos by Damien B. Donnelly



Fuck forty approaching,
And fuck metal mats,
Fuck fractured feet
Turning black like rats,

Fuck wandering round
With a walking stick
Exposing the frailties
Of this silly old dick,

I’ll forget the bruises
And broken bones,
Bollocks to bandages
And swollen toes,

I’ll not sit back
And fizzle away,
So watch out world
I’m on my way,

I’ll be the madman limping
And falling down
Cursing his clumsiness
Like a circus clown,

It would’ve been clever
To sit and stop working,
Ignore the garden
And the leaves collecting,

But no, he says,
It’ll be done in a jiffy
Till the mat fell down
And I fucked like a hussy,

I wanted to show them
I’d tidied the place,
I wanted to swim
In their gratitude and grace,

Well, next time I’ll know
To just let the leaves blow
Maybe better a mess
Than a broken toe!

Well it serves me right
For wanted to be noticed
Cause they’ll see me now
All battered and hopeless,

But I’m slowly getting fond
Of this walking cane,
So perhaps I’ll grow
A bearded grey mane,

And sway through the streets
In the wind and the rain
Saying fuck, instead,
To the prodding, prickling pain!

So bring on Forty,
Bring on your force,
I’m saddled and ready
I’m a stubborn, striding horse!




I release you
From the obsession,
From the overly long
Ogles of observation,
And a grass,
Seemingly green,
Long since remembered.

You are no longer
That deep desire
In the distant darkness,
Distracting me,
Daring me
To deploy,
To defect,
To retour.

That significant
In the shadows,
Swaying slowly,
Seducing me,
Enticing me.

I release you
From the waking dream
And the nocturnal rêver,
The phantom waiting
For the return
And the temptation
Teasing me
With time.
The illusions
That eluded me
In waking light,
The visions
Deceiving me
In the shade of night.

You are no longer
The haunting hunger,
The taste of what once was,
What still could be,
That insatiable need
Never fully quenched,
Never truly tested.

You are now no longer obsession,
You are now just a place called home.


I’ll Be Back


Excuses for my absence but I’m excited and distracted by painting, decorating, trying to remember my French and unpacking boxes to make a new home in Paris- back again after 18 years of much longing and the distractions of London and Amsterdam in between, but the pen once again found paper today, while I ignored the temporary loss of electricity and the contents of the new fridge melting within, on a sun filled terrace in the 14th, former home to Hemmingway, Fitzgerald, Stien, so I’m hoping for a little ghostly magic to rub its way into my little lines of literature. It’s now evening and still 29 degrees which perhaps means the candles I have lighting to distract from the smell of paint and turps are only causing a rise in temperature and means that nothing will dry as quickly as one hopes but I think it was Maupin’s legendary Anna Madrigal who once said that even shit looks good in candle light so I’m sticking with her philosophy. Until next time, a bientôt- I’ll be back…

Winning Days

A move from Amsterdam to Paris, 3 days of unpacking, painting, decorating, a trip home to family for nearly 3 weeks and then the news that I am a winner in the http://www.originalwriting.ie Short Story competition and will be part of their autumn anthology of short stories book!Feeling grateful to the Universe and all its magic and wonder.

The August short story competition is still open for submissions- check out their website from the web address above.

A rainbow on Bettystown beach, County Dublin, Ireland