Happy Poetry Day Ireland. There will be Time.

Back story- Orla Grant-Donoghue originally invited 16 poets to create 16 new poems based on their favourite books and we were going to read these poems at Alan Hanna’s Bookshop in Rathmines Dublin, today. Of course, due to current events, all that was cancelled but it still took place today online on Twitter… 


You can read all the poems and discover all the artists in one place because Eoin from BlueFoot Books kindly put it all together for us. This is the link to the site…

The book I chose was 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne and here, with my 1st attempt at using Clips and my almost octogenarian mother as Camera Woman extraordinaire, is my Short Film to showcase the poem. Welcome to the Nautilus, Captain Nemo and his fellow passengers are waiting. It’s Time …



Mobilis in Mobili

the monster-
metal made, making movements
under waves.
Air trembles. Earth rocks.
The sea is a desert.
Immense. Without Master.
But with mineral, vegetable, animal.
Man can be the beast on land- despots, destroyers.
Land and Mr. Land who can’t swallow water.
Down below, beneath the glass.
Glass is breakable, like man, but can be of service
like Conseil- glass is capable of offering resistance.
Considerable. And He comes to resist.
Resist man and land and service.
But he takes the Other down, leagues below the darkness
to where there’s light, to admire this liquid light
through which they sail,
his electric thread of connection,
there, in that place which is far off
and exceedingly deep, away from those despots,
his own aquatic flock below the wave,
his own folly to float through the fathoms.
Fathoms. One comes to fathom who can find it out,
how man can flee, can float on his own hope,
his own pride, his own position. Opposition.
Defence. Defender. Here below,
where there are no masters.
But one. And it isn’t always
the sea.

the sea is everything.
The globe began with the sea
and may end that way too.
He is the Sea and must defend himself.
And Man? The sea is an immense desert
where man is never lonely. Though man is on his own.
Not being Mineral. Or Vegetable.
Or always animal.

Darkness is deceiving,
regardless of its liquid light.
Behold the maelstrom! The Nautilus is no narwhal.
A can of unquestionable character can also be a coffin.
Man can make his own. His own house.
His own home. His own tomb. To float. In the water.
Through the light. Leagues below the sunlight.
Where light is electric, that fine thread.
Finely Snapped.
I recognise no masters here,
he said. I am free, here, he said.
God Almighty!
And the Other blinked, for a moment
and took hold of Land and his Conseil.
And then looked back
to behold the monster.
Some are drawn to the deep,
to the current, to the curiosity
of the perpendicularity, to the leagues
of light at the far end of the black water,
where there are no other men
murdering to be masters.
Behold. Enough.


The Cast…


Damien B. Donnelly

With huge thanks to Orla, Eoin at BlueFoot, Alan Hanna’s and my fellow poets and you, for tuning in xx