GRAZING GREENS

 

I set down
upon your shores,
those grazing greens
of my childhood memory
displaced as tears rained
over the darkness
of your sleeping fields,

once seeping with humble hope,

once filled with a fine blood
even famine could not blight,

now flooded with a feeling of regret or relief,

too dark to tell,
too changed to recognise,

not knowing if you were crying
because I had found my way home
or that I’d once found a home in other fields.

All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Poem for Day 8 of National Poetry Writing Month

OVERTAKING

Today is the 2nd year anniversary of part 2 of my life in Paris. I moved here on July 17th 2015. I first moved here form Dublin when I was 22. At that point I knew as little about anyone in this city or the city itself as I did about myself. Two years later London called and I packed a few bags and moved. When Amsterdam called 6 years after that, the bags had become boxes and the identity of who I was, a little clearer. I’d already learned that you can’t hold on to everything, regardless of how hard you try. And then, almost 10 years later, I returned to the city that first captured my imagination and carved so much of itself into the lines now more visible on my features that I could barely distinguish the lines of the city and the lines of the self. Needless to say,  the bags were bigger this time and I don’t just mean the ones under my eyes. From 22 to a month away from 42, all now visible in the partially filled boxes around my feet. Somewhere within these collections, are hints at who I am on route to becoming, I guess…

 

Overtaking

Back to the boxes; finding things forgotten
in seams not yet sealed and finding no room
for other things since stuck with too much tape
that I cannot take any longer in this movement
along another midway, a mild change of track
through to midlife, making home at another station
amid the mayhem of the moment, making room
to make more moments that will momentarily
fill more boxes when another move meanders
my way. We are made of movements from major
to minor and back again; I am right, he has left,
she is nowhere and everywhere and not everyone
understands, they’ve turned back, I’ve carried on,
I can hold happy alongside these boxes; bruised
and battered but far from broken, I can hold it all,
I will hold all that has been left. Back to the boxes;
to the treasures I’ve taken to be true and the truths
that have lead me to the lies I’ve cast to the curbs
I have crawled over and then crossed off. I cannot
carefully wrap each and every delightfully deceptive
distraction that comes a calling, whether correctly
considered or coldly comfortless, I too was created
be cared for, I too need room to be made for me
without the waste of words, do I not deserve a space
to call my space within all space, within all this
fleeting space we are speeding through?

My next bed will spring from my liking as I plaster
my own skin with my own desires. I desire to be
distracted by dreams not too distant. I will not
be packed in a box like these belongings;
longing to be lifted to the light. I am too fond
of freedom to wait for life to find me. I am moving,
with boxes on my back and cartons crammed
into the cracks of my consciousness. I will not wait
for life to come to me; this is me, see me, overtaking it.

All words and pictures by Damien B. Donnelly

Audio version available on Soundcloud:

 

DEEPLY ROOTED

 

In a patch of the park
bench and bark are bound
like hands that once held hearts
on seats in summer
when days were only dawning

in times now twisted
into memory like roots
now turning in the turf
beneath bench and bark
in a patch of the park.

In a patch of this earth
shadows slip over soil
and all that once was
whispers on the breeze…

Break the benches
where we once rested,
cut down the trees
where we once sheltered

but roots,

roots are like hearts held

their impressions last longer
than benches and barks
in patches on parks.

All words and Photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Audio version available on SoundCloud:

https://soundcloud.com/damien-donnelly-2/deeply-rooted

CAUGHT IN THE CONSCIOUSNESS

 

Curious are the occasions 
you come into consciousness, 
like colours caught 
out of season, without 
a reason you slip in 
between the solace 
to accentuate the silence,
the stillness and the distance.
 
Curious are the occasions 
you come into consciousness,
like lyrics lost
to their line, without
reason or rhyme, you are mine
through the miles, a million
smiles emerging for time
to divide, derail and deride.

Curious are the occasions
you come into consciousness,
like a photo forgotten
then found as if to remind,
to rebound on possibilities
pondered, attachments
attempted and those
connections long cemented.

Curious are the occasions 
you come into consciousness,
like a hold that can be held 
in hindsight, and suddenly
there is kindness in the place
of confusion, comfort
in the place of exclusion,
hope in between the illusion…

All Words and Photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Listen to the audio version on Soundcloud:

https://soundcloud.com/damien-donnelly-2/caught-in-the-consciousness