Time washes onwards

but I recall each wave

I welcomed

over body

like a cover of comfort

like a blanket of trust,

a surrender to the water

warm, deep breath and dive

without drowning,

I recall each wave

but forget

how far it swept

from the shore,


how it left

each time

with a wanting

for more

as I drifted further

though I cannot swim


I am only fool

not fish

and how you fished…


how your hook cut

so deep.


All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Audio version available on SoundCloud…



through time
that never truly changes
while never really stopping,

through thoughts
that cannot be accounted for,
that cannot be considered

and still we are counting

but not the cost.


through floorboards
of homes that are no more

(did we invent the word war?)

no more the heart at home,
no more the heart of the home;

home now an ocean bed
and no boat big enough
to hold us all

even the arc
only took two of everything

while the heavens ran with rain

yet the heart still beats
like time,

still falling…

through cracks that cannot be closed
and every splinter
splits the skin
of illusion

and we are all a delusion;
a fading reflection
of subjection,

speculation and conjecture;
the spectre of conjecture. 


through hands
that no longer hold
hearts now hardened

(and they say icebergs are melting)

hearts have grown cold
and have no place in homes.


in shallow shoals
shoals of souls
too shallow to swim in,

too sullied to see survival

as we rewrite the bible.


in the falling rain
too polluted to have faith in,

faith; and so fell faith
fate; and so befell Our Fate

in slow moving tears
on piers were boats are bound
to no harbour,
to no hope,
to no humanity

(christianity was a cross to heavy to bare)


while standing up

and yet no one seems to notice.
“I came in bright as a neon light and I burnt out right there before him.’ This line is taken from Joni Mitchell’s song Lesson in Survival

All Words and Photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Audio version available at SoundCloud:




I stood, firm footed against fate, beside the storm,
A raucous rage of twisting winds and hollow howls
As waves, frothing with fierce foam, forced their way
Upon the land, as if claiming some right to survive.
I saw, amid the sweeping sound of the stormy sea
As it clawed, climbed and crashed its way forward,
The horizon line, looking like no more than a drop off;
A free falling finality from which all would fall and fade.
I watched the wilful waves as they crested the currents
And fell beneath, all in one endless search for a shore
To stumble upon, to rest along, in the everlasting hope
For an end to the ebb and flow of life and all its longing.

I turned, just as all those times before, to share with you
This wondrous world unfolding but found myself alone
Staring into a void where time and space had placed us,
Distracted us, before it carelessly, casually destroyed us.
I wondered, in absence, what world you now witnessed
As the tides tickled my feet and sand slapped my skin
And I reminded myself, once again, that you were gone,
No longer by my side, or in my hand, or breath on flesh.
Your desertion washed over me like the tides, in waves
As I wondered why I had met you and how I had lost you,
How I had let myself believe that an oarless broken boat
Could ever carry us onward to the places we’d dreamt of.
I lost myself, in that time, in all those seas of uncertainty,
Lost in a hope that the tides would set us right, that winds
Would carry us and an ocean of something could make up
For a past full of failures and fears you had yet to cast off.

I could have drowned in all that debris, in all that decay,
Stayed silent, not swam, not fought back at all the forces
But I gasped for air, in those final moments, and the ripples
I made favoured me and carried me back to the shore, alone.

I stood, firm footed against fate, and realised the storm had passed.


Audio version available on Soundcloud:



I drifted away once,

Carried off by a delusional dream

Of how it all could be-

Consumed and captured,

Completely confused

And so far removed

From everything


And intrinsically valuable

That I forgot for a while

Who I was,

What I had

And how to return.

I was swept away once, long ago,

By everything I’d ever imagined

That I lost sight of everything

I’d ever had or held.

I’d cast myself somehow

Off into an infinite ocean,

Driven to dive deeper by desires

But only to find that down deep,

In the dark,

Every excessive dream loses luster

And fades forever

Amid the fathomless

Faith of the forgotten

But alas,

I did not wake until the bottom found me

And roared its laughter in my ears

And then,

In those too few precious moments

Of understanding-

When the truth finally surfaced within me,

So deep below,

Every movement made to swim back

To the comfort of your shoreline

Sent such ripples all around me

That I lost sight of where you actually lay.

Will you ever know how the sorrow

Grows within me

As time passes

And we remain


I let myself drift away, once,

Only to fail later in finding favor with the shore.

If I were an ocean

I would send ripples

Through the waters

To warn you of my sinking.

But I am mere man,

Trapped inside a body

Of drowning emotions,

Looking always and evermore

For that selfishly forsaken shore.