In the supermarket
on Saturday
in the 14th
on the 14th
in numb November
in Paris, their Paris,
our Paris, my Paris,
people push grief
in comfortless trolleys
down shadowed aisles
of silence, strangers
claiming their spaces
in solidarity, in queues
of slow-moving sorrow,
seeing shadow in places
where once there was light,
terror in crowds
where once there was music,
death in their streets
where once there was life.

In a supermarket
in the 14th
on the 14th,
as the numbers rise
on a Saturday morning,
there is nothing available
on a single shelf
to fill the void
of what we lost
in the night.

It’s not the whole world,
it’s not the end of the world
but it’s far too far from a perfect world.


All words by Damien B Donnelly

This poem was first featured in Nous Somme Paris, published by Eyewear Publishing to commemorate the Paris attacks of Friday 13th Nov, 2015.



A factory man
forged in fights
on streets
and bars
on iron clad nights
and a local girl
born and raised
in longing,
and dreams unglazed
who crash sometimes
behind the shades
to drink,
to fuck,
to drop their blades
on this desert town
of dirt and dust,
of cactus,
and mounting rust.

An old train tears
right through the town
to tense,
to tease
all those around,
it rarely stops,
just blows on through
the drab,
the dust,
that vacant view.

A factory man
forged in fights
on streets
and bars
with small town sights

and a local girl
born and raised
who now owns
a ticket
toward freedom days.

All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Audio version available on SoundCloud:





‘Kiss me
before the light fades
into the dream of what once was’
she pleads.

Kiss him
and fall,
and then look for him, let her look for him,
falling through the fine hold of false hope
as he moves off
to twist through other sheets.

Kiss him
and he is gone
evaporated in a lips touch
not a minute more than much
and yet she looks for him
she still looks for him
as if his breath were traceable
as if his touch was reachable
as if his promise
was trustable

Kiss him
but once
and watch her fall,
like the dream of what once was,
lost in a single kiss
drowning in dreams that follow
as he moves on
to other dreams
to shatter
with that same kiss.

‘Kiss me,’ she pleads
as the dream finds light and bleeds
onto the folds
in the empty space
on the bed
beside her.

All Words by Damien B. Donnelly

Audio version available on Soundcloud:



I cross bridges blindfolded

not afraid of the heights
I could fall from

but aware of the ocean
of emptiness
I have risen from.

All Words and Photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Photograph taken in Södermalm, Stockholm, Sweden 


Screen Shot 2015-12-23 at 16.20.40

You opened me
You held my heart
in your own bare hands
I bared all for you
I lay naked for you
I shed my layers
I have become undone
loosened, lessened,
I have been unravelled
like ribbon
red knotted ribbon,
like red rotting blood
on the stone cold floor
of a battered heart
barely beating
revealing the emptiness
of our essence.

All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly


Nothing, Beyond the Sea…

‘Nothing can be done,’

She said

Almost smiling,

Her clothes and skin

A lighter shade

Of hospital white,

‘Nothing can be done-‘

She said, ‘Head up,

Eyes forward,

Grin and bare it.’


Nothing more to do,

Nothing else to see,

Not a single reason to cry-

No ocean flood will bring them back

For strong currents have stolen them,

No tide will ever return them-

Not now, not at all,

Not just for you

While forsaking the rest-

The ones who’ve gone before

Since time began

And life found its end.


Nothing could be done,

He knew

With an intake of breath,

Sweaty palms, blurred vision

And a bag of belongings in his hands

And then it’s empty-

The contents on the table top-

Motionless and mournful,

Detached and dislocated

From its owners,

The hands ticking ever onwards

On the watch-

Time still moves on,

Even now,

Even without them

Breathing through this world,

And yet the tides still return to the shore

After deserting it,

And then desert again

And then return

And all the while

Time stops for no one,

Takes no pause,

Bows not it’s head.

We are as the waves-

One chance to rise and crest

Before that single fall

Into eternity-

Once chance

To reach the highest height.


Nothing now to do

But sit and wait

For the calls and prayers,

For the nodding heads

And compassionate stares,

For the toasts

To the end of the road,

For the handshakes and hugs and tears,

For the long lost beggars

Wanting something from wills,

The placing you in the ground

Amid the shivers and chills.


Nothing left but nothing now-

A barren emptiness,

A sudden silence,

A sea without water or waves,

An aching that you can’t quite place,

A sinking sensation

That sucks on, seeps in

And seeks you to surrender

And suddenly all light is painful

All color is faded,

All laughter riles you

Like nails on a chalk board

And the nothingness settles in

And leaves you

Longing for nothing

But more meaningless

Days of nothing-



And nostalgic

For the days gone by,

The lives now lived

And the faces now fading,



Losing their clarity

Their scent-

Surrendering to the passing seconds

And their touch

Never more to be felt-

Carried off those unreachable sunsets

That sink beyond the sea…