In the shadows

not yet departed

from former students

since departed

confined in compartments 

the Polish left to the Irish,

red vinegar wine

(as vulgar as the vultures 

who drowned in its deluge)

caught itself in corners 

still not drunk 

by the blow-ins

still bleating

about the burnt beef

and sodden soil 

as we made smoke chains

in our simple chambres

to choke a distance 

between the homes we had left

and the hands that hadn’t 

yet let us go. We may have been 

from the same barrel born 

but had desires to be labeled 

in a better bottle.

All words and drawing by Damien B. Donnelly