We are carved and we are cared for,
Cuddled and coddled all our lives,
But we are, will always remain
A mother’s creation, the love
And labour of the hands
That first held us.

I see you
In me, in the minutes so simple,
In the moments so precious,
Sometimes so predictable,
Other times obscure.

I see you
In me, all your lessons listened to,
Learnt from, lived out, a part
Of me now, a part
Of who I am.

I see you
In me, in my ever evolving hands,
Fumbling along their lines of life
But I see your caress steering,
Guiding me on as I
Clutch, climb,

I see myself
In you, in your eyes, reflecting all
My passion and your pride
Of this gift you gave me,
This life, its laughter
And its love.

I see you,
Ignoring the separating distances,
The forceful waters that flood
Their way around us
But have failed so
In their attempt
To divide us.

I see you
Today, in that jumble of geography,
Challenging the mountains high
And the tides returning,

I see you
The light and magic, the mother
Miraculous, a million others
All waiting, wanting, trying,
A million babies, needing,
And still we found
Each other.

I see you
Right before me, yesterday, today
Carefully tidying up memories,
Gently tossing away tears,
Happy in what we had,
Forever soothing
My fears.

I see you,
Smiling. I see you, living, learning.
I see you in heels and happiness,
I have watched you forgiving
And forgetting. I see you
Laughing and loving.
I see you.

I see you
And through you I can see myself
And smile at all we’ve created,
Laugh at the joy we shared,
Wait with the breath held
For all that’s still
Yet to come.

I see you
Now, see the twinkle in your eyes
And I smile at the strength
You taught me.

I see you,
Like this,



Fragile beauty

Caught in the garden,

Flickerings of ruby red

Tenderly unraveling

From garlands of green

Amid a day

Named ordinary.

It is the fairest pleasure,

The simplest suggestion of perfection,

Nature unearthing itself

Onto the world

And yet

It is the easiest

To crush-

A cry of crimson

Carelessly caught

In the chaos

Of our calloused hands.

We are the blossom

Of our dull days

And are no more




Than a rose

Risen one day

To be clipped the next,

Never knowing

How a season can be

But a minute,

A year

But an hour,

A lifetime

But a day.

We hold the beauty

In our fragile fingers,

Careful we must be

How tightly

We clutch our lives,

For only in our hands

Can we shape it,

Share it

And ensure

It survives.



With my hands,

I create something from nothing.

With my hands,

I reach out and touch you.

With my hands,

I find my way through the darkness

And, if needed, wipe away the tears.

In the light,

They shade my eyes so I can see what lies ahead.

In our love,

They are the touch that entwines two bodies in our bed.

My hands are my creativity,

My contact,

My compass

And my comfort.

I see in them the lines of my life-

I watch them change as I journey through time.


Italian Thoughts


You washed over me today-

Darkest hair, hazel of eyes

And that lower luscious lip-

As I retraced those steps

From a lifetime ago

And found myself

Lost again-

Like all those years ago-

When I’d first fallen

Upon this Sea of a City,

Back when your heart

Had begun to feel

More like mine

Than mine itself.

I’d walked that narrow walled city

That day

As gallant green waters

Glistened along side me

And I listened out for the ghosts

Of past parties

In Taffeta skirts-


And with masked faces-


Before I stopped,

And by this very bridge,

I called you

And told you

I’d fallen

And thought nothing of those rushing waters

Beneath me-

Their movement,

Their depth,

Their current-

How far they can take you

From the shore.

I thought us to be as inseparable

As Gondola from Gondolier

And yet we sank

As surely as the City will itself

One day,

Some day

When time itself has forgotten all about

The lovers who laughed

And loved

And kissed

And promised-

Just like us

Before the waves washed us over

And around

And in between,

Before our hands let go

And you slipped away to dance through other lands,

In other hands,

That Time and Space that time has almost forgotten

And yet,

Do you know-

There are times

When my lower lip trembles

With the memory

Of your kiss

And the weight

Of your heart

When I wore it?

All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly