Fragility falling

through fine flecks of fair filigree,
perfect patterns of individuality speckled
on imperfect individuals.

Snowflakes melt

on steaming skin thin on time,
too thick to break through, you cannot always sink
below the surface of an iceberg,

we cannot break through

all that lays beneath, all the lies below the surface,
it gets hotter the closer you come to the cold truth,
only in space can a spec appear spotless.

Fragility falling

through the folds of a snowstorm,
we are the swept and the sweepers, we must be swift,
icicles can injure, perfection can pierce.

I can be broken,

I can be better, I can be broken, but it takes time
to rebuild. I can be a snow-swept filigree
falling through the perfection of time

and time,

with all its perfection, with its constant movement
and minutes, is as fragile as that snowflake.


All words and drawings by Damien B Donnelly




And so it begins, National (Global) Poetry Writing Month #NaPoWriMo

30 new poems over 30 days

Gird your loins! (Or Lines!)

Who’s joining in? Feel free to post your blog address in the comments section here to make sure everyone knows what you’re up to…

All pillars fall
over time,
all gods
grow down
out of grandeur,
grow pale
out of waste
(we cannot
always worship
that which is distant)
and gravitate
into grasp as age
and taste and circumstance
wrinkle the concrete columns
we set them once upon,
so high, too high
to truly touch at times
like trees too tall
in forests to far to reach,
too distant to be seen.

All pillars fall
over time,
all trees topple,
and their tales
revealed as circles
turned and twisted
in trunks we could not
wrap ourselves around
until we cut them down,
like bodies
bound by loves
and lusts
we could not reach
until we found a way in.

But you

will not
come down,
will not be grounded
(precious distance
demands still
songs of glory)
will not
wrap around
this flesh that feels
your fingers too far,
though still I breathe,
though not do I rot.
not made
for me
but a moment
too late,
too complicated,
but mystery,
but man
becoming myth,
no kisses but misses,

still missed.

I tended
too much
to the roots,
thoughts twisting
through a time
now past
(like your eyes to my sight)
now lost
(like your voice to my ears)
a time
never touched
(we never touched
but watched it
slip though fingers).
I let it tower
not over me
(how I wished),
but away from me
and found myself
firm footed
on strange soil
and you;
in the sky
of dreams
on a pillar
I built for you
never thinking
you’d one day
grow out,
out of reach,
our of hand,
out of hope,
out of hold
(all that I never held),
hand that I can’t
let go of
even if it’s now
too far from reach.

If you never had it
to begin with,
are you still
to miss it?

All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Audio version available on SoundCloud:



I see you sometimes 
in motions and moments, 
on lips being kissed
and hands being held, 

in that taxi while thinking of another,

in those arms while I searched for slumber, 

I see you sometimes 
in paintings of people,
in colours of contentment 
on canvas, connected, 

I see you on the streets that I covet
serene and smiling in the shadows,

I see you in reflections
that have yet to become,

I see you in suggestions
that have already been done, 

I see you held in other’s hands 
and caressing kisses on other lips

                not mine,
                not yet,

I see you 
no more in the dream 
but in the wake of day,

                awake and waiting 


All Words and Photographs by Damien B. Donnelly


Subdued by circumstance,
Sitting soulfully
In the shadow
Of uncertainty
As situations
Settle themselves
Into scenes played out
Beyond reach of understanding
Or certitude,
I succumb
To the subtle shifts
In atmospherical changes,
Accept the silences
As essential escapism
And shake
In the fallouts from storms
Rained down only
In the calmest corners of the day
As if to test me
And my corroding composure
And question my ability
To remain neutral
As trying themes
Surround me
Directly involving me.

I am the shadow dancer,
Tip toeing over egg shells,
Fighting with a past
That won’t break
With the present
And a present
Too preoccupied
To see the future.

Subdued by circumstance,
Sitting somberly
In the shadow
Of insecurity
As untended wounds
Rise up before me
To cut and criticize me,
Judging me
From a position
Of misperceived perfection.

I have seen,
The light
And glow
Of a smile
And recognise it now,
Off in the distance,
Lost to the moment,
And worry
How to tempt it home,
To a home that is both
Too new
To be recognisable
And too soon made
To prove enough.

The dust,
Previously formed,
Has not settled
And yet we busy ourselves
Shifting the furniture
Of our current lives,
Sometimes aligned,
Sometimes bumping,
Trying to fit
The clumsiest of cupboards
Into the smallest of spaces.

Only time will tell
What fits where,
What will survive
And what will be
Along the wayside.


Attaining the Stars

Parted from the inhuman heights of the heavens,

We dwell deep, deep down

In what we’ve shaped

Into the final spoils

Of Planet Earth,

Lost amid our own

All-consuming desire

To rise up and stand out.

We are funny creatures

Of spiraling arms

And spindly legs,

Equally drawn and repelled

By each other’s tastes and tones,

Gifted with two eyes

To view the world around us

And yet remain often oblivious

To all and everything

Other than ourselves,

Though ever curious

To understand each other,

Oft’ times care for each other,

And, more often, control each other

As we wander about on two feet

And ten tiny nubbins named toes

With spine up stretched

As if trying to reach for the stars

Though all the time busy

Trying to make stars of ourselves-

Forever wanting to shine

As we bask in the warmth of the sun

And be remembered

As we fall drowsy under the spell

Of the moon.


Fickle fellows we are

Who fall frequently fool

To fortune,

Forever following the flock,

Fast footed on the flow

Of fashion and idols of falsity,

Fiercely arrogant

And fearlessly fumbling forward

Through consumer moments,

Appetizing advertising and diets of the day-

Were we not once modeled

Upon a glorious god-

An unparalleled picture of perfection

That somehow slipped, over time, to rejection.


Ambitious creatures are we-

Carnivorously craving more from the pot

And constantly climbing this ladder,

That ladder- every ladder.

No longer willing to settle

For only land and sea,

We molded man-made wings of metal

And matched the birds in flight

Low over land and water, at first,

And then coveting the clouds

And soaring past those stars

We tried so hard as kids

To reach out and touch.


Yet here we are, today,

Ascending higher than ever,

Reaching for those inhuman heights,

Us, with our spiraling arms

And spindly legs,

Eyes to understand

And ears to comprehend,

Capable of so much glory

With our courage and convictions

And opposable thumbs-

We had the hope

To hold the whole universe

In our hungry hands

With those fumbling fingers

And gnarly nails.


We will continue

To rise onwards and upwards

Charting skies lanes and skyways,

Naming those long, burnt-out,

Fading stars

After ourselves-

As if deserving-

But, while we wage war

On our own individuality-

On those very tastes and tones

That both attract and distract us,

Then the heavens will remain,

Always and forever,

The untapped attainment of human desire.



A Thousand Sweet Dreams


I will love you for a thousand years and a thousand years more
if only you’d ask and I would, you know, lock that love away
so it can’t be touched, tarnished or tampered with. I will hide it
so deep within my heart that every beat will be stronger for it.
I will love you for a thousand years though a thousand others
may come and go, to distract me, delight me, even deceive me
but you will remain, as always, the single force that lies within,
that assures me in the darkness you have been a guiding light,
that reminds me in happiness you made me smile. I will love you
for a thousand years as if we’d spent a thousand nights together,
as if I’d been kissed by your lips a million times, as if I’d dreamt
in your arms a hundred dreams, as if we’d always laid together
and I’d woken up to your gaze every morning since time began.
I’ll love you like this, I promise, for a thousand years and more
and will ignore what we really are, what we have always been
and will forever be. I will love you, truly, for a thousand years.
I will love you for a thousand years, behind shadows, in private,
you’ll be my sweetest secret, the hand never held, or lips kissed,
or arms ever wrapped in. I will love you for a thousand years
in that dream always dreamt, forever a dream, never to waken,
never to end. We were not meant for the harsh light of reality.
We were but briefly met, barely known and yet never forgotten.
We have become the stuff that dreams are made of, candy floss
and unicorns, fairytales and forever afters. We could never be
day-to-day, common place, product of routine, we’re the dream
of the dreamers, without beginning or end. We are the sweet
existence of slumber, you and I, sweet is the dream we share.


All words and graphics by Damien B. Donnelly

From Myth to Man in 37 Years


When I was a boy I dreamt of you daily,

When I was 20 I thought I knew you,

As I fall toward 40 I’m not sure we’ve ever met,

But I’ve loved you, you know, since childhood;

Since I saw what it meant to hold someone’s hand

And understood what that touch could bring.

I’ve spoken to you, daily, not sure if you ever heard,

But I’ve told you, over and over,

The plans I’ve made for us in my head,

All alone, though sometimes I spoke to you silently

As I lay in the wrong arms, in the wrong bed,

Having fallen upon a path that wasn’t mine.

I’ve married you, again and again,

In fairy tales and formal attire,

In far off castles and on sun kissed shores.

I’ve made love to you, moved in with you,

Moved the world for you and yet,

Although we’ve never met, you’ve changed a lot

Over time, with each day, along each year,

Through the ages that I’ve dreamt you in.

You are no more the God I once dreamt you to be

With chiseled jaw and perfect pose.

No, you are now to me, at last,

more man than myth; more meaningful than mystical,

More substance than surface.

I too am now man, having grown older and wiser

And learned to distinguish all that is necessary

From all that is but noise.

When I was a boy I dreamt of you daily,

One bounteous bodily being of beauty,

But now, all is different, I have seen the world

Beyond dreams, and have felt life pulsing through my waking hands.

Now, with eyes open, I see part of you in many and none of you in some

but I’m thinking that I’ll never find all of you in one.

All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly