LENGTHS

 

Spring has left us shy.
We flirt like sheep- cute but clumsy,
forgetting what it was like to fold a summer
into forever. Words come but feel cumbersome-
you can only swallow so much of those ocean eyes
before drowning. Sheep don’t swim
and wool doesn’t do well in so much hot water.
Be careful with the laundry- no white flag yet in sight.
Spring has left us shy.
We never unfolded another summer to flock to the flirt.
You do or don’t- the tide isn’t ours to play with.
Sink, swim, shrink or drown. And I was never good
at lengths- length of time, length of hold,
length of hope.
Sheep need to be shepherded
or they lose their way. 

 

All words and photographs by Damien B Donnelly

TO EACH HIS TIME TO SHINE

 

Silent under summer sun
I slip back
to where the shadows
snatched older days,
Boho days
in soho
and then that shift
further south;
so south of centre,
I slip back
and see you
in the spotlight
that surrounded you
and see myself; sidelined
into abstractions
and decorating diversions;
building barricades
while you shone above them
I was swimming in subtle shifts
barely susceptible to both,
seeking out shadows
of a former self
that had shifted
like a current
you can’t control
We had removed
a sea of division
but had no idea
what has been lost
in the crossing.
We were couple content
in musicals and mortgage
but there had been more
standing between us
than just an ocean bed.

I remember you
standing centre stage
in the spotlight
that so suited you
and I was reminded,
there in the shadows
of the dressing room,
that I had yet
to find my character.

All Words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Audio version available on Soundcloud:

 

BITTER BRIDGES

 

Clouds cross the skies
and trains cross countries
while we cross each other
only at jagged junctions
and obstinate intersections,
cluttered with catastrophes
or below bitter bridges
that bridge no boundaries,
basked only in blackness
always shadow, never light,
always almost, never right
here, right now, right moment,

while clouds still cross skies
and trains still trail onwards,
distance never denied to those
on the right track.

All Words and Photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Photograph taken from a moving train somewhere outside of Lisbon, Portugal.

 

 

IN THE WAKE OF DAY

 

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

UNDER, ONWARDS & OVER

under onwards colour

Washed over
in whiskey and rum
and falling, on a street,
by a bridge in the lamplight
as the river rushed under us
onwards and out of sight,
falling into each other
in foreign lands
into foreign hands
sliding along foreign bodies,
lean and slender,
twists and thrusts
of bodies curious
to what they’d not yet tasted.
You danced around me
on stages, in my head
in stages, on my bed
above the water
that never stopped moving
under us, onwards and off.
Falling into you,
our own echoes
reverberating into a dance
we were generating,
a tale of three acts;
the fall,
the fairytale
and the future unfolding
more fierce than we’d foreseen
and those hours,
always the hours,
slipping in between,
splitting the space around us
like the water that night
beneath the bridge where we kissed
rushing under us, onwards and over us,
dissolving us without consideration
a gradual obliteration
and yet my lip still tingles 
from all we thought we were
in the moment the movement made us,
falling through time, through a space we couldn’t name, 
stretching skin and bending bone into a structure unstable, insubstantial,
kissing and courting and covering up the parts that could never be,
trying to be what we never were and ignoring the bits that we didn’t want to see. 

All Words and Photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Photograph of the Blauwbrug bridge on the Amstel Canal in Amsterdam, The Netherlands