Sean Brannigan

Seán Brannigan lives in Dundalk, Co.Louth. His poetry has been featured in the Irish Press (New Irish Writing), Sunday Tribune (New Irish Writing), Sunday Independent, Irish Independent, Argus Newspapers, Dundalk Democrat, and on RTE radio and local radio stations. In 1993 he was writer-in-residence for Louth County Council under the aegis of the arts scheme administered by Mary Cloake. Seán continues to write, give readings, and travel extensively.

No Second Chance

Blonde-haloed blue jean attired angel
Of my micro-second youth,
Memory makes you
A Lakota Sioux daughter
With your buckskin swinging jacket
And those soul-deep earnest eyes.
I half proposed in the rusty red Viva
And you half accepted.
As I watched you mount the guest-house steps
You waved to the most perfect man
In the universe.
Suicidal temperament and time
Have brought me to this sky-lit Garret
And although I try, I know
That we can’t be recreated.
How many hands have helped you disrobe
Or who has loaned you his name ?
I wonder
Who gave me this vast supply of pain
And the franchise which made you cry ?
I make the sign of peace
And send it to the lone star sky.


Church of Cats

I see myself in the face of the old man
Who lives three doors down from our hotel
In St. Julians, Malta.
He is slight, crinkled, well baked, wiry, genial
There’s fire still in his busy eyes,
A willingness to engage with the stranger
Who might speak.

He feeds wild cats in a little grotto he has created
With patience, time, care, skill,
From the near nothingness of a demolished wall,
A patch of someone’s abandoned earth.
He may have been not stunningly handsome
When a storm raged in his veins
But behind his nightime shutter
There is light, and music.
He moves easily from the kitchen kingdom
To a front room table
And spreads supper on small plates
With a smile.

I pass on the narrow path by his Church of Cats
Say my silent thanks
On the way to pub communion
And pray for contentment.

© 2019 Sean Brannigan