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Work Horses

The clanking compound of the brewery

– where Dad did casual shifts

when building work was scarce –

is buried now beneath the floors

of a multi-storey car park

and chat that drifts across

from cappuccino pavements.


Born to a scant inheritance

of rushy Sligo acres, my dad was bred

like his brothers to follow the work,

sending remittances home

from London, Readin...

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Shadow Boxing

The closest my dad ever got to poetry

was when he savoured some word

like pugilist, or the tip-toe springiness

he sensed in bob and weave,

his unalloyed delight in the flytings

and eyeball-to-eyeball hype

that went with big fight weigh-ins.


And maybe I should have been

a contender, when I did my stint

in the ring, my dad convinced

I had style and the stamp of a w...

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