Before she was mine
But with each revolution comes sex
After Alvy Carragher’s ‘Mother’
I have just read a poem:
Mother, I don’t recall you saying that
The words, ‘I love you’? No
I come home from time to time
Lower Derries, Cavan
for Martin and Breda
The lake swarms, teeters the edge of evening shore
in response to Seamus Heaney’s ‘Post Script’
At risk of turning this into an ad for Ireland
The Road Taken and other poems are © Kate Ennals
The Road Taken It was dark as we crossed the cattle grid, pulled up the Barrack Hill, down the other side, around the mini roundabout, drove the N3 out of Cavan, Virginia, Kells, Navan, Dublin Spiralling the short-term parking, coming to a stop at the top, and flying. Then travellating to the station. The train stopped at Manchester Piccadilly, a fret of ornate iron and glass Suspended; industrial, opaque, white bulbs hang in the gloom of winter gloam. Groaning with Northern Asia, Derbyshire, an English winter Red stone red brick red stone red brick red stone Rows of town, city suburbs: Hawkeswood, Stockport, Hazelcroft and the Price is Right. We disappear into banks of soil and tunnel. Black electric light blasts into heaving peaks of green, velvet brown Soft to touch, sloping down. In the sky, a lisp of blue in leaden grey, a flash of Hope, followed by a thrumming cab, to a Sheffield HOME of blue uniforms, snug around a bosom of pinned identity. My mother in law’s tiny marbled legs attached to a nappy, a bib and tucker. A baby mother. A soft face slack with grace, a momentary greed of interest, forgotten in seconds…then repeated. Over again. Again. Soon, she tires of not remembering. I go on. Travelling on a train, to London. The carriage lights are dim. There are clicks of zips. Creaks of bags. Whispers of coats taken off folded. Murmur of pale blue light. Rain squeezes drops down the window pane. I snuggle down in the interim for the linger of journey, the in-between.Chesterfield, Derby, Leicester, St Pancras. I walk the marble floor that lays the way to Paris, passing cocktail bars, sumptuous shops, silver, gold, chains, and jewels, glamorous hair, bags and suits, leather, barrels of wine Down down down to the Northern line I wade through a tube of Londoners: a commuter, a son, a daughter, an old man, a student, a worker, a patient, a brother, a sister, an aunt, an uncle, a cousin, an only child, a father to you, mother: old woman, bright beads for eyes, swaddled in pads and yellow rage, hunched, slumped, lost for words, waiting. I take off my coat, sit down. You are my destination.
Kate Ennals is a poet and writer and has published material in a range of literary and on line journals (Crannog, Skylight 47, Honest Ulsterman, Anomaly, The International Lakeview Journal, Boyne Berries, North West Words, The Blue Nib, Dodging the Rain plus many more). Her first collection of poetry At The Edge was published in 2015. Her second collection comes in 2018. In 2017, she won the Westport Arts Festival Poetry Competition. She has lived in Ireland for 25 years and currently runs poetry and writing workshops in County Cavan, and organises At The Edge, Cavan, a literary reading evening, funded by the Cavan Arts Office.