"A nation that keeps one eye on the past is wise.
A nation that keeps two eyes on the past is blind."
The wolf has been with us for a while now.
It watches us during love-making,
nibbles a corner of the bed sheet
and drools on the linen.
It eats from our table,
never waiting for mere scraps,
pleasing itself on the main meat.
It’s the kick in our bellies
when we cramp over from greed,
the silence of thoughts so loud,
providing a chisel to the nearest wall
to transcribe our lone bestial wails.
This wolf, it bleeds onto this rented household.
We do not know how it achieved its wounds.
Lupine mystery, we let it howl
without a moon to show its teeth.
We have no say in the lullaby.
You may hurl me to Mediterranean tides,
cast my ship to drift upon mystery oceans,
each wave, a whisper telling of home.
You may unpack me, complete as a continent,
into desert holes and forest fires; I carry
the manna of Ireland in my cheeks.
You may fix my feet to stand on faraway shores,
with soles pricking into darkest soil; I still grow,
no adopted land denies these roots.
I am forever called to home, a firm echo
of the remarkable faith we place in each day,
set to skirr across the longitudes.
The important thing
is to keep breathing when the water comes;
is to run through the light
as if it was a thousand proclamations of love
kissing your skin;
is to find solace in yourself,
and then others;
is to welcome the world
with the uncluttered mind of a child;
is to stand in the fire and drift pass the burning,
and when scars appear,
to allow the ointment of salvation
to be soothed into the skin
from the palms of angels;
is to find our harmony with the choir
without forgetting to project
your voice into the congregation;
is to deliver your words
with all the clarity of the waterfall
and the calmness of the stream.