Screenshot. Suspended animation. Life.
The day after Bloomsday in Temple Bar,
Pulsing with flags and red geraniums.
Next frame, the train passing Joyce’s tower
On the beach as we roll along the rails
To Wexford.

Iconic, ordinary, memories.
Later standing watching young seals at play
From the restaurant balcony at Howth.
Sunset flirting with the peaceful water,
Capture the moment, in celebration,

Seals bobbing in the last of the sunlight,
Hide and seek, now you see me, now you don’t.
A raft to cling to when the time has gone.
My screensaver, this still life.

Still life - our parents were still alive then
Our few days respite from the relentless,
Impotent witness of their ebbing tides,
Close to eternity, or nothing.

My mother’s hand holding mine as she is
Dragged terrified from her Vale of Tears,
Hail Marys firing from her frantic lips,
“Pray for us sinners, now and at
The hour of our death”.

Bloomsday - a day in the life.
Halloween- the Day of your death.
Geraniums on this balcony now.
Sunlight flattering a different sea.
Picture perfect.

Still life.