Thursday 8 April 2021

Three Poems by Margaret Kiernan

Sequinned Revers.-Lil


Creaked steps, lead

to the cross-beamed loft ,a single

window casts light into the blue

shadows within

Shelves groan under stacks of material bound

with string

Well- thumbed yellow edged

patterns tumble off the cutting bench

beside the gold box of Sweet Afton’s

they’’ll be puffed

into the web and weave hold the dust

above this room of cloth batches


Bobbins jump up and down, treacherous scissors

look dangerous hung on the industrial scope sewing machine

Lil, her face, smoky as an Albanian field worker

pulls and shapes, pins a body into form,

mutters to herself.

The mountains out beyond, draws her eye

Mount Gable, with its horses back close enough to mount

perhaps she sees red buses

pillar-boxes or hears Cockney slang.


She takes a half day off

never on the Fair day.

farmers leave the livestock

bang up the three flight of stairs

pay their way.

Leeches lie idly by

Between two shoulder blades, a drip appears

Non-virginal, it’s been before

The knife a different size


Lose yourself in words, and forget

Your intent was not to master the knife- a different size

Between the shoulder-blades, a drip appears


Their talk a variation, a pain,

Nightmare wisdom from mere dreams

That knife a different size


Happy for no reason, I’m inoculated

Against the throw-down barbs, averse to misfortune

Between the shoulder-blades, a drip appears


I lost some words, darkness sifted out

In blindness, I became the Light

The knife a different colour, inked


Words will never hurt you, she said

She didn’t lie beneath the lines

Between the shoulder blades, a drip appears

Leeches lie idly by.

After Georgi Petri “Feed the Fish” .


Dry-eyed vigil


The storm is raging as I cross the bridge

towards the hospital in squelching shoes

my low mood drips ire, knowing you are snug in bed

blue rubber floor mutes the sound of footsteps, when

plastic curtains whisper harshly


Nurses move with intent over your inert shape

tampering with the accrued signs

disparage my presence, mawkishly listen, watch

your grey hair lying limp upon your brow

your quick wit and pithy responses, let go

without a thought for me

an act of forgetting


Of stories told succinctly to reel me in

like gut upon a spool, creaking as you spin

now you lie still, underwhelmed

idle amnesia, the act of forgetting

transcends pedestrian realities

the backstory left alone.

Margaret Kiernan writes fiction, non-fiction essay, memoir, and poetry. She has had poetry and prose published. In e-book, in anthology collections, and literary journals and magazines. Including, Black-lion Press, journal-C19 collection , archived at University College Dublin.

The Blue Nib Lit-Journal , The Write Life Magazine, Unity Global Festival, Vox Galvia at the Galway Advertiser, A New Ulster Literary Press, The Burrow Lit. Journal, and Lothlorien Poetry Journal.

She writes with Over the Edge, Thursday writing/reading group at Galway Arts Centre, and, Ox Mountain Poets, Sligo.

She is listed in the Index of Contemporary Women Poets in Ireland, 2020.


She holds several Educational qualifications, Including a Degree in Arts in Humanities, from Sligo IT.

Her background is in Advocacy in Human and Social Rights.

Margaret has completed numerous courses and workshops in writing, for prose and poetry.

Tutors in poetry includes, Annemarie Ni Churainn, Martin Dyer, Colm Keegan, Monica Corish, Moyra Donaldson, Noel Monahan, Kevin Higgins.

Tutors in prose includes, Claire Allan, Anne McMaster, Conor Kostick, Carlo Gebler, Malacai O’Doherty, Jan Carson, Ciara Doorley. END.


Margaret has four grown-up children. She lives in Westmeath with her dog Molly. She is a landscape painter. Is into Nature, walking, gardening, music, and heritage. She is working towards a First collection in Poetry.


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