Last night the harbourer tracked the stag to his resting place, and at sunrise made a close inspection of the perimeter of the wood, to ensure he had not escaped. When the Master heard this, and was satisfied, he ordered the release of the hounds that had been barking at our heels all morning.
Then, a moment later, from where I lay, in dew damp grass, I saw it break through the tree line, a flash of royal red, and I followed it, panning; hooves thundered above barks, until it reached the river; where it stopped and turned and faced down the dogs. In the cross hairs I saw every hair on his neck, counted each of his fourteen points, I looked him in the eye, and could not, in all conscience, pull the trigger.
Valentine’s Day 1945, lying in the nose of a Lancaster, 8000 feet above Dresden, my heartbeat drowned out the roar of four Rolls Royce Merlin engines. I lined up the burning city in my Blackett bomb sight.
I never heard the children running, or saw the hairs on their heads, or the whites of their eyes.
Irish poet, who spent his early years in Belfast and now lives in Coleraine with his wife and 2 children. His first collection "Thomas" was published by Lapwing in 2005, and his second collection "Black Eyed Peace" has just been published. It is available as either a free eBook or in traditional printed format. His work has been widely published in magazines, anthologies, and on-line. His work has also been broadcast and published by the BBC and a number of his poems have achieved competition success. He has been involved with the Ballymoney Writers for over 15 years and has edited and published 3 collections of their work.
Running from something better to leave it unnamed cold water muddy stream, convenience food wrappers in a kind of marketing survey, neons washed out pink and peach among moss wet rock and metal bridge stanchion rising a splayed hipbone from
A coronal mass ejection caused me to wake my son at a quarter past midnight, on a school night, and wrap up him carefully, to shut out the cold, to keep a cosmic appointment with electrons, plasma and protons that