After much deliberation from our Four Judges, Catherine Ann Cullen, Ciaran Carty and Louis de Paor ( assisted by Prof. Michael Cronin as languages’ advisor) we now have the four poems which will receive prizes, the overall winner will be announced on Friday 17th June, 2016 in Buswells Hotel Dublin. We would like to thank all entrants in the competition which proved to be very popular indeed.
Keep up to date with details of the event in Buswells via our facebook page Reclaim 16 which will be updated from the event on Friday.
Carved with the crevices of time and history,
Her face was a rocky precipice.
Each generation since seemed diminished.
Put to sit with her, you didn’t fidget,
Didn’t speak. Tight-lipped, she’d stare into the fire,
Far eyes that resisted the distance back.
Her room behind the front porch was a shut door.
Unless a rare errand up the stone step,
Let you push the metal latch, open a glimpse.
A three-mirrored vanity fanned the lattice,
Its mahogany laid over with lace,
A squat white bottle of Anaïs Anaïs.
Brooches, trinkets, letters with strange stamps.
The faded sepia of a man,
A pack of cigarettes in a drawer.
Trust relics, God, the Pope, the dead.
Sing to those that died for Ireland,
Her own stories she’d never bequeath.
Words spoken can curl into consequence,
Stories a territory better kept close,
Brought with her to the hillside at Cruagh.
By Sinead Griffin
In sighed awl red, now read and bleed if you must and you must
Foresee in this, you can believe that we can see that we can seed
That we can cede, we can concede
You must believe we can achieve some greater good beyond this hood
Beyond this little minded… call it what you… Crips against the Bloods
The Catholic, the Protestant
The state of meant, the state of should
The state of you, the state of me
The state of liber-fucking-ty
Who’s fooling who, hear people’s rights?
I don’t see you making a change
Are you talking to me?
Annnnd that’s what it comes down to see
Our parents broke their backs in bits so that we could be safe and warm
And sheltered from the same old storm
And that’s been raging since the day and before then, when I was born
And before we let it rage, we’re in a cage, blind little rats
The fuckers watch us spend our lot and toy our wounds like feral cats
Not skinny either, Fucker’s fat
Believe in that, Cause that’s a fact
Controlling you – Controlling me
Is this the land here of the free?
I don’t feel free , I don’t feel safe
Ahh start again, deny the rape
And round and round and round we go
And poor befuddled stupid Joe and stupid Jill
Who pays the bill?
We always will
Until, you see, until you be
I don’t want another child here
To need to need to plead to be
What?! We leave this proud history
Until these fields that we have sown
Renounce this shit, denounce, disown
But we don’t learn – we think we earn
But all we do is bury me, and bury you
And that’s the truth
It’s time to get up now – That’s the alarm
Get up t’fuck
By Derek Collins
Death of Cuchulainn?
Like the Pieta, the statue is impossible;
as such an angle the body could not
be held by those bindings, by sinews,
or be the sword-arm that circles the rock.
Generations of loss and fore-knowledge
of overwhelming force, too bravely dismissed,
strain for balance in the body’s canted form.
Is there a flicker left to keep the fight alive,
as Prometheus tried to survive the rage of gods
thrown into vengeful confusion by his valour?
Despite the terrible slump of head, a hero
does not die completely even when leached
of war frenzy or when the scald-crow leaves
the black cavern and descends in final betrayal
with a wounding kiss of its tainted beak,
and sword and shield begin to slip from grasp
and with them all inspiring urges of the heart.
Where the heroism in an empire winning?
Victors know one thing; the defeated many things
among them this: every war is won as well as lost.
Was it mere drama to unveil the deeper truth
to observers lining the road to Calvary? Even so,
it will suffice if the promise of revival holds.
By Michael Casey
Ní thugann staraithe le fios
cé acu ar shil sé deor
in aghaidh an ghunna.
Luaitear an phaidir
a thit go tripallach óna bhéal
an chros chéasta ina lámh
an chrógacht ina shúil.
Deirtear gur mhaith sé
lucht a riaghtha
gur fháiltigh go lúcháireach
cinnteacht an tslánaithe
dó féin is dá thír.
Samhlaím gur chrith a chroí ann
gur réabadh a intinn,
go riabh an t-allas fuar
a shil o bhallaí Chill Mhaighnean
ag lonrú ar chlár a éadain,
déarfainn gur lúb a ghlúin
gur scaoileadh a mhún
sa bhodhránacht chruaidh sin
gur chorraigh a cholainn
go dtabharfadh sé a anáil bheo
ar shlí amach.
Breast iad a dhéanann mórtas as gaisce éaga
tá sé furasta bás a fháil, shílfeá.
Mo cheol thú, a reibiliúnaí,
tusa a chrom roimh an eagla
a chúlaigh tamall in aghaidh na himní
ach fós a d’aimsigh misneach
le cloigeann agus cos a ardú.
Coinneofar do chuimhne
ní i searmanais nósúla stáit
ach i scríob umhal mo phinn.
By Proinsias Mac A’Bhaird