equals penance, upshot of confession:
You say you want to go back and begin
your life where it ended, and where was that?
Ask the priest who panders to the poor.
Or doesn’t, he so loves his own disgrace,
rather what lies beneath the mask of show
me this, I’ll tell you that, all between you
and me, for now have a good time with
Sally, Mary, and the kids, whoop it up
Protestant style, this nation being nil
Catholic-wise. Smuggle guns one way
or t’other, Ulster once awash with blood.
When Seamus Heaney arrives, let him in.
If Jimmy Joyce were to resurrect, say
something you remember so he can say
what you can't yet commit to memory.
The list tumbles on, Oliver Cromwell,
potato famine, snake holes abandoned,
Ireland too quiet so here comes Wilde,
John Millington Synge, Sean O’Casey,
love-struck nationalist Willy Yeats.
My darling Clarke, with her long love
embracing the sap who spills into street
and road and risks ignominy with this
spill of nothing not better kept quiet.
Molly Bloom, who says yes but means no
when boys come around with illusory
love dreams beading on their penis tips.
Molly, save a bed swale for Leopold.
He may be a boy, take Stephen for son,
and want to end the long night with you,
but how does he overcome the sad spell
guttering the flesh of girls in Nighttown?
How does my darling remember her men?
The day after, begin all this again?
Rise. Rest. Resume taxation’s aftermath,
declare before the bar of justice
our leaves of pecuniary sin, then await
salvation's refund, planning how to spend
the money. Order beer whose taste of hops
flows through America's emporiums
engendering love, light, beauty’s rigors . . .
Unruly Romantic, Auld Sod of Eire!
(18 May 2013)
copyright 2013 by Floyce Alexander