Penultimate Poem

Day 364 of 365 days of writing and posting a poem a day. Except for the blip on 30th November when the internet went down. There were two posts on 1st December. When I considered what might be a fitting subject as I have the finish line of this poetry writing marathon in sight, I thought I have not, directly at least, written a love poem for Ireland. I also am very fond of old style maps. You know, the paper kind, rather than the interactive, digital sort. Months and months ago I found this wonderful image of an old map of Ireland that has been on my desktop teasing me. It’s a map of Ireland from circa 1808. It delinates the four ancient kingdoms of Ireland- Ulster in the north, Leinster in the east, Munster south and Connaught in the west. I live in a village on the Black Pig’s Dyke, which was an ancient earthwork system to discourage cattle raids from over yon border. (These schemes for walls never work. Why do we never learn, but just keep repeating the same old same old?) Half of my village is on the Ulster side of the River Shannon, where I live. Cross the bridge and you are in Leitrim and Connaught.

There was a rosy glow of dawn’s early light over the Playbank as I let Ellie out to answer her call of nature this morning. It never fails to take make me feel blessed to call this place home. So, a love poem for Ireland…


Island or land mass
Every chamber
has its particular
of its four fields,
their rivers,
arteries of love
running through.
Their oxygen, too.

It may only be
the size
of a human fist,
yet everything
upon this:
the morning mist,
its mythic hints,
the river gods
the seat of awe.

Copyright © 2019 Bee Smith. All rights reserved

2 thoughts on “Penultimate Poem

  1. Love it, Bee!
    p.s. — never clued in before that you’re so very close to my ancestral home turf, just across the border in Enniskillen area … both Irish great-greats (paternal and maternal) left the isle between 1855 and 1864, one of them settling first in the USA as a bachelor, t’other in Canada’s midwest. Lots of us offshoots by now, and mostly ‘Prods’ by this time. Hain’t been back that way in years, but next lifetime …!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, we are back and forth to Enniskillen a lot. We are about 20 miles from a few towns, north, south and west of us. Going east means going over the mountain towards Cavan Town.

      And it is a truly lush and beautiful part of the world, which includes the Marble Arch Caves geopark.


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