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Famine Memorial
lucas1976 wrote in bpsociety



They came to me as desolate ghosts,

their desperate eyes watching without seeing,

the exasperate anxiety of those starving

wiped away by their quiet final surrender.

Clutching to their last breath of life

and their modest scant belongings

they were peasants, artisans, lovers,

were men and women and children with their dogs.

Later, they were those thin fingers,

that dreadful flimsiness of specters in those ten impotent claws

watching the last ashes of their misery fading away.


They were that last man carrying in his weary shoulders

what once was his child, his illusion and the hope

that his name would turn to seed again.

That man, now soulless,

consumed by hunger and horror,

with the defeated body of his son.

They were peasants bleeding away in an endless ordeal

what had been an insurrect island, dignified and beautiful.

Those were the years of a black curse

over an island as green as the stones of Connemara.


They came to me by the edge of an exhausted river,

their errand steps towards the port,

towards that hope that was also a grave and oblivion and exile.

Their desperate final intent to escape

from the infamous twin-headed hydra:

one, mother Nature and her irresoluble mysteries,

pouring over them its plagues

perverting the womb of the land

under the sight of the sun so aloof;

the other, Her Majesty the Queen, the lady of unmatched cruelty

contemplating in boredom the agony of a people,

an entire nation decimated by starvation and ships.

Is there any return after the most treacherous genocide,

of the most cunning attack to the foundations of life?

How could it be possible, how come such sadism and contempt

against those men and women and children with their dogs?

How come such a calm and brewed hatred

against a quiet people whose only crime, if one so,

was to love with joyful human imperfection

the greenish fresh land where they were born?



Dublin, 20/02/2008


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