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Posted by gt on April 24, 2003 at 06:07:03:
Excuse the punctuation.
Sunny days by the lake jumping off a diving board long gone
In hand me down swimming trunks when the average sized family had five kids
And afterwards with teeth chattering in a towel from Best’s covering nothing around you
But warming up later with the sun on your back
As you make your way back to town through the crosses of the cemetery.
At the big match in McHale Park with Dad and the brothers,
A free choc-ice with every spoon , the born salesman plamas’in the ladies brave enough to sit on the concrete steps with only a match programme for a cushion and comfort
And during the week never playing on the main field but on the other above
And afterwards catching a shower amidst the concrete of the dressing rooms before the Spotlann came along
And your fingers so cold you could hardly do your flies
And walking down to O'Malleys where you might buy a bag of Tayto
And making your way back to town through the Spencer Park elms.
Dive bombing in the duck pond
And a game of football on the green
Playing spin the bottle in the trees by Marion row
And doing the hogies and sometimes falling in when you tried to jump the river
And walking down to Hobans and buying a wibbly wobbly wonder
And making your way back to town through the nestled two-up two-downs of Newtown.
Kicking a tennis ball at playtime
Around eleven in the main yard of the National school
Wolfhound, wolfhound, 1, 2, 3
And the ringing of the bell and back to class
And Mammy Hanley, a mother of us all
And off to the ‘leithreas’, two by two
And twopence for the chalk and the slate came free
And then in high infants singing ‘Our God Reigns’ and getting off at three
And making you way back to town through Tucker and Linenhall Streets.
And in the church getting up and kneeling down
And knowing the mass like a mantra and wondering when it would be over
And the ‘Bless me Father for I have sinned’
And the telling of sins through a cross shaped hole in a grill
And afterwards comparing penitence,
A few Hail Mary’s not too bad, a few Our Fathers much worse
And the big day, communion day when if you were luck you might get a few quid
And making you way back to town through Chapel and Shamble Street.
And lots of memories I never had but are now only on maps
And in the minds of those long gone
The Jail always spelt with a G
Or the Brewery with ‘in ruins’ in brackets, memories of more distant memories
The Lawn and The Farm when there only was one
And the old gas works and nearly 100 years later and gas hasn’t come back.
And all about, all over the sappers marks, arrows pointing to a time long gone but beneath it all still revealing some deep truth, some elevation, some point of reference.
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