The Heelers Diaries

the fantasy world of ireland's greatest living poet

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Location: Kilcullen (Phone 087 7790766), County Kildare, Ireland

Saturday, June 03, 2006


Aunty Marie's funeral has brought me into contact with family members I'd almost forgotten.
There's little Jen.
I remember her as the cousin who at the age of five would go into Grandad's saddlery workshop to look for money.
She'd approach each of the lads in turn with her hand out and say: "Have you got anything for me?"
I kid you not. She really did this. At that age.
The lads would give her a few coins from their pockets.
Jen was making a killing at the little girl begging routine.
Her practice of this arcane ritual went on in fact until the day she held her hand out to Grandad and he spat in it, seized her palm, and crunched up the goo in her fist.
I see Jen today.
Cool, assured, beautiful, stylish, professional.
Just returned from the Carribean where she works as an accountant for Denis O'Brien one of Ireland's richest men.
An accountant?
Well let me put it this way.
She knows the way to the doubloon cupboard.
I cannot help thinking she has found a career most suited to her talents.

Friday, June 02, 2006

london umbrellas

Wednesday, May 31, 2006


footballers cheer a score
pat carroll shoots rabbits in the gloom
children steal crab apples
and farmer byrne calls the cattle home

perhaps this chaotic place
is not kilcullen in the present time
but a dusty frontier town
at the heart of ancient palestine

the sounds dissolve
into a muted half felt bliss
fluted by fond memory
and a strange provincial holiness

(dedicated to kim merker the canadian genius)

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

ubi caritas

I remember sitting at the fire with Aunty Marie on a stormy winter evening late last year.
She said: "I saw Ronald O'Dowd trying to thumb a lift to Newbridge in the rain today."
I nodded and asked: "What did you do?"
The Aunt eyed me keenly.
"I gave him a lift of course," sez she.
Her answer provoked an exclamation from me, of mild amazement that she would stop for him. I knew he was a fairly rough and ready character.
Rough and ready in the sense that he was involved with drug dealing in the area.
In ten years of seeing him at the side of the road in rain or shine, I've never given him a lift.
The Aunt considered my reservations thusly expressed.
"Ah he's not that bad," she mused.
I snorted and enquired as to what had happened during the journey.
"Well," sez she, "nothing really."
I persisted in my quest for details. I did not believe nothing had happened.
"Okay," sez she, "when we got to Newbridge I told him, here we are now, and he leaned over and asked me did I want to buy some hash."
I laughed long and loud and hearty at this gem.
When I'd regained control I enquired: "And what did you say to him?"
"I said no," replied the Aunt primly.
And there our story ends.