Beyond the Calm and other poems by Phil Lynch
Phil Lynch lives in Dublin and has previously lived in Belgium. His poems have appeared in a range of literary journals and anthologies. His work has also been featured on RTE national radio in Ireland in programmes such as the Arena Arts Show, the Poetry Programme and Sunday Miscellany as well as on a number of local radio programmes. He was a runner-up in the iYeats Poetry Competition (2014) has been shortlisted and longlisted in a number of others in recent years, including the Doolin Writers’ Weekend Poetry Competition, the Red Line Poetry Competition, the Dermot Healy International Poetry Competition and the Over The Edge New Writer of the Year Competition. He is a regular reader/performer at poetry and spoken word events and festivals in Ireland and has also performed at events in Belgium, France, the UK and USA. He was a co-founder of Lingo, Ireland’s first spoken word festival and is a member of Dalkey Writers Workshop. His collection, In a Changing Light, was published by Salmon Poetry in 2016: http://salmonpoetry.com/details.php?ID=394&a=284
Beyond the Calm
These are wasted days,
scary times we share as best we can,
days when everyone wants to talk
but no one cares to listen
and so the tyrants are unleashed.
These are brittle days,
so little chimes with what we know,
time ticks towards an alien place
that may hold no trace of anything
we know or love.
Before sleep, I ponder
questions that in future may be asked,
like how so few could bring
disaster to so many.
In sleep, I wander
through a landscape of upturned trees,
their budding leaves beneath the soil
buried to protect the life inside,
roots reaching to whatever heaven there may be
tentacles outstretched in desperate dying pleas
beseeching the tyrants to relent.
I wake to find the nightmare
real in a fruitless day.
Head-shakers declare that truthlessness surrounds.
Great art may come of it some say
but can we find beauty in all this death?
When we were walking once amid a storm
you told me that when trees begin to fall
the safest place to run to is the trunk.
I love that you’re my safe place. When it’s dark,
your bark enfolds me in protective wrap.
Sometimes you are my bite against attack,
I love you for that too and when it’s calm
I love to play at being a weatherman,
predicting dire storms, wild and angry winds
that send me running to my safest spot
to which I cling until the force subsides.
In windless peace we settle down to sleep.
I love you when on unexpected days
you, too, pretend a storm is on its way.
Flowers in a pretty bunch,
left behind upon a bench.
A bouquet full of smiling scent.
Forgotten or forsaken?
© Phil Lynch