NIMBUS i.m. Patrick Galvin

by Alan Garvey

I fail and fail again –
it seems my hand and pen
can’t catch the lithe word
that flew from your mouth
or considerations that rose
like buckets from a well.
Remember a person doing
something, they say,
it’s key to memory;
OK – you lighting a smoke,
puffing away, guiding a glass
of red wine round an upstairs room
in the Triskel or wearing your specs,
brows deepening as you dig
into a sofa, a heap of books
before and beside you, one
in your hands, following black
against white in the striplit room
of a grey afternoon in Cork
before night banishes gloom,
when streetlights and signs double
in a whirl of gutters and puddles,
constellations of neon alive and trembling
in the wind-drift of precipitation, ripples
of anticipation outside the Spailpín or Hi-B –
manmade but fitting, the city’s nimbus –
like Christmas, it was magic how it shone!
The lights continue to illuminate Cork,
how could any of us say you are gone?

Alan Garvey's picture

Alan Garvey was born in Dublin in 1975. His three collections of poetry, Herself in Air (2006), Learning to Crawl (2008) and Terror Háza (2009) have all been published by Lapwing (Belfast). His work has been published in magazines such as Crannóg, Revival, The Raintown Review, and The Stinging Fly; and in anthologies such as The March Hare Anthology, published by Breakwater Books and The Echoing Years, an anthology of poetry from Canada and Ireland. He has poems and translations of his work forthcoming in Cuadrivio,, The American Dissident and The Moth. He worked as an arts administrator, part-time lecturer and community arts facilitator but is now a full-time father and writer. He published three chapbooks of his own poetry and two anthologies of others’ poetry and stories (Unpublished and Sticky Orchard). He graduated with a MA in Creative Writing; has read in Toronto and Newfoundland, and worked in Budapest, courtesy of the Irish Arts Council. He is working on his fourth collection / new & selected poems (whichever comes first).

Last updated June 20, 2011