Kieran Conway

Rookie (1966 / Ireland)

Oh To Be John Millington Synge - Poem by Kieran Conway

Oh to be John Millington Synge
Laying about getting singed
On the Aran rocks
Watching other men at work
Considering that to be his work!
Them all the while keeping
Him well fed on fish and bread
And the odd sup of poteen
With sthories to fill his head,
And he judging them all
To be the walking dead
In their time of toil with the sea
Leaving the women behind to keen
And smoke pipes through the night:

The wind howls,
Blows curraghs about,
The priest travels perilous seas
From North Island to South,
But ‘twill be a grand day
When they ferry Mr Synge out
To reflect in Paris streets
Or among Dublin’s elite
The theme of Celtic Peasantry
And scratch with author’s nib
The hovelled desperation;
The pagan savagery
Of an isolated pedigree

His imagination set in flame
He lit it on a Dublin stage
Stirring up controversy;
A Nationalistic fury

He disapproved the coming age,
Discouraged Western prosperity
(So like his ancestral ascendancy
Which he avoided quite carefully)
Lest it should encroach upon
The purity of his characters
Like the bould Christy Mahon,
A wild riotous playboy
If ever there be one

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Poem Submitted: Saturday, December 3, 2011

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