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PATRICK MORAN

 

Patrick Moran

Patrick Moran was born in Templetuohy, County Tipperary, where he still lives. He works as a post-primary teacher.

He has won the Gerard Manley Hopkins Poetry Prize; he has also been a winner at Listowel Writers’ Week and the 2008 Éist Poetry Competition. In 1990, he was shortlisted for the Hennessy/Sunday Tribune Poetry Award.

His poems have appeared widely in the major Irish outlets: Poetry Ireland Review, The Irish Times, Cyphers, The Honest Ulsterman, Cork Literary Review, THE SHOp, Irish Pages and The Stinging Fly. His work is featured in anthologies, including the inaugural Forward Book of Poetry (UK), The Stony Thursday Book and The Best of Irish Poetry 2007.

Patrick Moran has published two collections of poetry: The Stubble Fields (Dedalus Press 2001) and Green (Salmon Poetry 2008).

 

Confessional

 

The first evening I set out to meet you,
along a road I’d not travelled for years,
I found it strange to be in a landscape

at once so familiar and so changed.
The cleft parapet at the river-bridge
still stood there, the old tree-lined avenue

was still intact. Yet, here and there, hedges
had been uprooted; while of that thatched cottage
only a whitewashed gable-end remained.

And in the town itself, the irk of slowed
traffic: a funeral cortege bearing
towards the church; flashlit arrows showing roadworks…

On the way, memories of confession stirred:
the priest muttering in the dark box; the sins
trickling out; absolution’s tense release.

Yet when I met you – a wife and mother
disposed to probe the gloaming of the soul,
a counsellor used to excavating

haunted intimacies in that quiet room –
I had no inkling where this would lead me.
How could I tell what light or grace might come?

Or if words alone would suffice in healing?
But, I realised, I must start somewhere.
It’s like this, I ventured. Most nights, I’m jolted

out of sleep, my heart fluttering: as if
even when the storms seem to have abated,
every branch, each leaf in me still keeps shaking.

©2009 Patrick Moran

 

Author Links

Green (including poem & review) on the Salmon Publishing website

Video of Moran reading at the White House, Limerick

Moran poem in Studies: An Irish Quarterly Review

 

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