Do you remember the hills
north of Kells.
and yellow blossomed Furze
grown thick below exposed rock.
The land here remember things,
recorded in mountains and rivers,
lakes and coastal cliffs where
sea spinach grows
In dry places where tides used to flow.
pressed between the dusty pages of
Or branded deep into hot igneous stone
from burning cores.
Marble in Galway bay
with bones of whales
and impossible oysters from prehistory.
memories written in sand and pressure
The land remembers ice monsters
growing and receding
and hills, drumlins
and erratic’s scattered like
crumbs to hens
from a hags apron full to overflowing
Primordial forest lost,
drowned in Noah’s flood.
Biblical rain that fell from warmer skies
for a hundred years and forty days
forming deep dank dark bogs,
on branches for six millennia.
Soup of pulp and flesh dried back
To wood cut and milled
In rows of forest memory.
Men from warmer lands,
the scent and taste of olives
redolent in the air
and memory of wattle homes on riverbanks.
Farmers who praised earth and sun.
Do you remember the days spent exploring
the hills and ancient tombs
built with the wisdom of men
who could read the memories
of the land.
I remember your eyes in the dark,
your hair tied back with a black bow.
Did you feel the ghosts there too.
In the tombs, leaking from the sediment
of stone into living bone.
They crept under my skin
shadow my days
memories, pressing fossils of living time
into the grain of skin
and the molten lava of my mind.
Memories of you.
that held the tang of olives and garlic
the children of the sun,
the Dannan that came across the sea.
Did they return with you too
and did you take them
to your own distant shores.
© Dave Kavanagh @ daithiocaomanaigh.com