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Bright Star
(15/07/56 / Curragh Camp, Co. Kildare, Eire.)

Bright Star

Poem By Dónall Dempsey

You talked to the stars
as if they knew you
whispered their sweet names
& they came to you

like cows
grazing in your mind
you gave them their known names
& they adored you

taming the night skies
their constellations your consolation.
You tell me that: “The stars are really
all the dead that ever were
...looking down on us! ”

No longer earth bound
beyond
the reach of such human grief
as yours
you
convinced
you will be a star
lost in these heavens.

* * *

This cold night
the stars trapped in the sky
Forever
only a poster
peeling from a crumbling wall

to reveal
past Forevers
past recall.
Memory only a circus
an audience’s gasp

as an acrobat slips up
& falls
in the big top of your dreams
once again the music fails
the memory of your laughter
like the tinkling of bells
trembling inside me

beside my self
beside you
all this forever gone
I search for you in the heavens
find only stars trapped in a sky.

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