An Irish Parish

  1. Ale Mercado illustration for An Irish Parish poem

It was a lazy Sunday.
Getting up late was a seldom treat,
The day living up to its name as my eyes squinted at opening the blind.

I decided to go for a walk,
looking for something to write.
I heard the distant sound of a car so I automatically stepped off the road.

An ambulance drove silently by.
No sirens or lights were sounding,
I forgot it instantly as it drove by, and got on with my day.

Later I sat on the decking alone.
I looked to the gate as a car appeared.
Two Garda vehicles, a van and a car.

My mind instantly was intrigued;
nothing ever interesting happened in Ballycallan.
The thought returned when around an hour later only the van was to be seen driving back.

I went for another walk,
desperate for something to write about as I dragged myself up and down the unusually busy country lane.
I heard another car in the distance so I stepped in off the road.

This vehicle caught me off guard.
A hearse,
driving in the same direction the ambulance came from and the Garda cars went in with a coffin in the back.

The sombre driver raised his finger from the steering wheel,
in basic Irish manners subtly driven into me I did it back.
The stereotypical Irish nosiness kicked in then; I’d better ask Anna to see who was dead up near Tullaron.