Fr Hugh O’Donnell is a poet and ministers with the Salesian community in the parish of Sean McDermott Street in Dublin. He shares the following poem with us:
BARNACLE GEESE AT LISSADELL
for Teresa and Maurice
Three fields away, you say, you can see something
as Maurice whips out binoculars then spreads
and tightens the legs of the telescope –
‘it’s them alright,
could be 300 stretched across the field feeding’.
From the hide we gaze out, awaiting our turn to see
close up their black and white bodies against the green.
‘And when will they rise up together and return home
to the island?’ you ask,
‘against what tincture of dusk?’ Suddenly a buzzard
sweeps over and they startle and scatter
in a great uproar about the sky. As we might do
if we knew how to raise ourselves out of the habitual,
offer something like a cry to the sunset before it dies.