Three poems by Jean Folan

JEAN FOLANJean Folan lives in Inishcrone, Co. Sligo. She is a student on the MA in Writing at NUIG. Her poems have been published in West 47, Crannóg, Revival, The Cuirt Annual, Network Magazine, Trácht Magazine, Midlife Slices Anthology. Shortlisted for The Cuirt New Writing Award 2007. A featured reader at Over the Edge 2007. Winner, Culture Night 2010 Ballina, Co. Mayo. Runner-up Culture Night 2012, Galway. Her first collection of poetry Between Time will be published by Lapwing in 2013.

Three poems by Jean Folan



I stand at the Bish boatslip, scullers skim by the Pillars.

Swans, ducks, gulls gather, gray waters etch Galway.

Lifebelts hang by the weir over the uneven thrum

of an unseen cascade. A distant drone of traffic,

grey and blue buildings, the Cathedral mass looms.

Nee-naw, Nee naw, increasing volume, incessant intensity.

Past the white colonnades of the Salmon Weir Bridge

a fluorescent ambulance stutters through hidden traffic.

At the same time: reverberations over the copper cupola

of University College; a dark speck enlarges. Overhead

a red and white bird turns towards the concealed hospital.

The rotating noise of helicopter blades scythe my mind.

Smell of fresh cut grass. Stench of acrid bird shit.

Two swans glide, trail V shaped ripples.

I am mesmerised by the confluence of wakes.



I loved the first,

a golden torc

with crescent moons

placed with gentle hands.

His fingerpads lingered,

brushed my delicate skin.

The second,

I wish to forget.

A tight black band,

clamped hands,

fingertips crushing,

I struggled. Do bruises

still colour my neck?

He claimed it was a dream

but it was my nightmare

when the torc of his love

became the black choker.



Forty geese from Burren shores

veer north in February formation,

a black frieze undulating under

an incandescent full moon rising.

Twilight wings whisper on Galway Bay

heralding spring migrations,

with honkings of Boreal gaggles,

promise laden with eggs goose golden.


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