Clodagh_black_and_white_smiling_April_2012_profileClodagh O’Brien is a published poet and short story writer. Her work has appeared inWordlegsthefirstcutBare Hands Poetry, Poetry Bus, ‘Gods and Monsters of Tomorrow’ anthology, The Bohemyth and others. She is currently working on the rickety bones of a novel. You can read her musings at

Two poems by Clodagh O’Brien

Beneath it Devours

Giants whirr and clank,

wrench earth by its roots

tear, clench, gouge

an artery –

an ocean wide.


Poisons seep

invade flesh to

arrest alveoli,

heavy with grief.


Over metal chatter

a hand of voices roar;

to impede the bully, secure

beneath its jaundiced shell.


A gavel falls

shatters shackles

allows the beasts’ return

to pillage the tip of Erris,

nestled in Ireland’s arm.


A community fractured,

bipolar and bleeding,

left to battle batons

raised at flesh and bone,

reigning dull blows.



He Left Me There

He left me there

that day on O’Connell Bridge

rain a smear across my face

brutal in its rage.


His silence should have told me,

its absence weighty

rejection a storm.


I tried so hard

to be myself

yet ended up

as someone else

the parts he preferred

on show; lesser ones buried.


I had been part of something,

no longer on the fringes

believing that alone

was the only way as

‘girlfriend’ slid from his tongue,

and I bathed in its licks.


He told me

in the bridge’s middle,

beside a man that wore

the weather on his face

and spread fingerless gloves

over badges and earrings

without a pair.


His words were fast and slippery

so none of them stuck –

‘please don’t leave me’

a puddle at my feet.


He disappeared from sight

consumed by backs and fronts,

yet another man

once so precious, now lost.


Despite it all;

he left me there.