Jessamine O Connor’s chapbook “Hellsteeth” is available from www.jessamineoconnor.com and is the product of a 2013 artists bursary. She comes from Dublin, and lives in rural Sligo. In 2013 she was short-listed for the Hennessy Literary Award, the Red Line Book Festival competition, and the Dead Good Poetry competition; in 2012 short-listed for the Bradshaw Books manuscript competition; and in 2011 she won both the iYeats, and the Francis Ledwidge awards. One of her poems is installed in the Hawkswell Theatre, Sligo. Publications include The Stinging Fly, Abridged, The Stony Thursday Book, New Irish Writing, the Leaf Books magazine and anthology Balancing Act, Ropes, Crannog, and the online journals The First Cut, Shot Glass Journal, and The Galway Review.
On the runway, space ripples.
A roar of waves that never crash
swells and swells, and bloats the earth
with the haze of burning
Inside the plane, mystery men
buckle up or strain against buckles.
A medley of murderers, paper-pushers,
and expendables dressed in sand coloured costumes
Today they bring cargo, a live one –
Bound and taped mute,
kidnapped and in transit, alone and surrounded
by voices he can’t understand
In the blackness of a blindfold
he knows he goes through just one
of many airports, and wonders why
no one ever thinks to ask questions
Preparing to lift off, the war criminals
are comfortable, settling back, relaxed,
they’ll come here again,
Ireland’s a great place to pass through;
They never cause any trouble,
they say they believe what we tell them,
and they never worry about things
that are none of their business
In a kitchen, without him,
the young man’s mother stirs tea too,
tries to pretend everything will be alright too,
believes her love must be big enough, too.
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