Matt Mooney was born in Kilchreest, Loughrea, Co. Galway. He has lived in Listowel since 1966. His first book of poetry ‘Droving’ was published in 2003 and this was followed in 2010 by ‘Falling Apples’. His poems have appeared in ‘Feasta’, ‘West 47′ , ‘First Cut’ ,The Applicant’, The Kerryman, The Connaught Tribune.
Two mighty pines, arms outstretched…,
So elegant in layers of needles evergreen,
Stand close together on an elevated lawn
As if they were the guardians of the Gap-
Further on where years ago there was a fee
For livestock at the fairs held in the Square;
There twin church spires meant in the past
One went to the service, the other to mass-
No one ever dared the other’s door to pass.
A place that heard Parnell and saw as well
Fighting between brothers in the Civil War
And Black and Tans carousing in the bars.
Tonight I saw the eye of blue stained glass
Above there in the bell tower of St. John’s,
Its blueness barely masked by falling night
And rain fell from its rim like a colour run,
In tears for all the passing years and people
Old enough but some too young we thought.
An idea came to me that the spires conspire
To turn the pages of our history year by year:
Dancing at the Fleadh with couples swinging,
Cheers and laughter after winning at the Races;
And the lofty pines that make us feel at home
Stand always there for us on the edge of town.