Therese Down – Balloon

writer 2Therese Down is currently working as the Head of English in a Sixth Form College in Birmingham, England, and has been teaching English Literature and Language for over twenty years in a range of schools and colleges. She holds a MA in Employment Law and spent several years as a Human Resources Manager with a Communications company in London. Therese was born an O’Dwyer and her mother hails from Wexford, her father from Tipperary. Therese is an alumna of what was formerly The Sacred Heart College, Presentation Convent, Ballingarry, Thurles in Tipperary and is now The Presentation Secondary School, Ballingarry. She has written a novel,  ‘Only with Blood: A Novel of Ireland’ which is due to be published by Lion Fiction in June 2015.


My child has a helium balloon
in which he lost interest
several days ago.

It sways and butts around the place
in warm currents
rising from the radiators,

pressed against the ceiling
like a hopeful sperm,
long ribbon wagging.

Its future is uncertain;
the properties of helium are
unknown to me.

It might, one day, explode
or shrivel, disappointed
in an empty room.

If somebody were careless
and simply let it out
its glory could be endless

or, some envious crow
might peck it
and die laughing.

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