Matt Mooney. Born in Kilchreest, Loughrea, Co. Galway in 1943, 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’.
Earth to Earth (2015) and The Singing Woods (2017) were both published by Galway Academic Press.
His poems have appeared in ‘Feasta’, ‘West 47’ , ‘First Cut’ ,The Applicant’, The Kerryman, Duilleoga, Striking a Chord, The Connaught Tribune,The Galway Review and read on Radio Kerry.
I will go where my heart is lighter.
I will go soon for I’ve found a place
lying beyond in the wild Atlantic
where children are running free,
getting surer of their own identity
up on sand hills, roaring, rolling,
going for swims off the Old Pier;
cycling to school all year in safety,
loving just being young islanders.
There I’ll not feel cold inside at all
for island folk are warm hearted
knowing ‘ní neart go cur le chéile’-
we should be there for one another.
On arrival I will marvel once again
at hand woven stone grey walls,
loose knitted and fitted so intricate
through centuries of passing time.
I’ll walk on smooth limestone slabs,
circumventing the grikes and clints,
where goats might hide in hollows
of weathered rock that broke away
from the Isle of Erin and the Burren
aeons ago; this oasis off the coast –
oileán álainn of our Gaelic speakers,
for tyrants chains never rattled here.
They held on to the wealth they had.
I will easily go by criss cross roads
and stop to marvel at a rock pool,
dipping my cares in its crystal soul;
or lean upon a wall for a long look
at primroses that have now turned
a little green field to a yellow gold.
Further on some sheep and lambs,
an upturned boat with lobster pots,
a man spading in his spring garden.
I’ll go back soon to the middle isle
and between two shores I’ll watch
for each sunrise and the setting sun
and I will own the moon above me
when it’s full again over Inis Meáin.