Angela McCabe has worked as a Neuropsychologist. She is the 2016 winner of the Listowel Poetry Collection Competition. Several of her short stories and poems have won prizes and have appeared in various anthologies. Angela has written screen plays and made an award winning short movie and does Performance Art.
She leads cross-border women’s writing groups. Her third poetry book will be complete by the end of 2017.
old shoes fit
I wear them
in the garden.
like the dress
I wore at
year after year
in the wardrobe
knowing it will never
be worn again,
on my skin.
over the hills.
the other side
of the mountain
Ancestors stood in the meadow
watching fire burn down the home place.
A freak accident.
Faces of family reflected
in pools of black water
Pulling me down. I almost drowned.
Dreams of women in summer frocks
cooling cakes by open windows.
Men making hay. Living through war.
The name of the house is gone,
‘Lisnaree.’ The name blows through
the azaleas I grow here in Lahard.
Begonias, geraniums and violas
talk to one another
of my mother’s green fingers.
Mine went blue with grief,
almost turned black.
After a time the forest flame
bedspreads to match
sewn with those green fingers,
smell her blue roses in the china vase,
pick some ‘Star of Bethlehem,’
The one she planted for you.’
I dream of two houses
on the south facing slope of a mountain.
Daughter will live in the main house,
children learning from wind patterns, nature.
Tibetan rugs, a shrine room,
butter lamps and teas of every kind.
Kitchen brimming with vegetables, walnuts,
apples, pine cones piled like pineapples.
My house will have log walls, a slanted roof,
yellow, cream and blue.
No doorbell, no kids selling tickets,
the grandchildren coming to play and pick wild flowers.
Between us a pagoda for burning
pine and cypress twigs, prayer wheels turning clockwise.
A sheep skull at one front door, a horse skull at the other
to keep away demons.
Two Abyssinian cats and a Siberian Husky
in the study as I keep a fire going round the clock.
The Lama will bless the buildings, circling them twice,
casting handfuls of rice in all directions.
I will weave, make clothes, cushions
and hang prayer flags out at New Year.
You will sleep next to me under cotton sheets
and wool blankets. We will write stories
to fill books on the oak roller desk.