Katie O’Sullivan is a Creative Writing and Arts student in NUI Galway. Katie is nineteen and also lives in Galway. She has had a number of stories published in small anthologies and school publications, most recently NUI Galway’s Writer’s Society publication, ‘Stories of Ōg’. Katie hopes to pursue her love of writing long into the future.

A Mugging on Memory Lane

Sweets were really treats you got once in December;
There was no such thing as obesity in that time that I remember.
Tea leaves came loose, they’d make you spit your tea out;
Speaking of loose, teachers would knock your teeth out.

You’d leave your front door open, hadn’t a computer or a phone;
We’d play outside from morning ‘til our mothers called us home.
The roads were never dangerous ‘cus the cars were few,
Sunday’s streets were empty, each knee bending by a pew.

The day the Pope came to Galway, and I there in the brass band,
Amongst the crowds of Ballybrit watched the papal chopper land;
My mother, a believer, religious and God-fearing,
And I dreaded each minute I felt a new school day nearing.

We had no Sky and no Netflix – just RTE One and Two,
And the Troubles were raging, sure the Peace is only new.
And through the years I still remember how I was put in my place,
When a fully-grown man shook me, shook the glasses from my face.

But we won’t talk about that.

Confession to a Boy from School

I know I don’t really know you.
We’re not friends,
not neighbours,
I’m nothing to you
but something deep inside made me speak today.

Was it a hidden well of empathy
waiting to be discovered and exhausted?
Or perhaps madness
mingled with social ineptitude?
Who knows?

All that’s clear in this moment is
that I need to see you, to talk,
because while I may be nothing to you now,
I’m sure to change that.

Once I’ve parted my lips and
strung my vocal chords like a discordant harp
it will have happened.
Emotions will be plucked and my nerve tested.
It’s all I have to say.
The embarrassing truth crammed into
three simple words.
You can’t rap.
So maybe give the talent show a miss?