Melanie McDowell makes sense of her world through words. Through poetry she threads her internal and external landscapes together.  Melanie lives by the sea in West Kerry with her husband, three young boys and dog.  Melanie studied English Literature and Philosophy at Trinity College Dublin and after forays in travel, setting up a business, and starting a family, she is finding her way back to words through poetry.  Melanie has volunteered with Fighting Words and has been involved with the Dingle Literary Festival.  Melanie has been encouraged to share her unpublished work after mentorship with Enda Coyle-Greene through the Irish Writers Centre and her continuing mentorship with Máire Holmes through the Kerry Arts Council.  Melanie has written her first collection of poetry.

 Old Chestnut Soul

A Chestnut horse
across a field
we stare at each other
I put on hazards
she walks towards me
I pull to a gritty stop
I am walking towards her
a white diamond
teardrop on her forehead
globed eyes shadowed and
darting and
I am
she is
too thin her
ribs are quivering
I hope that the
hawthorn tree inside
protects her
and brings her
to the
other world
I hold out my hand
close but
never touching
we are fearful
we are
cut from the same hide
or any
so lacking
don’t trust it
don’t know it
don’t know how
to be in it.

Storm Blue

Storm blue sky
reminds me
of a bubble watch
I wore once
when i was
just a child
just trendy
it was called
a bracelet really
a silver cuff
and me
not even
able to tell time
unable to tell time
it seems out to tell me
as far
as I can see
and still
this stormy blue.

Part of the Furniture

The house was filled with furniture
shiny conker brown
sideboards, chiffoniers,
corner cupboards and cabinets
with many hidden drawers
latches and keys
the curtains hung in pleated drapes
of velvets and embroidered silks
the Persian rugs’ colours and swirls
were held down by lions’ claws
gilded mirrors, chandeliers and
cut glass reflected everything back
bannisters bent the many stairs
to our wrought iron beds
where we listened
to tempered voices and
our own hearts beat
against the grandfather clock
ticking time.


I creep
down the
corridors of
my mind
listening for
creaking floorboards to
give me away
doors closed
behind hidden silences
firefly ajars
of light.

A Rush

Her feedback
courses through
my veins
rivulets of
welcome spring rain a
rush of river
breaking its banks the
gush of that waterfall word