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“Suirside Carillon”, Poem By Tom Ryan

Suirside Carillon.
© Author & Poet Tom Ryan.

Oh, happy carillon and bells of my youth, by the river Suir now sounding,
How near and how dear to my heart’s truth, in quiet moments never-ending.

By Cathedral bell’s sound one day I was born,
Amid musical sounds of a river that sings in my heart
In moments forlorn and in my happiest moments ever.

To play and to school my life was to rule,
By the bells and the river determined; by green banks and bridge,
By the Ursuline school, my earliest life was thus fashioned.

And, however, how often I may wander away,
Be it near or far over the ocean, I shall hear in my mind
The bells peal and play their carols of happy emotion.

Carolling, carolling , carolling ever, always in tune with the song of the river,
Oh, bells of my heart and my home now ringing ever and ever sweetly singing.

Tom Ryan, “Iona”, Rahealty, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.


A Winters Tale

Kickham Street, Thurles, Co. Tipperary 28/2/2018

A Winters Tale

© Author & Poet Tom Ryan.

I saw a tree, branches like five gnarled fingers,
Bare, barren against a sky of austere lead,
And I shivered.
Cold, gaunt the time,
The mist’s on the mountains,
Night shadows fall fast on the day,
The wind moans in the haggard crying for summer,
And each human greeting’s
More a wheeze, a cough, a sneeze.
The woodshed’s full
A cat, back to fire
Glares at secret places round the house.
That warm retreat from winter and from woe.
We clap our hands for warmth,
For comfort grimly eye the sky .
And all in vain.
We sip the tea
With hearts in one great hurry for the Spring.


[Tom Ryan ,“Iona”, Rahealty, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.]


Love Lines For St Valentine’s Day

Love Lines For St Valentine’s Day

[ © Author & Poet Tom Ryan. ]

No more I seek sweet paradise or absolute truth and beauty rare.
I see my heaven in your eyes and in the shining of your hair;
No more I seek in sonnet, song or music’s sweetest, deepest sound,
That part of me so lost for long, which in your being I have found.
No more I wander through the hours, fearful, lonely, without cheer,
For you, oh fairest of the flowers, are here my love, sweet love, are here.
My every sense now wildly soars to joy beyond this transient earth,
Sweet scented life, oh beauteous bower, oh, bright and light my happy heart.
I wish and you are always there, my light, my courage and my soul,
You are enchantment everywhere, you bless, embolden and enthral.
And so not death nor worldliness shall keep us two, now one, apart;
Oh, magical our happiness, eternal our united heart.


Tom Ryan, “Iona,” Rahealty, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.


Can Spring Be Far Behind?


(© Author & Poet Tom Ryan.)

Under the far and flickering stars
On this bright and lovely night of Spring
In that children’s place of memories
By the river down the Mall .
Tell me it isn’t beautiful.

That place where street lights magically
Trace their pale and orange shimmering shapes
On the ever flowing river
Serenading each life’s journey.
Tell me it isn’t beautiful,

In secret silence swans
From out the mysterious mist of night,
Play with the lighted patterns on the water.
Buds on bare boughs breast the air.
On grassy banks crisp frost appears.
Oh tell me it isn’t beautiful.

And in those hours when magic fails,
And worldliness can faith assail,
I then envision swans of Spring.
Solemn and splendid hearkening
To the language of each living thing.
Oh, tell me it isn’t beautiful.

Tom Ryan, “Iona,” Rahealty, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.


An Emigrant’s Dream

                         The Emigrant’s Last Farewell, Alfred Grey RHA, Irish Artist, 1845 – 1926.

An Emigrant’s Dream  (© Author & Poet Tom Ryan.)

The pictures in mind are enthralling, as you count the days to go home,
As you sit and ponder the vista that’s a vision almighty bar none.
The faces and places of childhood that were once so familiar at school.
Oh, come back, come back to the wild wood, for the world has been playing the fool.

You get on the plane or the boat then your heart nigh exploding with joy,
Come back, come back to the wild wood, where once you played as a boy,
Come back to the quiet, dusty roadways where you hurled at night before bed,
Near the old sweet shop on the corner, frequented by ‘boyos’ now dead.
The song is bursting the heart strings, the memories flood into the soul,
Come back, come back to the wild wood, for the world has been playing the fool.

Ah, the dreaming, the dreaming destroys you, with your heart half at home and away.
Like all of our race it’s the dreaming that can never right take you away.
And amid all the grandeur and plenty and the glories not heard of at school.
Sings the wind: “Come back to the wild wood, for the world has been playing the fool.”

The old ways have changed ah but little, there’s a poorness of many a kind.
Yet, as the days to go way draw nearer, your heart takes over your mind.
For, though happy enough in the new land, that has given you more than the rule,
O’er the din of the plane goes that old refrain, “Come back, come back you fool.”

Ah, me but the heart is a torment, you’re doing all right over there,
And there’s little enough or nothing in the land that caused you care.
But for all the dark desperation, and your tongue can be thorny cruel,
There’s the beat of an air, so near despair, “The world has played the fool”.

In that land away from the wild wood, you make with a proud strong face,
As you ply your trade and charms parade for another kind of race.
You are so proud of the land behind, as you sit on a high posh stool,
But the song that lasts long is on your mind, “Ah, the world has played the fool.”     END.

Tom Ryan “Iona” Rahealty, Thurles, County Tipperary.