This collection contains original work inspired by Patrick’s formative years growing up in a family-centric mini-universe that enveloped a mountain called Neversink. Eternal memory!

Requiem for History


Sprinkle the past with holy water—

cover it with a white linen pall.

 

Eternal rest grant unto it—

light perpetual upon the present.

 

Plumes of incense waft from the thurible—

lifting all into the future.

 

INQUIRIES

 

Potātoe Potâtoe


There’s an inherent pathos in any given Patrick.

Have you ever met one who didn’t have it?

A prerequisite of the name.

Who begot whom is the real question

But don’t expect an answer to it anytime soon.

It’s just the way it is.

 

Patrick and Pathos are one and the same.

Any Irish Thesaurus worth its salt will point to the other.

Passionate

Evocative—

And duly suffering.

It’s just the way it is.

 

‘Are you alright?’

“Not to worry—

I’m just Irish

And well— 

A Patrick.

It’s just the way it is.”

 

INQUIRIES

VESSEL


Sometimes soul remembers what body forgets.

A carefree summer peppered with gangrene.

Father is leaving mother soon.

And grandfather’s leg has to go.

Funnel clouds ferment in the grey wisteria of my bluish-purple sky.

 

Disease backed into a corner.

Better to lose one member than the whole.

Wind de-muzzled.

Heavens open.

Blade unsheathed.

 

The damn breaks and the old bridge is washed away.

East intangible from West.

West intangible from East.

So too the park that held our playground.

That childish mountain—now adult hill, both submerged.

 

Welcome the new-normal.

Normal, New.

Waters eventually retreat.

Drowning, more permanent.

A forever-cut through the quick.

 

Gone and almost forgotten.

Raised again as a phantom pain shooting through a limb-no-more.

It throbs for a spell.

Only to disperse invisibly into the flood of Now.

And Then.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Polaroid


 

Peering into the wide-eyes of my

4 year-old self—

Realizing

 

We remain exactly the same

40 years on—

Decidedly

 

Unamused

and—

Forever musing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Their Last Quart of Cherry Vanilla Ice Cream


Enjoyed as a babysitter’s guilty pleasure,

While watching “The Golden Girls” on their console tv.

Reclined in my Great-Grandmother’s Chair,

she slept soundly upstairs.

Great-Grandfather was in a new bed,

Four-Point-Five Miles away.

Not quite dead,

But nearly so.

That night I presciently slept in his bed,

Which would be mine in a month or two.

Twenty shaping years aft,

I still have that bed.

The quart of cherry vanilla is long-gone,

But that memory still keeps me company.

So does that bed,

So do they.

 

 

 

ALL SOULS DAY


I remember them all.

Pop-Pop and his larger than life spirit.

I remember them all.

Granny and her lovingly knit afghans.

I remember them all.

Dzia-Dzia and his quiet countenance.

I remember them all.

Grandpop Ferdie and his sweet saltiness.

I remember them all.

Grandma and her perpetual worries.

I remember them all.

Grandpa tapping my name out to the world.

I remember them all.

Mary Jean and her intricate gardens.

I remember them all.

Josie and her happy bee-hive hairdo.

I remember them all.

Mrs. Meinhardt and her kind thoughtfulness.

I remember them all.

Stephen and his unrelenting friendship.

I remember them all.

Their fingerprints forever on my soul.

 

INQUIRIES