The space before

All these little daily disappointments, I feel them in my knees. When I rise in the morning and feel the ache as my toes spread and my weight moves down my legs, I know I am in for a tired and uninspired day. But when I make mistakes, I feel it rising behind my ears like a blush. I feel it sometimes, as I reach for the hand of the wrong man, as I set aside something important. The warning in the space before regret.

During the day, in the glare of the sun, it is hard to tell if the scorching against my ears is the heat of the summer, or an impending disaster. It is easier in the dark, when the wine and tequila lays a vignette over the world, and he comes into clearer focus in the centre of my life. My whole body burns then, and the fear is gone.

I have yet to find the part of me that responds to what is correct. I sit for hours, staring questions in the face, and mentally examine myself from head to toe. That twinge in my chest – excitement or fear? Anticipation or trepidation? When I feel the tears come I don’t know if it’s sadness or exhaustion.

We all long for what we can’t have. And because it doesn’t exist, we long for that one true love that will follow us throughout a lifetime. Is there anyone who doesn’t wish their first love, that first flutter at the tender age of fifteen, was their last? Their one and only? We all want that clarity of feeling, the knowing that it’s right simply because it always has been.

But it’s never that easy. We fumble through life, clutching at the straws that are offered to us. And it can be hard to tell the clutching from the genuine falling.

So I try to just feel the want. It can consume me, if I let it, but I’m too old now for such extravagance. I rise in the morning, swing my legs off the bed, and test out my knees. I try not to take the disappointments personally.


Catch your fall

He’s closer now
He’s closer now to losing
To losing it all
And he’s closer now
He’s closer to the
Final fall

She pushed him to
She pushed him to a cliff top
A knife edge
But his love still holds
And his heart enfolds
The crumbs she’s left

But when he jumps
He will fly like a fallen angel
Without wings
And when he jumps
He will leave behind
All the mess she’s left him in

I will not let you drown
And I’ll be waiting on the ground
To catch your fall
I will never let you drown
I have learned from my mistakes
And I’ll be waiting on the ground
To catch your fall

He wakes up cold
He wakes up cold and shaken
And shaken by life
Cos the nights are long
And he prays for day
But it looks worse by light

He’s tired of this
He’s tired of crying
And that’s how it starts
But I’m not her
And I’ll never be
Cos I don’t break hearts

But when he’s ready
He will face the truth
And she’ll come tumbling down
He’ll spread his arms
Like wings or a crucifixion
And embrace

I will not let you drown
And I’ll be waiting on the ground
To catch your fall
No I will never let you drown
You won’t suffer my mistakes
And I’ll be waiting on the ground
To catch your fall

He will suffer
He will not believe
That he can survive
He will suffer
He will learn
And he will heal

Cos the saddest thing about love
Is that you can just have enough
And then it stops

But I will, I will not let you down
I will, I will not let you drown
No I will never let you drown
I won’t let you suffer my mistakes
And I’ll be waiting on the ground
To catch your fall.

Fresh start of the summer

Irish temperatures have finally caught up with the season, and the population of Dublin are wandering the streets and lounging in parks sporting bare arms and sunburn. My own back is a fetching lobster red, and the vivid white bra strap marks will undoubtedly remain all summer.

But sunburn is one ailment I will never lament, considering its infequency in this country, and the promise it brings for an outdoor, happy kind of season. A lot has changed since I finished the semester, both in my own head and out of it. Some demons may have caught up with me, but I’m shaking them off, maybe this time for good. And I have opened my eyes to discover a whole new possibility has been sitting patiently beside, waiting for me to realise.

It’s the kind of possibility I still can’t quite look straight in the eye, so we sit side by side in the sunshine and just wait. But a change is coming, so fast I have no time to overthink it.

I’m going to let it happen.



I don’t believe, he said,
Roses never stay red.
But I won’t leave, she said,
Until the petals are all dead.

He took her hand, and smiled
with the closeness of a child.
She holds his hand, and smiles,
and it’s bursting in her eyes.

Hope, it sits
upon these lips.
Hearstrings are torn.
Hope, it sits
upon these lips
Shadows are born.

I don’t believe, he cried,
I am hollow inside.
Just let it out, she cried,
There are things that words can’t hide.

He took her hand instead
questions spinning in his head.
She held his gaze and said,
Don’t you crush my heart of lead.

For hope is rich
upon these lips.
Heartstrings are torn.
Hope is rich
upon these lips.
Shadows are born.

I don’t believe, he said,
Roses never stay red.
But I won’t leave, she said,
Until the petals are all dead.

Her gaze falls to the ground,
a single tear without a sound.
He pulls his hand away
and says, Today is not our day.

But hope is rich
upon these lips
and just one kiss
will not hurt you,
yeah hope is rich
upon these lips,
a goodbye kiss
will not hurt you.


I wrote this song in November 2005, but I found it yesterday and thought I would share. It’s one of the few old songs that I still like. I might record it over the summer.

Summer is coming

Well, I woke up this morning feeling decidedly better, so I guess a good night’s sleep was partly what I needed after all. To be honest, it usually is – I continue to completely underestimate how much tiredness affects my mood.

It feels like the rain is finally stopping this morning, and the sun is sort of pushing through the clouds – summer is finally arriving, I think. It’s been raining a lot since the beginning of May, and that has totally confused me, as I usually get right into the spirit of a season as soon as it changes. So this change of weather is good news for me too. I’m going to walk into town in a bit to have lunch with a friend, and I can’t wait to have that summery feeling of being able to wander anywhere I want in the sunshine.

And then maybe I’ll sit in the sun and read, or some such decadent activity. The capstone project can wait a few days.

Peace of mind wasn’t built in a day

So I finished the semester… and I thought I would wake up this morning feeling happy, relaxed, and full of the joys of life. Not so much. I’d forgotten how stress and tiredness tend to linger. Add to that the checking of my university email for the first time in a week, and althogether today was not one of my finest.

Maybe once this capstone project gets underway I’ll feel a bit better. It’s looming over me at the moment, one big project that I just don’t want to do. Or maybe a good night’s sleep will do the trick. Really, though, I just wish I could get out of this apartment, get out of this city, and do something new, meet some new people. I have itchy feet again and nowhere to go.

I feel like a broken record complaining about this stuff, so I guess I’ll leave it there. Ironically, most of you reading this won’t care about the details of my life, and I feel a little uncomfortable at the thought of ‘real life’ people reading all this stuff anyway. So who the hell am I writing this for? Anyone who cares, I suppose. I should get over the ‘real life’ people issue anyway; after all, if I’m going to be a real honest-to-god writer, I’ll have to get used to it.

But I did make yet another post private today. So sue me. One of these days I’ll figure out what I am actually comfortable spewing out here on the internet for the world to see.


The smell of unwashed skin.
Jocelyn, she said,
You have to get out of this flat.
I would kill myself,
put the gun to my head
But I don’t want to die in this place.
The tap, tap of the water coming through
it gives me nightmares.
And my mother,
My fucking mother, they don’t give a
They don’t give a shit.
And my fucking mother
And I’m a mother, and Amy –
She says, you can’t see
the wood from the trees.
It’s just a flat, it’s just –
But I had a nice place
in West Cork, how did I get here?
Watership Down, it was like –
The wood from the trees.
I’m a fighter, but it’s
killing my spirit.
It’s killing me.
The tap, tap of the water
coming through.
Fucking Walter Mitty,
I’m just so depressed.
They say Jocelyn,
You’re just so depressed
you can’t get out of it.
And Walter fucking Mitty
would not live in this shit.