Friday, March 6, 2009

A poem by Paul Durcan.

Paul Durcan is a contemporary Irish poet, born in 1944. He's won the Patrick Kavanagh Award, the Irish American Cultural Institute Poetry Award, The Whitebread Prize and has been a London Poetry Book Society choice. He was Poet in Residence at the Frost Place, New Hampshire, in 1985, and Writer in Residence at Trinity College, Dublin, in 1990. He is a member of Aosdána (an association of people in Ireland who have achieved distinction in the arts) and has held the Ireland Chair of Poetry. He lives in Dublin.

Minister Opens New Home For Battered Husbands by Paul Durcan.

The Minister for Justice wearing a new fur coat
Yesterday opened a home for battered husbands:
Present were leading farmers and greyhound-owners
As well as respectable solicitors with their mistresses.
When the Minister cut the tape to the new home
Several battered husbands could be seen cringing
On the staircase in tear-stained cardigans
And cracked slippers; and the stairs looked
As though they had received a liberal sprinkling
Of dandruff and cigarette ash. A spokesman for the husbands said:
We are relieved to have at last got a place of our own;
Several of the men are pregnant and the security
Which the new home will provide, is for them
A welcome boon. Asked as to what kind of injury
The husbands suffered from, the spokesman said that frayed nerves
Are the major ailment and further inspection revealed
Loose nerve-ends dangling from eye-sockets and cheek-bones.
It was also stated that in order to protect the men
From the wrath of wives
A team of Limerick ban-gardai - known as the heavy gang -
Will be on twenty-four-hour duty outside the new home.

(ban-gardai is Irish for policewomen, or women policemen, or maybe it’s policepeople?)

Have a great weekend.

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