Poem: Shots at close range

5th March 2022

you rang me at the end of the world
and asked if I was going into war
with the three o’clock connecting train

at Limerick Junction I threw a few punches
down the phone and took shots
of a mountain I didn’t know the name of

things like and how is she, my replacement?
it was a shitty thing to say
but I wanted to say it

make you feel bad for liking brunettes
you pretended to take offence
but that kind of thing is the reason you still ring me

are you ok?

there is a tenderness still there
a care that hasn’t been harmed
in our surrendering of arms

yours are for holding
someone else
and mine

well mine have gained some resolute sense
now I just hold a pen and let the other hand itch
for a cigarette that I won’t give it

there was a threat today
six times the size of Chernobyl

the grass glowing yellow
the sky an infinite blue

the mountains
have lain down to die
in a brown and purple hue

and every time

the world ends
you ring me
to provoke me
into reminding you
of what it was all for

and why

we can’t describe love
without the language
of war.


Photo Credit: Ernest Karchmit on Unsplash


beam is a poet from Ireland who has participated in workshops led by Kevin Higgins, read at Galway City's Literary Organisation event ''Over The Edge'' and has been published in Broadsheet.ie, Spilling Cocoa Over Martin Amis, and Ink Sweat And Tears.  You can find more of her poetry @personalbeam on instagram.

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