Neactains, Quay St.

by Neil McCarthy

                                for Nick and JT


Rarely is Quay Street so clean,

Monday in rain,

Neactain's ticking over with

Slow jazz and crosswords,

Stout and steaming anoraks.


Here is our summer, our July,

Without which there would

Be no casual banter, no

Sympathetic glances exchanged

At the door,


No umbrellas shared and shaken,

No conversations from nothing

With a stranger shielding a

Cigarette from the Atlantic,

No mist to wrap a beauty

Safe in the shawl of morning

As we sit and watch the

Sky from a Spanish window

Waiting for the cracks.