Golden Boughs

Like divers, they have plunged in,
adjusted their sight to an otherworld,
happy to allow the incongruity,
the mismatches, the absurdity of it all,
how things arise, take form,
disappear again.

The Big Bang still spews gasses,
planets form and speed through green space,
storms are swirling across oceans, calm-eyed;
the centre of the web is dark and from it
they come crawling, all things various.

Snakes and mermaids swim together,
here an owl, there a goblin who has lost an eye,
wombs are opening, bonds and bounds
are formed and broken.

Charon plies his dark trade on the Styx
and Odysseus still sails for home.
Dazzling neurons spark and crackle
in the human brain and a town turns festive
as fireworks spill their colours
through the early winter dark.

Such lovely madness
and easy to fall victim,
find you haven’t got a leg to stand on

but trusting in their golden boughs,
a brush, the pen, they have come through,
finding more than just a leg to stand on –
see there, a ballerina has emerged,
someone has found a way to dance.

Mary O’Brien – published in Crannóg, Spring 2018.

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