Late on a summer evening . . .
Late on a summer evening
The houses are parting with heat
And the streets are warm
As a bedroom full of sleeping children
The wheels of a car, a dull
Even sound, as if it drove on a carpet
Among the cracked pavements
And the painted windowsills on which
Lamplit people are sitting and talking.
We are soft-footed and busy as dogs
Disappearing down alleyways,
The faces I meet are warped with meaning.
We turn away from each other.
Our shoulders are smooth as the plaster veils of statues
That are turning their backs in the windows and doors.
from Cork (1977)
by Eiléan Ní Chuilleanáin
with drawings by Brian Lalor