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Moving On / Phil Lynch

Moving On

By: Phil Lynch

€12.00
‘A beautiful meditation on the passing of time, loss, family and how we bear witness. Poems about harvesting a life, told with a gentle defiance, and unwavering honesty. A triumph.’ Elaine Feeney‘At the heart of Phil Lynch’s second collection Moving On is a deep love for and delight in his beloved family, past and present, and the natural world that shaped each decade of his life. In these richly observed and meti...
ISBN 978-1-915022-62-2
Pub Date Sunday, April 28, 2024
Cover Image Donal Norton
Page Count 96
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‘A beautiful meditation on the passing of time, loss, family and how we bear witness. Poems about harvesting a life, told with a gentle defiance, and unwavering honesty. A triumph.’ 

Elaine Feeney


‘At the heart of Phil Lynch’s second collection Moving On is a deep love for and delight in his beloved family, past and present, and the natural world that shaped each decade of his life. In these richly observed and meticulously crafted poems, he honours the rural life that raised him and the city life that birthed the poet. Keenly aware of how precious and precarious life is on a personal and global level, these poems are a moving testament to a life well lived and attended to.’

Anne Tannam


‘Here is an artist taking his place as custodian of what sustains us, life parsed into poetry. Phil Lynch’s work remains subtle while pulsing with soft power and vision, all the while infused with the trademark of a real poet, generosity. These intimate reflections on family, art, legacy, deftly placed alongside reflections on the joy and fragility of existence, resonate with hope, and will give your heart relief.’

Colm Keegan


Phil Lynch

Phil Lynch was born in Westmeath and currently lives in Dublin. He also lived in Belgium for several years. His poems have appeared in a wide range of print and online literary journals and anthologies. His work has been featured on national and local radio in Ireland including Arena, The Poetry Programme, Sunday Miscellany and ‘The Doc on One’ on RTE Radio 1; Rhyme & Reason on Dublin South FM and on The Celtic Show broadcast out of Atlanta in the USA. Podcasts in which he has been featured include: Words Lightly Spoken, Boundless & Bare and Eat the Storms. Some of his poems and adaptations of others have been recorded on CDs. He has been a winner, runner up and highly commended finalist in various poetry competitions. 

His previous poetry collection, In a Changing Light, was published by Salmon Poetry in 2016. He is a regular reader of his work at poetry and spoken word events and festivals in Ireland (including Electric Picnic Festival, Bray Literary Festival, Dublin Book Festival, Cuirt Literary Festival (Spoken Word Platform), Blackwater International Poetry Festival, Red Line Book Festival, St Patrick’s Festival, Dublin: A Year in Words – Poetry & Spoken Word Trail) and has performed at events in Paris, Brussels, London, New York and Washington. 
Phil is a coordinator and sometimes host of the Words by the Sea monthly event in Dun Laoghaire under the auspices of ArtNetdlr. He was a member of the organising committee for the Bray Literary Festival 2019-2022 and a co-founder and board member of the LINGO Spoken Word Festival (2014-2016). He is a professional member of the Irish Writers Centre, a member of ArtNetdlr (Artist Network Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown), a member of Dalkey Writers Workshop and the ‘Lord Edward’ writing group. 

Moving On


I am upstream east of Heidelberg

on the scenic Neckar when it comes to me

with more clarity than ever before:

I am more than what others demand of me.

The moment is hammered into the chain

that links memory to circumstance.


Time to put an end to the endless chasing

and second-guessing of diverse positions,

to be written up in briefings, on the myriad

of pros & cons of one policy position over

another. Time to file away the files. Time to

make my words my own and let them flow.


The late May air is warm, beer ice cold,

the cruise boat burps along in lazy chugs,

steep-sided banks of evergreens and vines

float past. I lean back like a sunflower

face to the sun and invite the future

to sweep me into its slipstream.



Reading the Sundays


After Sunday dinner (in the middle

of the day) they retreated to their regular

chairs to read the Sunday papers,

the Sunday Independent and Sunday Review.

Later the Sunday World, Press and Tribune

all became part of the mix.


As with the dailies, Dad’s first focus

fell on the death notices, to make sure

I’m not among them he would joke

while noting funerals to be attended,

before proclaiming, there are people

dying today who never died before.


Calling out snippets to each other

from various articles, their tone

of voice revealing whether the item

found favour or was being frowned upon;

the source usually informed the tone,

the more official, the greater the scorn.


Sections were swapped over 

as each was read until the papers

were fully exchanged, their order

re-arranged and some parts discarded

in keeping with my parents’ interpretation

of the news and articles therein.


Dozing off mid-read was part of the ritual,

pages crumpling like rumpled blankets

on their laps or hanging sideways

half on the ground in a disordered tousle.

This was their day of rest unless something 

of a higher order pressed itself onto the agenda.


Some sunny Sundays, Mam converted the car

in the yard into her personal conservatory

to finish the papers and grab a peaceful nap

while Dad lay back in his chair snoring

and dreaming that his much wished-for

six-day-cow had at last come to pass.



Direct Knowledge 


It is said 

we should have known

but mostly we didn’t 

because we did not

have the knowledge

to know that things were

other than they seemed,

other than we were told

to believe.


It took decades 

and tribunals of inquiry

to reveal truths, 

extract apologies, promises of

no repeats. 


Now we have the knowledge

to know that some things

seem other than they ought to be.


In another future

it may be asked again

why we did not act.


(All of the above poems are Copyright © Phil Lynch, 2024)

Other Titles from Phil Lynch

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