Poem taken from:

In Sight of Home by Nessa O'Mahony

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Poem of the Week

Friday, December 11, 2009

QuoteVoyager by O Mahony, NessaQuote

I do not know the date.
Hours go into days
go into weeks. 
Each morning the same.
We wake to blackness,
the only light
the glow of Matron’s lantern.

But our nostrils fill:
oak tar mixed with sweat,
damp wool, the tang
of vegetables on the turn,
sometimes a hint of rum,
always animal dung.

And there are a hundred sounds:
creaking wood,
the muffled thump of water, 
the hoarse shouts of crewmen;
the groans and sighs 
of 200 girls dreaming of home.

Some dream of the place
we are going to,
and wake up screaming,
telling of tigers and elephants
and burning trees
and savages with red bloody eyes.

I dream of water: 
green swamps I wade through,
fronds cloak my skin,
huge foamy waves
lifting me high up. 

I’m never afraid. 
I find my feet, stride on,
always wake before
I reach the end of water.

Copyright © Nessa O'Mahony 2009

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