It beats words

DS Maolalai recently returned to Ireland after four years away, now spending his days working maintenance dispatch for a bank and his nights looking out the window and wishing he had a view. His first collection, Love is Breaking Plates in the Garden, was published in 2016 by the Encircle Press. He has twice been nominated for the Pushcart Prize.


It beats words

midnight
and the classical radio,
lyric fm in dublin,
slips in a couple of modern songs
with words such simple english
that even I can understand. I don’t
know much
music
but I do prefer it – it beats words
because it doesn’t hand a meaning
when you’re stretched out drunk at midnight
on a chair. midnight, drunk,
is when I need
something
simple,
something that moves
quiet as the muscle in a dog.
I can stand singing
in italian and french,
even german is ok,
but what’s best
is a violin
playing on its own
in a big
empty room
or an accordion
or else
if nothing else
a symphony
with so many strings
going at once
you can’t hear your own heartbeat,
all on the same
in loud lines
you could use
if you wanted
for an industrial
sheep-skinning machine
or to cut enough cheese
to feed france.

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