Breda Wall Ryan

Goodnight Sleeptight

commotion in the walls again

the smothery hand slips round the door

brushes brown three-faced roses

switches on the treacle dark

afterburn drops a light-stunned moth

butterfly key winds alarm-clock spring

Goodnight Sleeptight

COMMOTION IN THE WALLS—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—

 

                                                          DING  dong  DANG  dong—

quarter-past-the-hall-clock

TIME—swing—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—

a    breath     held

m  o  t  i  o  n  l  e  s  s

the smotherer slides through treacle dark

COMMOTION IN THE WALLS

three-faced roses whisper a paper song

     swing-swong—the day is long—the cuckoo and the sparrow—

loose rattle     brassy squeeeak     hinge-swivel

lock-snib     click!

rose-giggles rose-titters rose-sniggers

Toolate! Toolate! Locked in!

COMMOTION IN THE WALLS

don’t tell won’t tell never tell—tell tale tattler—

                                                          DONG  dang  DING  dong —

half-past-the-hall-clock

TIME—swing—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—

breath     held     &     held

m  o  t  i  o  n  l  e  s  s

coat button tap-taps     squeak-creak-swivel-rap-rap

mousewarning!  mousewarning!     COMMOTION IN THE WALLS

     the little piggy burnt his tail—and we’ll have beef tomorrow—

carpet leaves shuffle     feet bump     in treacle dark

the smotherer loud-breathes     treacle dark

CIGARETTE-SMOKE-SHAVING-SOAP

redcloudbellyburst breath S W E L L S

&  S W E L L S     belly     chest     redcloudhead     B A L L O O N S

                                                DING  dang  DONG  dong—

quarter-to-the-hall-clock

TIME—swing—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—

balloonbreath held     held     held

m  o  t  i  o  n  l  e  s  s

hard hand traces hair     foreheadeyescheeks

portrait in nicotine     CIGARETTE-SMOKE-SHAVING-SOAP

clampnose clampmouth     redcloudbreath     in     in     in

cold air ups over legs & up & UP &

COMMOTION IN THE WALLS     rosechatter! rosechatter!

three-faced—Toolate! Toolate! Toolate!

TIME—swin g—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—

breath     held     &     held     &     held

m  o  t  i  o  n  l  e  s  s

redcloudhead balloon free-floats up—up—up—through the crazing

     step on a crack—break your back—never come back

     the smotherer don’t know you’re leaving—

TIME—swing—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—

clamp-hand falls with a groan—a groan—a moan

redcloudballoonhead—flitter-flutter hither-tither zig-zag down to the pillow

creep-feet-muffle carpet-leaves smother-hands

paper rose-scoffs     rose-sniggers     rose-sneers

     not because you’re dirty— not because you’re clean

     because you live on Town Wall and eat margarine

a creak—a moan—a clockwork whirr

DING dong DANG dong—DONG dang DING dong—DING dang DONG dong—DONG dang DING dong

!ONE! cigarette-smoke—!TWO! commotion—!THREE! treacle-dark

rose-mumbles rose-mutters rose-whispers

LIE STILL     Lie Still     lie still

Goodnight Sleeptight

TIME—swing—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—TIME—swing—

a     breath     held

m  o  t  i  o  n  l  e  s  s

Breda Wall Ryan was awarded Joint 3rd place in the Patrick Kavanagh Awards and won the iYeats Poetry Contest, Poets Meet Painters Competition, Dromineer Literary Festival Poetry Contest and Over the Edge New Writer of the Year 2013. A Pushcart nominee, she lives in Bray.

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