My name is Kathleen, Kate to most
who want to know me. To some?
I am tiresome, old, bent out of shape
in form and demeanour.
I have lived in Finglas forever,
since my first breath in the old cottage,
in the village as it was, back then
Mother was alive until I was 12.
Scarred; my future turned me
sour to life’s precious time.
Like having my 6, well, 8 when I think
of 2 still…still it broke me.
Roger abandoned me, my weak husband
left me alone.
I don’t want to think,
or recall harsh words spilt,
like a baptism drenched in a struggle
to get by, each day those nosey bitches
sneered, scoffed…can’t hold her man,
Them! Them that wore the marks of rough love,
I did not miss. So I raised my lot, to respect even
the ignorant mouths, jawed open
In the hunger the swallowed pride
on the queue outside the dinner house.
Many an empty belly filled, its ache
Lingers, now they are reared strong
In some ways, they carry scars,
I know so well.