Thomas McCarthy

Two Poems


Around 1943, Cecil, you dropped what you were doing
Just to follow me here into the history section
With my arms full to the brim with heavy Robert Fisks,
Him that tries to make everything right, him that
In old age thinks the world would be much better
If people could only be reasonable: as you know
Well, that’s only a lovely English fallacy, encouraged,
No doubt, by too much obsessing with Edmund Burke;
Not that you read excessively, just that your Peace work
And your Peace Mass made you seem like a beech tree
In an English meadow in an age between Napoleons –
Unlike Tadhg, bustling, unsettled, with something
Always written down, one verse of a song missing,
A task for the Music people, a job for Bernard and Kitty,
And obsessed upon until the job got done. Tadhg,
Now that you’ve gone to join the Emperor of Japan
In a place where books are just cherry blossoms, see
That the kettle is singing, that there’s a cup left for me.


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