Saturday, December 5, 2009


It came through the clouds with a great sonic boom,
I watched it descend from a height.
The alien ship landed outside Macroom,
Oh God! What a wonderful sight!

The lights were all blazing, its body span round
As I sat on the gate with my friend.
I felt the earth shake as the wheels touched ground
And we both watched the ladder descend.

‘Twas like a great robot with green flashing eyes
And it held a great butterfly net.
Myself and Lucille were struck dumb with surprise –
For how long though, I find I forget.

And then came a flash and a bit of a buzz
And up through the ether we flew
And we woke to find aliens gawping at us
As exhibits in some far-off zoo.

Monday, October 26, 2009


This was it, she thought, cradling him in arms
that would never hold another. The sun
beat down on the last of the old yeast farms,
now mouldy. She sobbed and glanced at the gun
that they had primed and left. The burden bore
down on her shoulders. Was it the right
thing to do, or should she allow the night
to swallow her up, the natural law?
But did it matter? No-one left to judge
or point long weatherbeaten fingers.
But still, she thought, the suspicion lingers
that history might bear a lasting grudge.
A sand-encrusted tear ran down her face,
like the frenzied survivor of its race.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Strategic Defence System

The spaceship sat high above the planet
Scanning the surface with its radar dish.
It resembled a hovering gannet
Waiting above the ocean for a fish.
“Still no break,” grunted Kovacs yet again.
“The entire planet appears to be criss-crossed
By radio waves. Our ship would be tossed
And battered if we came down. It’s insane!”
“This is a waste of time,” said Captain Drake.
“We’ll try the next one. Makes you wonder why
A planet should go to such lengths to try
To hide its secrets. We can’t even make
Communication.” Below, like strange clones,
Another ten million people reached for their phones.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Invasion imminent

It seems they’ve set their evil plan in motion
And secretly released those greenhouse gases.
The gaping hole above the Southern Ocean
Will spell the end of our collective asses.

The only thing in space they feared was ozone.
The strongest of their missiles couldn’t dent it.
A world with such a layer was a no-go zone
Until they found a way to circumvent it.

And, as the hole grows larger, they’ll come streaming
Through the layer that once protected us.
And we’ll fall victim to their dev’lish scheming
And suffer as a conquered planet does.

It will be a lamentable occasion
When conquered by these warlike Cosmic elves,
But the worst thing in regard to this invasion –
We’ll think we’ve orchestrated it ourselves.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

He was only gone a minute

He was only gone a minute.
He’d been distracted by a question
From a student with a clipboard,
Who’d a problem generating
Small amoeba on his planet.

He was only gone a minute
But it was a crucial minute,
For the water level gauge
Which was increased just a fraction
Needed further realignment.

Weeks of work were nearly wasted
As the life-forms cultivated
In the foaming global test-tube
Nearly vanished altogether
In the mass of rising water.

It must be said that quick reactions
When he realised his faux pas
And turned down the rising water
To a life-supporting level
Averted a great calamity.

And it was a stroke of fortune
That a tiny microcosm
Of each species bred and reared
Had been saved from mass extinction,
Floating on a tiny splinter.

Monday, February 23, 2009


Stepping through the door, the warden laid
A kindly hand upon Sanchez’ arm.
“Head up, son, and do not be afraid.

You will be most speedily conveyed
To your maker with angelic calm.”
Thus was the warden’s final card played.

Sanchez did not launch a loud tirade
Against this institutional smarm.
Arms outstretched and fingers tautly splayed,

He smiled at the warden’s masquerade,
Then turned to the door without a qualm.
The warden stepped out again, dismayed

At a law so archaic and unweighed.
Breathing deep, he turned on the alarm.
The door slid shut. He said a decade

Of the rosary. The far door made
No sound. The remnant of a last psalm
Died, as the full horror did pervade.

Like the bullet that killed the housemaid,
Spat in haste by his trembling firearm,
Sanchez shot into the cold arcade.

Monday, February 9, 2009

The final star

When the final star
Is just a dot behind you,
When you’ve gone as far
As anyone can go,
That’s the very place
The inner voice will find you
And God’s pure grace
Will doubtless start to flow.

When all ahead
Is night and night forever,
When light has fled
And darkness closes in,
He’ll come to you
E’en though you mightn’t ever
Have known the true
Indifference of sin.

And though the course
Is destined to end badly,
You’ll feel his force
Around you as you fly.
And when your ship
Begins to shudder madly,
He’ll smoothe your trip
And close your panicked eye.

Thursday, January 29, 2009


Nobody was sure what became of wee Ron.
One sec he was there, and the next he was gone.

It reminded the neighbours of eight year old Claire
Who vanished one Tuesday night into thin air.

And Jimmy McLoughlin and Michelle McGrane
Who emitted a “Pop!” and were ne’er seen again.

Another dimension?
Who knows what befell
Young Jimmy and Claire and wee Ron and Michelle?

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Racism 2108

The Jovian economy’s overheated.
It’s meltdown on a quite enormous scale.
The planet’s market forces are depleted
And thereby hangs a cautionary tale.

We need to cut back greatly on our borrowing.
We need to rein the banks in very fast.
If we don’t there will be no tomorrowing,
Our present rate of spending cannot last…

There’s been an influx from the Giant Planet,
These Jovians work hard for little pay.
Immigration? Some say we should ban it,
There’s not enough to go around today.

Why don’t they go to Venus or to Saturn?
Why are they always drawn to Mother Earth?
Each solar crisis follows this same pattern,
Regression to the planet of life’s birth.

If we allow them all in willy-nilly,
It isn’t only Earthlings who will suffer.
The present laws are spurious and silly –
It’s time our well-paid leaders made them tougher.

The liberals point out our own global crisis
When billions had to leave our choking lands
And populate those worlds where hard-packed ice is
More prevalent than warm inviting sands.

But that was way back then. The story’s altered
And economic migrants keep arriving.
It’s no surprise the Jovian dollar faltered
And left their banking system far from thriving.

Of course their culture has to be respected
Their ethics and morality are renowned,
But if our living standards are affected,
It’s time we drew the line and stood our ground.

The day the music really died

No storm clouds blotted out the sky,
No thunder crashed in doom-filled peals.
No trumpets blared the news on high,
No chariots of fire sped by
On rolling, flashing wheels.

‘Twas just a day wherein the breeze
Roved lightly over hedge and street
And rustled leaves in stately trees
In pleasant seventeen degrees
Of lazy springtime heat.

But dotted all around the world,
No-one could soothe the songsmiths’ feelings.
And imprecations long were hurled
And smoke from ashtrays gaily curled
On up to blackened ceilings.

For though they paced with frantic tread,
No songs of note could be composed.
It was as if the Muse had fled
From every earnest songsmith’s head,
Or resolutely dozed.

Whatever set of notes they strummed
Or plucked, or sang with voices fair,
Whatever mournful tune they hummed,
One by one they all succumbed
To tearing out their hair.

For every song that could be writ
Had now been writ. And though they blew
And drew their bows, and though they bit
Their bottom lips, they had to quit
Composing something new.

And after days and weeks, they cried
And flung their fiddles in the bin.
It was the day the music died
When every songsmith joined the tide
And packed the business in.

And no more music e’er was heard,
No rise and fall of pitch and tone,
And though it might seem quite absurd,
Each hitherto expressive bird
Now chirped in monotone.

And soon a dark’ning gloom descended,
Blacker still than any night.
The Music Age abruptly ended,
The grasping claws of death extended,
Blocking out the light.