'Knocking about on a Rowing Boat' by DS Maolalai
in a pond which we're calling
a lake for the day,
in limerick, somewhere south
of the city – near to the road
toward tralee. it's a long weekend;
we're in a house my sister rented –
wine with our breakfast (sausages)
and now some beers which float
and get cold in a bag tied astern.
the sun shifting slowly and cresting
the hills like the white caps of waves
over shorelines. approaching midday –
there's five here afloat. aodhain at paddle
and ani is acting as coxswain. the rest of us
sitting, watching occasional whirlpools
as they kick back from oarstrokes,
go behind, go away. gui takes photos, kev
talks bollocks and through reeds, dragonflies
show a blue detail – a mirrored blue scaling
and steel. small as fingernails, some
big as fingers, all about and all landing,
taking off and fucking mid-air.
a jetty is westward – picked arbitrarily
as a waypoint. striking mud we sit
down, drink the beers and talk mock
sailor-language elaborately – we know
words like starboard, port and jetty,
like coxswain and astern.
All Rights. DS Maolalai.
DS Maolalai has received nine nominations for Best of the Net and seven for the Pushcart Prize. His poetry has been released in three collections, "Love is Breaking Plates in the Garden" (Encircle Press, 2016), "Sad Havoc Among the Birds" (Turas Press, 2019) and Noble Rot (Turas Press, 2022)