Underbelly

You had merry-looking eyes
but you were a cruel man.
I saw you beat your wife in the front hall

and sling her into the street,
where she stood and wept
as the furniture came flying out.

I saw you punch your sons
and kick them too when you were drunk,
while the neighbours watched

and shook their heads.
In O'Hara's bar you drank Brasso
and spat it on the hot stove,

you danced and chewed glass,
all for the odd free drink of porter.
And the men laughed, watching

an Irish show the tourists never see;
unless they get mugged or murdered
in the Phoenix Park.


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URL: www.mourne.org/underbelly.htm