Howley’s Quay

Joe Healy on Howley’s Quay


Gathered in Darkness, Rescued in Light
We gathered in darkness
four in the morning
unbelievable, the crowd
that showed by our side.
For the House they call Pieta
who councel the lonely
hoping to free us
from the stigma of  – suicide.
Like the Vikings we crept
over the Island.
Sarsfield and Thomond
now in our wake.
The Shannon our guide
gently was flowing
its low tide exposing
the love we forsake.
Do you know who
helped us on our walk?
Young people from late
night discos and bars.
They joined us filled
with banter and talk.
We all struggled together
under God’s stars.

By dawn’s early chorus
swans slept near the quayside
necks tucked in the wing
souls under sweet lines.
Each corner we turned
had our saviours and guardians,
how many nights, have they
looked out for signs?
We thank all the fine helpers
working hard, out of sight
who help us poor people
turn darkness to light.


– Joe Healy



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