“My Own Crowd” – My poem about St Patrick’s Day

MY OWN CROWD

 

On Patrick’s Day

I take the fifth

to walk in stride

with living ghosts

of those long gone.

 

Billowed tales of all

who marched ago,

passed down the canyoned walls

from mouth to mouth

to lift one’s feet

in step with feats –

Long passed in memories view.

 

Extant by music’s wail

pounding out the way,

a mass of mind –

snaked out as one –

As if green concrete poured.

 

Such whelming sense

that though I wish

to plod alone

adapting toward the unforeseen

and never known.

 

One day a year

My people’s blood

Demands a stand

On foreign land.

 

As years decrease my fill of tears

When casting east to reel my west.

It’s now I look across both times –

My childhood there

My living here.

 

To March, in silent awe

and grateful stamp,

with all of those

cross centuries long

from out my shores –

Who landed on this isle.

 

To claim a stake

in what it takes

to feed

the challenging,

churning,

changing beat

in the belly of this beast –

we call New York.

 

Frank J. Cunningham (2005)

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