Maeve Kelly

A Last Loving: Collected Poems

ISBN: 9781851321483

A Lantern in the Dark
    for Gerard

I have shut the shutters,
clipped the locks
and put the cat out,
kissed your beard
and helped you to your bed.
Eighty now and the years
bend you like a bow,
a sprung arch,
a willow wand,
bones chiselled to a new arc.

Sweetheart I know
the way you grow
not old but with your old
lightness still showing,
a lantern swinging in the dark.

Maeve Kelly is the author of two novels: Necessary Treasons (Michael Joseph, 1985) and Florrie’s Girls (Michael Joseph, 1989); two short story collections, A Life of Her Own (Poolbeg Press, 1976) and Orange Horses (Michael Joseph, 1990/Tramp Press, 2016); a satirical feminist fairytale, Alice in Thunderland (Attic Press. 1993) and three collections of poetry, including Resolution (Blackstaff Press, 1986) and Lament for Oona (Astrolabe Press 2005). Born in Dundalk in 1930, she lives in Limerick. Over the past 50 years Maeve has written out of her own experience as a woman, wife, mother, nurse, farmer and feminist activist and hers is a truly unique voice in Irish literature.

Cover artwork by Oona O’Brien Kelly, courtesy of Maeve Kelly