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There’s peace in the world today
No more war or bloodshed
Lost limbs or mass graves
We’ve learned to live together
Without greed

Wait a second…
It’s April Fools

There’s equality in the world today
No more sexism or poverty
Or judgment based upon race
Background or colour
And gender

Wait a second…
It’s April Fools

Everybody’s lives matter in the world today
No more riots against injustice
Or knees placed upon heads I pray
Played out on
Our TV screens

Wait a second…
It’s April Fools

There’s longevity in the world today
No more sickness or death
Everyone’s going to live & stay
Around forever

Wait a second…
It’s April Fools

There’s full bellies in the world today
No more hunger or starvation
Everyone’s got food on their plate
Wherever they are
Fully satisfied

Wait a second…
It’s April Fools

There’s sanity in the world today
No more anxiety or depression
Bipolar disorder to play
Havoc with your head or
Pull the noose

Wait a second…
It’s April Fools

There’s soberness in the world today
No more addiction or dependency
Or another lost soul gone astray
Hooked & tethered
On something toxic

Wait a second…
It’s April Fools

It’s April Fools
Pranks and jokesters rule
(But the world hasn’t really changed)
Here to mock and ridicule
A society that’s still so cruel
And maybe put a smile on your face


Coffee shop interlopers

Strangers to these surrounds

Intruders to the peace

Adorned with Irish scarves

Leprechaun hats mounted

On their heads

Painted shamrocks upon their face

Standing around

As though having a pint

They look confused

They look out of place

They don’t belong

I look amused

At this giddy throng

Invading this sacred space

Of the highly caffeinated

Just to have a taste

Or their curiosity sated

I doubt they’ll be back

It’s just a day out

The commitment they lack

Of the true coffee devotee

The lure of the stout

Will launch their retreat

To the familiar environs

Of the public house

For some fermented banter

And a bottle of beer.


I’ll just stay in my corner

With a takeaway cup

Write up a charmer

With my laptop

As is my way

And celebrate the holiday

In my own quiet way


Sunken eyes
Sunken spirit
Bereft of sleep
Bereft of peace
Sitting forward on the couch
Shifting nervously
Unable to settle
My hands quivering
My feet tapping
Off the ground
So, I plant my unsteady hands on them
Grasping them tight
As much as to give them something to do
As to quell the shakes
Otherwise I’ll reach for the phone
As I am prone
And…. well,
The devil finds work for idle hands
Dresses up pretty
Leads you on a merry dance
The restlessness
The agitation
Is palpable
Painfully so
Got to keep myself busy
As my head’s in a tizzy
Got to find something
For myself to do.
To overcome this temptation
To get myself through
I push myself up off the couch
Pace up and down the floor
Start washing the dishes
Hovering the floor
Cleaning the fire
Pretty much any chore
As the devil finds work for idle hands
And makes more demands
On you
Than you could ever have envisaged
My morality now pillaged
My sense of worth
At an all time low
It is easy to throw
In the towel
But that’s not my way
That’s not my style
Time to go all the way
Travel the extra mile
For I’m wrestling with demons
That no freeman
Should ever have to
Facing them head on
Though I’m not strong
Feeling the weight
Of responsibility
For all the people
I’ve let down
And hurt
Was it worth it?
This indulgence
This temporary pleasure
This flirtation
With danger
This bent
This compulsion
Of pressing the button
To self destruct
Whilst ignoring the treasure
Right in front of me
Before my descent
Into the abyss
Of fantasy
The same old dance you see


I know, you’re right
Sometimes I’m still prone
To scrolling down
Through the pictures
Of you on my phone
To check for your number
Or my Facebook memories
In case I feel alone
My ache to appease
It reminds me of a birthday
Anniversary or holiday
Puts a smile on my face
Even just for that one day
I know I can’t ring you
That’s not a choice
It’s just in case I forget
The soft sound of your voice.
In case I ever let
The images of you
Fade from my mind
Memories so true.
Over the course of time
Because I got too busy
To stop and rewind
These are my fears
On this journey of grief
Replacing the tears
That’s taken me from
Fierce denial & anger
To acceptance & relief
That you never had to endure
The constant fear of infection
From Covid travelling around
Or the crippling isolation
That accompanied the lockdowns
That maybe, just maybe
You passed away at the right time
So, you could be free
To fly. That I’d be free to rhyme
For now, I must content myself
With more pictures on my phone
Or upon the mantlepiece
In my sitting room at home
It fills my heart with peace
I feel my hope increase
Just in case I ever forget
That won’t happen
Not just yet.


To my porcelain doll
My fragile little girl
Your body shivered
Your mouth, it whimpered
And you gave out a heart-breaking cry
When you came into this world
When you were lifted out
It’s like you were asking us why.
Why did we have to lift you up?
Why did we have to take you out?
Of the womb, you’d made your home
I kissed your forehead
And talked to you
Mam gently rubbed your cheek
We tried to console you
As you seemed a little weak
With your spindly legs
And quivering lips
Your narrow, pleading eyes
Eyes that seem to beg
Us not to disturb you
And let you lie in peace

Eventually you find rest
On your mother’s chest
Skin to skin
Little ears to beating heart
Soothes you into a
Wonderfully deep sleep

We’ll hold you tight
We’ll wrap you up
But not so tight
In case you might break
For you feel so light
Like a little baby bird”


Wish that I could’ve frozen time

Halted it completely in its tracks

Made it that the bells wouldn’t chime

That you wouldn’t fade to black

Wish I could’ve wrapped you

And your fragile little frame,

Stooped in humble service

Like a perpetual prayer,

up in cotton wool

In bubble wrap

In my arms

Breathe fresh life

Into your lungs

But cancer had set its trap

Aggressively it had struck

And your body slowly wasted away

To mere skin & bone

As if you were made to atone

For some ancient sin

You’d buried deep within

A thought I scarce can entertain

For it would stain

Your memory

Your legacy

You were too pure

Too gentle

For this earth

Hope you find the peace

You’re looking for

To make your sacrifices



Wish that I could freeze time

Halt it completely in its tracks

Get a marker & draw a line,

Across which you cannot pass

For fear that you might get older

Grow up too soon

Lose your childlike innocence

For you’re too young to shoulder

Such burdens.

If that makes any sense.

Put together your very own

Wardrobe to Narnia

Where you’ll never grow old

Or succumb to disease

Where you’ll never be told

What to do

Or have to appease

You’ll sit on the throne

Guided by the great lion

And rule your kingdom

With kindness and compassion

Love and wisdom

Strength & dignity

For the whole of your life









To sit down on this couch, I never thought

I’d be here, yet this strange life has brought

Me to this place, where I’ve become wrought

With these anxieties that have me caught

In the mousetrap of crippling past vocations

Haunting my mind and stilting aspirations

So here I find myself sharing my vexations

With a stranger, a long way off from elation

I sit down on this couch, not to think

But to carve open my head to a shrink

And let him see inside, how I just shrink

Sometimes under life’s weight, the brink

Of fragility and battened up tears

Vulnerability and fattened up fears

That I try to hide but truth always rears

When nerves are fried, breakdown nears

To sit down on this couch, I now believe

Is the beginning of the long path to retrieve

The sense of balance and peace to conceive

Medicine for the silence and keys to relieve

The pressure that’s been building up inside

Gets less, the more I’m willing to confide

The more I’m willing to swallow my old pride

and learn the lessons that need to be applied


Born on 16-11-1928, today would’ve been by dad’s 93rd Birthday! He cast a wonderful & happy shadow over us all; was a huge influence on every one he knew and is still greatly missed! 🙁 Happy heavenly birthday Dad! 😁🎂🎉❤️ #poems #poetry #writing #AShadowCast #dad #birthday #happymemories

“Are you John Hume’s son?”

They would inquire,
Once they had caught wind of my surname
“I am”
Came the immediate; proud reply.
“Nothing to do with his namesake John Hume up in the North by any chance”
They would pursue.
Both men of peace. Both much respected.

“I worked with your father when he was Hospital Administrator”
“I was in the Civil Defence with your dad”
“I used to work with him in the court house”
“Ah, I remember working with John in Kilroy’s”
“Didn’t he do the Mater Hospital Pools?”
“He was a good man. A kind man. Always had time for everybody.
Was an absolute gent. Always got things done. Always had a smile
On his face.”

“Who is this man?” I thought to myself
This man they call John Hume
The man with a plan
This man of whom they speak
With such fondness and high regard.
With veneration almost
As though he were a saint
To be revered.
A giant among men
Chosen to walk among us mere mortals
Without equal.
Yet treating everyone equally
Such high standards
Such lofty heights
Such charm and charisma.
I did not really know this man
Nor he me.
He was a stranger to me.
And I to him.
A mystery wrapped in an enigma.
Not a patch on him
Yet cut from his cloth
So something of him
Must have rubbed off on me

Yet he loved me unconditionally
Encouraged my talents
Embraced the path I chose to walk,
Even though it wasn’t pensionable
Nor secure
Walking the extra mile with us all
Bending over backwards to support
Always expressed his pride in me,
Via our mutual translator:
My mum. His wife.
He said to her
“I wish I had Ken’s way with words”
I said to her
“I wish I had my dad’s way with people”

You cast a large shadow over us all dad
Spreading far back into a time before I began
Before I was a twinkle in my mother’s eye
Comforting and warm as a thick blanket
Suffocating and inspiring in equal measure.
Your name carried so much substance
And character. Had a gravity to it
So loaded with expectation and history
That I sometimes stumbled under its weight
A weight that I’m only now learning to carry
And embrace.

A rich tapestry of experiences
Sewn together by the same name
By the same man. Bound
Together forever by
The same man’s sorrow
Which made one family, two.
One family’s loss
Became another families birth
Multiplying his legacy
And casting his shadow
Way beyond what he could
Have ever imagined.

Written by Ken Hume
Copyright of Ken Hume 2015

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