For my great-grandmother Mary Rose McGlynn, Cumann na mBan Sligo

by Bayveen O'Connell

A woman moving in darkness
carving out her invisible path
to freedom
under the sickle moon
a bundle of men’s clothes
under her arm
pistols strapped tightly
under her skirts
on to the safehouse
beckoned by woodsmoke
where there will be rest
for blistered toes
where there will be more men
to fill these dead men’s shoes

Reproduced with kind permission of the author. This poem was composed in Poetry as Commemoration workshops held at the National Museum of Ireland — Country Life on the 8th & 9th of November 2022. The workshops were led by writer Terry McDonagh.