Lost for Words

by Cathy Dalton

Under the terms of the truce
The ordinary machine was dismantled
No explanation was given
For the loss of all books

Without our parts
We cannot hope to start again
Though we have rigged a machine
It has no speed
We do not see our way
Lost for words
Imprinted by the sins of the father
Ink on our hands

Reproduced with kind permission of the author. This poem was composed in a Poetry as Commemoration workshop at the Museum of Literature Ireland (MoLI) on 12th of October, 2023. The workshops were led by poet Christodoulos Makris.

Inspired by a letter from E.D. MacAdams, North of Ireland Publishing Co. to Eoin O’Duffy
Date: 27th July 1921
Collection: Superintendent Joseph Murray private papers
Reference: P/183/3/7/2
Archive: Donegal County Council Archives

Cover photo by Markus Spiske.