Picture Postcard

by Sally McHugh

In memory of my grandfather, Tom Brady, Vice O/C of the Longford Anti-Treaty Brigade and member of the North Longford Flying Column.

of young Tom Brady dressed
in military uniform
a leather belt
holding a light machine gun
collected from Ernie O’Malley
to be put to ‘good use’
by the Anti-Treaty brigade.

Some time before, Tom and the Flying Column
ambushed Auxies at Clonfin,
Afterwards he and his fellow Volunteers
gathered surrendered arms,
including a Lewis Gun.
Firing five to six hundred rounds a minute
this gun would have decimated the Flying Column:
had the North Longford men not taken out
gunner one,
gunner two
and gunner three.

Reproduced with kind permission of the author. This poem was composed in Poetry as Commemoration workshops held at Galway City Museum  on 5th and 12th of November, 2022. The workshops were led by writer Gerry Hanberry.