by Eoin Devereux

Liam Doyle bought me
From Eugene Devereux
Cycle Agent, Enniscorthy
for five shillings a week,
on the Never Never.
By trade, a miller,
I transported him at sunrise
to Davis’s dusty flourmills,
and wheeled him home
in the evenings,
to lower Irish Street,
Via a thirsty detour.
I was chained to the railings,
while he met his friends
in Billy Stamp’s fine establishment
on Market Square.

Some five years later
it was a small repair job,
– a slight tear on my Brooks Saddle –
that reunited the cycle agent and miller.
Devereux recruited Doyle
to the Wexford ‘A’ Company
of The Irish Volunteers.

In April 1916
I played my part,
in the four-day revolution,
ferrying grub to the Atheneum,
carrying ammunition to the men
who took over Dodo Roche’s Castle,
and the stumpy windmill on Vinegar Hill.
I escorted my young owner to patrol
Scarrawalsh, Ferns, Oylegate, Ballycarney,
And with word of surrender,
Back to his home in Irish Street,


Reproduced with kind permission of the author. This poem featured on the Poetry Jukebox installation in Galway from July to October 2023.