Say no More

by Aileen Sweeney

Good husband and father, raised a ‘good’ family
Enjoyed his pint
Loved by all who knew him.

We said of two people who trod different paths. Difficult paths.
Brought together by an unlikely relationship
Between two young people whose love superseded their lineage

“Aha me oul Blueshirt” I was greeted by a local teacher purporting to know more
about me than I did.
In the 1980s still trying to poke an old wound
Long covered by a band-aid
Gently healing through 3 generations
In the days when “some things are best left unsaid”
A glance, a nod, knowing.
Past pain not forgotten.
But we’ll say no more.

Reproduced with kind permission of the author. Aileen Sweeney participated in Poetry as Commemoration workshops in Leitrim County Library, Ballinamore, facilitated by Mary Melvin Geoghegan in October and November 2023.

Sweeney’s paternal grandfather, Thomas Coen, was a volunteer and an adjutant in the North Mayo Brigade 1918-1922. He was arrested by the Free State troops in July 1922 and imprisoned until 20th December, 1923.