When I visit my uncle in respite
he shuffles closer to the door, complains
no one will repair his bike. He needs
to cycle home; he’d take a taxi
but can’t afford the fare.
He sits across from me, dismayed;
no one listens or understands
that he must go back. No one
can see what he sees tangled
in the past.
His bicycle chain has been derailed;
he struggles to reset the links
that took him here. His feet trapped
in slippers far too loose; they trip him
when he tries to pedal
his way back.
Breda Joyce lives near Cahir, Co. Tipperary and graduated with an MA in Creative Writing from U.C.C. February 2020. Her poem, The Guardian of the Wheel was shortlisted for the Anthony Cronin Award and longlisted for the Over the Edge Award 2019. The Bee-Smoker and Murmuration above the Peace Line were shortlisted for the Hennessy Award 2019. Slán leis an Airc was shortlisted for The Kinsale Literary Festival 2019. Her poem Free Fall won the Judith Aronson Likeness competition, April 2018. Breda has had poems published in Crannóg, Crossways, Skylight 47, The Galway Review, The Honest Ulsterman, Bangor Literary Journal, and The Quarryman and in the forthcoming Kilkenny Broadsheet 2020.