Theresa Donnelly

A Matter of Time

St. Vincent’s delights in cashmere

sweaters and Jimmy Choo boots-

your niece’s eyes sparkle like the ring.


You want to talk wood-

mahogany or oak? 

I want to talk metal-

the cold steel of a Kukri.


Shards of broken glass

sweep towards the pier.

The season’s dank breath

sweetens ambitious seedlings

in the Jiffy greenhouse.


Basil, peppers, onions will taste

bitter as chicory come summer.


Geese return as you prepare to leave.

I search for words for you to take along

but find the dictionary sealed shut

with marmalade glue and spilt Arabica.


The cat will refuse to eat-

she always does when you go away.


Unlike last year, the pompous  

hibiscus will rot. The sprinklers

are unpredictable when left to their own devices.


Blackbirds will again tunnel

their way inside the dryer vent,

before being evicted into middle-spring

by a landlord who insists on rent-paying tenants.


The roses will blush embarrassment-

for reminding me of your silhouette

bending in the fading light.


Adamant to live in the country-

this house denied home status

but befitting a four-page spread

in Architectural Digest.


You slipped between rooms

while I entertained moguls

after hours and on weekends.


Soon the smell of manure

will saturate the air.

I will return to a city

where steel will grow-


a backbone for urban decay.

Where melancholy can be

buried beneath slabs-


of freshly poured concrete.



Theresa Donnelly is an Irish/Canadian poet who spends her time between Waterville, Co. Kerry and Brooklin, Ontario. Her poetry has been published in the Brooklin Town Crier, Surfacing Magazine, The Copperfield Review, Beret Days Press, Red Claw Press, Ink Bottle Press and The Caterpillar Magazine. She is the author of two poetry books ‘Moon Witch and Other Scary Poems (juvenile) and Recurrence of Blue. She is a member of The Ontario Poetry Society and a founding member of The Brooklin Poetry Society.

For more information visit

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s