Poetry from a Dublin Scientist

Month: December, 2011

Old and New

The old year is gone

Take from it what you will

Take the fun, the joy

The love you felt, the people you loved

The lessons learned, the prizes won

The new ventures brimming in hope


The old year is gone

Leave behind what you must

Forget the troubles, the fights

The bad times are gone, the slate swept clean

Time forgives debts,  forgets wrongs

Put behind the past, for the future lies ahead


A new year is born

Full of hope, full of potential

New schemes, new lives, waiting to come to fruition

New loves, new beginnings, the possibility of the unknown

What new delights can just be around the corner?

What familiar constant will take on new meaning?


The old year is gone

And a new year is born

The currents of time flow as strongly as ever

Each of us just flotsam in its turbulent flow

It is unpredictable, mysterious, never boring

Think of the wonders it has in store for the year to come.


My story

Listen to me

For I have a story to tell

Of my life, what I have done

All I have lost and what I learned from losing

Of the love I have felt, the despair when it came to an end

But more than that

For my story is more than what I was

It is also what I could be

What I could have been

The road not taken, the question not asked

All these add to the narrative, the infinite complexity

The multitudes that make the man

Listen to my story

And I will hear yours

Let our voices add to the great cacophony

Threads in the tapestry

The artwork of history.


Mistletoe, why do you tempt me so?

Why do you give me such sweet hope when I should know better

I take you to my heart and hope you will bring her to me

Yet I stay and do nothing

Your promise keeps me fixed when I should be searching

When I am under your spell the future I should be making

The soul mate I should be tracking slips further beyond reach

Mistletoe, you provide such sweet hope

But it is not hope I need now

What I need is action

To find what my heart is empty of and plug the gap

To seize what life, what love has to offer

Mistletoe, it is better to be out in the world then under your garland

Waiting for fate, for her, to come.

Not like the movies

Life is not like the Movies I find

Sometimes good doesn’t win

Evil seldom dresses in black

The fight is seldom fair

The cause rarely just


Life is rarely like the movies

There is no soundtrack to warn me

No formulae that events follow

No check list of colourful characters I need to complete

Things rarely work out in the end


I wish life could be like the movies

I wish that true love would be clear with a single look

That, events, friends, the hands of the great script writer

Would conspire to keep young lovers together

That after that first kiss, the future is as perfect as the leading ladies hair


 But life is not like the movies

Life is real

There is no cut scenes, no jumps in plot

The story goes at the same pace regardless of the interest of the audience

No secret lighting or camera angles to hide that which you don’t want seen


Life is not like the movies

Because that is how it is meant to be

The world is more, beautiful, insane and complex than anything ever put on celluloid

And you get it for free

Front row seats in the premiere of your life.

I am what I am

I am what I am

Sometimes you may not like it

Sometimes it may offend you

Unnerve you

These are not necessarily intentional

Just how things have turned out

I am what I am

What I am is not decided by you

Or by me for that matter

I am the product of my fate

History and potential working towards their own unknowable goals

What I am, what I write, are intrinsically linked

I can no more easily edit these thoughts than I can cut off a finger

It would be pointless to even consider, or ask it

 I am what I am

Deal with it.

Mick Claus

Two nights before Christmas and here in the lab

No one was working, except me, looking drab

I was there ’cause my boss was abundantly clear

I’d much work to do for my thesis next year

I mixed and I stirred, heated and decanted

The swore and shouted, kicked and then ranted

At the height of my anger, liable to do harm

I felt a light touch upon my left arm

I thought it a colleague, but found there instead

A jovial man, in a lab coat, bright red

On his head an elf hat, neatly tied back

On his feet hazmat boots, mint condition, in black

I asked somewhat fuddled who the hell this guy was

He said Santa’s brother, Professor Mick Claus

He sought out young men in pre-thesis strife

To take out and show there’s much more to life

So I, some innocent, playing the clown

Followed this guy for a night on the town

We saw all the pubs, the gigs and nightclubs

Sampled the best recreational drugs

Romanced the women, fought with the men

Put wagers on cock-fights held in a pen

I have to admit, that I had some fun

But quickly found time, out it had run

  I went the next day to find my boss pissed

And found to my shock three weeks had I missed

Quickly I realised that that tub of lard

Made time go faster by partying hard

I was out in the doghouse, deep in the shit

My chances of finishing taken a hit

What more the fat bastard, left me a note

I’ll tell it right now, I learned it by rote

“I’ve come through the years to despise competition

So I hobble it early with my style of rendition

Your career now is over, you better give up

You’re screwed, merry Christmas, annoying young pup”

I was burned, that I know, but I’ve learned my lesson

Not be tempted by a pre-season session

So if you want a good Christmas, no story to sob

Just ignore the fat fellah and get on with your job.


I feel spent

Used up

Worn out

Not really that surprising though

For I have been through a lot

I have seen in the festive season with friends old and new

I have danced and sang, both badly

I have solved the problems of the world

And forgot all about them to ogle “her” red dress

I have eaten and drank to excess

And suffered for it the next day

And I suffer for it now

I have spent what life, what energy I had these past few days

But I have to say

I’ve spent it well.


You hear my soft-spoken words and friendly manner

Reading the script of no harm

Of a party you must check out

Of how you are in need and I am just the knight in armour to save you

Your naiveté and innocence wants to take me at face value

But your inner sense

The wisdom inherited from ancestral survival

Looks into my eyes

Therein you see the true me

The predator, sizing his prey

Waiting for your guard to go down, to safely strike

A master at manipulation, I play all the cards I can

But my eyes cannot lie

There you see my true intentions

For even the most callous give small mercies to their victims

There you see your warning to escape

Not welcome

Why do you insist on coming here?

We say all are welcome, but we don’t really mean that

This place is for a select few, our kind of people

Others don’t belong, your kind especially

You are so out-of-place here, can’t you see?

This is a sanctum, a place were we can go an forget our troubles

But with you there, we can’t do that, can we?

Next to you. our troubles feel small

Hobbled, on your last legs, you mar the delicate vista we prepared for ourselves

Our quick stares are filled with judgement,

We ask, what you did to deserved such a life?

As if that absolves us

But we know it doesn’t

You’re not welcome here

Because you have breached our happy lives

With a reminder, one we don’t care for

That for all our power, for all our wealth

We do nothing, nothing that really matters

You are our shame

And you are not welcome.


Dance while there’s music making

Dance until your feet are aching

Dance until the floor is breaking

That is how you make the grade


Dance because the beat fills you

Dance until the dark sky turns blue

Dance with all the rest who come too

 There is no way you’ll be stayed


Dance through night until the next day

Dance, the game that new young loves play

Dance is my life is all I can say

The best of nights out dance has made.