Friday, December 24, 2010

Cork Constabulary

The Wren Boy Procession made its way up the street, drums pounding. Tam tam tam tam went the pecking wrens. With Christmas eve on the quick the Wren Boy Procession came out of Kilmainham Jail and marched down Inchicore Road, a small group of onlookers giving them the once-over. ‘here they come’ said a woman in a Kerry scarf, ‘and in such a neat orderly line’. Alongside the barricades dressed in full regalia the Kerry Women’s Auxiliary tossed nosegays of daffodils and carnations and bluebells and marigolds and frothy half-pints of chocolaty brown Guinness into the streets, the onlookers roaring with enthusiasm.

Peeping slyly from behind the bust of King Olaf, his chest puffed out like a Spring pheasant, the littlest dogman watched the procession march by. A woman holding a sign that read “A godless person is like a public woman to whom everyone has access” (Witold Gombrowicz, Bacacay) charged to the front of the procession, her face a medley of consternation and bliss. ‘mark my words!’ bawled the Witness, a waif, his tongue stuck out like a red Pop-sickle, tugging on his coattails. ‘out of my way!’ bellowed a tugboat of a man, the prow of his belly cutting the crowd in half. ‘make way for the Óglaigh na hÉireann!’ piped a man clad in full military dress.

Standing in the middle of a lottery of broken plates and dishes, the aftermath of an all-out brawl between the Cork Constabulary the Sligo Armory, the man in the hat watched the Wren Boy Procession make its way through the icy streets, the blue sky above his behatted head turning centenarian gray. Tomorrow is another day, he thought, and then another and another, until the one is indistinguishable from the other. A week, a month, a year, the days following one after the other, like sheep to the slaughter, dancing like dervishes under a whorish yellow moon, his father smiling, counting the day’s take: tomorrow will be a good day, a fine day indeed.

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"Poetry is the short-circuiting of meaning between words, the impetuous regeneration of primordial myth". Bruno Schulz

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