Gortnor Abbey, Crossmolina, Co. Mayo

Shame

All around, nothing but corruption,
Our own untimely destruction.

What really have we come to, to point fingers,
So much blame yet only shame lingers.

A viscous guilt grows inside us
For what we are, for what people once called us.

We stare at ourselves, we seethe at what we see,
Don’t you understand? we are a reflection of what we wish to be.

Why should we be ashamed of who we are, what we are,
We are what we make ourselves, we are our own blazing star.

Tara Hannick

Syria

Life starts with toothy grins and sweet venial sins
With scruffy footballs and glassy-eyed dolls
Innocent relaxation and happy oblation
To the workman’s ideals and the scholar’s appeals
To the promise of an existence which is painless and shameless
To the guarantee of an easy life as a happy wife
Or a brilliant reputation within the academic nation
All these promises and guarantees will surely come to be,
But not here.

Emma O’Hora

Girls

I ponder of something great
A world in which girls are not defined as bait
A world in which girls can do something amazing
and not be subjected to a dreadful hazing

A girl should be prim proper
not a punk rocker
a girl should be quiet and nice
and stay at home and be a good housewife

A girl can be a punk rocker
doesn’t need to be proper
A girl can be a rugby player
without it pressing a boundary layer

Only one woman won a Nobel prize
I bet she didn’t need a disguise
A girl can be a belly dancer
without people acting like its some sort of cancer

Its shocking for all of us to see
how cruel the world can be
How much judgement is here
That we all wish would disappear.

Katelyn

They Don’t Care

They don’t care,
about the imaginations that they will crush
or the dreams that turn to mush
as they disintegrate behind a letter
a eulogy to the lives forever
lost.

They don’t care,
that behind the smile that we put on,
the stressful nights of hammer and tongs.
I have to memorize, I have to learn
What’s wrong with me? I’ll fail, and the future I yearn,
lost.

They don’t care,
because in the end, the only way,
to be successful is the price we pay.
Our happiness, our social lives,
our mental wellbeing, we realize,
is lost.

They don’t care,
they say education will fuel our lives,
to find our career, to self-actualize.
But they fail to see, the destruction they wreak,
the futures they ruin, the children their talents, unique
are lost.

But, they don’t care.
Because in the end, there’s one ideal,
and failure to conform is shadowed, repealed.
But they don’t care, because success overpowers,
the overwhelming pressure, the tears, the insanity, the hours
lost.

Linda Kelly

Words

I’m writing words that someone has already written,
Words people call inspiring, profound but nobody seems to listen.

About girls who have had doors slammed in their faces,
Because of their gender or of their different races.

About girls who attempt to peer through technologies door,
Only to be told to go sweep a floor.

We tell young women to strive for more,
But these are just words, I see no action.

In a world where people claim to wage war with equality,
People are only writing and no one is fighting.

Rachel Garvin

Seven Sisters Of Sin

Broken smile, Bruised skin
Born and Bred
Daughters of sin

Grave Charm, Guilty Creed
Grown and Graduated
Daughter of Greed

Famed Beauty, Forgotten Bride
Favoured and Fabled
Daughter of Pride

Hushed Urges, Hungered Utterly
Hunted and Hated
Daughter of Gluttony

Mistreated Heiress, No Mercy Hath
Heartless and Haunted
Daughter of Wrath

Execrable Thoughts, Eternal Thirst
Exiled and Evil
Daughter of Lust

Eerie Orbs, Endless Oath
Evasive and Empty
Daughter of Sloth

Facsimile Taste, Forever Twenty
Fern and Fervid
Daughter of Envy

Blackened Smile, Burnt Skin
Bred not Born
Sisters of Sin.

Kelly Hannick

Cold Corridors

The dark cold corridors,
To pass by the rusted windows of small litters.
The dreaded moves to pass every student,
Do not satisfy to everyone’s amusement.
To finally reach the dreaded door,
Only to be soon awakened by a bellowing roar.
Oh if only they knew,
The cycle they try to pull through,
Then maybe they would see,
The chains holding them from being free.

Karl Holmes

Autumn

Autumn is here,
Under the weather we all need some cheer,
Time is running out for the hedgehog to find,
Under the ground some place to hide,

Golden leaves are tumbling down,
All different colours from yellow to brown,
Mornings are dull and dark
Nobody wants to play in the park.

Days are long and boring
School is nothing but imploring.

Irene Hegarty

Untitled

When I was 10 years old,
The bad news was told,
And everything changed from there.

New house, new school, new lifestyle,
Everything was going to be different for awhile,
But I had no control.

The first few years were fine,
then the next few years came by,
And everything went downhill from there.

Being called a “problem” by your dad,
And that’s not fad,
And told to go somewhere to get it “fixed”.

Counsellors, psychologists, all different people,
All people that saw me weep a little,
but none of them could “fix” me.

Court cases went on,
which felt like a bomb,
detonating inside of me.

One year went on,
the story is long,
But I am not going to bore you.

The divorce case was completed,
But you may not believe it,
But it is not finished.

This will never be finished,
This will never end,
My parents may be divorced,
But life still carries on.
And that is life.

Anon

My Story

If you do not know my story
If you haven’t read my book
Don’t take away my glory
Don’t sit and give me that look

If you can’t understand why my life is like this
Then why should it bother you
If your idea of normal and my life just don’t mix
Then that’s alright, that’s nothing new.

Clara Gardiner

A Hopeful Christmas Gift

Shuffling home on a cold, winters day,
Wondering if Dad will be at home Today.
Sometimes he is there but mostly he is not,
While Mam ensures me “He really just forgot”.
It’s nearly Christmas time and I can see she’s very worried,
As she frantically runs around, almost like a scurry.
I do not want to tell her this, because I don’t want to make her Sad,
But really all I want for Christmas is to have my Dad…

Anon

Untitled

I come to the place
I think is a waste of space
To decide my future
I have to get through it every day like a trooper
Everybody here seems dead
No fire left in their belly
We’re all just fools
We call this place school.

Adam Carr

Gymnastics

Torn muscles,
Broken bones,
Ripped hands,
Aching groans,
Why keep going,
Why do it at all,
Why stick the pain,
Why chance a fall,
Why chalk your hands
And give up control,
Why not play it safe
And stay at home
Why flip back when you can sit back,
Because you can.

Eve Foggin

Untitled

As I’m lying in bed, fast asleep,
Mum bursts in and the car goes beep.
Get up for school she screams and roars,
but all I can think is schools a bore.

I’m sadly there, on the brink of tears,
I sigh under my breath only two more years.
I’m sat in maths wondering what the hell is going on,
I’m trying to concentrate but all I can do is yawn.

Tiana Lewis-Jones

What It’s Like

Here’s what is it like to be me,
Rotten fruit grows on this family tree.
what’s thicker than water takes fifteen years
to trickle slowly down the genetic drain,
Fifteen years of nothing but pain.
Hidden away in the shadow where no one could see,
In the shadow of grief that my mother caused me.
A year has passed since she I’ve seen her face,
So what do think its like to be me?
Where she used to be there’s an empty space.

Anon

Choices

People ask us to make so many choices
Yet no one hears our voices
Makes us feel exploited
When choosing our subjects
If you’re not an intellectual
You get no respect
If you want to be an engineer
or a black marketeer
they don’t care as long as you become a millionaire
It all seems unfair

Ava O’Hora

Trend

Every day a new trend
to copy and pretend.
The popular movement
to make self-improvements.
The course of the river
that shapes your figure.
When you try to drift away
You feel like a castaway

Liam McGarry

F**k the System

We are not free
We are slaves to the system
When we as for help
You just pretend to listen
But when we speak out
We as individuals are shut down.

So go ahead and tell me where you went to college
Looking down the barrel of a loaded gun, which is your knowledge
You tell me that I don’t have potential
I don’t give a fuck about your god damn credentials

But still
You shove it down my throat
expecting me not to choke
you expect me to listen to you
when you won’t even listen to me

Now here I am

What if you heard that the next day I chose the rope instead of the books
Do you feel how wrong this looks
What would you do then?
Would you still be sipping drinks in your den
Or would you realized that you should have handed me a piece of paper and a pen

Still
You continue to feed the flame

So I say f**k the system.

Cian O’Boyle

A Place

There’s a place where
People believe,
Killing youth means bearing fruit,
Like it is something to achieve.
Where exploding limbs feel like singing hymns.
Suppressing their rights.
Beating their wives.
Doing anything to start political fights.

This place sounds very scary, like fear is swelling.
Where is it? Your standing on it
This place is your dwelling.

Ronan Lynn

Sure Look’it

When things go wrong,
And I mean like donkey kong,
You look at them,
Sure look’it.

When you have no time,
To fall or climb,
You’re stuck between,
Sure look’it.

When it all falls down,
And you look like a clown,
You take a step back,
Sure look’it.

Conán Reilly

Untitled

It was the wheat and barley that caused the smash,
Funny, with wavering thoughts of disapproval,
Happiness purchased with sinister cash
My engagement refused removal.

3 years, for a pretty piece of paper
I found myself chatting with an unresponsive soul,
Fix it faster maybe a plaster,
2 years I’ll come out.

Frozen flowing blood, red as a rose,
Told my naive mind it couldn’t oppose,
In wavering denial about why I could disclose
I couldn’t justify why there was blood on my clothes

You see, I’m a quiet 16-year-old living a double life,
One with a man and one with a wife
a sensation seeker, a people pleaser, unfortunately a high achiever.

The guilt caught me, beat me in the race
Perception is what keeps me going,
Life is ambiguous, life is monotonous,
I can’t feel my face.

Anon

The Legend

The man, the myth, the legend
Just because he found some girl by night’s end
She’s labelled as a slut, a whore
Treated as if she’s worthless and poor.

Looked down on for having a good time
In the Lord’s eyes it’s such a crime
But these girls you degrade are human too
And all they should say is
F**k You.

Eilish Gill

Prison

This place is a prison,
These walls so bare and bleak,
I can’t take it anymore,
This place is a prison,
Meaningless words,
Blank expressions,
I can’t take it anymore,
This place is a prison.

Adam Beale

Farming

Farmings for men
Oh here we go again
A world where I am judged just for being a girl
This is Irish agriculture in a whirl
When I talk about a Limousin It isn’t the car
Most girls they would run far

At the sight of a 1-tonne bull
For me that is my life in full
When I enter the ring
Men stare as if were a king
Yet when I win then stops the slagging
And all of a sudden the criticism is lacking .

Ailbhe Kelly

Untitled

As they sat down with a cup of tea
others sat down with cups of disarray.
They brewed the tea and picked the food;
The others conflicted which adversed the mood
They ranted and chanted but nothing was done-
the children they cried for their mum could not run.

They cried for help but no one came –
as the children were not near where there could be fun;
So the people they felt that nothing could be done.

The postman came and through the door landed parcels that sent them for;
They then got mad as they seen the mail for the price of the oil was off the rail.

Emma Mulligan

School

School is cold
It’s about the A’s and B’ so we’re told
I don’t think it’s for me
I just want to be free to do what’s for me
Metaphors, similes alliteration this our education
All I feel is Frustration
Get me out of school
I just feel like I’m a fool.

Cian O’Boyle

Inspireland

Inspireland,
I see what you did there.
Appreciating this merging of words as I sit in my chair,
for this poem I’m trying to match its standard.
That was sarcasm, yes I’m a bastard.

Jamie

Video Games

Video games, playing them since forever
Been told ill never get anywhere… ever
Believed in this for years and years then finally
Found out what they earn, rightfully
Standard prize pool is 100 thousand each
With a 5 man team its pretty neat
With the practice, and the patience needed
They deserve everything they succeeded
They put their hearts and their souls into this
What they get out is surely what they put into it
So if you ever tell me again you’ll get nowhere
I’ll beat the ever living shit out of you, I swear.

Michael