St Mary’s Secondary School, Nenagh, Co. Tipperary

ASD- Autism Spectrum Disorder Automatically Sent Down

Automatically sent down because of ASD,
Sometimes he wonders is that what’s seen.
Wanders into school,
Wonders is that all they see.

But he needs to realize,
It’s his individuality.
Video games, Nintendo Switch,
Agreeing with his classmates that his teacher is a witch.

But regardless of what they share,
All they do is stare.
Freshly diagnosed with ASD,
Now even some of his best friends won’t talk to him.

“Mam can I stay home?”
“What about your perfect attendance?”
“Emily, can you talk to her?
Try get an end to it.”

As his older sister, it tears me apart,
Such an innocent 12 year old and a delicate heart.
“It’s not really a problem though” or so I’m told.
But do you realize he doesn’t want to get old

For the fear that the constant torment and lack of acceptance will carry on.
Please open your eyes and realize,
ASD, Aspergers, high functioning or low,
There’s nothing wrong with any of you.
The new dawn is coming soon,
I promise, you’ll see,
There will be acceptance for all,
Including both him and me.

Emily O’Reilly



Poured upon fires of
Toxic masculinity
White privilege
Sexual assault

Doesn’t stop the flames
The blistering blazes
Of Difference,

Cannot quench




My worst enemy is my best friend and much deeper,
From salvation and saviour, to bleak grim reaper.
My company and comfort, a light in the dark,
My disdain for it still is a contrast so stark.

Darkest nights it holds me tight,
I rack my brain I go insane,
Can’t take it much longer,
Does it make me stronger?

Just stop,
Stop imagining.

Katherine Grace

All Alone

Don’t tell me that you love me,
Cause I won’t love back.
Don’t tell me you need me,
Cause I don’t need that.
Don’t tell me that you want me,
Cause I’m on my own.
So if you get up and leave me I’ll be all alone.



Under the water you go
And you don’t stop falling
Unable to get out
You don’t do anything right
So why float back up

They don’t think you’re much good
Think you’re slow and all you do is fall
When you’re doing better than they are
They shout, hiss and don’t care
About how you’re actually feeling

They give out when you’re not playing
But little do they know they are the reason
Don’t be vulnerable, show that you’re better
They are just jealous that they can’t do it

Now they don’t play and I still do
It proves to everyone you do what you want
And who cares about the people
They’re just downright jealous



The beeps never stop.
Trolls always scroll
Through newsfeeds and stories
And make the insecurities worse
No one will ever feel
The tight chest pain
Of the sobbing girl
As she cries herself
To sleep every night
Over the boy
Who treats her like a dog toy.

All she ever wanted was to be loved.

Emma Ryan

I Hate the Way

I hate the way you walk into a room and everything goes silent,
When everyone’s stares seem so violent,
When peer pressure gets so superior,
You can’t seem to stop it.

I hate the way in society you get judged on your appearance, like it’s all that matters,
When really it’s only your personality that defines who you are,

I hate the way people classify you as dumb if you make one simple mistake,
However when the tables turn you’re the worst person in the world.



What’s one thing we never can reach,
Yet all we here is people that preach?
There’s no such thing as perfection,
Perhaps we crave it out of a lack of affection.
Day upon day we try and deny that we desire a sense of security,
One we cannot get from our impurities.
We scroll mindlessly for hours on end,
Looking at pictures from a celeb or a friend,
But deep, deep down we know the result,
That we are essentially a part of a cult,
One that strives for the perfect look
Instead of perhaps picking up a book
And seeing a world that’s bigger than our phones
Or the new and improved magic drone.
Online we explore, ourselves to friend or foes
For hours on end, we compare, ourselves to this model,
Wishing we breathed the same air,
We strive for perfection
When in fact
It’s all a big act
We don’t allow ourselves to feel
Or show any part of ourselves that is real.

Laura O’Flaherty


A light,
A star on the darkest of nights
My right,
My fight.

My voice,
My words to say
Your choice,
To leave or to stay

The only one who has my tongue is you,
Who acts like it’s a weapon

“Cat got your tongue?”

Isabelle Mullane Darvish

Growing Up

Growing up, growing old, growing tough, growing bold,
New beginnings and ends
Enemies and friends
Through the good times and the bad
Through the happy thoughts and the sad
No regrets, no mistakes
Just remake and replace.
Everyone was born for a reason
Some just take longer to start believing
Look around and you will see
Just how beautiful this world can be

Nikki Taylor

Here We Go

I found myself stumbling
My eyes darted left and right
Faster than my own mouth, mumbling “here we go”.

I took one step
That was all
The blinding lights revealed who I was
And the crowd were in awe

They were curious
Hungry wanting more
I felt my own blood pumping through my heart
They were furious.

I took my place
Took my time to get ready
To play the strings of the old Irish heart
The national anthem, going steady

Once again, I thought,
“Here we go”
Generations of county scór
Have walked through the door

To where I am
Sitting on the stage
I’m proud to say I’m Irish
In hope you say the same

Ciara Kennedy


Why do I always have to carry something?
Between carrying society’s unrealistic standards
And the very notion that I have to be
Delicate not strong
Pretty, not smart
Dependant not independent
A princess with a gown but not a queen with a crown.

This wouldn’t be a problem if I had pockets

Anna Powell


Never feeling nice enough
Why don’t I look like them?
Not being able to just enjoy
Always conscious about it

Counting the calories to every bight
Not allowed to eat that today
It will be worth it in the end
But when is it the end?

Nothing in my stomach
A lot in my mind
Thinking too much
Not enjoying life enough.



In a room full of people
But all alone.
In a room full of people
With no one to hold.
In a room full of people,
Anxious and scared.
In a room full of people,
How did I get here?
In a room full of people,
Yet so much the same.
I’m in a room full of people,
Who could experience so much pain?



We are…
The ones who say we’re fine,
When really we could not be further away from fine of we tried.
We are…
The ones who say it doesn’t matter,
When really it’s the thing that matters most.
We are…
The ones who say we don’t care,
When really we care more than anyone else ever could.
What are we?
We are girls!


Fresh Air

I want to smell fresh air
Because Nenagh is getting hard to bare
I want to go somewhere far away
Maybe even live on a golden bay
I want to leave this dirty town
To stop hearing its monotonous sound
I want to touch the warm sand
And leave this grey industrial land

Katie Egan


Time is not my friend
All the things I want to do
It doesn’t let me attempt
You want to do rugby
Time laughs at me
Maybe next year, unlucky
Time won’t or can’t stay
All you’ve got is
Twenty four hours a day

Aoibhínn Delaney


I’m bored,
Sitting in class,
Listening to the teacher,
Rambling on about things no one cares about.
Everyone is falling asleep,
Heads down on the table,
And now I’m asleep.

Anna O’Keefe


Why don’t you understand?
You never do.
I try to explain
It doesn’t go through
I tell you the truth, that I am depression,
But you say I’m okay, that I need a session


Fairy Tales

Once upon a time,
And happily ever after
The guidelines used to tell
A story filled with laughter

The story of a prince
Who falls so deep in love
With a girl with golden hair
And a voice as sweet as a dove

But what about the story
Of the boy from a broken home
Or the girl who’s heart is broken
And is nothing more than a bone

The hopeless cases of the world
Who are hidden away from view
Their stories too sad to tell
Their skies always grey, never blue

Each person has a story
Not all filled with joy
But each story is important
Like every girl and boy.



Paws, wait a minute.
Bundles of joy
Acres of fun
Tell me what is better
Than watching them run?

Two ears four legs and one tail
Their love for you will never fail
Missing socks, torn shoes
Always there to cure Sunday blues

So wipe your glasses
Clear your heart
You know there is a place for a dog
In your shopping cart!

Bríd Hayes and Aisling O’Farrel


I really like sleep
I really like white silk bed sheets
I like big fluffy pillows made with feathers, of course
None of the cotton bullshit.
I like king beds where I can roll around all day.
I like dreamless sleeps where I can just die for a few hours.
I hate waking up.



We are young and wild
We only live once
Why are there rules?
Why are we told what to do?
They won’t care when we’re dead,
So why do they care now?
We are told how to act,
How to look,
What to wear,
How to speak,
But in the end it will all be forgotten
Life’s boring if we go by the rules
Our biggest memories, good or bad, are made when we break the rules.



The fact is that the majority of things you learn in school
Are completely useless to you in the outside world.
School doesn’t prepare you for the outside world.
The lessons you are taught in school are ones that you will never need again.
Things like Algebra, Shakespeare, Irish poems and stories.
You are never going to be somewhere
Where you will need to use the –b formula or a quadratic equation.
You will never need to know one of Shakespeare’s sonnets.
The leaving cert is where you learn off a whole load of crap
That you will never need again and if you can’t remember the vast majority of it,
You are a failure and you might not get into the college you want.
There is so much that needs to be changed with the education system.
The Irish government needs to wake up and see that the education system is failing young people.
It is affecting their mental health.
Young people are not failing; the education system is failing them.

Emma Corcoran


I have travelled from Sligo to Waterford,
Riding different gorses at every chance I get
Nearly every single occasion I have been told
That money will be the barrier to my success,
To get on anywhere you need money
Even though I have sacrificed everything.

Time and time again they say, “try again love”
I have been stood upon, kicked, bitten and thrown up against walls but horses
This is what I want to do.
No one else gets it!




Laying next to you, I got a flight in the morning,
Got me questioning what I think is important,
I can’t even lie, think of you when I’m with him,
Look me in my eye, tell me that you feel different,
Drove 2 hours just to stay the night with you,
Haven’t seen you in a year, but I still get you,
Hurts to see you laugh cause I know I’ll fricken miss that,
How could I forget that?
You made me feel alive,
Forget them other girls, I will put em to the side,
Boys in Nenagh couldn’t be more dry,
You’re so money baby, you ain’t even have to try,
Now I’m running, with you round Limerick city,
We’re in your room, we’re dancing,
It’s a quarter after 3, sayin everything we need.

Ali Dwan


You can hear them before you see them
Hunting for their next meal
Hunting in big groups to make them superior
Their prey try to avoid them at all costs
These animals can vary from the muscular lion to the timid mouse
They are all still animals
Hunting and boasting about their past, present and future meals
These animals are more common than you think
As you can see them outside chippers on a Saturday calling at their next prey

Lucy Armstrong