Standard Deviation – Patricia Walsh


(For Niall Julian)

This national museum of wrecked dreams
Promising difference on a swathe of landscape
Academically gifted, a sore realisation
Dancing to this rhythm of nonsensical ambition

Yet we buried ourselves in a textbook delight
Savouring gold mines of book-stores locally,
Moving heaven and earth, as promised, lightly
Completing dissertations to set the world on fire.

This filigree classic, a virginal slant,
Keeping every nose clean over the snooker table
An ascetic stance satisfies the smallest slights
A promise of repeat offence rather likely.

Jobs gone before advertised, always the way,
Posthumous reveries ensconced in foreign lands
Torn apart by indifference from an apposite sex
Rewards for notice in spades, gratuitous attention.

A special heart, rolled over in competition
Smirking at another pain, love’s dichotomy spiralled
Watching on site at dissonant effort
In between excavations at another’s expense.

Sorry for your loss, as if we ever mattered.
Digging for an eternal, mutual soul
Personal routine running into the ground
Hardened beginnings augur the finish.

About the contributor: Patricia Walsh was born and raised in the parish of Mourneabbey, Co Cork, Ireland.  To date, she has published one novel, titled The Quest for Lost Eire, in 2014, and has published one collection of poetry, titled Continuity Errors, with Lapwing Publications in 2010. She has since been published in a variety of print and online journals.  These include: The Lake; Seventh Quarry Press; Marble Journal; New Binary Press; Stanzas; Crossways; Ygdrasil; Seventh Quarry; The Fractured Nuance; Revival Magazine; Ink Sweat and Tears; Drunk Monkeys; Hesterglock Press; Linnet’s Wing, Narrator International, The Galway Review; Poethead and The Evening Echo.


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