Hard thuds chop through me
With the heavy sound that blunts my sense
Knocking out inhabitants who
Flutter away stunned by unfamiliar daylight hours.
Like an unskinned drum
The last beat runs with sap along
My trunk to the stretched-out bases
Beneath the gripping soil
Here I’ve stood for a century.
Each deep hollow slough
Brings me closer to flame
Or metamorphosis into a grandfather clock
Leave my arteries in the earth’s womb
Hidden from axe man strokes of insanity.
⏩ Frankie Quinn is a former republican prisoner who is now a community activist. He is the author of Open Gates, a book of poetry.