Aidan Rooney

Aidan Rooney

Aidan Rooney has new work recently in Prairie Schooner, Salamander, The Recorder, Cream City Review, Poetry Ireland Review and Mudlark. Day Release (2000) and Tightrope (2007) are published by The Gallery Press.

Aidan Rooney lives in Hingham, Massachussetts, and teaches at Thayer Academy.


for Padraig

Like that pink flamingo not a mile back
dropping its tucked-up leg only to leap
with a great flap to dinner in Bouzigues,

I must have been half asleep or still light
in the head – no-nonsense lunch Chez Philippe,
then some Picpoul and oysters in Pinet –

when the front wheel went out from under me
in a patch of stone dust. I stayed clipped in,
clattering beneath the bike out front of

Languedoc Agrégats. The helmet kept
one ear-flap a half-inch off the tarmac
that hummed its racetrack song of passing cars.

A truck stopped to exit, rattled its clutch,
depositing a line of damp pea-stones
smelling of the ash of a fire long out.

I lay there till certain all was all right,
the little blood coagulated, sweat
gone cool, the dark and a hunger coming on.

Saint Dominic in Cannes

He might as well get down of there, Saint Dominic,
because he’s never going to get his rosary back
from Our Lady of Hope, down off the clouds cherubs
have their heads in, and out past stations some old sobs
still stop by to do. He has a prayer. Saint-Roch
might brief his dog on how to feed him, Peter the Rock
groom his rooster’s natty plumage, and Simon Stock
be happily scapular: they all have jobs.

He, Dominic, might as well
get down of there, and slip into those Birkenstocks
that look so him, sling on his shoulder-bag of tricks
in the event he meets a scout among the mob,
out to spot the next, non-motion picture heart-throb.
He loves a good de-halo. Can play the odd heretic.
As well he might.

Patrick at Saint Honorat

I am of nowhere everywhere here,
crude in all things, God the sphere
of water round me, sky above
whose sunshine I have tired of.

I am the no one no one goes near,
the other brothers steer clear
of my dark cell, night walks,
God beside me long talks.

I am of nowhere everywhere here,
by turns bereft then full of fear
of God before me fornenst ill,
shadows that will not stay still.

I am the no one no one goes near,
rude becomes me more than desire
to know God in me invisible,
one and many, indivisible.

I am of nowhere everywhere here,
drawn in dreams to go back there
where children in the woods must meet
God the ground beneath their feet.

The splendor of the sun won’t last.
God at my right and left stands fast.
He is the one forever near
everyone everywhere.

Poetry in this post: © Aidan Rooney
Published with the permission of Aidan Rooney