Christmas In Belfast, 1991
by Owen Gallagher
Before mass, the milk runs, the paper rounds,
she hauled her son in through the door.
The soldiers returned to barracks for a full belly.
Taking off her Sunday best, laying him out
on the table to rest, she scrubbed him clean,
sewed him up, where he peeped through.
And when she was done, his tie and suit pressed,
Pioneer Pin closing his breast, didn’t she pour
paraffin over him, set him alight. So, no one could
see what they had done to her wee boy. And didn’t
she go out into the street, kitchen knife under
her apron, and take three soldiers with her.