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Talking shit about dinosaurs

—Diarmuid ó Maolalaí

Talking shit about dinosaurs

the road to drumkeeran

becomes narrow 

from dublin

as the space 

between cruelty

and a very good 

friend, the space

between rocks

and the fossil. once


we were up there 

on a three day long 

bender – this was me 

jack and aodhain – 

went out to the river

and aodhain spent 

the whole time

pulling shells off

the edges of mud-

stone which flaked

to the touch. it's amazing 

to watch, though

we didn't let on – 

like a talented fisherman

and trout playing 

drums on a pier. 


jumping rocks over

water with trousers on

and slapping your hand

against clay. going under 

the bridge of the road

just for something to do

in the daylight before

you get drinking. 


finding someone behind you 

sinking fingers through mud 

into millions of years and then 

coming out holding stone

like a louse from a haircut, a grey

curling diamond, slick

clinging river-water, silver. 


of course later on, sitting back

at the house, we lay in talking 

shit about dinosaurs – just 

to annoy him while we got

into wine bottles, walked

to the village for guinness

in real guinness glasses. 


"no, of course, it's a wonderful 

fossil, of course – wait, how much

did you say brendan makes

mining diamonds? and you 

went to college with him 

for 8 years? was it 9?"


DS MAOLALAÍ has been described by one editor as "a cosmopolitan poet" and another as "prolific, bordering on incontinent". His work has nominated eleven times for Best of the Net, eight for the Pushcart Prize and once for the Forward Prize, and has been released in three collections; "Love is Breaking Plates in the Garden" (Encircle Press, 2016), "Sad Havoc Among the Birds" (Turas Press, 2019) and “Noble Rot” (Turas Press, 2022).

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