The Tall Lighthouse
John Clarke

John Clarke John Clarke renowned for his performances on the London poetry & jazz scene - jcjazzman is a real presence on stage and on the page. His new and selected poems - ghost on the road - is a must for any jazz/beat fans.

jazz & other religions  OUT OF PRINT
ghost on the road


Tichnoch, Cabinteely, Poulaphuca

(Three villages in the Dublin mountains whose names

my father would quote repeatedly like a mantra)


It was always Cafolas on O’Connell Street

for the ice cream and the jukebox with those

wall-mounted selectors, Formica furniture bordered with gleaming silver.


We’d spend what seemed like hours

inside that dazzling cathedral of a place

where none of the customers

put on painful airs or graces.


A dark-suited tousle-haired Glaswegian

stooped saying; so ye like the Everly Brothers

then laddie? in rhetorical fashion

after the duo’s syrupy harmonies

poured out into a dreary Dublin afternoon.


Johnny he’s a joker, he’s a bird…

such a funny joker…. he’s a bird dog

it’s where you go where nothing ever happens:

Tichnoch, Cabinteely, Poulaphuca.


Sometimes I view my life as a storm

trying desperately to blow itself out

Tichnoch, Cabinteely, Poulaphuca

Tichnoch, Cabinteely, Poulaphuca.

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