After Daniel McColgan’s Murder
His body lies on the pad
Under the ash, next to a blackthorn,
In the soft hollow of the devil’s punchbowl
(His dad says the devil only lurks in dark corners).
Ravens stalk his head
And tatted flowers creep round
The braeface of the caves
Where United Irishmen stashed dreams.
A heart-bitter witness to his own eyes,
He named McColgan’s killers.
‘Way on to bed,’ the peelers told him,
Overbowled by the whiskey on his tongue,
And said to come again tomorrow.
The back end of day the killers took him
From his terraced home
And heeled him off from Freedom’s Cap,
A living sacrifice to the truth.
They cowped him like the stone of kings,
The broken pelt hawked up
Where harebells sleep
And whin bushes whisper
That the tongue is the giver
Of life and death.