POETS Main Page INDEX of Poets INDEX of Titles & First Lines DURCAN menu
 

Durcan
Paul Durcan
b.1944

  "Raymond of the Rooftops"

 
The morning after the night
The roof flew off the house
And our sleeping children narrowly missed
Being decapitated by falling slates,
I asked my husband if he would
Help me put back the roof:
But no he was too busy at his work
Writing for a women's magazine in London
An Irish fairytale called Raymond of the Rooftops.
Will you have a heart, woman he bellowed
Can't you see I am up to my eyes and ears in work,
Breaking my neck to finish Raymond of the Rooftops,
Fighting against time to finish Raymond of the Rooftops,
Putting everything I have got into Raymond of the Rooftops?

Isn't is well for him? Everything he has got!

All I wanted him to do was to stand
For an hour, maybe two hours, three at the most,
At the bottom of the stepladder
And hand me up slates while I slated the roof:
but no once again I was proving to be the insensitive,
Thoughtless, feckless even, wife of the artist.
There was I up to my fat, raw knees in rainwater
Worrying him about the hole in our roof
While he was up to his neck in Raymond of the Rooftops.
Will you have a heart, woman he bellowed
Can't you see I am up to my eyes and ears in work,
Breaking my neck to finish Raymond of the Rooftops,
Fighting against time to finish Raymond of the Rooftops,
Putting everything I have got into Raymond of the Rooftops?

Isn't it well for him? Everything he has got!

© Paul Durcan
Buy Paul Durcan's poetry

POETS Main Page INDEX of Poets INDEX of Titles & First Lines DURCAN menu