Baile Átha Cliath

A middle aged woman shamelessly pouts for a selfie
 As she sits alone outside Butler’s;
 A fleeting insight into the Dublin of today,
 Broken buskers saluting wealthy suits and the hurried.

The invisible homeless.
 The ghosts who wander into coffee shops, where they’re sure they lost a euro,
 while college students scrounge to buy a pint for 6.
 A winding path where the people flow like veins
 Pulsing through the streets that never change.

It is the people who keep the city.
 The people, the flow;
 The unreliable bus service disrupting scheduled meals,
 Low blood sugars fueling angry drivers, and
 A haste to get everywhere before the next shower bursts.

The infectious desire to travel,
 As tourists stare in awe at doors you’ve never noticed before,
 Experiencing your city as a pin on a map
 -Where you’ve never pinned it at all.

Rooftops between the canal and the river;
 A refuge from the Georgian mansions that remain
 Stubborn in their depth, reluctant to relate to the redbrick-terraced hipsters
 That craftily have cycled their way to the forefront of the ‘culture’.

You jaywalk; a term on erasmus from America as we try it out across O’Connell bridge,
 The space between the Heineken building and the island in the middle a no-man’s land as you feel you’re
 Traversing the centre of Ireland.

The centre of my world;
 For up until today it is all I have known.
 A metal spike with no function seeing all
 While you see yourself in it’s base, longing in vain to catch a glimpse from the top,
 To be privy to a view it has been constructed to prevent.

All too soon I will be gone;
 Shunning the gloom of Winter in Dublin,
 Missing only the familiar; I will acclimatize again.
 To write, to learn, to build understanding –
 To glean from another city the self this one has given me.

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