My uncle’s house was the picture of elegance
He had money, prestige and loneliness in abundance.
He farmed the land and loved the freedom
But never married “in his infinite wisdom”.
We visited each year to help him with the crops
He told us what to do, because a farm rarely stops.
We helped with the cattle, the chickens and the hay,
It seemed there were never enough hours in the day.
At night we listened to stories around the big wide fire,
With its big black kettle that hissed as it boiled on the pyre
The heat-glow from the turf and the smell it created
Kept us cosy, while it lulled us to sleep, as it was fated.
I remember we had cornflower for desert almost each day,
That my uncle had made as a token reward for our pay.
At the weekend he cycled into town to buy food for us all,
He bought a cake that he got from the farmers town hall
In the weeks we stayed with him he cursed quite a lot,
How we chased his poor hens and annoyed his dog Spot.
But when it came time for us to leave he was never around,
He would leave the house early without making a sound.
No hugs, waves or kisses as he so hated long goodbyes,
Because he missed his adopted family with tears in his eyes.
So he walked along with his pride, across his big farm land,
With his friend loneliness firmly taking him by the hand.
It was only later in life I realised how much we meant to him,
Where we filled his house with light and banished the dim.
Copyright © Seosamh De Burca | Year Posted 2016