John Carthy

John Carthy


By Mattie Lennon.


God rest your Soul John Carthy,

We’ll hear your voice no more,

While young and hale and hearty

You fell at your mother’s door.

You’d no disease to stifle

Or deprive you of your breath,

‘Twas a well aimed state-owned Uzi

That sent you to your death.The folks of Abbeylara knew

You weren’t crazed or mad:

That you were just depressed and blue,

Not menacing or bad.

But without your medication

You could get out of hand

And in one such situation,

You made some strange demands.


As rising trauma searched to find

A sanctuary in fear,

Your father’s death preyed on your mind

As Easter-tide drew near.

Blind panic armed you for a fight,

All truth became a lie

When those who could resolve your plight

Were not allowed to try.


To mother Rose you were a joy,

A loving only son.

The ones who knew you man and boy

Could ignore your loaded gun.

For your handball they adored you,

Your humour and goodwill

But most of all those neighbours knew

You were not the type to kill.


Those marksmen standing ready,

Aware of all your strife,

With weapons true and steady,

Prepared to take your life.

They pointed at your manly frame,

Not shoulder, hip or thigh,

Without a thought to stun or maim,

And so you had to die.


The victim of state rigours,

Your death has nurtured rage,

And yet our national figures

Applaud this high tech age.

As enquiries (all ex-parte)

Switch on to eyewash mode

I see your ghost, John Carthy

On the Ballywilliam road

I see your ghost John Carthy

On the Ballywilliam road


(c) Mattie Lennon 2000.

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