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  • Writer's pictureTony Frobisher

Summer Inspirations

Emerald Smoke

Sligo’s summer sun

Sets long into the west, bound

For Cape Cod, Boston, New York.

And those memories days,

Imbued with the aromas of

Smoke and the sweat of

The harried, but happy barbecue host

Come on will ye!

Yer wan is hungry here!

Cry friends and family.

And now the smoke is dissolved

To memories, replaced

By the sweetness of

Cut grass, emerald green -

Sparkling with carefreeness and hope.

Oh, Ireland’s youthful summer days,

Boundless light and energy.

Treasure the gold of summer youth,

For the decades will pass by

Like lightning from an evening coastal storm.

Inspired by

Alan Gorevan

The Woodland Hills Evening Club

The boys chased the sun

Glinting low through

Woodland canopy and

Friendly branches. 9pm already

And the trees still dance to

A summer breeze, not yet ready for sleep.

‘When does the sun set?’

Asks one of the boys.

‘When the leaves fade from green

To black and the birds refrain from

Singing, exhausted from the long-song days.’

The sun is a summer tease, a happy stop out.

In the evening, long before the sun

Sinks towards the horizon, the boys

Crest a hill, panting quietly, not wanting their

Mates to see them tired, unfit. Never, we race to

The top – for a summer boys picnic,

Evenings filled with crisps and Dandelion and Burdock

And the most succulent berries.

Ah but the boys are now men,

Aching of knees and no longer possessed

By youthful zest. But, we still race to the top!

The crunch of tyres on gravel trails

The squeal of brakes, cresting the hill

Upon a bike. Recapturing the youth.

Panting as quietly as we can.

Inspired by

Howard Gray

Road Trips Down Memory Lane

Me ma and pa up front,

The boys in the back.

A fully loaded car.

You’d think we were going

For a month or moving house.

Stacks of sandwiches in Tupperware boxes,

6 packs of Salt n Shake crisps.

A pile of beach towels, a wind break,

A flask of thickly brewed tea,

Cans of Coke for us – it’s a day out after all.

The road map spread across me ma’s lap.

Me da frowning, ‘Now I’m sure it’s this way…

Follow your nose boys!’

Closing the windows in a hurry as we

Pass a farmer, chugging up and down a field

Spreading slurry. A dig in the ribs from me brother –

‘Did ye clean yer teeth this morning eh?’

Da telling us that smell, that mature

Manure, will be your carrots, one day.

To be sure, that shut us up.

From beach days to forest glades,

The summer meadows where we laid

Sinking into the wildflowers, chorused by bees.

Following the swallow tails and sharing

Tales of escapades and plans for the next day

And the next. Those endless summers.

‘Back to the car boys’ shouts me ma.

And we know what’s coming next –

‘Fish n chips follows road trips!’

That’s our motto.

Not far to home, I think.

‘Yes please – and mushy peas!

Cod for me, salt n vinegar on me chips!’

As me own children happy-shout

From the back of the car.

Inspired by

Giles Conlon

Beached Memories

Days of constant sunshine

Sprinkled with the finest sand

From a beach full of memories.

Where the breeze carried the laughter

Of children for miles.

Holidays weren’t just any old days,

They were memories made.

They were moments preserved -

Like a shell encased in a sandcastle,

Ready to be rediscovered, or gently washed

Into the future by the year-waves.

But readily brought ashore by

The memory-tides.

Inspired by

Luke Corbet

The Seed of Hope

I found a seed

At the side of the road,

Pocketed it and

Took it home.

In the yard

Scorched, burnt and brown.

I placed the seed

In a crack in the ground.

The fire sky lit above

Like a furnace ablaze,

And the ground cracked asunder

Where the seed now lay.

Infernal, eternal, inviolable sun - yet

Horizon clouds at last gathered as one.

A riotous tumult split the sky,

The monsoon is here, the monsoon’s begun!

A deluge, a torrent

A downpour, an outpouring.

A single thunder crack and the

Heavens opened without warning.

A joyous smell of sodden green.

The smell that caressed the earth,

Of freshness, of hope reignited,

Of streets washed of dust and dirt.

With the drought’s approach

There’s an impending dread,

What life can survive intolerable heat

What will thrive beyond the dead?

And each dry season

That passes to monsoon

I watch that scent-full rose bush

Flourish from that seed

Like a child, full grown.

Inspired by

Awais Khan

Summer Stars

Where do summer stars go?

Do they take their leave

And journey to an infinite darkness?

An ever-winter, where

The nights are drawn out and

The peacock-proud stars

Shine their fullest.

The summer stars are obscured

By the evening light, the extended sun.

And no one stops on the pier

Or promenade to gaze heavenwards,

Scanning for evening stars.

At 9pm on a summer’s night

The stars don’t exist.

Well, actually they are there,

Scowling at the evening strollers

From behind the fading blue.

Jealous of the high clouds that survey

The gentling waves and the swirls

Of the final vanilla ice cream cones of the day,

Where the beach and waves were stars.

And by the time the sea has

Watched the tide of wearied holidaymakers

And home-towners drift into back streets

And B&B’s, bustling Italian restaurants with posters

Of Sorento, the Amalfi Coast –

Not a patch on Hastings,

The stars emerge, revealing themselves to no one.

Inspired by

Alexandra Sage

The Woodlanders

The sounds carry differently in the warm, still air.

The valley twinkles silver from a glinting stream

And the trees drip with leaves, green in every shade,

As the young ones miss nature passing by

For a lick of pistachio ice cream.

Steppingstones across a cool brook;

Decades swirl and flow past, sunlit years

Of dappled memories, listen to the

Water babbling – chattering like old friends

And cherished departed loved ones.

The children forge ahead,

Rising from the valley floor,

A gorgeous gorge you tell them,

But the children skip ahead,

It’s not time for jokes, only to play.

And create memories of grazed knees

And climbing trees, swinging from branches

And numbing feet in the ice cold stream.

The sounds carry differently in the warm, still air.

The sounds of youth, budding youth –

The infant and the innocent.

As fresh as the woodland brook.

Will teenage years trade places

For a raging torrent and will adulthood

Becalm them – gentle, soft flowing through life?

Until then, we’ll enjoy nature

As we nurture the woodlanders,

The curious, adventurous, ice-cream smeared

Explorers, the splash and be splashed smilers

Of today and tomorrow.

Inspired by

Sally Kendrick

Storms and Teacups

Roaming, not going home in

All weathers, me and the fellas

Down by the beach, a bench, a seat,

A plaque near the beach shacks

That says

‘In Loving Memory of Rodney Jones,

Lover of Birds – The feathered kind!


The slowly sinking sun

Casts languid late afternoon

Shadows across the sands.

Low tide for some, high time we’d

Better be headed home, I can hear

Me mam calling for us now,

Yer tea’s getting cold…

Well the Findus Crispy Pancakes are,

Not your Arctic Roll, but you’ll not

Be having that until you’re in, boots off,

Hands washed and sat at that table.

A fresh pot, a new brew,

A reviving cuppa to wash down your supper

As the summer clouds roll by,

Peering in through the window.

Hungry faces scraping plates and wiping

Sauces and gravy with a slice of

Sliced white bread, the best thing since…

A sudden crack of thunder

Shocks us from our plates

Forks dropped as forks of

Lightning illuminate the sky.

Summer storms, flash…count the seconds

1 thousand, 2 thousand, 3 thous…BANG

It’s getting closer.

Now the rain falls, and the air steams

As the parched earth sighs in relief,

And the grass breaths its delicious petrichor

Once the rains and storm has passed.

And the clouds go on roaming

And Dad gives us that look that says,

‘Oh, go on then, but don’t stay out too long.’

And I’m out the door

Faster than lightning.

Inspired by

Ellis Stewart

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