Ray Givans


Ray Givans

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The train hasn’t left the station

in four weeks. No Junior Lego bricks

strewn across a track, delaying progress.


You sit on the grass in our front garden

between your mother and father,

cross-legged little Buddha.


We stand, three adults, at the open front door,

distanced by six feet, more.

We are hungry to know of your progress,


see for ourselves more than a screen can show.

Slow to speak. A new word? ‘How old are you?’

‘Two’. We applaud. Too long. Too loud, for the times.

Before you go, we go to the dining-room window.

Lifted by your father, we kiss, glass between.


Ray Givans

Ray Givans has been published in five poetry pamphlets. His first full poetry collection, Tolstoy in Love, was published in 2009 by Dedalus Press, and was shortlisted for the Strong award for best first collection by an Irish poet for that year. His most recent collection, The Innermost Room was published by Salzburg Poetry Press, at the University of Salzburg.