Muscadine Lines: A Southern Journal

Belated Irish Rose

Patrick McCarthy

St. Patrick’s day was two days gone
The tavern’s ebb was low
The place had rocked with song and glee
Just two nights ago

Lonely patrons sat in gloom
Staring at their beers
With solace they did partake
In drinking away tears

Then I informed the barroom maiden
That occasionally I do write
A little poem here and there
What was her delight?

She said, “Write a little ditty
About a baby boy
With paddy cakes and ticklish feet
Surrounded by his toys

Tell about his bright blue eyes
And how he crawls around so fast
He likes to look in mirrors
Write how he bubbles when he laughs”

I was stunned for a moment
Then quickly I could see
She was an oasis
In this drunk immensity

She seemed so out of place
In the inebriated air
With melodic voice, sparkling eyes
And strands of golden hair

With sadness I did realize
It was nearing time to close
And I promised the dear maiden
I would write for her some prose

She said to me with a smile
I would like that very much
And don’t forget to write
How soft he is to touch

It was not until I left that night
To myself I did expose
The lovely fact that I had found
My belated Irish Rose


Patrick McCarthy was raised in a small town. He is an ex-Minor League ball player. McCarthy went to Vietnam, then went to college on the GI Bill and got a degree in English. He is a career salesman. Recently he returned home to Denver from Hurricane Katrina in hard hit Mississippi, where he did FEMA inspections. Last summer he signed a contract to publish his novel Unity Ranch which will be out in paperback next year.

© Patrick McCarthy

Muscadine Lines: A Southern Journal ISSN 1554-8449, Copyright © 2004-2012