Uncle Jack brought whiskey breath to dinner,
His broken man's badge of Irish despair,
Of countless bad nights alone,
A different man whose hand once spread
Her ashes, a debt still owed,
As yet she falls and rises with each tide.

Back then he chose the bottom,
To rise again with black-slimed rocks.
And spit at him great mouthfuls of sea,
And laugh his lilting laugh.

Encircled here by ancient shadows,
He joins in atavistic dance,
While he, in here, denies the carpie's breath,
The whispered lies,
Yet reach to shake each hand amid deceit
Of smile and nod,
At last to kneel before the living cross
And find them both alone with Love.