Martin O'Neill

(20-06-1958 / Solihull, Birmingham, England)

Half past a headache


Uncork the bottle and pour me a drink
A long one
A strong one
I don't want to think

Ethanol, methanol, I really don't care,
Don't store it
Just pour it
Let's shave the dog's hair

A curse from the rim of a beaker of rum
Or handbags
And gladrags
With a bottle of Mumm

A thimble of whiskey, a gallon of wine
A tall one
A small one
Just please don't call time

A girl in the corner, her red hair a mess
Dirt marks
From car parks
On a green viscose dress

Ear-bending strangers in oak panelled bars
Are crying
And lying
In a haze of cigars

The bartender's towel, coming loose at the seams
Wipes beers
And salt tears
From a bar soaked in dreams

Outside the rain falls, a soft veil that hides
The flotsam
And jetsam
On the edge of life's tide.

Submitted: Monday, August 11, 2008
Edited: Wednesday, January 18, 2012

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Comments about this poem (Half past a headache by Martin O'Neill )

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  • Smoky Hoss (10/16/2012 4:50:00 PM)

    This has the strong feel of reality flowing all through it; good writing. (Report) Reply

  • Ruth Walters (3/7/2012 7:34:00 PM)

    A lovely, rhyming, rhythmic verse here that tell the story of the drinking man and woman and even though I don't, I get the picture loud and clear (Report) Reply

  • Patti Masterman (2/17/2012 3:49:00 PM)

    Wow, I just read this again and it's a marvel of craftmanship..The unusual rhyme scheme is the icing on this one..does it justice in every way. ;) Sorta made me
    wish I was the barfly type, just so I could soak up some of that atmosphere! (Report) Reply

  • Sreelekha Premjit (2/11/2012 11:11:00 PM)

    beatifully written.. a bar soaked in dreams... does alcohol make one dream or drown it in tears.. great read. (Report) Reply

  • AJ Ryan (1/27/2012 1:49:00 PM)

    You portray images as clear as crystal, I'm very impressed with this poem (Report) Reply

  • Patti Masterman (4/20/2010 3:51:00 PM)

    You've captured the unexpected beauty of things in life that shouldn't be; without ever asking why, and that is something this universe badly needed, so thank you. For this. (Report) Reply

  • Roshni D'Souza (4/24/2009 7:21:00 PM)

    You set a pace and a tempo in this poem that goes just perfectly with the theme, the rhymes, with everything! Really nice! ! (Report) Reply

  • Frank Cannon (8/12/2008 3:50:00 AM)

    Pour me a Guinness and paint me a smile
    I'm sitting here reading your poetry awhile. (Report) Reply

  • Lauren Watkins (8/11/2008 5:25:00 AM)

    I love the structure of this, and the observational tone in which you write it. You paint a vivid picture. (Report) Reply

Read all 11 comments »

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