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  • By Martin McCarthy

Waves of You & Other Poetry

Waves of You I want to hold you, long and close, where waves break in twilight. I want to hold you, long and close, and feel your skin gleaming with joy. I want to hold you, long and close, in the tiered fragments of a vision. I want to hold you, long and close, whenever you come back to me on the froth of the tide.


I did not expect to find you here,

among these little shells and things

that move from shore to shore

in a vast eternity of sea-foam;

but here you are, light years

from when I met you,

seeing the sea with eyes

that are still open to astonishment.

I did not expect to see you,

with your face lit up in eager joy,

or feel the fading day being charged again

by a sudden voltage of your touch;

but here you are, as the night undresses

in an alcove of dreams and moonbeams,

uttering the long tidal gasp of a longing

that is echoed from every shore.

Martin McCarthy lives in Cork City, Ireland, where he studied English at UCC. He has published two collections: Lockdown Diary (2020) and Lockdown (2021). His most recent poems appear in the pandemic anthology, Poems from My 5k, and in the journals: Drawn to the Light, Seventh Quarry Poetry, Poetry Salzburg, The Lyric, The Road Not Taken, The Orchards, WestWard Quarterly, Better Than Starbucks, Blue Unicorn, and Lighten Up Online. He was shortlisted for the Red Line Poetry Prize, and is a nominee for the 2022 Pushcart prize. At present, he is working on a long sequence of love poems, titled Book of Desire, and these poems are taken from that sequence.

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