1. The gates opened we walked in my wife and I perched behind our daughter’s eyes we inched forward as she tried to take it all in the Ferris Wheel the Bumper Cars the water slides set against the Spanish sunset
fairground sounds pressed against her beeps and bells, whirling whistles colours washed across her upturned face the neon adding to the glow of her she pointed we nodded ran behind her arrived breathless
we sat in the roller-coaster just the three of us there was a countdown we had taught her the numbers in Spanish shouted them together CINCO! CUATRO! TRES! DOS! UNO! we creaked, clanked, forward, upward she looked at me, puzzled her face a question I smiled an answer, wait just wait
teetering, forever, on the cusp falling, falling, hurtling into corners and corkscrews screaming laughing our throats ragged I looked at my daughter no one on earth more alive at that moment I looked at my wife, thought it will never be Monday, July 1st, 2019 again 2. In a waiting room we never wait for good news I sit in a Dublin hospital built in 1895 and showing it I am crammed into a large, long room with dozens of others waiting I am number 77 lucky number seven twice over I have seen the nurse already she conducted a preliminary test cold as ice, rarely looking at me mentioned tumour casually and now I sit we all sit Dublin City, grey and wet behind these walls a thousand miles away time, moving, barely slow as the continents I sit there listening to ringtones and wailing babies thinking it will never be Friday, October 4th, 2019 again
Steve Denehan lives in Ireland with his wife Eimear and daughter Robin. He is a widely published, award-winning poet and the author of two chapbooks and two collections (one forthcoming from Salmon Press). He has been nominated for The Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net and Best New Poet.