These country roads meander a little
like Odysseus coming home
or tunes not written down, but improvised.
All along the way you feel the tug
of signpost names: Kells, Oldcastle, Ballyjamesduff.
On the Cavan bus, the way is long
but the scenery is a grassy idyll
as you get closer to Virginia.
The rain-beaten hills are drying in the sun
and rainclouds on the run have gone
with the travelling musicians who had to travel on
with banjo, fiddle, accordion.
Through hay-scented meadowland
these lanes meander a little, take detours
like the cortege going back to pause
at the house of the deceased—
these lanes that were leafy once until the trees
were butchered, the ditches stripped of lushness
by someone who thought this place should be
like someplace else.