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Out on the Street to the Memorial There is a wobble in the step. Out in the street without an empty whiskey bottle to take along to the Carmelite Church to fill with Holy Water. They do use a lot of that stuff in this country and it’s a damp place so you can’t be chalking it up to evaporation. Sons slinking down the stairs in the early morning hour to get a cup of the stuff to take back to the bathroom and let it run over the hand. Which misses the point wonderfully but not tripping on the low curb so passed the closed McDaids ARENA lived without regard for exactness of fact and typography , which angered people for whom a magazine was judged only by its regularity and correctness in both. However, ARENA lived with flair.Its editors and contributors cavorted,were reputed to run the periodical from McDaids, refused to take life seriously. to Grafton Street and stand for a moment at the corner empty of: the man with the fiddle, the man with the open scarred palm, the women with the two baby carriages filled with cut flowers, on Grafton Street I . . . the group of men in donkey jackets discussing the true north or the true south or might not west be best, the man saying, suddenly finding himself laughed at for being too much of a reminder of where they were forced to live for too many years, London, chained to dormitory beds in rooms rented by the shift—when I was over to visit Helen living near Highgate, I had to stay a night in a Camden room in a bed, with shoes on, all my clothes on and my arm as a pillow, so always one ear open to the guy all night in the bed next to me saying the rosary in Irish because St. Patrick’s Day ———— ———— 37 I could see his fingers moving over a knotted piece of string fastened to his shirt sleeve and what was I doing there lying in that bed thirsty and knowing I would tell people about spending a night in such a place and they would nod their heads and turn away or say something but god wasn’t it awful. Standing on the corner of Grafton Street. Up the street going toward Trinity, on the corner of Wicklow Street, Desmond O’Grady had the woman with the harp standing, in a poem, waiting to go down to the country—she’s long gone but I used to always walk down that street, back when it, when I lived in the St. Andrew’s Hotel on Exchequer Street. That’s gone, as you of course know or should . . . The Magic Mountain wasn’t put together on the run. Afterwards, the meetings were short to the point where I had unbuttoned my pants before ringing the bell; neither of us knowing those sentences that lead to The New Amsterdam Café is not there anymore on South Anne Street, replaced by a sandwich shop stocked with foreign-looking stuff in honor of Ireland’s membership in the Common Market . . . yes, yes. Lilia’s remark from her hospital bed in Baggot Street Hospital: they give you so much tea you’d think they think you’re sitting on a pot, it runs right through you like rain on a day when you went to the beach expecting a sunny time. Once upon a time . . . Justin died in September. Found “neglected” in his room. I met him several times in the summer and when I asked him down to the Gorey Festival he said he couldn’t risk losing his busking spot in Stephen’s Green. (Liddy in a letter) Fifteen years it took him . . . having come home from work there was a letter, saved until back on the street to read walking along: Found “neglected,” in other words died last September in his room in Dublin. A shudder never felt before. Why for him? The second friend to die. My getting old. Another birthday. If I was to call Lilia and tell her I just got a letter about how Justin died, you remember him? But she wouldn’t and would say as she had of another friend, Charles, he did what he wanted to do; but she wouldn’t remember Justin because the year she was in Dublin she wasn’t speaking English that well and wasn’t drinking , and those were the...


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MARC Record
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