This thin pale man, this poor gom who could passfor one of us, sees through his windowthe full moon sail in an optical illusionabove cloud and canal and half-completed hotelaccommodating only a stumped crane.
The moon's eyeful works on him, buildingand bundling his ailment into a dreamof a super animal. He exits to the street, cravingdelectation beyond the sensationof the news "as it happens" on-screen,
the ravages of flood, fireball, earthquakecontending in slow motion. He inhales the dregsof living in all its shallow burials.The wind gusting seeds and freshness tickles his facewith a promise to overcome everything—
traffic smoke, oil-slick, even the river'schlorinated conscience. His fingers send upa manhole cover for the moon's laugh.He teeters on the edge of astonishment, of scaringhimself, whose pelt—if we could touch it—
seems flecks, seems shivers, seems gentleness.A thunderstorm starts him zigzagging.His odoriferous delights scatter; his limbsslobber and steam. The moonabandons him. Long-horned lorry lights close.
Knocked clear, he stiffens, curled naked in a ditchwhere he will be found in time to makethe early edition. Snapped, captioned "The manwho thought he was a werewolf,"with just a few specks of blood freckling his nose. [End Page 36]
Patrick Deeley is from Loughrea, County Galway, Ireland. The most recent of his seven books of poetry is The End of the World, published in 2019. His memoir, The Hurley Maker's Son, was shortlisted for the 2016 Irish Book of the Year Award. He has also received the Eilís Dillon Award, the Dermot Healy International Poetry Prize, and the Lawrence O'Shaughnessy Award for Poetry.