Rody Gorman


rodys head and shoulders red



(United Kingdom)



The Polish Maids


All the others back home for Hogmanay and New Year,

Today, Ne’erday – never! – it’s my fiftieth birthday.

After last night’s gathering and farewell party

With Mother, up and about earlier than the rest,

I leave our apartment and go out on the balcony

And stand there and look out over the country.


It’s our last day too. Time to go pack and get out,

I say to no-one. Those Polish maids will be there

Already with their clean white dusters, clearing away

Up under the skylight, moving their broom trolley

And vacuum cleaner, passing along this corridor

And then the next, letting themselves in any minute.





It’s late August back in Westport.

Father’s gone and beached our ‘half-boat’

And brought home a catch of a sort

From, he says, the Isle of the Blest

Out on the North Atlantic Drift:

A Mary bean, a fishing-float,

Periwinkles they used as bait,

Pellitory, thrift, bittersweet.



Home End


After we all gathered round to head

For the exit as it was time to clear out

And the whole ground slowly emptied,

Was I the only one in the place

Who’d rather he’d been back there

Still at the start when the two sides faced

One another in the centre circle,

Heads bowed, on the halfway line,

With his father standing out on the terrace

Among the crowd of men in the home end

Before kicking off that night,

Remembering our unspoken unsung hero,

Not with a one minute’s silence

But a resounding standing O?



1970s Skoda


A Kodachrome negative: we’re all set to go, all

Stuffed in the back of the hired 1970s Skoda,


Taking a stop at somewhere near by Pike of Pike Hall

On the last leg to Youghal and then Ballymacoda

For a snack on top of a rough wet or dry stone wall.


I’m, like, so tired of our own home baking and soda.



Double Hook


On Loch Baravaig, catching rainbows in May,

Wishing I was back there near Lake Winnipeg

With MacLean and co. or in our old shanty,

Shadow casting all day long or ice-fishing

Mackinaw on Remembrance or New Year’s Day

And wishing I was back on Loch Baravaig.



A’ Siubhal


Ga sealltainn fhèin

Air ais aig an dachaigh

‘S a’ siubhal ris an uisge ‘n dèidh sin

‘S a’ tilgeil m’ arain

Don eala-bhàin mar a bu ghnàth

‘S gun lorg oirre no làrach.





showseeing herself back at the househome and deathseekwalking in the riverwaverainwater after that and shootflinging my sustenancebread to the wildfallowgroundwhite swan as before and not a presencetrace of her





A’ siubhal air ais dhomh

Sa Chuan Sgìth,

Chunnaic mi mar lasair

Eadar dà thaigh-solais

Losgadh air an uachdar

Agus de ghathan a’ boillsgeadh

Nam faileas

Ann am blobhsag a’ bhodaich.





deathseektravelling back in the tiredminchoceanbay, i saw like a flashflame eitherbothbetween two moonphaseknowledgelighthouses shootburning on the woofcreamsurfacetop and sheafspokesunbeamdarts gaudyglittering like a shadow in the halfbottlespectreoldcodboy’s oilskinblouse











Irish by birth (born in Dublin in 1960), Rody Gorman has lived for 28 years on the island of Isle of Skye in the Hebrides Islands in the north-west of Scotland. Poet and translator specialized in Gaelic languages; he has published fourteen volumes of poems of his own creation, and translations (sometimes free) from many poets, including Kavafis, Yeats, Prévert, Neruda, Milosz, Rósewicz, Larkin.

He writes both in English, Gaelic Irish and Scottish Gaelic. He has translated into English poems composed by authors such as Sorley MacLean, Iain Crichton Smith or Donald MacAulay, and carried out free translations into English of Zen poetry by Japanese and Korean classics of the genre. He remarkably reinterprets  the creation of many artists belonging to many civilizations and countries from all around the world. His poems have been translated in several languages ​​(Arabic, Dutch, Estonian, Hebrew, Swedish, Slovenian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, German, Lithuanian, etc.). He had received several literary awards, scholarships and writer residencies (in Ireland, Canada, Switzerland, Israel, Macedonia, etc.) and also led creative writing workshops.

He belongs to a group of writers affiliated with the College of Sky, Ostaìg Mòr Sabha and is a member of several prestigious institutes and linguistic associations.


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