South Kilkenny poet, Billy Fenton was shortlisted for the prestigious Hennessy Literary awards in the emerging poets section for his poem, Cracked Voices. He has a certificate in creative writing from NUI Maynooth and works in the technology sector. Cracked Voices is his first published poem.
It was on my father’s
old Nordmende radio,
that I first heard your jazz.
Your trumpet mournfully rippled,
across my little bedroom,
broke over my mind,
and we were brothers.
It was on a cassette player,
in a house in Belfast,
that I first heard your flamenco.
I didn’t understand your words,
but your voice was tangled and raw.
It gurgled up from some dark cave,
and spat it’s pain into Belfast night.
It was on an old LP,
in a Cork boarding house,
that I first heard you sing.
You sang of strange fruit,
and other ordinary things.
In a voice almost broken.
In a voice almost sweet.
Not afraid to risk,
Not a role model to be heard.
Just ordinary to the core.
Just dazzling for the heart.
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