Monday, 22 October 2012

Postcript: On the Road from Thomastown

The Good Shepherd

Every winter’s night a solitary figure steps out the road from Thomastown.
Here’s how you’ll know him; 
‘Tidy bundle of hay under one arm; quarter-filled meal bag in the other’! 
“I’ll stop for a chat” 
Wintry squalls tormented us but Pat was not bothered. 
“Clover Hill; Ballinvella; Smooth Stepper; Delmaine; a great horsewoman from Kinnity and someone from Clondra.” 

I took my leave “stock of my own” and ‘tipped’ back to Trim. 
Strange how the parable of the Good Shepherd kept coming to mind. 

When next I heard, Pat was dead and buried. 
They say Peter himself was ‘on the gate’. 
“Come in a mhic-Come in!”
Down here we just say “may the green sod rest lightly on our grave, Pat.” 

T.J.G.

PS: If you ever happen down that windswept road and the night is dark enough
Chances are you'll meet Pat still 'stepping out'. 
Make an effort for a chat;
He likes to 'keep in touch'. 

Appreciation of Pat Coffey, Thomastown, Killucan, died 8th May 1995.

The Good Shepherd originally appeared in the form of a dedication to the book I Want to Really Learn about Horses by T.J. Gillespie (aka Tom na gCapaillín).



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