The 23rd of October

On this day in twenty-ten

My mammy passed away

Breathed her last of ninety-four long years

Her passing was so peaceful

I have hardly noticed grief

The shock of her coffin yes

But my tears were brief



But today I see another death

That happened on this day

In Dublin town nineteen eighty-six

Philip Cairns a schoolboy

Not but thirteen years

Dressed in schoolboy grey

Mourning all these years


He never got to school that day

His bag found in a lane

Some schoolbooks were missing

But most of all Philip

All this pain


Appeal goes out from Gardai

Surely someone knows

And righting wrongs

Never too late to do

Please God some conscience

Can be stirred

We owe it to each other

Philip Cairns live with God

We are sister brother


Brian Fahy

23 October 2021

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