New Potatoes

The sight of new potatoes turned my head

To hell with ready meals

We’ll have some spuds instead

My mother’s words now echoing in my mind

A meal without potato isn’t kind


Gammon and maple syrup would be nice

And green spring cabbage

Ready in a trice

A proper meal not some processed thing

A glass of wine

I’m getting in the swing


And so come home

To soda bread and tea

A fresh new tablecloth laid out

For this new me

And sitting down I watch a film I find

About the Irish Famine so unkind


How different now

From generations gone

From those who fled from Ireland

Or died while on the run

Fleeing destitution hunger and disease

Here am I in comfort

Sitting at my ease


I heard that Fearnley Whittingstall

On radio yesterday

Talking about school

Our learning and our play

Reading writing arithmetic

Studying a book

All very well but really

We should teach children how to cook


And today that new potato

Smiling up at me

Reminded me of mammy

And of her wisdom free

Always have a potato

Then you’ve had a meal

And remember those who have no food

To forget them is to steal


Brian Fahy

8 December 2021


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