Cosmo/s

Featured art by David Sussberg.

Five. She’s been awake twenty-two hours.

Seeing too many things she’s seen before,


The dawn shakes her husk, she has to work-

She must- but lust for anything has lost her.


She makes coffee.

He straightens his tie. Six.

His wife pretends she’s not woken


He thinks he should kiss his kids goodbye-

She’d definitely kill him this time.


He leaves the house in a dampness of deodorant

and drives towards the city.

The city winds him in like a spool.

She flosses her teeth with the threads of her worker bees

Expelling egg from her tongue

Morning peeps from a cracked shell hoping to be an omelette

City is ravenous.

The Sun rises again at seven-thirty, whirling

Out of bed in flame yellow as peach, she

Is helium only fourteen revolutions old.

Beams downstairs, coaxingly pulls little ones from soft lands

And older ones from sleep

They rise sloppily, follow blindly

Her light will be waiting in the kitchen with toast and the radio

God they love her.

But Jesus it’s early.

The moon sinks at the crack of eight.

Corralled to the kitchen by the whip of his mother’s tongue

“Up!”

Big soles pad back upstairs and want to die


Gawkish hands pick at acne

He stares down the drain at the suds bubbling away from him.

Who cares anyway?

Across irked, stirring houses and the slow pull of traffic

Babies wake and scream

They babble at the table and dribble mashed banana

Running ring-a-ring-a-rosies around their parent’s grey eyes

Who wouldn't trade it for anything.

Nine. Late. Great.

He honks his horn and curses

Neck veins strobing and Sure Men can’t help him now

“Why aren’t you at school??”

He screams at a cyclist

The sun is whizzing through City's traffic without grace or a helmet

One eye on the road, the other in her brain’s back pocket

Thinking about Venus,

The morning star.

Venus is on the 65 as it rumbles through the roads

She groans

It’s nearly ten-

“We’re bloody late again!”

She wipes her name from the window and draws her elbow closer

“I know! These strikes are mayhem. And I’ve an exam first thing”

“Me too- what subject?”

“Geography, Mr.Twomey”

“He looks like a spud.”

City tugs them all through her

Just like this

Her blood clogged with cars, her lips licking smog

From the chug chug chug on tarmac scars


Her face marred with the Big Idea-

She likes it that way.


At far-too-close-to-eleven the 65 stops and gives a wheeze

Before cresting the motorway hill. Finally.

Light can flood the bus with amber

Strands of its flowing waves spill

Like treacle, leaking through every Commuter’s shield

And it all just

Stops and sighs and

Smiles for a second.

The sludge of folk relax.

And the Sun

Just pedals on and beams.

God they do love her.

In this brief respite.

At noon the streets are a burst football

On the quays an old woman feeds a fat gull her crusts

They flap about her like the white rings of Saturn

The Liffey lulls in azure

Throwing diamonds in the eyes of passers-by

Some catch and keep for later

Saturn’s pockets fill with this glitter

(It’s only glitter)

And it won’t be long before the wind takes her,

She knows.

At one it's lunch

“I am STARVING”

The offices release like steam

The fleets of elite

Kicking heels off concrete and loosening ties

City is awash with coffee scent

A stretch of the legs

Her parks paced with

Tight-laced shine

Pale cheeks bare the air like a brother


For just a while. Thank God it’s Friday.

Back to work at two.

City’s cells are cubicled to the cuticles and hived

The hum is dull and foggy as face after face

Stare down the glare, and the pitter-patter

Of little font across screens

Outside clouds turn and through glass

We peer in at City’s young

Strung-out and staring back

Bored.

By three City’s walls weep and run with rain

Her streets bleat with rubber and red lights

The blink and crawl of it all

Water pounds leaves into ground until

They’re squeezed of themselves and chlorophyll stains the sidewalk.

Nearing four these carcasses are squashed by the stampedes of feet

Trampling their way on and off buses

Huffing with the weight

It’s all school bags squeaking against coats

And they’re soaked to the skin anyway

This afternoon barrage of burgundy and blue

Venus at their helm,

Slapping each other on the backs of their heads

Howling, hungry young

Gleam with laughter

And push the driver’s buttons

They clutter the corners and shove

The Moon out of the way

He's got his earphones in and he's blaring city out.

At five the Sun is shivering under an umbrella

Waiting for Venus

The Moon plods the cobbles alone


Saturn tucks herself in,

The evening is hinting

The m50 is filling

City rids herself of the visitors

Back to Meath, back to Wicklow, back to

House and Couch. The air is afire with texts

“I'm on my way.”

“I’ll see you soon.”

At five past six Venus shyly waves

The Sun is euphoric- it's been a week too long

They get burritos and warm their bones

They fall in love near the GPO

Saturn has a friend around for tea,

And remembers what Fridays used to be

And Mercury takes back his name today

Buys a new smell, flowers for his wife

His life is his tonight

A meadow all the way home.

By seven the dinner’s on

City empties and slowly swells

Like a blister, boot-worn is she

Grooves carving into her body deeper than the lifelines upon lifelines here

A symbiosis she hosts

She's not sure why.

Navy drools on her roof like he always has

And powders her lids with dusk

She lets him like she always has

And breathes in that familiar musk

“Hunger is not always good I think”

“So you say every weekend. Come Monday you'll be bloodthirsty as ever darling.”

“I know. I know love.”

Eight.


City is dressing up for the night

She's applying bass and lavish neon

She gets a babysitter

She's uncoiling.

Nine

It's time. Train doors open to a fresh wave of stampers.

They're looking to fill a different kind of empty.

They greet each other like dear friends

And hunt the night for stardust

Ten

Kids hide bottles down their trouser legs and whoop down O'Connell Street

The clouds go up and the moon is unveiled

His face is radiant

He sways like a song for them on his pole on the sky

Eleven

Old friends sing their lungs out in tiny basement rooms

Until the roof shakes and the glass drops

They feel young now, and

Over their heads Venus kisses the sun goodnight

And over their heads the moon reigns alight

He bathes the town in a white they don't look at

Twelve.

On the crux of night City becomes liquid

She whisks and thrusts her subjects around

Want and need flick flame between her fingers,

She invites the flush of another's mouth

Laughs and knocks a glass

A bubbling cauldron of felicity

She throws the best parties.

Outside there is someone hunched into a niche

Trying to sleep her away on the pavement

It's dangerous


To get this close to City.

One.

Re-start.

While Mercury and his kids are watching warm screens,

Far from this place

And the Sun is dreaming in a duvet of gold,

Saturn wakes and circumnavigates her whole home

Feeding owls and nightingales that nest about her head

They sing to her sweetly of stars outside her flat

Of the foxes and badgers and the cubs asleep

She needs to check on them, each

Is dreaming

Or scavenging or wagging its tail

She goes around again. Around again.

The Moon watches her do so

At two in the morning he’s practically electric

He's swooping around the world


See he’s got an idea-

A new one, this one,


He's been up all night on it

Since he can't know when and when

He’s composing he just gets it,

It's just fire between his teeth

It's just a planet of roses

(The poets are starting to notice)

Three am rolls into the station

Running fast and

The town is dead. It won't come to meet you.

City sits on her rooftops

And watches it all. The Moon on fire.

Venus, watching over the dreaming Sun

Saturn in her flat with her rings of feather,

Mercury happy.


All the tiny people

Littering her alleys and houses and trains

Her drains

Her galleries.

She's been their war. She's been their wedding.

She blows smoke at the sky and shakes her head.

At four another one wakes before the day.

At five she's counting, six hours of sleep

Since the previous morning

She leaves the house at dawn

As City blends her shades of grey

And bulbs blink through the witch-light

Across the water.

She's sitting on the river, where it runs to the sea

Too chilly for comfort.

She lets a single shiver stir her

Before the birds return to song

Before the souls retrieve their bodies

In the crisp morning air.


Seirce Mhac Conghail is a student of English and Irish at Trinity College Dublin. Their work has been published in Dodging the Rain, The Phare, ODD Magazine, and Tealight Press, among others. They are an accomplished egg scrambler. 

Raised by a riveting river, running through ravines of crumbled red rocks that hug the blue oak and pine forests of the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Since childhood, David Sussberg cultivated a deep reverence for Nature and the power of written words. David continues to grow his love for culture and the Holiness of Nature through writing and creating art. David has lived and taught in several magical places throughout Latin America and the U.S. His soul’s purpose has been forged from perspectives different from the land he originated from. David is inspired to write about how culture is not separate from our natural world. This past year, David published his first book on Amazon titled, Poetry Medicine. Currently, he is earning an M.S. in Science Education. Education is David's calling and is passionately motivated to teach and write! 

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