CHRISTMAS DAY by Michael Healy

CHRISTMAS DAY                                                                                   

C the Carols we sing in celebration,

H the Holly to help our decorations.

R for the Reindeer who pull Santa’s sleigh

I is Ivy to go with the Holly, we say

S the sweet Sauce we pour over our pud

T the green fir Tree where our presents are stood

M for the Marzipan wrapped round our cake

A in our bed the night before, ah that is Awake!

S as we Sing on Christmas Eve.

D for the Day that we all should be pleased

A for All those in need of our help.

And so to Y, Yuletide,

                        the old name for Christmas.

And a Merry Christmas to you all.         

By Michael Healy  


‘Restless’ and ‘New Home’ by Angela O’Connor


In the dream he’d been watching

not listening

Always the same time of day

 And once he was even drifting

In a land far far away

Wondering out loud if

He’d touched her, tasted her

Precious few reasons to give

Waking with a silent self-despair.


New Home

The wall is cool to touch,

Uneven solid and tall.

How many souls have rested here,

Laughed, cried and died.


Many stories held within mortar

Now, mine too lays its foundation

A crack here, peeling there

My home, my body, my soul

You by Angela O’Connor


Love, I try to provide it

Yet the actions surrounding

our world will never allow it.


For you, my friend are not that.

You have chosen destruction,

Pain, hurt and suffering.


An empty relic of life,

You have pierced yours

With a perpetual purgatory.


Now from within your


May you reflect and repent.

Angela O’Connor


She lives beneath the crying sky pressed up against the foam flecked sea.
In a clifftop house, hugged close by rhododendrons, her clock ticks away our time.
She offers you shelter from the approaching storm
Then, when the sun sneaks through the window,
She will walk you through the stained glass dappled hall
To take you on a scenic cliff top ride,
And watch the evening ocean tide,
As she holds you tightly to her side,
While talking of life and suicide
And other truths of which we rarely speak.


She takes you to a church, set down a rain veiled cobbled road
In which Rossetti clothed the solemn stones with romantic artistry,
Where she tells you of those Pre-Raphaelites
And of their lovers and their brotherhood.
Then leaving with downward steps onto the shore
She serves you cake and cinnamon tea,
While the gulls shriek out their misery,
And a rainbow surrenders to the sea,                             
While she talks of death and poetry,
And other truths of which we rarely speak.


We drove through wooded hills, clad in their autumn leaves
Painted the colour of molten lava by the late October sun.
The tortuous path of the country road hid its ending
Like a metaphor for the enigma of our own lives.
Cocooned inside the car we become philosophical,
Did big bang or God the universe create?
Have we at any time outwitted fate?
Have we souls death will liberate?
Does love all actions validate?
And other truths of which we rarely speak.


She is asking me the question, “what is life really for?
When we have no god to satisfy is love the only answer?”
But I can find no words. My lips are sealed
By the poverty of my own wisdom.
There is little time left to answer this question.
We are near the edge, we are in the queue,
There is nothing she or I can do,
But hold on tight and see it through,
Until the end comes into view,
When all the truths we spoke of are revealed.



Arthur played Father Christmas,
Down at the village hall,
A little boy sat on his lap,
A little lad called Paul.

“Now what would you like for Christmas?”
He asked him full of cheer,
“A new coat for my mummy,
And for dad, a case of beer”.

“But please don’t make the beer too strong,
Well not as strong as rum,
Last year, that’s what daddy got,
And really hit my mum”.

“Mum said, she walked into a door,
But I know that’s not true,
She really would get quite upset,
Me, telling this to you”.

A tear ran down old Santa’s cheek,
With every word he heard,
He happened to be Paul’s father,
As he hid, behind the beard.

Pete Brammer

The Unbelievable Truth by MICHAEL HEALY

Michael’s response to the trigger ‘truth’:
As a group, the sad truth is that Human Beings as a race do not take care of each other. Indeed, through history the evidence is that Wars have sought better and more efficient ways to cause such harm. This truth was brought vividly to my attention some years ago.
The year was 1978. I was talking to the Chief Scientist of a company called Cary Scientific Instruments in Metuchen, New York, USA.
The purpose of my visit was to assess one of Cary’s Raman Spectrometers with a view to its possible purchase for research at Nottingham University, a mere £70,000 .
The Chief Scientist was an interesting man, I guess about twice my age. He was an expert in the use of spectroscopy for chemical analysis. Their machine was state-of-the-Art: laser powered, and computer driven. By comparison my machine at Nottingham would have looked out of date at Stonehenge. I continued our conversation by asking him what was his background. He explained that he did his first degree at Harvard followed by his PhD , and then he joined the US Army’s technical branch just as the war started. He found himself being seconded to the Manhattan Project – the Atomic Bomb.
He went on to explain the excitement of developing techniques for purification of Uranium and methods for measuring it. He had witnessed several bomb tests in the Mexican desert, which he said were astounding. ‘But none of us realized what the impact would be’. He then went on to describe the dropping on Hiroshima. ‘We were all horrified at what we had developed and the magnitude of the effect,’ he said.
I was slightly shocked to note he had tears in his eyes. He continued that as soon as he could he left the US Army’s Technical Branch and returned to civilian life.
‘Have a look at the pictures of destruction caused to see what it meant,’ he said to me. ‘Be careful what you do as a scientist.’
This encounter had a profound impact on me and ever since I have considered the impact of any research I do.
Oh yes, I bought the Raman Spectrometer