You were a folklore figure
famous for the wild things you did
some said, a kind of Achilles.
You lifted a scythe to a crop of oats
cut a swathe the length of the field without stopping
some said, a powerful man.
You left a last indent of your head on a pillow
walked to work in Manchester
carrying a candle in your pocket.
You stepped into a crane bucket
to be winched forty feet below ground
where two men lay lifeless.
You were roped in the fireman’s chair knot
your cloth cap abandoned
on a sewer shaft floor.
You came back in the summer
when swallows skimmed waters at Riasc lake
and stooks of oats slanted in Lios Ban.
Four men held ropes tight