Rhyme Rag

10 mins read

Kilkenny Arts Office is delighted to share the ten poems selected by this years Rhyme Rag Editor Colm Keegan. Rhyme Rag workshop’s took place in CBS Kilkenny and Coláiste Abhainn Rí Callan this Spring resulting in beautiful work by some young writers.

All poems can also be found on the Rhyme Rag website and Instagram account over the coming weeks


Blue Happiness

Blue Happiness is my first friend

leaving for her dream college.


Its my brothers thirteenth birthday

and the anniversary of my mother being cancer free.


Its packing a suitcase,

and the smell of my old perfume.


The confidence boost of using retinol,

evident in the mannerisms of all the older women in my life.


Its putting on makeup,

and my teachers praising me for being so well behaved.


My favourite song playing on the car radio,

relatives saying I’ve grown so big.


The pleasant conversation

filling the silence after an argument.


Each one of these happy moments,



by that familiar blue feeling

that somehow manages to sneak its way in every time.


The feeling of being happy,

but sad, all at once.


By Daisy Carroll



Growing Pains

I cannot remember exactly when she went away. When she got lost.

Her brightly coloured scribbles on the walls were coated with a fresh coat of paint and I grew out of all the clothes she used to wear.

At first I did not miss her, or perhaps I did not really know she was gone, too focused on the future to reflect upon the past.

I cannot remember precisely when I first felt her absence. Perhaps when I saw the friends she once had change and leave me behind. Perhaps it was the first time I ever felt unsure of myself.

When unfamiliar feelings planted themselves between my lungs, I could not help but envy the girl ignorant to all but the dreams in her head.

I knew I could not bring her back and even if I could I would not want to. She will always be fearless and untameable, blessed with naivety and excitement. She will remain a memory, a fragment of time.

Yet sometimes I find it hard to believe she is gone for I see her everywhere I go.

I see her in grazed knees bandaged with pink plasters, in grass-stained books and wild daisies.

I see her in tea parties with teddy bears and pretend cakes.

When I look into the mirror, I recognise her within the person I see.

She did not go away, she is still there,

She is the girl I was and will always be.


by Ali Bryan


My Grandmothers Home

A long scenic lane,

Filled with flowers and forestry,

A white semi-detached cottage,

With yellow window sills

and an old-style brown door,

Beautiful flowers and plants

placed all around the grove,

Big stables with Connemara horses and donkeys,

Birds chirping all around in the trees,

And peter the pig rolling around

in the mud in the small paddocks,

Long walks with the dogs as the sun sets,

A weight off your shoulders,

A place to forget you troubles,

My paradise.


By Erin Keating


Stranger Again

It was meant to be a New Year

New beginnings for us

First few days were so bright

Then suddenly it turned so dark

I hadn’t expected such a rapid change

Whatever I tried

It just wouldn’t slide

And before I knew it

I was just a stranger again.


By Thomas Deegan



As I’m thrown to the bedroom floor,

I wonder why I’m treated so badly?


From the mashed, mouldy banana

to the three day old sandwich

buried in my depths,

to the dog eared books

and chewed pencils

scattered in all my pockets.


Why am I hated?

I have scars all over me,

a result of years of being dragged,

kicked, thrown and shoved


just to be cruelly stitched

back together again

to keep me going for what

my supposed friend calls the “school year”.


Why am I disliked?


Is it because I spend most of my time

in the place they despised

or the memories woven into my seams.


By Lia Butler


Womp Womp

 As someone’s born

As someone dies


People are torn

People tell lies


Winter truly is a dark mime

Although love is shared


Friends drop by all the time

to show they cared


We go by drinking

and singing


And trying not to cling

So we bring


People who’ve cried

For those that died


By Robert Deacon



The Cinema

A place we go to escape our reality

Where we watch stories unfold on the big screen

You could see a man fall to the depths of insanity

But when the lights turn on we ponder “What did it mean”.


We ask ourselves what the film was trying to say

Perhaps that life’s only worth living if spent with others

Or maybe we can’t leave what’s important for another day

Or maybe we should say “I love you” to our mothers.


In my opinion filmmaking’s an honourable craft

As it provides millions of people with enjoyment

And similar to some one stranded seeing a life raft

A film could end a suffering person’s torment.


By Zach Power



The Sand

The sand of a billion years old

Gathered in my shoes

“Here lie creatures of which I was never told:

Forgotten ancient species”, I muse


Old beings died and fell

And sunk down to the sea bed

They washed up with the swell

Right to where I treasure


I looked up at the sunny weather

Waves continued to crash, forever


By Hugh O’Connell


The Pact

His arms tired of lifting,

“That’s seven, three more!”

Even through heavy breathing,

He could still hear his mate’s roar


As he put back up the weights,

His friend recited their pact,

“So let’s get one thing straight,

Don’t you dare ever hold back”


One hundred and sixty nine,

a new PR for his squat,

All that weight on his spine,

ended in a snap, a crack and a pop


By the medics he was lifted,

His only thought was their pact,

He should not have listened,

He should have held back


He festered greed like a fool,

he knew even years later,

“How could I have been such a tool?”

as he wheeled round in his chair


Even years later, all he could think about was that same pact,

“So let’s get one thing straight, don’t you dare ever hold back”


By Brendan Pretorius


The deck of Cards (the club and diamond)

 The two frowning men,

with their unkempt stubble,

sooty hands and silent postures

looked on in blackness at the young prince,

as he strutted across the village square,

flanked by gruff guards with pointy spikes.


One whispered something in the others ear

and he smiled with skulduggery.

The young prince with his chest puffed wide

continued to boast around his square,

and as he passed the men

they were now grinning even more broadly.


The prince now looked puzzled as their gaze fell on him,

and continued to parade along, but this time with less convictions.


By Anonymous




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