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March 3, 2021


#ReadingIrelandMonth21 “Still” (poem)

by NancyElin



  1. RTÉ commissioned  STILL to aptly describe and capture
  2. Ireland’s reaction to the deadly virus.
  3. It puts forward the reality of our current uncertainty.
  4. Ms Olusanya was born in Nigeria and moved to Ireland with her mother.
  5. She has settled  in Longford where her application for refugee status was accepted.
  6. Core message:
  7. Covid-19 virus It is touching us all in different ways and different degrees.
  8. The only thing we can do for each other right now
  9. to remain as still as possible.
  10. It is how we can save each otherl



Covid came.

And Ireland stood still.

Shocked at how much could gather at our doorsteps – like dust.

We wrestled with what we might, What we may, How life would continue, the ways it must.

Stood still.

The virus ate through limbs of every family tree,

It choked out the lives we’d built roots around,

It emptied out purses; cutting money by the foot,

Rendered hearts bruised and persons forgotten, Left us breathless. For dead.


We closed into ourselves.

We folded behind lock and key, Inhaled through the fogs of uncertainty,

We found fun in the walls of our homes,

Made it work, Fashioned it for play,

Carved out sections we can fill joy with,

So we can hold it firm on the days we didn’t know what we next, what could happen.

Stood still.

For those whom age had known beyond a golden jubilee,

whose eyes glaze with film reel memories,

whose daughters have vowed to love them in their sunset,

whose sons have kissed them in their sunrise.

We want your vision of us in full colour.

Stood still.

For the Frontline workers armed with nothing but faith,

For the emerging minds that must dare to dream in high definition,

For the lonely minds that are glaring at love through a screen,

For the bodies that create homes in cardboard shelters.


For you. Ireland is standing still.

But tomorrow, when our knees get soft with impatience and the gates of our homes swing open,

Which way will our legs go?

Which path does our heart know?


Read more from Ireland, poetry
5 Comments Post a comment
  1. Mar 3 2021

    How wonderful Nancy – I hadn’t read this – thanks for sharing x

    • Mar 3 2021

      …trying to touch on the cultural diversity that is also Ireland! #ErinGoBragh

  2. Mar 7 2021

    This is an amazing poem. The spoken word performance brought the ideas alive. Thanks for sharing this.


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  1. Reading Ireland Month: Week 1 round-up and giveaway!

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