Aidan Rooney – Angel



Her ankle tag reads Ange-Louise, 2 ans.


Were it not for the diaper in her frock

she’d slip. She sleeps in the crook of my arm

that has fallen asleep. Her sweat beads grow.


She’d be one of the ones on the world news

had she not hung her eyes and raised her arms

for nothing more than a pick me up.


Were it not for her heat and her heartbeat

against mine, she might not be there at all.

There are no words. Outside, a waiting truck.


I hope she won’t wake when I put her back.


        — L’Orphelinat Mère Térésa, Port-au-Prince



Aidan Rooney is an Irish native, resident in the US since 1987; he teaches at Thayer Academy and lives in Hingham, Massachusetts. Aidan’s collections of poetry — Day Release (2000) and Tightrope (2007) — are published by  The Gallery Press in Ireland.
The two poems featured here are from a portfolio of poems written in response to Aidan’s involvement, since the 2010 earthquake, in Haiti. In 2013, the poet F.D. Reeve selected Angel for the Daniel Varoujan Prize (from the New England Poetry Club), awarded annually for a poem worthy of Daniel Varoujan, a poet killed in the Armenian genocide. 

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