Neil Slevin, Breathe, Remember

Neil Slevin is a writer from Co. Leitrim, Ireland whose poetry has been published widely. These poems feature in his work-in-progress chapbook. You can read more of Neil via


I promised you
I’d speak as Gaeilge
so I took a stranger’s words inside,

held each close to myself,
filled them with love
and let them float

into the air.


The space where
your skin and hair
become my light and dark,
where we create
our galaxy of stars;
stay with me,
keep me there.


You wandered in
to sit at my feet,
didn’t make a sound,

so when I looked
about for hope, I saw
you on the ground.

You stayed with me
and my silence, and I,
not daring to move,

I sat with you
for as long as I could,
knew that we were love.


After Mezzaniti 

They all slept here, once,
between the crook
of my arm and body

while I lay awake afraid,
too unsure and lost in new
for sleep to find me

so while body rested
mind roamed free
the waiting night,

its shadowed soul,
but where it went
I do not know,

only that it would
meet and greet them
when it came home,

when morning dawned
for them to leave me.
I sleep alone.


Our silence swelled
into a bubble
I could have lived forever

while life
hummed on outside
everything lost in your glow

while what you knew
set you ablaze
and I basked in
the warmth you gave away

joyous just to be, breathe
if a little scared
I might disturb
the bits of universe that made us

If I could live it all again
I would die happily
at its end

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