New Year’s Greed

Men’s dull dreams.

A steel, silver shimmer in the driveway for the New Year; sweaty St. Stephen’s sales.

Mêlées of greed.

Greco-Roman push-and-pull.

“A handbag, a handbag; my salvation for a handbag!”

We want for nothing and yet all we do is want.

We drip desire like a dive bar’s leaky urinals,

Shed selfishness along with our dry-dead epidermal cells and the moribund microflora of our gastrointestinal tract.

We had it all for a couple of days and when everything feels as hollow as the carved-out turkey’s carcass that rots in the rubbish, we ask ourselves philosophically what it was all about.

“‘Tis never worth it,” they say up town, eyeing your handbag as you eye theirs.

“Thank God it’s only once a year,” slobbering over the specs of the new car you’ll have under your arse on January 2.

And we tighten our belts for a spell, take the foot off the greed gas until at least St. Valentine’s.

While the ads offer to slim you down, tan you up and put a gleam on your teeth that would dazzle the risen Christ.

The kids’ presents; neglected and put aside, give new meaning to the word “disposable”,

And there’s more philosophy: “Why can’t they appreciate what they have?”

You hold the handbag you got in the sales over the bed and shake out the last few items of your “life”,

And you stuff it in on top of the dozens of others, thinking of hints to drop for Valentine’s Day.


About ucronin

Born in the country town of Ennis, Co. Clare, Ireland in 1975, I now live in Madrid with my partner and two young daughters and work in a research institute. While I was always a hungry reader and harboured vague notions of being a writer, as a young man writing was the furthest thing from my mind; after leaving school, I did a B.Sc. in Biotechnology in Galway's NUI, an M.Sc. in Plant Science in University College Cork and a Ph.D. in Microbiology in the University of Limerick, the plan being to dedicate my professional career to scientific research. While having written extensively within my technical scientific field, I had never contemplated becoming a writer of fiction until a road-to-Damascus moment on the N69 between Listowel and Tarbert, Co. Kerry in the summer of 2011. Since then, most of my spare time has been occupied with writing. In whatever other free moments I have, I like to listen to music, play the guitar and garden (which here in Madrid means a lot of watering of plants and spraying for red spider mite). My ambition is to become as good a writer as I possibly can, eventually freeing myself from the cold clutches of science and earning a living through my scribblings. The type of writing that excites me is honest, intelligent, well-constructed and richly descriptive.
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