AM Kelly

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I have been writing since a very young age and I have a Masters in Creative Writing. I enjoy writing mostly poetry and short stories. I like most types of fiction particularly dystopian works.

Current project


When fields are overgrown with ashes,
My swift of foot lies heavy awake,
I symbolize this night with trees,
Before shaft of winter decides to break,

Into pieces ashes falls, between my fingers,
But little by little, remnants dry clear,
Hesitant- to land on my coat of armour,
Warring sound of legitimate fear,

Voices far removed from cooing,
Gentle whispers, carry the fault of dread,
I drift to the branches without leaves,
And everything and all that is unsaid,

Her eyes dart into mine,
The ashes we cross become light,
Her heart weighs heavy inside me,
I close my eyes for the night,

Winter has laid bare its trenches,
I seldom curl up inside its depth,
Ramps up the frost of an ageless problem,
Never gets laid to rest.

Writing sample

Then I saw her. Her reflection ingrained on the window behind. I moved through the crowds to gain a closer look at her face. The resemblance was uncanny, the same tumbling head of dark blonde colours just stopping at her shoulders. Her eyes that peculiar shape, narrow and cat like as if she were a camera lens zooming in and scrutinizing your every blown up and sorry looking features. Each step I moved nearer another detail jumped out at me. I could not discern any single difference yet. Like existing fully in a past moment when it was all as real and fresh as it was now.

The increasing numbers in the public bar however thwarted my progress. I stood stationary against the glass case full of golden embossed cutlery. Ladies dressed to the nines in full black garb, long cocktail type dresses and tailor-made suits, complete with headgear completely unsuited to the proceedings. I moved left and a large grey feather like ornament obstructed my view and blocked my nostrils. I moved right a large bucket styled hat at an awkward angle nearly knocked me off my balance. The men were just as overdressed. Long waistcoats which looked liked they should have one of those chained watches attached and bowler hats. None of them looked my way. They were all huddled together in private conversations holding with vice like grips onto their beers and glasses of white wine. Or they were sat at the bar hunched over the counter with their eyes fixed on their next beverage or latest conquest. Maybe they didn’t want to look my way. If they did they wouldn’t like what they saw. Only she looked different. Maybe I had singled her out with my stumbling, opaque vision. The many drops I had had since the start was not exactly helping my judgement.

It was empty then. A voice came out of the distance. Old man Michael was there sitting in a snug in the far corner underneath the shelves of books of great Iris h poets nursing a pint of Guinness. He looked sadly into his pint. The bar looked like it had been there for centuries. I swung open the door and a handful of dust fell on my tattered old jeans. Brushing them down with my right hand I slowly moved inside. The dirty brown floorboards creaked as I walked on them, every step sounded like someone was squealing in agony. I half imagined someone lying under there waiting to be rescued from their dungeon. A large brown counter devoid of any mats or ornament which I was presumed was the bar stood directly in front of me curving around in a semi-circular fashion as if it were smiling sweetly, beckoning me to come nearer and taste all of the delights that lay in wait behind it. But old man Michael was calling. His voice grew shrill with his thick Dublin accent barely comprehensible. He sat at one of the square tables which were dotted around the place with gold and white striped couches behind and miniature stools before. Michael had his infamous clothing on him. The ones which he was known for and that you recognize immediately that was him from any distance. His dungarees, luminous green jumper and shiny, gold belt buckle never failed to delight the senses.

I found myself sitting beside him and still barely unable to make out what he was saying. He looked at me closely. I shakily tucked my long dark blonde hair inside my jumper.

“Are ya’ ere’ for it”

I looked at his red face.


“Bes’ get ya’ a drink so’. Tommy get this one’ a drink. What are ya’ havin’”

“Maybe a beer”

“Too many of them” Michael said lifting up his pint swiftly and placing back on the table with a thud which shook more dust out of the ceiling.

“What” I said, sitting right at the edge of the stool, my hands now underneath my legs.

“Too many of yous” Michael shook his head.

I looked away for someone called Tommy but could not see any one around.

“I don’t…don’t understand”

Michael looked right into my eyes. “Thinks ya’ do”

Nodding in agreement I found myself doing next. Maybe it was the best course of action to take. A large jug of beer was placed on the beer mat in front of me. Larger than anything I had seen before in my life. It was shaped like an urn you put somebody’s ashes into. I shifted back in my seat.

“Don’t be afraid of it, it won’t bite ya”.

I looked at the beer then at Michael smiling, his wrinkled up elderly face becoming more creased as he did, then back at the beer again before taking it up in both of my hands and taking a sip. The potency of it went right to my head. I fidgeted with the gold-plated inscribed bracelet on my arm. It was the only reminder I had left.

Before long, the people arrived. Hours had passed and Michael and I had sat in the same staccato position. He regaled me with tales of his youth, the antics he had gotten himself up to and places he had travelled on the back of his old bicycle which he’d built up himself in the backyard of his father’s farm. Three or four jugs were placed before me with a hand whose body I could not quite see from the angle I was sitting. It was if it was disconnected from it and stretching out from the musty, stale atmosphere of the place. The dim lighting wasn’t helping either. After the hours and in the half darkness Michael began snoring, his eyes still partly open perhaps in watch of the change that was happening around him, deposits of people here, there, and everywhere. I sat forward again and took my last sip, my head swimming joyfully with the effects of the beer and the stories of long ago.

That was then. Michael was gone from his snug. A man in a tight, polar neck black jumper and overlong trousers came along and carried him out the door. I was still trapped among the crowds. My body had just started to loosen and now it was once more firmly erect. The music started to play. It sounded like a banjo or some kind of stringed instrument. Suddenly it became amplified. Drums and keyboard accompanied. The speakers attached to the ceiling started to drown out the hum of the chat. I placed my hands on my ears and tried to look into the distance. I couldn’t see her anymore. Had she moved? I looked left and right but she was still nowhere to be found. No one was listening to the music but still carried on gesticulating wildly and tipping their heads back with roaring laughter. The noise kept growing louder and louder and louder. I couldn’t hear my own thoughts. Nothing else could be done. I took a deep breath and raised my head high in search of a doorway, after a few seconds I just about caught a glimpse of a half ajar door not knowing where it led. Then I pushed my way through the crowds forcing them to look at me and scorn at my lack of manners. I did not apologize. My head was too focused on the doorway and the promise of peace.

The doorway led out to the back of the pub. A place I never even knew existed. Although it was little more than a walled pavement with a few beer kegs stood against the door. I leaned against the wall and closed my eyes for half a second. Maybe I wanted her to reappear just one more time. The frosty night-time air made me shiver. Wrapping my hands all over myself I slid down to the ground still damp from the earlier showers.

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