By Órla Fay


Dublin, February 2017


There it hangs, just its-dark-self, 

not even spectacular and yet closer inspection 

requires even closer inspection – 

this fabled work, word-of-mouth enhanced,

Chinese-whispered vast, requires some undoing.

The pronouncement of its title 

is the casting of a spell:


La Cattura di Cristo


He, Himself, eyes downcast, 

kissed by Judas and fled by John

while lamp-bearing Peter watches on.

And you look to the soldier’s arm 

wrapped in polished armour,

reflective as a mirror

and grapple with your own conscience,


as the painter had contrived

in his battle with the light and the dark.

The greatest betrayal is a watermark,

a watershed, a benchmark.

I remember the day she placed

the sword in my side, how the wound

could only heal with time and plenty of it.




Órla Fay is the editor of Boyne Berries Magazine. Recently her work has appeared in Boyne Berries 21, The Ofi Press Arctic Issue, A New Ulster, Sixteen Magazine and Spontaneity. She also has a poem forthcoming in The Honest Ulsterman. She blogs at and more of her work can be found on