Flashback – by Patrick Dorrian


From a distant yet familiar place,
The urgent ‘whop, whop’ of the helicopter,
Woke the household, it’s searchlight
Flickering from street to cliff,
Was missing on Cavehill.
But this time, I was not in the present,
I had woken in winter 72,
The ‘whop, whop’ was a British Army helicopter,
Keeping station overhead, it’s searchlight
Flickering from street to street.
Illuminating the orchestra of terror,
The rumble of armoured cars,
Shouted orders, bangs from busted doors,
Screams from women and children
All underscored by the baleful bangingĀ 
Of metal dustbin lids rising from street to street,
As the women of the Falls warned their neighbours,
The British were looking for men to intern.





Patrick is a 67 yr old Grandfather of one, father of 3, married. His former occupation was a second level school teacher of geography and general subjects. His ‘writing’ began as a stress reliever, and is untutored, in that he has never been taught how to write poetry.