How fragile are these threads of gossamer
Stretched from one generation to the last,
Or to the next, or just from year to year;
The rock-hard scones, the lecture in Belfast,
The day your father just escaped the blast,
Summer on summer spent in Inisheer.
A history without a chronicler,
A hardly-known and all-but-endless past.
In almost every house in every street
In every town, in all the world, these scenes
Would mean as little as a doorless key;
They are like the familiar face we meet
In some strange place, or like the name that means
Nothing to all the world-- but all the world to me.