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Wednesday, 11 October 2017


Today I wrote a poem about a man called Mallon. I have no idea why he popped into my head. Way back in the 1970s, we met, along with a close friend of mine, at a youth club. He came across as a great guy, an encourager of creative talent amongst young people. He was a great listener and was interested in what we did and what we had to say. He was a nice guy. One day he pitched the idea to my friend and I that we should make a film. So off he drove us up the Black Mountain to make a weird, one-reel silent movie - that didn't make any sense. He was director and cameraman. My friend and I ran about a lot, gurned and tumbled. It was great craic. Cut to 2002 and Mallon, by now a bigwig amongst the Ulster-Scots, had been arrested in Chicago for grooming an underage girl (who turned out to be an undercover FBI agent). The cops raided his hotel room and found a video camera, sweets, a gold necklace wrapped in pink paper and a 12-pack of condoms. He was banged up in the US. I have no idea if he is still with us but he was a man my friend and I knew (and trusted) and a man we didn't know at all. The poem - oh, sorry, I can't print it because I've submitted it to a magazine.

In case you are wondering, nothing untoward happened to me or my friend.

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