Tralee’s large Famine graveyard is known locally as God’s Acre.  This is a large  gravesite just outside the  town, where hundreds of the dead from Tralee’s Workhouse would have been buried in unmarked graves during the Famine and in later years.

During a recent enjoyable story-telling Cois Tiné in Siopa na Méar, Listowel, Dick Carmody recited this lovely poem, which he had written:

God’s Acre

God’s Acre bids me enter through the well trodden stile of crafted limestone

Man’s handiwork separating the living from the dead, the busy from the rested

Therein repose the remains of the unmentioned, unlisted and oft forgotten

In distant times of want, denial and inhumanity they came here for final rest

Alone they sometimes sought it out, cold refuge against an even colder neglect

Last faltering steps taken to meet their Maker in the soft embrace of Mother Earth

Or in make-shift carts a final journey shared from workhouse or roadside refuge

Drawn over limestone paths by souls rehearsing their own inevitable last journey.

In our own time of plenty and opportunity we still seek out this relic from the past

Stepping inside from a world speeding by, we each find our own personal recess

Arriving to repose the burdens of our living with the memories of those deceased

The Stations, the Grotto, the Altar and the Cross all give us comfort on our way

Departing we are relieved, comforted and renewed by this sanctuary to our dead

God surely chose his Acre wisely, its great value not being of our choice or making.

©Dick Carmody                                                          January, 2013

MKA Blog God's Acre