Writers’ Week Listowel 2012

Crossing over the five arch bridge, traversing the River Feale, on the 30th May we entered Listowel town for the 41st annual Writers’ Week.  It’d been a three hour drive from the Cork City, along the back roads in the north of the county, skimming past ditches of white hawthorn, fresh ferns and nettles. We […]

To Proust

“…dispirited after a dreary day with the prospect of a depressing morrow, I raised to my lips a spoonful of the tea in which I had soaked a morsel of the cake… no sooner had the warm liquid mixed with the crumbs touched my palate than a shudder ran through me and I stopped, intent […]

Church Going

It was my sister who pointed it out to me; on the floor of the church, underneath the pew in front of us, was the under-wire from a bra. I did not recognise it till she told me. We laughed quietly to each other, imagining the possible scenarios that would lead to a bra-wire lodged […]

What I Talk about When I talk about Marathons

Starting 2008 Cork City Marathon Finishing 2008 Cork City Marathon June 1st 2008; the finish line seems unreachable as I turn onto Carrigrohane Road. I am on mile twenty-two; the seventeen-story Cork County Hall appears ominously far off. My legs burn; my calves grow tighter. It’s the last stretch back into the city, though the […]

A Taught Creativity?

It seems there are two views on the benefit of MAs in Creative Writing – one from those who do not approve of them, saying ‘writers cannot be created’, and the other from those have graduated from Creative Writing MAs. I myself come from the latter group. In 2008, I enrolled in the Creative Writing […]

One Sole Survivor

I see in the papers a picture of a 60 year old man on a raft swept nine miles out to sea by the 2011 Japanese tsunami. Surrounding him is driftwood of people’s homes, the splinters of their lives. In the corner of the photograph a grey boat is inching towards him with rescuers on […]