Tag Archives: loss

my grandmother’s cupboard

The crockery cupboard was on the left- door open, filled with china and cruet sets, the wee pot for mixing mustard for Granda. The other cupboard, the one on the right, was the mysterious one. It went from floor to ceiling, and was so deep I never saw the back.

The bottom third was Granda’s. It was filled with tools and cleaning equipment, like shoe polish and all the possible brushes. While Granny chopped and cooked and cleaned, he’d gather up all the shoes in the house- I had to take them off my feet- and polish them to a military shine. The whole house shone, in a way few do now.

I was never tall enough to reach the top of the cupboard. Granny was tiny but ingenious. She had a solution for every problem, but I’m not sure I ever saw her get to those shelves. Even standing on a kitchen chair wouldn’t have brought her to much above the height of her sons.

The shelves I could see had envelopes and photographs and sewing tasks and the nearly finished knitting. The inside of the door had postcards from people who’d got away for a few days, to Bundoran, or Skerries. And when the cupboard doors were closed, all was neat, tidy and safe. Presentable.

It all changed within a few weeks. We moved too far away for daily drop ins. Granda died. Our worlds were shaken. Other relations moved in with Granny. That kitchen wasn’t mine anymore. I was a visitor.

The cupboard doors were closed.

Task for Future Learn Creative Writing course- generate something new

what just happened? life.

Only last week, but how the world has changed. Only last Wednesday I spent some lovely hours with bloggy buddies Yvonne and Lesley. Yvonne was home from Arizona with her daughter, and took time out from family fun days to spend with two local women she’d never met. Three of us gathered round a table, strangers but not strangers, a model of the connecting power of blogging. Friends, who happened to be meeting in person for the first time.

Yvonne, Lesley, me
Yvonne, Lesley, me

Days later, Yvonne was widowed. Ken drifted off gently in his sleep. Well and good, a lovely way to go. Not so much for those left behind. Those still thousands of miles from the Arizona heat. Thousands of miles, and an eternity away from him.

Yvonne has written a remarkable post. You should read it. Hug your loved ones when you can. Send positive, supportive vibes out into the world.

Let’s appreciate our boring lives.

keep moving forward

Bloggy buddies- if you’ve ever wondered about the difference a regular, flawed, person can make, read on.
If you’ve cursed all politicians, read on.

If you’ve wondered how change happens, read on.

Read the properly awesome Michaela Hollywood’s thoughts on being understood, encouraged and inspired by a politician.

Conall McDevitt


This week, that politician resigned from public life in NI. He was right to do so, but we are all the poorer because of it.

Anyone fancy stepping up?

our great loss

I’ll never see Heaney now

Who will tell us the truth about ourselves?

Who will make us listen?

Who will keep us from the herd?

Who will remind us of the hope and the history, our foolishness, and our losses?

Rest now, Seamus.

Clearances, VIII

I thought of walking round and around a space

Utterly empty, utterly a source

Where the decked chestnut tree had lost its place

In our front hedge above the wallflowers.

The white chips jumped and jumped and skitted high.

I heard the hatchet’s differentiated

Accurate cut, the crack, the sigh

And collapse of what luxuriated

Through the shocked tips and wreckage of it all.

Deep-planted and long gone, my coeval

Chestnut from a jam jar in a hole,

Its heft and hush became a bright nowhere,

A soul ramifying and forever

Silent, beyond silence listened for.